A Process for Discovering Truth? Can credentialed chains, or other ID Tech, help create authentic voices learning from historical research practices of Museums & Archives.

From IIW

A Process for Discovering Truth: Can Credential Chains (or Other ID Tech) Help Create Authentic Voices? Learning from Historical Research Practices of Museums & Archives

Wednesday 6A

Convener: Sarah Allen

Notes-taker(s): Sarah Allen

Tags for the session - technology discussed/ideas considered:

Discussion notes, key understandings, outstanding questions, observations, and, if appropriate to this discussion: action items, next steps:

Session notes

  • overview of digitization challenge at the Smithsonian in 2013, and exploration of linking meta data
  • genealogy & "truth" challenge
  • Internet Archive doing project with wikipedia to cross-reference articles with physical source (e.g. books)
  • certificate chains
    • Expert ⇒ linked to all claims, if found to be not fraudulent can revoke credentials
    • Institution ⇒ claims
    • Amateur researchers / citizen scientists
  • How to stitch primary source material into authority
  • Problem of attribution in case of name changes, marriage
  • Examine “network of provenance”
  • Having an idea is not enough to claim invention
  • Idea of linked relationships, maybe the social network (of historical figures) is the important data to capture — yet how do we know? This is captured in the primary source materials, records of visits, journals, letters
  • Problem
    • Modern truth is re-written on the fly
    • “Notability” threshold in wikipedia pages for people
    • Trust in “anti-vax” community, single trusted source of truth in a community, not dissimilar to each of us who have trusted sources
    • Trust and deconstruction of Big 3 media (bygone era of network TV) and the need to rebuild what trust is (what is our consensus) To replace no trust (current era)
    • Altering history, deep fakes
  • [Chris Savage] “Managing the ambient trust commons”
  • Sloan foundation looking for ways to establish trust at scale
  • what if we were able to capture (and inspect) the trust chain?
  • Use case: reassemble artifacts collected in one expedition collected in one event and distributed to many different museums / archives
  • Related to git and signing commits

Related Work

Next Steps

What to do to push this process forward?  Brainstorm here

  • What problems might we be solving?
  • Learn / Contribute To / Report On existing tools?
  • Create a set of standards for any dataset that purports to support truth discovery (eg. data locations, dates, contributor identities, reference codebases, ideally with some cryptographic signatures on it all)
  • Curate collections of data sets that help get at the truth
  • More philosophizing

Specific next steps (Sarah is exploring options for pilot project this summer)

  • Clear Problem Statement
  • Pilot project ideas (could be small, focused technical approaches OR small-ish data sets where we can validate how people would add links as they add data)
    • Wordpress plugin (or jekyll, hugo)
    • SF Japanese community stories (Wendy has a connection here, Sarah to follow-up in June)