“Atos Origin Partners the National Library of France in securing the long-term preservation of its digital holdings”

Paris, June 18, 2008

Bibliothèque Nationale de France (BnF), France's National Library, has selected Atos Origin to develop its new SPAR Distributed Archiving and Preservation System, designed to preserve France's digital cultural heritage, enable access to the BnF's digital archives and store its digital holdings over the very long-term. By 2010, the system will be able to manage more than 1,000 terabytes of data, by tagging them with metadata to facilitate long-term preservation and process them to keep them accessible long into the future. The broad-based project leverages innovative technologies to address the important challenge of preserving France's digital cultural heritage for future generations.

As the size of its digital collection grows, the BnF is committed to meeting the challenge of preserving, over the very long term, the digital heritage under its responsibility. This is why its teams have designed and developed the SPAR Distributed Archiving and Preservation System. Atos Origin has now been selected as the library's partner in this strategic project, which aims to preserve digital collections, archive all their data and provide distributed access to this cultural heritage.

“SPAR covers an incredibly vast amount of digital materials that complement our print and paper collections,” says Jean-Marc Czaplinski, Director of the BnF Information Systems Department. “So it will become a sort of digital ‘fifth tower', joining the four physical towers at the BnF building. In analyzing the best ways to preserve our digital heritage we took into account the different human and technological factors that impact this truly massive undertaking. SPAR implements new technologies to guarantee that our cultural heritage is preserved and accessible over the long term. Atos Origin is helping us to build the new system, which will support our transition to the digital library of tomorrow.”

As part of this project, Atos Origin teams will be involved in:

  • Building the SPAR system (detailed specifications, design, development, integration).
  • Integrating all of the innovative Open Source bricks, including “Fedora Commons,” which facilitates format conversions and data dissemination, and “iRods,” the abstraction layer in the storage module.

In this way, the future SPAR system will be able to manage:

  • Migration to new formats when a media becomes obsolete.
  • Multiple data input controls to guarantee integrity and conformity.
  • Integration and construction of metadata to facilitate preservation, search and migration of information.
  • Conversion of data formats to accommodate technological advances.
  • Continuous supervision of archived data.

BnF's mission as custodian of France's national heritage is now being extended to digital materials. In addressing this challenge, the library has been guided by the exacting requirements of space research and compliance with the Open Archival Information System (OAIS), mitigating the technological, environmental and organizational risks that might arise over an extremely long-term time horizon.

“Our experts have been totally committed to this project to provide the BnF with an innovative, reliable applications architecture,” says Jean-Marc Djian, Director of Development for the Enterprise Content Management Solution, Atos Origin France. “We've also worked to devise a solution that allows the BnF to self-manage the system's long-term viability. The preservation of digital data has been fully integrated with our Enterprise Content Management (ECM) solution to effectively meet the challenge of archiving and preserving huge amounts of content, both issues that are faced by a growing number of our customers.”

About the Bibliothèque nationale de France
The Bibliothèque nationale de France is the custodian of a heritage built up over five centuries through the mandatory deposit of copyrighted materials and an active acquisitions policy. Its mission is to collect these resources, preserve them and make them available to the general public, thereby helping to promote French culture and to transmit the country's universal values.
The BnF holds millions of books and printed materials, as well as manuscripts, periodicals, posters, photographs, engravings, maps, music scores, recordings, videos, coins, medals and other resources. The content in its collections span the entire range of intellectual, artistic and scientific disciplines. The collections are available to the public at five sites: the François-Mitterrand Library, the Richelieu Library, the Bibliothèque de l'Arsenal, the Bibliothèque-Musée de l'Opéra in Paris and the Maison Jean-Vilar in Avignon. To ensure access for the research community in France and around the world, the BnF publishes reference catalogues, the great majority of which are available in digital format. The bnf.fr website provides access to catalogues and the Gallica online digital library. For more information visit the Bibliothèque nationale de France website: http://www.bnf.fr.

About Atos Origin
Atos Origin is one of the world's leading international information technology services companies. Its business is turning client vision into results through the application of consulting, systems integration and managed operations. The company's annual revenues total €5.8 billion and it employs 50,000 people in 40 countries. Atos Origin is the Worldwide Information Technology Partner for the Olympic Games and has a client base of international blue-chip companies across all sectors.
Atos Origin is listed on the Paris Eurolist Market and trades as Atos Origin, Atos Worldline and Atos Consulting.

Media contact: Anne de Beaumont + 33 (0)1 55 91 24 15 - anne.debeaumont@atosorigin.com