Information Access Seminar

Digitizing Archives of Local TV Stations in East Germany Documenting the Transition of Political Systems after the Reunification

Friday, September 30, 2016
3:10 pm to 5:00 pm
Maximilian Eibl

Surprisingly, the communist government of the German Democratic Republic (GDR) sometimes quietly tolerated and even supported the erection of community antennas all over East Germany in the 1980s even though these antennas were used to receive West German television. After reunification in 1990 many antennas and their accompanying cable networks became the nucleus for local TV stations whose programming document in a fascinating way the transition of the socialist system to a market economy. Surviving recordings on tape are deteriorating and at risk of loss.

The talk will present the software frameworks AMOPA (Automated Moving Picture Annotator) and xTrieval (Extended Information Retrieval Framework) developed at Chemnitz University of Technology. The frameworks are used for different purposes in teaching and research. I will show how the xTrieval framework can be used to enhance teaching Information Retrieval using real-world experiments and game mechanics. Also I report on experience using the frameworks to save the local TV archives.

Max Eibl is professor of media informatics at Chemnitz University of Technology in Germany and is currently a visiting scholar at the UC Berkeley School of Information. He studied information science, history, and philosophy at the University of Regensburg (Germany) and computer science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and at Sheffield University (UK). From 1996 until 1999 he was a research assistant at the Social Sciences Information Center in Bonn and did his Ph.D. in computer science at the University of Koblenz-Landau. His thesis was on “Visualization in Information Retrieval – Integrating concepts of HCI and Graphic Design to Improve Interaction.” In 2000 he became head of the internet group at the German Social Sciences Infrastructure Services (now GESIS). Since 2006 he has been professor of computer science at the Chemnitz University of Technology.

Last updated:

September 15, 2016