On September 27 2015 the Pilsudski Institute was privileged to host the visit  of the President of Poland, Andrzej Duda. The purpose of the visit was to meet members of the Institute’s Board of Directors and to see our collections. The President was shown the paintings and a selection of the most important documents from our archives. Dr Iwona Korga, the managing director, served as a guide, presenting a condensed history of our organization. Dr Magda Kapuścińska, the Institute’s president, welcomed the distinguished guest on behalf of the Board of Directors and introduced other members. Volunteers and friends of the Institute took part in the meeting. Mr. Duda was accompanied by several staff members of his Office, and by ministers Adam Kwiatkowski, Krzysztof Szczerski and Pawel Soloch. Dr Kapuścińska offered him a plaque with the image of Marshal Jozef Pilsudski, while the Institute received a painting of the Belvedere, the presidential palace in Warsaw. We feel greatly honored by this visit. Thank you, Mr. President.

Zdjęcie grupowe

Group picture

dr Iwona Korga oprowadza Prezydenta RP po zbiorach Instytutu

Dr Iwona Korga shows the President the Institute treasures

dr Magda Kapuścińska przekazuje Prezydentowi RP płaskorzeźbę z wizerunkiem Marszałka Józefa Piłsudskiego

Dr Magda Kapuścińska gives the President a  Marshal Józef Piłsudski bas-relief

Prezydent Andrzej Duda przekazuje Instytutowi obraz z wizerunkiem Belwederu

President Andrzej Duda gives the Institute a drawing of the Polish Belvedere

A „Meet and Greet” gathering took place on September 16, 2015 at the Pilsudski Institute, introducing the Institute to the authorities and communities of Brooklyn, and to the American social and educational community. We were honored by the presence of distinguished guests: Deputy Borough President for Brooklyn Diane Reyna, State Representative for Brooklyn Assemblyman Joseph Lentol, Commander of the American Legion Richard Kenny of St Stanislaus Memorial Post # 1771, and Mary Odomirok, representative from the office of Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney. Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams issued a special proclamation, officially welcoming  the Institute to the Borough of Brooklyn and congratulating us on our recent activities.

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Also present at the meeting were Alicja Winnicki, Superintendent  district 14, principals from Greenpoint schools PS 34 and PS 110, representatives of local Polish communities, businessmen from Brooklyn and Manhattan, a good friend of the Institute, the Polish Consul General in New York Urszula Gacek, and representatives from the media:  Nowy Dziennik, Radio Rampa, and Greenpoint Gazette.

Guests admired the gallery with Polish paintings, museum materials and historical exhibits. In their speeches they emphasized the uniqueness of the Institute and expressed gratitude that the new headquarters are now located in Greenpoint.

 Consul General of the Republic of Poland in New York Urszula Gacek, Executive Director of the Institute Iwona Korga, Assemblyman Joseph Lentol, President of the Institute Magda Kapuścinska, Superintendent of District 14 Alicja Winnicki.

Consul General of the Republic of Poland in New York Urszula Gacek, Executive Director of the Institute Iwona Korga, Assemblyman Joseph Lentol, President of the Institute Magda Kapuścinska, Superintendent of District 14 Alicja Winnicki.

Consul General of the Republic of Poland in New York Urszula Gacek, Institute volunteer Andrzej Józef Dąbrowski, Vice President of the Institute Marek Zieliński, President of the Institute Magda Kapuścinska, Executive Director of the Institute Iwona Korga, Deputy Borough President for Brooklyn Diana Reyna.Consul General of the Republic of Poland in New York Urszula Gacek, Institute volunteer Andrzej Józef Dąbrowski, Vice president of the Institute Marek Zieliński, President of the Institute Magda Kapuścinska,  Executive Director of the Institute Iwona Korga, Deputy Borough President for Brooklyn Diana Reyna.

Prague astronomical clock
Prague astronomical clock By Steve Collis from Melbourne, Australia (Astronomical Clock Uploaded by russavia) [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

In one of my previous blog posts on “How to write dates?” I discussed the basic universal date and time notation, as specified in the International Organization for Standardization standard (ISO 8601) and its Word Wide Web Consortium (W3C) simplification. Since that time the Library of Congress has completed the work on the extension of this standard, the Extended Date/Time Format (EDTF) 1.0. This extension for the most part deals with expressing uncertain dates and times. Such limited or imprecise date/time information is common occurrence in recording historical events in archives libraries etc. The ISO 8601 does not allow for the expression of such concepts as “approximately  year 1962” or “some year between 1920 and 1935” or “the event occurred probably in may 1938, but we are not certain”. The EDTF standard, allows us to express them in a formalized way,, fulfilling a real need in many fields dealing with historical metadata.

Despite the fact that the standard is relatively new, and there are few software tools to help enter or validate the uncertain dates and time data, I believe, that it is worth familiarizing oneself with the new notation wherever possible.

Definitions

I would like to to begin with some definitions to facilitate the discussion of the new notation. The definitions are accompanied by symbols that will be used in the next section. 

Precision

Precision is a measure of a range or interval within which the ‘true’ value exists [1]. Precision is explicit in the date or date/time expression; if an event occurred in the year 1318, the precision is one year (it could occur at any time within this year). If we specify 1945-09-15, the precision is one day, etc. [2] In EDTF we can extend this definition to a specify a decade or century precision using the x symbol - see discussion of masked precision below.

Approximate (~)

An estimate that is assumed to be possibly correct, or close to correct, where “closeness” may be dependent on specific application.

Uncertain (?)

We are not sure of the value of the variable (in our case date or time). Uncertainty is independent of precision. The source of the information may itself not be reliable, or we may face several values and not enough information to discern between them. For example we may be uncertain as to the year, or month, or day of an event etc.

Unspecified (u)

The value is not stated. The point in time may be unspecified because it did not occur yet, because it is classified, unknown or for any other reason.

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