A Research Interface for Digital Records Using the IIIF Protocol
Abstract: How can the library community best promote large-scale access to heterogeneous digital records such as the materials found in organizational and personal archives? As a springboard to answering that question, this presentation describes a collaborative project undertaken by staff members in Preservation, IT, and University Archives at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) Library. Specifically, panelists will discuss specific ways that UIUC is using the IIIF protocol and associated tools to develop an integrated web service that exposes born digital content for easy ingest and description by archives and library staff, as well as for intuitive browsing, search, and web access for researchers.
The talk will begin by comparing the archival approach of aggregate description of related digital content to the library approach of exhaustive item-level metadata. Specific examples will illustrate that is it possible to facilitate aggregate description and access, while also allowing item-level description when warranted or useful. The talk will continue with a demonstration of this theory put into practice, with on overview of UIUC’s Medusa repository architecture for the integrated management of preservation and access. The Medusa system features a “free-form” viewer for browsing born digital content, incorporating the IIIF protocol for display of image files with the possibility of directory-level descriptions for related content. As a result, Medusa provides the archivist with a broad range of options for providing access to collections of born digital content, including automatic extraction of metadata from source images, customizable metadata profiles, and low (or even no) metadata requirements at the item level. IIIF supplies a critical component of the browse and discovery environment for these collections, and UIUC’s IIIF implementation makes use of the locally developed Canteloupe image server, a fast, easy-to-deploy option for the on-demand generation of derivatives of high-resolution source images. The presentation will conclude with a brief overview of Canteloupe for its growing community of users.
Presentation type: 20 minute presentations (plus 5 mins questions)
- IIIF and archival collections,
- Discovery of IIIF resources,
- IIIF content communities (museums, manuscripts, newspapers, archival content, etc.),
- Emerging use cases for IIIF technical specifications,
- IIIF-compatible software and experimentation
- IIIF Protocol,