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eHive Open Day - London November 2010
 

eHive Open Day - London November 2010

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  • Image: Nether Wallop Cache - waistcoat, stomacher, paper patterns
  • These are typical objects: Boot - most commonly found object is footware - Northampton Museum have concealed shoe index Bottle - quite a few bottles Stomacher - Nether Wallop Cache
  • Each contributor has their own private account with login access. Each object record with images can be marked as belonging to one or more communities. NZMuseums was marked as a default community for published objects records for each of the NZMuseums members.
  • A very positive and effective site. Image: Reigate Doublet - found in Reigate - iconic object Launched in 2001 it was innovative Webstats have proved, about 4000 visits It had a virtual collection of finds The website provided a means of data collection as well as dissemination (report a find on line) It provided a mechanism for finders to report finds via on the online report a find form - which was cutting edge at the time But by 2007 we wanted to bring the website up todate because it now seemed rather clunky
  • Now that we’re almost finished here’s a quick summarise: We decided to put repeat the image of the guinneapigs as the key point is to share information - it’s a carrot in this case Thanks: All the funders of the Deliberately Concealed Garments Project - noteably the Scaggs Foundation, the AHRC and the Textile Conservation Centre Foundation, KGB Internet for hosting the website since 2001 Thanks to the finders = who may well be in the audience
  • Talking websites here It was frustrating for Dinah in her academic role as she wasn’t able to add to the bibliography regularly - also to share the oral histories which is a hugely rich resource, accessibility ……
  • Three sections Static pages 2 database pages 3 ‘How to’ pages
  • All the content is there as a very rich resource - just needs to be added to and refresh the look
  • Five main reasons to update to eHive Update - using a CMS so we can update the website from anywhere with internet connection The website was looking dated, and the navigation wasn’t clear, well to me anyway CAPTCHA is the wiggly words and numbers which can be easily read by human and prevents standard automated software from filling out forms. For example, Paul Rowe - a personal touch is that he met me in London whilst over from New Zealand to discuss the website which gave me confidence in developing the website And now Zoe is going to tell you about eHive another example, not the Deliberately Concealed Garments Project
  • Now we’re back to the Deliberately Concealed Garments project - We wanted some continuity and modernisation, but keep a similar look and feel so repeat visitors feel confident and comfortable with site = we feel eHive understood our requirements immediately
  • Using a lightbox mode - easy and quick to filter and pick what they want.
  • The policy was to call each cache by location - no names or address, just geographical location.
  • Example of the detailed object record
  • This is key to the website - being able EASILY to tell us about what they’ve found. Trust has been established - very clear about people’s privacy Now back to Zoe

eHive Open Day - London November 2010 eHive Open Day - London November 2010 Presentation Transcript

  • eHive Open Day Zoë Hill (Vernon Systems), Laura Whitton & Nick Poole (Collections Trust) Collections Trust Monday 15 th November 2010 London
  • Zoë Hill UK Systems Consultant, Vernon Systems Ltd Developers of the eHive collection management system (CMS) CMS developers since 1985
  • Aims of presentation:
    • To provide an overview of the history of eHive
    • – why did we decide to build it?
    • To demonstrate what eHive provides for collections
    • management and online access to collections
    • To introduce Software as a Service (SaaS)
    • To show our future plans for the ‘instant museum
    • website’ using our Wordpress plugins
    • To demonstrate some imaginative approaches to
    • solving collections management software problems.
  • Staff in New Zealand, UK, and South Africa Vernon CMS – 160 sites worldwide Focused on collections management software
    • 600 museums worldwide
    • World’s first Software as a Service CMS
    • Developed as a result of research in 2005
  • Research Independent focus groups: Needs of small museums Standards: SPECTRUM, Dublin Core, Web Accessibility Questionnaires sent to museum experts Software: New tools emerging to speed up web development Photo: Scott Beale / Laughing Squid
  • Common Themes
    • Problems for small museums:
      • Limited IT resources & budget
      • Existing software too complex
      • Publishing to the web too hard
      • Run by volunteers who may want to contribute from home
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/collinmel/1450793951/
  • eHive collection management system
    • Within eHive, each contributor has their own login to create and edit object records and upload images
  • eHive web admin for collections management functions
  • eHive functions
    • Object cataloguing
    • Acquisition tracking
  • eHive functions
    • Communities to group content
    • Bulk import via XML or spreadsheet
    • Searching and reporting
    • Export in text, Excel and XML formats
    • Public access
  • Example eHive user: Champs Chapel Museum of East Hendred, UK
  • About the Trust, Museum and Village
    • Small volunteer run organisation
    • Archives, heritage objects, photographs
    • Looking to replace existing image database
    • Needed to reduce costs
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  • eHive as a possible solution?
    • Richer cataloguing functionality
    • Public access with tagging and commenting
    • Web admin functions for collections management
    • Outsourcing the running of the system
  • East Hendred Museum on eHive
    • Images and data converted in July 2009
    • Directory page
    • Search and browse over 4,000 collection images
    East Hendred Museum on eHive
  • Records tagged with search keywords
  • Examples of thatch construction in East Hendred
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  • Outcomes for East Hendred Museum
    • Reduced IT budget
    • Public access to collection
    • Access to cataloguing system for volunteers
  • South Georgia Museum
  • Where are they?
  • About South Georgia Museum
    • Remote location
    • No existing CMS
    • Museum staff onsite during summer/autumn
    • Remainder of year based in UK
    • Needed low cost way to manage collection from both locations
  •  
  • The South Georgia Museum collection
  • eHive forum and direct support http://www.flickr.com/photos/doctorow/2496308570/
  • Sharing data http://www.flickr.com/photos/ryanr/142455033/
  • Sharing data
    • Copyright issues
    • Less control of where your data ends up
    • eHive - 3 rd party search “opt-out” option
    • Creative Commons licences
      • Copyright holders only
    • Other categories
      • No rights reserved, copyright unknown, all rights reserved
    • Time for a cuppa
  • Current development
    • Rights management , including Creative Commons licences, launched in May
    • Programming interfaces for integration with other websites and products
    • Support for Open Archives Initiative harvesting protocol for Culture Grid
    • Wordpress plugins to enable eHive users to build their own museum websites , launched in October
    • Museum and collection info driven by eHive
    • Represents 400 museums
    • Collection records and images from 70 museums
  • How did the website come about? Redevelopment of an older directory site Vernon Systems were the successful tender for the new site New site to be based on eHive
  • 2006: NZMuseums focus groups
      • Volunteers are key - keep it simple
      • Keep costs low
      • It should be possible to contribute without the Internet
      • Outline benefits and address concerns
  • Benefits for small museums
    • Reduces barriers to achieving a web presence
    • Unified approach across New Zealand
    • Entry point into simple collections management
    • Minimal funds and expertise required
    • Show it to the world!
    Motueka Museum
  • Getting museums onboard
    • Electronic newsletters
    • Museum Development Officers in the field
    • Training workshops
  • Spreadsheet for data contributors
    • Could be used without an internet connection
    • Stepping stone between existing systems and eHive
  •  
  • What’s an API and what’s it doing to my museum data?
    • Application Programmable Interface
    • The way two websites or applications talk to each other
    • Data created in one place can be repurposed
    Website 1 Collection Records . . . . . Website 2 Collection Records Redisplayed with different presentation . . . . . API – “the telephone line”
  • Why use software as a service?
    • Simplifies public access
    • No need to buy servers or manage software
    • No installation
    • Automatic backups
    • Automatic updates
    • Fewer compatibility issues
    • Access from anywhere with a web connection
    • Smaller ongoing costs, no initial purchase cost
  • eHive pricing
  • eHive and Wordpress
    • Enables a museum to build their own site
    • Start from the hundreds of free themes
    • Add your own graphics
    • Add generic Wordpress widgets for contact forms, Flickr image feeds, embedded videos etc
    • Manage static pages and regular posts
    • Embed collection info from eHive within Wordpress
  • eHive Wordpress plugins
    • Search, Explore by Tag Cloud, Explore Recent/Popular Objects, Add Tags & Comments
    • Alter the appearance and content positioning
      • For example:
      • Change field labels
      • Hide fields
      • Add tag clouds to side panel for the site
  • The old DCGP website Was averaging 4,000 visits per month
  • Key points for the DCGP
    • Website is central to the project for data collection, data dissemination and public engagement
    • Website is very popular; averaging 4,000 visits per month
    • eHive has helped to update the site, improve functionality and appearance
  • Built in 2001 No content management system (CMS), so background & project pages have remained static
  • Hard to navigate between the 3 different sections of the original website
  • Collection content needed to be preserved
  • Decision to move to eHive
    • Update the website - add new caches and publications
    • Fresh look and easy navigation
    • New functionality - CAPTCHA, more interaction and
    • eventually Twitter
    • Vernon Systems offered good advice and understanding of
    • museums collections
    • Price - very competitive and good value!
  • Deliberately Concealed Garments Project (DCGP) new website
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  • Pages using the eHive plugins can include static content and eHive functions
  • Example of an eHive & Wordpress site with different theme
  • Contact Information
    • Zoë Hill
    • [email_address]
    • www.vernonsystems.com
    • www.ehive.com
    • www.twitter.com/ehive
  • Useful links
    • For information on images and digitisation
    • www.jiscdigitalmedia.ac.uk
    • formerly known as the Technical Advisory Service for Images (TASI)
    • The newly re-vamped Collections Link website from Collections Trust has many downloadable resources and new networks
    • www.collectionslink.org.uk
    • The eHive collections management system