The programming to integrate the datasets virtually and to develop applications for accessing them easily have been developed here in Oxford over the past year thanks to a grant from the Fell Fund. Only one post was funded and only for one year, but the work was so exciting that others can freely of their time. In addition to those who are speaking today I would like to acknowledge the work of Sebastian Rahtz in OUCS who programmes the LGPN, to Reinhard Foertsch and Robert Kummer in Cologne, and Anne-Violaine Szabdos in Paris. My vision for the future sees CLAROS in museums, libraries, universities, schools and homes. I see a global registry of antiquities and I see public participation in creating it. That future is now and the University of Oxford is leading it.
Graham…. The CLAROS system provides what we might call a search and discovery service over the different data sources. They have each developed independently over many years and each uses different underlying technologies to deliver information about the same very large subject. Beazley has pottery, engraved gems, sculpture in the form of plaster casts, and antiquarian books and photographs. Arachne and DAI have sculpture, antiquarian books and photographs. LIMC has all types of classical art with mythological subjects. LGPN has personal names of ancient Greeks.
Each also uses different technologies and different vocabularies to represent information. CLAROS needed a way to bring them together. Instead of developing our own bespoke system we looked very carefully at the work that had already been done and we found two standards that seemed to suit our needs. The first is CIDOC-CRM. This is an ISO standard that was developed under the aegis of UNESCO for ICOM – for the world’s museums. It provides a flexible framework and vocabulary, and seems to offer greater potential for creating a common framework than other systems we know such as OAI, CDWA and MuseumDat. It also seems to be well suited to other domains, such as describing scientific experiments – the type of work that I usually do with computers. And this seems ot us to be a good thing. The second is RDF. This is a World Wide Web standard, a kind of universal data format and it is the base format for current work on the next generation web, often called a “Semantic Web” or “Web of Data”.
What works for software could work equally well for digital resources
When programmers can read, redistribute, and modify the source code for a piece of software, the software evolves. People improve it, people adapt it, people fix bugs. When developers can access, redistribute, and enhance the digital resources underlying a digital application, new applications can evolve. People can add value, people can adapt it, people can fix bugs.
Digital humanities manifesto 2.0 Digital Humanities is not a unified field but an array of convergent practices that explore a universe in which: a) print is no longer the exclusive or the normative medium in which knowledge is produced and/or disseminated; instead, print finds itself absorbed into new, multimedia configurations; and b) digital tools, techniques, and media have altered the production and dissemination of knowledge in the arts, human and social sciences. http://dev.cdh.ucla.edu/digitalhumanities/2009/05/29/the-digital-humanities-manifesto-20/#0
ibid... Digital Humanities implies the multi-purposing and multiple channeling of humanistic knowledge : no channel excludes the other. Its economy is abundance based, not one based upon scarcity .... though notions of humanistic research are everywhere under institutional pressure, there is (potentially) plenty for all. And, indeed, there is plenty to do.
Beazley Archive: documentation of pottery, jewels, etc.
Lexicon of Greek Personal Names: attested names
University of Cologne
Arachne Archive: data about sculpture
German Archaeological Institute, Berlin
Images from archaeological sites
University of Paris X
Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae:
Over 2 million records and images
Four different database systems
A mix of technologies... Beazley Archive DAI Arachne LGPN (Oxford) LIMC (Paris) .NET / ASP XSLT, PHP Java XSLT Relational database: MS SQL Server XML database Relational database: MySQL Relational database: MySQL Browser Browser Browser Browser