Getting Organized: Planning website projects

With the management of a large, ever-changing website comes the management of the individual projects that make up that website. The Smithsonian Libraries’ website is made up of many components, most of which were or are treated as smaller projects that have limited or ongoing scope. We’re in the process of testing and refining a documentation process by which our staff can propose and define additions to our site.

Moving Big Data

In my part of the Smithsonian Libraries, we work with data. You’ll hear talk of “big data“, which often refers data sets far larger than what we work on in here, but for the sake of this blog post, I’m going to use the term Big Data because I’m working with files that are far larger than anything we’ve worked with before… and it’s a sign of things to come. As the more »

Refining Taxonomic Literature II Linked Data

Editor’s note: Rachel is an intern from the University of Maryland’s iSchool MLS program and has been with us for the past seven weeks. Her internship is coming to a close, so we’ve asked her to write a blog post to share what she has done as part of her internship. I have posted this on her behalf. In January, Joel wrote about our plans to present the Taxonomic Literature-2 (TL-2) dataset as Linked Open Data, allowing for greater searchability and reuse. The main focus of my internship was to identify and investigate other data elements that could be converted to Linked Open Data.

Improving Linked Data

In an earlier post in December 2011, we announced the release of the Taxonomic Literature II (TL-2) search tool that allows anyone to search and read its fifteen volumes.  One of the things we mentioned in that post was our plans to open the TL-2 dataset to searchability and reuse by providing it as Linked Open Data (LOD). This time, we’ll discuss details of our plans for Linked Open Data, some of the data we are extracting, and the challenges in creating data for a linked open data set.

Bringing Books* to the Web

The past couple of months in the web-development world have been spent building a foundation for a method of presenting digitized book-like things on the Smithsonian Libraries website. This has been an interesting time creating a home for the history, art, and culture part of our scanned collections.

Web Analytics and Us: A report from the LITA National Forum

In my role as web developer at the Smithsonian Libraries, I recently attended the LITA National Forum in Columbus, OH. At the conference, I participated in an 8-hour pre-conference session on website analytics and how to use them to understand and improve the usability of a website. Since this is Open Access Week, I thought a summary of this session might be interesting to share.

Creating a Digital Library

Now that our new website is up and running, we are planning the next phase of its development by deciding what features should and should not be part of the Digital Library. In any well-designed (web) project, there are hours and hours of planning and writing and discussing what the website will and will not do and this is an expected part of the process. However, at the outset of our discussions, we had to discuss a the single most important part of the project: What is a digital library? 

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