Hi All,

I am particularly fond J of the Archives of American Art’s display of EAD finding aids which incorporates an image gallery for collections with finding aids and associated digital content.  I am not referring to our interface for accessing and navigating fully digitized collections (Collections Online), although this is also achieved using the structured data in the xml file. At this writing, digital content is not available via links deep in the finding aid, except for our fully digitized collections.  We’re working on it, but we’re not quite there.


With the design of our online display of finding aids, our goal was to incorporate less jargon and more user-friendly terms, as well as contextualize any associated digital content.  In an earlier version, we collapsed the narrative sections, but user-studies found that users were confused by landing on a page where the search term did not display because it was hidden in a collapsed field.  So, we did revert back to a full text display which is perhaps more text-y than I might have originally thought a web appropriate display.  


Here are a couple of examples






We launched this display in January 2011. 


The EAD finding aid xml file is uploaded to our database and the data is then parsed to different tables.  Programming pulls the data together for the interface/display.  It is not done “on the fly.”


Barbara Aikens

Chief, Collections Processing

Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution

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-----Original Message-----
From: Encoded Archival Description List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Cory Nimer
Sent: Thursday, March 08, 2012 2:40 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Innovations in interfaces using finding aid data?




Here at Brigham Young University we have been experimenting with the design functionality you describe, and have developed a prototype system based on the idea of single-level display and hierarchical inheritance. There is a fairly detailed description of this work and of the resulting display in an article by Gordon Daines and myself, "Re-Imagining Archival Display: Creating User-Friendly Finding Aids," Journal of Archival Organization 9, no. 1 (2011): 4-31 (http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/15332748.2011.574019). The system itself is available at http://findingaid.lib.byu.edu/. If you have any questions, please let us know.




Cory Nimer

Manuscripts Cataloger/Metadata Specialist Brigham Young University



-----Original Message-----

From: Encoded Archival Description List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Bowers, Kate A.

Sent: Thursday, March 08, 2012 8:24 AM

To: [log in to unmask]

Subject: Innovations in interfaces using finding aid data?


I should have used a new subject line in my earlier request-- I'm not interested only in implementations that use AT and ContentDM, but any system or systems that achieves similar ends or has features that show the power of structured finding aid data.


Examples might be a public interface that returns components of finding aids rather than full finding aids  (such as in back-end of AT searching).  The original question was in response to a post showing Clark's interface that integrates finding aid data and digital objects in a single display and (I think) has user-initiated sorting of finding aid components.









Kate Bowers

Collections Services Archivist

Harvard University Archives

Cambridge, MA 02138

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voice: (617) 384-7787

fax: (617) 495-8011

web: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:hul.eresource:archives



-----Original Message-----

From: Encoded Archival Description List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Penny Baker

Sent: Thursday, March 08, 2012 8:14 AM

To: [log in to unmask]

Subject: Re: [EAD] CONTENTdm and DTD and Schema mechanics


The Clark is also using AT to CDM. We're faced with a significant amount of tweaking (many of our finding aids are legacy EAD created using X-metal migrated to AT which can be quite a mess). Example collections below: