Friday, February 02, 2007

unveiling of our repository

It seems like I've been working towards the unveiling of our Digital Collections Repository forever. participating in architecture planning. Collecting functional specifications. Coordinating production standards. Watching workflows come together. Watching teams coalesce. Implementation. Meeting with faculty for testing and feedback. Working with Library staff on testing and feedback. More implementation. More testing.

Finally, after 2 years of alpha and beta versions, we unveiled the Digital Collections Repository yesterday. We had been calling it a launch, but after two years it's really an unveiling.

There were a couple of glitches. High traffic caused issues with text rendering, seemingly due to server timeouts. Some updates hadn't gotten added to the index so a couple of faculty couldn't find some specific images. Expectations exceed some of our search capabilities (I can't index what I don't have in the metadata). But it's out there. We can rest on our laurels for a few days, then start planning the next release and the production and delivery of additional formats. And likely an entirely new indexing infrastructure.

Today, I got a message from a faculty member who I have never met. The selector for her department had emailed the announcement. She liked what she saw and wanted to know how to get her image collection selected and added. I am thrilled.


burlapwax said...

Excellent! Some great materials on there...I checked out a few of the documents that a non-UVA user can see, and they really look excellent.

Have you found there to be problems specific to Fedora that led to the two-year development phase? Most of what I've heard of the system has been positive.

Dorothea said...

Congratulations! Big step forward.

Melinda Baumann said...

Congratulations, Leslie! This was a long time coming, but it's finally officially out there!

Leslie Johnston said...

The development process was over two years long for a number of reasons. First, Fedora was still developing when we started. It still is. Some keys features for us -- especially granular enforcement of access policies -- weren't available until last year, and then it took us a while to take advantage of the new functionality. Second, we had a lot of infrastructure to develop to sustain the project, including standards development, production work flows, hardware and software to support an increased level of use, etc. There were no problems related to Fedora that created any issues for us.

Ryan Scherle said...

Mega coolness! Now I just need a way to get my hands on that Collector Tool (which also looks like it's coming along nicely).