Posts Tagged ‘rss’

Search the National Museum of Australia collection live on CAN

You can now search the National Museum of Australia collection on CAN’s online database. This is particularly exciting news because the searches are live using RSS feeds, otherwise known as OpenSearch. This means as the NMA add images into its collection management system EMU, they are immediately searchable on CAN. Curators and the public can feel safe in knowing that when records are updated in EMU, the changes are immediately available to the public.

The NMA has made 25,000 objects from 1003 collections accessible on its Online Public Access Catalogue. Several teams are working hard to make the other 90% of its collection available. They are using the Powerhouse Museum’s object thesaurus to facilitate an easier search for specific items. This thesaurus will be available on the CAN website. CAN already offers links to other thesaurus standards.

NMA collection information and digitisation manager Helen Ludellen stresses the importance of knowing how to search effectively and how to refine a search. She suggests people should use single quotes for two co-located words to pull-up both of their search terms.

CAN is participating in a Federated Open Search Project that aims to allow the public to search collection records from libraries, galleries, museums and archives all across Australia through a single search.
George Serras.
Captain James Cook’s magnifier from the Australian Journeys exhibition at the NMA. Photo: George Serras

CAN has been an early implementor of the OpenSearch. Our current strategy is to host collection data for smaller institutions on our central database, while supporting distributed search access to larger institutions using the OpenSearch protocol.

As a result of these developments, it is now possible for anyone to search across the central CAN database, the Powerhouse Museum, Museum Victoria, Picture Australia, Libraries Australia, State Records of NSW and now the NMA in a single search. Furthermore, as larger museums, archives, libraries and galleries implement the OpenSearch protocol in their collection management systems, it should progressively become possible for anyone to search across the entire community of Australian collecting institutions.

The OpenSearch protocol is relatively easy to implement and provides a simple keyword search that can be applied to discovery services in any sector including government and universities, as well as subject-related search services in a broad range of areas including health, scientific and statistical information.

CAN’s online collection database is a current and reliable resource for researchers, cultural institutions, curators and the general public.

Sarah Rhodes


Virtual-delegates at the Museum and the Web 2009

For those who cannot attend the Museum and the Web 2009 conference in Indianapolis, social media tools can link you to the action. In past years, participants were limited to blogging on the MW website but this year the use of social media will mean backchannel (or online dialogue) will play a significant role. Groups have been set up on Twitter, Flickr, LinkedIn, delicious and Facebook to enable better networking opportunities. You can even link up RSS feeds with conference updates. These social media applications are for people interested in marking themselves as key players in the industry, sharing ideas and meeting like-minded people.

There are several papers and workshops on social media tools accessible to the public.

Great Expectations: Sustaining Participation in Social Media Spaces by Angelina Russo, Swinburne University of Technology, Victoria and Darren Peacock, University of South Australia, Adelaide.

Planning for social media by Seb Chan, head of Digtial Services and Research, Powerhouse Museum, Sydney and Angelina Russo, Swinburne University of Technology, Victoria.

Down to Earth. Social Media and Institutional Change by Vincent de Keijzer, Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, The Netherlands and Patricia Deiser, Museum voor Communicatie, The Netherlands.

Of particular interest is a paper presented by Maxwell Anderson, of the Indianapolis Museum of Art called Moving from Virtual to Visceral. Anderson will discuss how museum’s can translate their on-site experiences online to penetrate through media clutter.

Sarah Rhodes


Subscribing to RSS

See that lovely orange icon above the CAN logo on the right hands side? That’s an RSS logo, and it means that you can subscribe to the RSS feed from this blog so you don’t have to keep checking back for updates, you will get a summary of each entry sent to you. You’ll find this function on just about every blog, and most websites, and it’s a pretty handy way of knowing what’s new on all your favourite sites. It’s great for news sites as well.

To view subscribe to an rss feed, you’ll need to use an rss reader or aggregator. These can be desktop or web based. The major online services like Yahoo and Google who you may already use for email offer web based rss readers, Internet Explorer 7 has one, and there are plugins for the Firefox web browser.

For more detailed information, the BBC help pages have information about how to subscribe and links to different feed readers, while the rss specifications page has a good, no fuss explanation.

If you haven’t subscribed to an RSS feed before, why not give it a try and make this blog your first subscription?