Yesterday was the Capstone Poster session for the iSchool. We each had 90 seconds to present our project and had to make a poster to go with it. I think that the session went very well. I was really happy with how my poster turned out. After watching a few people play with the website, I have a couple of minor changes to make this weekend, which I hope will help with usability.
We are very excited to announce that the Sno-Bliz Online Exhibit is now live. The Online Exhibit is a a collection of Hansen’s Sno-Bliz memorabilia, including photographs, signs, articles, and video.
I am so close to launching the Online Exhibit I can almost taste it. As of right now, all of the pages on the site look and behave the way I want them to. I just have a few technical details to work out and some text to polish.
Uploading items to the exhibit is going well. I’m figuring out some pretty cool tricks that I can do with OpenCollection.
I’ve also run ABBY Fine Reader 8 (an OCR program) on many of the articles and other documents and created PDFs (with mostly clean OCR) for many of them which I’m including in the Exhibit.
If all goes well, I plan to launch the Online Exhibit on Tuesday.
I also decided to simplify my cataloging. I realized that it did not make sense to separate letters from paper documents, so I folded them into the paper documents category. I’ve updated my Naming Schema to reflect this.
I have now gotten both OpenCollection and OpenCollectionAccess (a nice front end for OpenCollection) working on the site. I figured out how to add metadata elements, including Dublin Core. I also figured out lots of other things about how to organize stuff in OpenCollection, which I hope will add ease of browse and functionality to the Online Exhibit.
I also started working on changing the look of OpenCollectionAccess to what I want the Online Exhibit to look like, with some help from my friend Jesse. My friend Maggie pointed out that I need to make sure that the Online Exhibit is obviously a different place than the main site. I think that one of the ways to do this (other than my plan for a top nav and a different break in space for the nav) is to make the roll-over color for images different. The idea is that the color will be the roll over color for “Online Exhibit” on the main site and the “Main Site” link on the Online Exhibit will be blue. I’m thinking about going with a green, since so much of OCA already uses a green color and green is a good sno-ball color. So, the final product will probably look something like this (but I think the green will be darker):
I’ve uploaded and catalogued about 20 images so far. I even re-purposed one of the OC fields to link to a Flickr image of the object, and only show up on display if I’ve uploaded the image to Flickr. And I figured out how to make Flickr link back to the Online Exhibit. I’m really excited about this as I hope people will use either Flickr or email to let us know more about the pictures that we know almost nothing about.
As of right now, everything is locked up because I don’t want people seeing an unfinished product. I hope to be able to launch everything in a week to a week and a half.
After almost a week of trying to figure out everything that needed to be done to start running OpenCollection on SnoBliz.com, it is finally working. Now I can get to the fun part – uploading and cataloging everything that I digitized last month and setting up the Online Exhibit to look just how I want it to. I’m really excited about this. I currently have the directory hidden, but as soon as I get it where I want it, I’ll make it public.
I finished scanning everything yesterday. I have the exact totals at my finger tips, but I ended up scanning on site 1 cup design, a few letters/short-stories/poems, several business documents (like business cards and gift certificates), about 70 photographs, and 5 articles from magazines or newspapers (one was 12 pages long). I also took a bunch of digital photography for the website and the fun of it. I wasn’t able to take shots for a QTVR panorama because I didn’t have a tripod. But I hope to be able to make one for them at some point in the future (if one doesn’t get made for this project).
I finalized the main website design and am mostly done building the whole thing on a test server. I still need to get content from Ashley.
Also, I mocked up a look for the online exhibit part of the site. I like it and Ashley does too.
I’ve spent the past two days at Hansen’s Sno-Bliz scanning photographs and other items. So far we have a total of 49 digitized items, 40 of them photographs. All photograph and text items are being scanned in 24 bit color and at 400 ppi using a Brother MFC-465CN scanner.
For some reason the scanner is tinting everything slightly red, although the amount of red tint seems to vary. I made sure that my monitor was well calibrated, but it still happens, so I’m pretty sure it’s not my monitor. I’m getting good at color correcting for red.
The process generally goes like this: place photograph on scanner which already has the color bar on it (add the grey scale color bars to scanner if it is a black and white photo). From the Photoshop file menu open “Brother TWAIN”, pre-scan the image, select the area to scan, wait for image to scan. Immediately save tiff version of image as preservation copy. Color correct photo using eyes and color bar, rotate image so that it is straight, crop down to just around image. Save as tiff access copy. Catalogue image as best as possible (including measurements of original photo).
I’m getting pretty fast at this. I scanned 26 photographs today (and I even took a break to have a Cream of Ice Cream snoball).
Ok, after talking with Ashley and our designer and thinking about the flow of information, here is my most recent version of the website design.
I changed the name of “archive” to “online exhibit” because FA2 pointed out that while archive is a trendy term, online exhibit is more accurate. I also decided to move the memorial page to a special page of the online exhibit, so we can easily use scanned pictures of Mary and Ernest Hansen. I also added a Contact page that will have more detailed information than what is in the footer. I decided that with these changes only one box was needed to contain them.
Furthermore, I changed the border from the little snoballs (which really wasn’t working) to a rounded edged rectangular section border. I’ve decided that I am much happier with that than with the snoballs. I also changed the color of “Hansen’s Sno-Bliz” to the same pink as the default nav color. It’s subtle, but I like it.