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DigiCULT
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Info
54
look forward to the day when all editing will
be performed on native XML files, using an
interface that does not distract writers and
copy editors from the content.
DIGITISATION AND DELIVERY
T
he search for digital or digitisable
resources for the project has extend-
ed to libraries, museums and other reposi-
tories through New Zealand and beyond.
Calls for contributions on particular topics
have gone out to the community. New maps
and graphs are created by a Web designer
in house and a Te Ara visual house style has
been developed for these. Members of the
project's Resources Team have attended the
training course in digitisation held in New
Zealand in 2003 by Seamus Ross of HATII
(http://www.hatii.arts.gla.ac.uk/). This back-
ground has helped to prepare them to apply
best practices in gathering and digitising
material, and to provide sound advice to
institutions and individuals. Besides co-ordi-
nating orders from the conventional metro-
politan storehouses of artefacts, members of
the team travel around New Zealand with
a portable flatbed scanner and digital cam-
era to capture unique resources. The opti-
misation of over 2,000 items in all media
for publication with the first theme is a
major current activity. An audio-visual play-
er has been designed for the site, and will
present high- and low-bandwidth delivery
options to the user through a single inter-
face. Macromedia Flash was chosen for this
mechanism due to its wide uptake, the small
size of the resulting files, and its ability to
interface with XML.
STANDARDS FOR INTEROPERABILITY
T
o assist resource discovery and to ena-
ble potential interoperability with
other projects, including the National Digital
Forum's Matapihi distributed resource access
initiative (http://www.matapihi.org.nz/), the
site will include Dublin Core metadata ele-
ments describing every entry. An appropriate
keyword vocabulary will be used to describe
entries and enhance searchability and the
relevance of search results. While the ini-
tial release of Te Ara will be relatively con-
strained and manageable, as the site grows
in volume and complexity these factors will
be of increasing importance. The site will
be fully compliant with the New Zealand
e-government guidelines for Web site best
practice and accessibility. We hope that the
standards underpinning our technical choic-
es will enable the flexibility and extensibility
a project of this kind will require over the
long term.
M
ore information about the project
is available on the Ministry for
Culture and Heritage's Web site at http://
www.mch.govt.nz/ref/enz/.
Editor Fiona Oliver works on adapting the XML code of the 1966 encyc-
lopedia for the new website.
Designer Helene Coulson works on one of the many new maps that will be
used to illustrate the encyclopedia.

T
e
Ara,

2004

Melanie
Lo
v
ell-Smith,

T
e
Ara,

2004
T
H E
A
U S T R I A N
D
I G I TA L
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E R I TAG E
I
N I T I AT I V E
D
I G I T I S I N G
A
U S T R I A
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S
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U LT U R A L
A N D
S
C I E N T I F I C
H
E R I TAG E
A
NDREAS
S
TRASSER
, S
ALZBURG
R
ESEARCH
,
A
USTRIA
(
HTTP
://
WWW
.
SALZBURGRESEARCH
.
AT
)
O
ur cultural and scientific heritage is
a unique public asset that provides
an exceptional resource pool for the devel-
opment of the knowledge society. To make
these resources accessible and to contribute
to the conservation and preservation of our
cultural and scientific patrimony, digitisa-
tion is an essential first step.
T
he European Digitising Content
Together Initiative was launched in
2001 as a joint initiative of member states and
the European Commission to co-ordinate
digitisation activities at the European level.
It involved building a platform for enhanced
collaboration between the countries to share
their expertise, best practices and standards
and to develop a common view on European
cultural and scientific heritage.