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Archelon 1.0 Release

We are pleased to announce the 1.0 release of Archelon, the new staff-only administrative interface for content in the UMD Libraries’ Fedora 4 repository. The Fedora 4 repository was released in production last August and Archelon is the first staff interface for content in Fedora 4.

The 1.0 release enables library staff in Special Collections and University Archives, Digital Conversion and Media Reformatting, Digital Programs and Initiatives, and other departments to search, browse, and download content in Fedora 4. In addition, a basic, embedded newspaper and image viewer is included in the 1.0 release. Archelon will be developed in an agile fashion, with many incremental releases over time, and upcoming releases will include more features in the newspaper viewer. Eventually, full content add/update capabilities will be available to users, beginning with version 2.0.

Digital Content in Archelon

The launch of Archelon coincides with the import of the digitized Diamondback student newspapers, which will be the first collection available on the new platform. Batch loading of 130,000 objects is currently underway, representing 3,500 issues spanning 1910 to 1971.  Working closely with stakeholders in Special Collections and University Archives, we have established that it is a priority to load content that is currently not available online, such as Katherine Anne Porter correspondence and Diamondback photos.  We will be working on loading this content through 2017 as well as migrating content from the existing Digital Collections repository.

Archelon’s Technology

Archelon 1.0 is built using Ruby on Rails and the Blacklight discovery interface.  The supporting infrastructure behind Archelon includes the previously released Fedora 4 repository and new additions of a Newspaper batch loader, IIIF image server using Loris, search/index service using Apache Solr 6,  and IIIF manifest server using pcdm-manifests.  The newspaper viewer is built using the Mirador IIIF image viewer.

What’s Up with the Name?

Archelon is named for the ancient genus of giant sea turtles Archelon, whose name means “ruler turtle” in Greek. Archelon lived approximately 80.5 million years ago in the shallow seas that covered most of North America at the time. It is the largest ever recorded species of turtle by size, and second largest by weight.

Acknowledgements

The Fedora 4 repository implementation team would like to thank everyone in Digital Systems and Stewardship and throughout the University Libraries whose technical and administrative support made this effort possible.

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About Ben Wallberg

Ben Wallberg is the Manager, Software Systems Development and Research at the University of Maryland Libraries. http://lib.umd.edu/dss/software

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