New version of Collections Online

Yesterday we released an updated version of Collections Online, or at least the beginnings of it. There are a few tweaks to do here and there that we will work on over the next while, and of course more features we will be adding in the future.

I won’t go into too much detail now as we’ll discuss it more over the coming weeks, highlighting the different bits and pieces we find exiting (and challenging). However in summary, our aim to make relationships between collection objects and specimens, people, places and  topics more explicit, and more meaningful; to make it easier to browse the collections and Te Papa’s related knowledge; to make it a richer browsing experience; and to link out to other collections and institutions. Take a look at these samples to get a taste:

A lot of people across Te Papa have put a lot of work into getting this out there, and we look forward continuing to expand the content and tools. Bear with us while we iron out the kinks, but do let us know what you think of these early stages, what you find useful, or maybe what you’d like to see as future developments. Have a play, you might be surprised at what you find!

PS. Remember to keep an eye on the blog, where we will be giving you a bit more of a tour through the new features soon.

4 Responses

  1. adriankingston

    Hi Paul,

    The link to the Dunedin above record is not actually a query, but is a term itself.

    A better example of the difference may be with “Hamilton”. If you were interested in the Waikato city of Hamilton, a basic search using the word “Hamilton” gives a variety of results many of which are not related to the city itself, but people with the surname “Hamilton”. However one result you do get is the Related Place of “Hamilton (New Zealand)” Here you will see the objects, people and topics that relate specifically to the city of Hamilton, New Zealand. You can also see how those objects, people or topics relate, for example if you filter objects that “Depict” Hamilton, “Refer to” Hamilton or were “Made at” Hamilton. You also get some basic info on the place, e.g. latitudes and longitudes, other names.

    You can also hierarchically browse the Place pages, for example the page for Hamilton has a broader term of Waikato, were again you can see the objects that are related to the Waikato, and how they relate. This includes objects that are related to places more specific than Hamilton, e.g. Matamata, Huntly, Hamilton, so gives you an overview of the area, and you can drill down as required.

    The URL uses an internally assigned number as a consistent identifier. We can’t use the word itself in the URL as there are more then one Hamilton in the world (more than 100 according to the Getty’s Thesaurus for Geographic Names).

    RSS for some aspects of Collections Online is on our To Do list, so watch this space.

  2. Paul

    The link to Dunedin (place) surely should reflect the query Place=Dunedin not some secret number

    Can I get the results as rss?

  3. Melissa McCarthy

    Wow… this looks amazing, both for a “serious” researcher and for a casual web browser. I work with a lot of archives and museums in New Brunswick, Canada and I’ll show them your site as something to strive for!


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