Museums and the Web

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Fedora, Drupal, and Cloud Computing for a low-cost, sustainable DAM

TitleFedora, Drupal, and Cloud Computing for a low-cost, sustainable DAM
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2009
AuthorsDavidow, A.
Secondary TitleMuseums and the Web 2009. Proceedings
Conference Start DateApril 15-18, 200
PublisherArchives & Museum Informatics
Place PublishedIndianapolis, Indiana, USA
EditorTrant, J., & Bearman D.
Keywordsagile development, Amazon Web Services, cloud computing, digital asset management, digital preservation, Drupal, Fedora, small archive

Digital asset management and digital preservation can require expensive, proprietary software and expensive servers. For a small, underfunded institution like the Jewish Women’s Archive, the answer lies in using open source technology, leveraging what we can do by collaborating extensively, supplemented by relatively inexpensive cloud computer services that let us explore and take chances without tying down our resources on expensive hardware.The most important ingredient is probably Agile development — doing large scale development by biting off small chunks of useful development at a time, learning from what you have done, and then planning the next chunk of work, funded as you can. In this project we approached long-term Digital Asset Management by accomplishing just enough work with Fedora so that our most urgent assets could be ingested and managed. At the same time we directed development in Drupal, an open source content management system. so that as we develop our public web “face” we are also developing the common ways of working with data and displaying digital objects. Soon, Drupal, an excellent CMS which has no particular digital asset management affordances will be ready to serve as the front end to Fedora, an excellent Digital Repository Framework with enviable digital asset management hooks, but no interface of which to speak.This paper also serves as a call to other interested archives to collaborate with us in future development.