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The Service Oriented Museum Web

TitleThe Service Oriented Museum Web
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2007
AuthorsShah, R., Bojkov P., Ellis D., & Foster G. L.
Secondary TitleMuseums and the Web 2007. Proceedings
PublisherArchives & Museum Informatics
Place PublishedToronto, Canada
EditorTrant, J., & Bearman D.
Keywordsmuseum service, service oriented architecture, software design, Web 2.0

Before describing our vision for a distributed service oriented museum Web, we assess the projects nexhibition (An On-line Exhibition tool), (An Artwork tagging tool), Pachyderm (an open source museum presentation manager) and other open source products of interest to museums. At first sight, one might choose to see these as distinct, stand-alone products that require some investment to utilise effectively. We argue the case for breaking down these tools into their constituents and exposing their functionality through a distributed API such as SOAP. The paper explores how previously monolithic systems can instead be seen as re-usable components. Such services may include calendaring event programming/publishing; collections management systems; the tagging and analysis tools of steve; and the on-line exhibition generating tools of nexhibition and Pachyderm. This model empowers Web developers with the services to construct a rich set of functionality without necessarily having to learn how to implement these services in-house. We envisage a service market whereby vendors will offer out services such as those discussed. Museums will be able to pick and choose the services and offerings and may even choose to host services themselves. This will consolidate running costs, and increase the available range of services, and ensure the effective utilisation of I.T. Infrastructure by museums.