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Museums and the Web

An annual conference exploring the social, cultural, design, technological, economic, and organizational issues of culture, science and heritage on-line.

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal

People's Choice:
2 votes

Institution: 

Museum of the City of New York

Designer: 

Analogous and Orange Logic

Category: 

Research | Online Collection

Why

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Home Page: Animated film strips show selected=

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Home Page: Animated film strips show selected highlights of the collections, browsable by topic.

The Museum of the City of New York's Collections Portal has launched with more than 52,000 images from the Museum's photography collection and is structured and planned (as per two complementary IMLS grants) to eventually offer the entire collection, including decorative arts, maps, paintings, costumes, and more as more content is digitized and cataloged.

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Home Page with film strip expanded: Clicking on a filmstrip will expand it, allowing the user to see many images and their captiona without leaving the page.

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Home Page with film strip expanded: Clicking on a filmstrip will expand it, allowing the user to see many images and their captions without leaving the page.

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Image Detail Page: Clicking on an image will take the user to a detail page, with more information about the photograph, and clickable metadata subject tags.

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Image Detail Page: Clicking on an image will take the user to a detail page, with more information about the photograph, and clickable metadata subject tags that lead deeper into the collection.

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Zoom Function: Because of the high resolution of these images, the user can zoom in on details in the photograph.

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Zoom Function: Because of the high resolution of these images, the user can zoom in on details in the photograph.

 Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Search Results: Rollover function in the search results allows previews of image details. 

Museum of the City of New York Collections Portal Search Results: Rollover function in the search results allows previews of image details.

The public site, in essence:

  • Gives ready access now to the collections most in-demand by researchers, students, and the general public.
  • Offers high resolution zoom-function that facilitates online scrutiny of image details.
  • Supports browsing with ability to expand collection descriptions and entry points going forward
  • Uses both controlled vocabulary and keyword search to optimize retrieval and provide pathways into content
  • Uses an elegant design from Studio Analogous for state-based navigation on the home page.
  • Is powered by a robust database created called Cortex, used primarily by commercial stock photo agencies, but adapted to museum purposes by Orange Logic.

The Collections Portal reflects the Museum of the City of New York's commitment to increasing the intellectual and physical care of its collections, and providing the broadest possible access to those collections. The project began in 2006 with cataloging efforts that laid the groundwork for digitization, which began in 2008 and is ongoing.