The Florida Heritage Project was the first statewide digital library initiative in Florida. The Project, proposed in 1998 by the libraries of the State University System of Florida (SUS) in partnership with the Florida Center for Library Automation (FCLA) and the State Library of Florida, intends to build an openly-accessible collection of digital materials documenting the history and culture of Florida from prehistoric times to the modern day.
The Project is supported through a central fund created by the directors of the SUS libraries. Most funds are redistributed to libraries to reimburse the direct costs of digitizing Florida Heritage materials. A small percentage is allocated for graphics design, historical consulting, and other professional services. The cost of selection, cataloging, and other support activities are bourne by the individual libraries. Image storage, retrieval and website maintenance are provided by FCLA.
Fiscal management is provided through the Florida Center for Library Automation. Ongoing project oversight is provided by the Digitization Services Planning Committee, a standing committee of the SUS libraries.
OVERVIEW AND WORKFLOW
Participating libraries select materials for inclusion in the Florida Heritage Collection and contribute catalog records for the digitized version to a central database. The libraries perform or outsource the digitization and create files of structural metadata describing the relation of images to logical parts of the resource. The structural metadata record and the set of images for each resource is transmitted to FCLA, where the data is loaded into a DB2 application on a central Unix server. Identifiers which serve the function of persistent URLs pointing to the DB2 application are inserted into the catalog records, which are used for name and topical access to the electronic resources.
RESOURCE DESCRIPTION -- CATALOGING
Participating libraries are responsible for creating full MARC catalog records for selected materials from their own collections. Cataloging records are maintained in a union database of all Florida Heritage materials at FCLA and are also contributed to the OCLC WorldCat.
Cataloging is expected to adhere to guidelines developed by the Technical Services Planning Committee Cataloging and Access Guidelines for Electronic Resources (CAGER). The guidelines specify that records should represent the electronic versions only, and include specific instructions to:
- Put the date of the original in Fixed Field Date1, the date of digitization in Date2, and use Form of Reproduction "s";
- Include a title (245) subfield h to indicate the resource is electronic;
- Specify the digitizing institution and date of digitization in the imprint (260);
- Include a series statement (830) for the Florida Heritage Project, justified by a general note (500);
- Use an original version note (534) to record the location of and publication information for the source document.
Catalog records also contain a target audience note (521) indicating the grade level of the material according to the Florida State Department of Education Sunshine State Standards (FDOESS).
Each record should also contain at least one Florida Heritage Timeline heading from the Florida History Timeline added as a geographic subject heading (651).
Complete MARC cataloging instructions can be found in the CAGER Guidelines.
RESOURCE DESCRIPTION -- STRUCTURAL METADATA
A file of structural metadata is created for every document to indicate the relationship between the physical units of digitization (TIFF, JPEG and other images) and the logical units of publication (pages, chapters, and other parts). The metadata format used is a modified version of the Elsevier EFFECT format called DataSet.TOC.
For each electronic resource (book volume, journal issue, manuscript, etc.), the DataSet.Toc file:
- identifies and names the image files comprising the resource,
- defines the order of images,
- identifies and names the subsections (such as chapters),
- says which images belong to particular subsections,
- and establishes the order and hierarchy of subsections.
IMAGE LOADING, STORAGE and NAVIGATION
For each volume that is digitized, a directory containing one DataSet.TOC file and a set of images is sent by FTP from the contributing institution to FCLA. The metadata and images are processed by a locally written loader, which first checks that all the image files referenced by the DataSet.TOC are present, copies the images into a Florida Heritage directory, and loads the structural metadata into DB2 tables maintained on a Unix server. If instructed, the loader will also create derivative formats such as PDF files.
Once structural metadata is loaded and images are moved to the appropriate directories, access and navigation is provided by another locally written DB2 server program.
Persistent URLs referencing the server application are created by program and inserted into the bibliographic record describing the resource.
The cataloging records describing Florida Heritage resources are loaded into a shared central library management system, a locally developed application based on NOTIS, on an IBM mainframe. The records can be searched through the SUS Libraries' online union catalog. All traditional catalog access points are available (author, title, subject, etc.) as well as Florida Heritage Timeline headings and grade level from the Sunshine State Standards categories.
Once records are retrieved, the URLs in the bibliographic record are used as hotlinks to the DB2 server application, which initially presents a Table of Contents display.
FUTURE DIRECTIONS -- PLANS FOR YEAR 2000
Participating libraries will continue to contribute materials to Florida Heritage. Funding has been provided for the digitization of approximately 50,000 additional pages by July 1, 2000.
A Panel for the Identification of Florida Heritage Resources will be formed to advise the libraries on selection of materials for digitization.
The Florida History Timeline will be fully developed to include narrative information and links to digitized materials for all Timeline headings. A thematic index to identify topics that cross Timeline categories will be developed.
The project will develop the capability of storing ASCII text obtained by performing Optical Character Recognition (OCR) on textual image files. This "dirty ASCII" will be used for full text retrieval of the documents.
The format for contributing structural metadata will be changed from the current modified EFFECT format to an XML-based structure.