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WWW.CULTURE.FR/COLLECTIONS… A Single Entrance for Access to Cultural Data (Archives, Museums, Libraries, Heritage) at the French Ministry of Culture Knowledge.

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Presentation on theme: "WWW.CULTURE.FR/COLLECTIONS… A Single Entrance for Access to Cultural Data (Archives, Museums, Libraries, Heritage) at the French Ministry of Culture Knowledge."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Single Entrance for Access to Cultural Data (Archives, Museums, Libraries, Heritage) at the French Ministry of Culture Knowledge by Networking International Conference, Berlin, June 2007 Paul Smith Direction de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine Ministère de la Culture et de la Communication

2 HISTORY French Ministry of Culture pioneered computerised data bases on the heritage and on museum collections 1974: ‘Mérimée’ - notices on the architectural heritage (buildings studied by Inventory services or protected as historic monuments) 1975: ‘Joconde’ - catalogue of museum collections (paintings, objects, sculpture... ) Mérimée and Joconde on-line, first on ‘minitel’, in 1993, then on the Internet in : plan for digitizing cultural documentation (archives, libraries, museums, built and movable heritage): enriches existing textual data bases Mémoire: data base of graphic and photographic documents

3 HISTORY 2002: report on the digital diffusion of the heritage: recommendation for better interoperability between different databases: simultaneous consultation through a single question 2005: this project given priority in the Ministry’s information system master plan. Working group identifies 250 separate on-line documentary sources, managed directly by the Ministry or by public cultural establishments; different technologies and software programmes 2006: operation ‘guichet unique’, a single entrance for accessing digitised cultural information

4 ORGANISATION AT THE MINISTRY OF CULTURE Project piloted by the transversal documentation service at the Ministry of Culture; project group comprising representatives the Ministry’s different directions: central administration, archives, architecture and heritage directorate, museums, books and reading, research mission, delegation for the French language, department of information and communication July 2006: call for proposals, based on technical specifications drawn up by this project group; project starts in November 2006

5 OBJECTIVES On-line access to cultural information presently held in 14 different data bases, covering archives, libraries, museums and the built and movable heritage Access via the Ministry’s portal at and the ‘Collections’ tab Offer the public a unique and transversal entrance which is user-friendly and easily identifiable Version 1 (on-line since April 2007) aims at the non-specialist public Version 2 (July 2007) will allow for more advanced research and 17 more data bases

6 DATA ACCESSIBLE A broad range of domains: architecture, archaeology, movable objects, painting, sculpture, engravings, drawings, illuminated manuscripts, arts of the spectacle, ethnology, plans, maps, archives, geneology, photography… Also, the French catalogue of digital collections (French participation in the Michael project) Also…. cultural events The sources are varied: data bases, static and dynamic web sites, electronic reviews, virtual visits and exhibitions… Two million documents are presently accessible, and one million pictures (!)

7 TECHNICAL IMPLEMENTATION Use of a semantic search engine, based not on existing data organisation (fields) but on full text research with specific functionalities: - morpho-syntactical analysis of word (words in all forms, avoidance of ambiguities) - linguistic analysis: phonetical and spelling correction - semantic analysis in order to prioritise presentation of answers - other extensions for synonyms, lists of terms… This ‘Intuition’ search engine developed by Sinéqua

8 THE FUTURE Version 2 (incorporating a total of 32 information sources) planned for July 2007 Version 3, planned for 2008, will comprise other sources (Museum of Music, Musée d’Orsay…); study of interoperability with regional cultural portals Will include: - cross-linguistic interface (Spanish and English in addition to French) - advanced research capacities (specific thesauri, who, what, when fields…) - personalised services (research history, favourites, results basket for downloading or mailing)

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17 THE END ‘collections’


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