Monday, 28 June 2010

UKOLN guest post

I've a guest post all about this blog and archives 2.0 over on the UKOLN Cultural Heritage blog today.

So head over there to read it.

Incidentally, I've written about UKOLN before here and the excellent range of briefing documents they have on all things web 2.0 here.

Friday, 25 June 2010


Historypin is a project launched this month by we are what we do and google that "aims to get people from different generations to spend more time together."

It allows you to view photographs of a street scene using google maps technology. Try it out here.

So far images have been uploaded by individuals as well as archives and other organisations like Marks & Spencer, Biggleswade History Society and Arsenal football club. As an archive you can arrange to do a bulk upload of your pictures to the site.

This video from the Historypin youtube channel gives a fuller overview:

Monday, 21 June 2010

TNA does it again

The National Archives (TNA) have consistently been a leading user and developer of web 2.0 technologies, and with their latest venture they are pushing ahead again. They have created the National Archives Labs which is a section of their website "where you are invited to test prototypes, provide feedback and help us to develop further our ideas for exciting online resources."

At the moment they have the following tools in development

Valuation Office Map Finder - you can identify and order maps of England and Wales from 1910 to 1915.
Person Search - allows you to search across a number of their name rich databases at once.
UK History Photo Finder - allows you to search and view digitised photographs of the UK and Ireland.

I think the number of comments they have already received for these tools shows what a strong user base they have and how well it works to open up the floor to your users and ask them what they think. Big thumbs up to TNA!

Twitter for archivists

Catching up with myself a bit and I decided I should include something on how to use twitter in an archive, particularly as I've a new favourite tweeter - Orkney Library.

So what can you use twitter for in your archive? This great presentation by Lisa Grimm on slide share goes through the options:

Examples of twitter use that I'm liking are using it to 'tweet' original content like George Orwell's diaries, the UK War Cabinet's papers. Repositories using it to share news and information like Strathclyde Archive, West Yorkshire Archive and the National Archives. And Wiltshire Archive and their document delivery tweeting.

You can find me @kkingaling but I rarely post and even less rarely anything to do with archives. If I do I'll be sure to use the #archives tag.

Friday, 11 June 2010

Internet for Archives

A new and brilliant resource for finding out about archives has been produced by Lisa Jenkins of the Archives Hub. It takes the form of an online tutorial and goes through all the different resources there are for finding out information about archives and online catalogues on the Internet.

The tutorial was produced as part of the Virtual Training Suite to teach Internet research skills to students and researchers and help them find archive materials and information online.

"The tutorial has four main sections:

  • Tour – focuses on the academic information landscape on the Internet and aims to create a mental map for students of the key scholarly sources for their subject.
  • Discover – offers updated guidance on how to find scholarly information online; choosing the right search tool and looks at the importance of developing a search strategy.
  • Judge – discusses how critical thinking can improve the quality of online research and provides guidance on how to judge which Internet resources are appropriate for University work.
  • Success – provides practical examples of students using the Internet for research – successfully and unsuccessfully, so that students can learn from the mistakes of others, as well as by example."
This is exactly the kind of resource that I would have killed for as a baby archivist when I knew or hoped there must be information out there but didn't know where it all was.

Its an excellent resource to be able to point researchers towards as it explains all the different catalogues and portals that are available and what they should be used for. It also rather helpfully goes through an example catalogue result to explain what the different information fields are telling you and the different archival terms.

So, check it out and tell all your friends!

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Virtual tour of 150 year old archive repository

The Parliamentary Archives have recently unveiled their virtual tour of the Victoria Tower which was built in 1860 as a state of the art facility to house the parliamentary archives.

The video can be viewed here and takes you through the archive storeroom and the original Act room, with information points about certain documents.

Also check out their introductory video to the archives on youtube

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