University of Florida Digital Collections

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A photograph titled "11 Women in costumes" (1930s) from the University Archive Photo Collection, one of the collections in UFDC.

The University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC) are supported by the University of Florida Digital Library Center in the George A. Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida. The University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC) comprise a constantly growing collection of digital resources from the University of Florida’s library collections as well as partner institutions. Opening in April 2006,[1] UFDC has added over 300,000 items - books, newspapers, oral histories, videos, photos, and more - with over 8 million pages.

Preservation and Access[edit]

All materials are freely and openly accessible (Open Access) and full text searchable. In UFDC, all items can be text searched simultaneously or certain collections can be selected for a faceted search. Because UFDC grew out of the efforts of the University of Florida Libraries' Preservation Department, all items are scanned at preservation quality and all are digitally preserved through the Florida Digital Archive. The page images are particularly important for the preservation of artifactually significant materials such as maps, artifacts, illustrated children's literature from the Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature, and other materials.

Technologies[edit]

The UF Digital Collections are powered by the open source SobekCM software engine and suite of associated tools. The associated tools include online user tools and standalone software for use in digitizing and curating born digital materials. The online system is deployed with Solr and other technologies for optimal functionality.

Because of the highly visual nature of so many items, the pages are displayed as zoomable images (through a JPG2000 server) and all can be browsed as thumbnails at the item and the collection level.[2] Artifacts with multiple photos from multiple angles can be seen in motion, rotating in an Adobe Flash video view,[3] and items can be searched by their geographic information (city, county, state, latitude and longitude) or viewed on a map through UFDC's use of the Google Maps API.[4]

Additionally, UFDC hosts record-only collections like the Catalog of Digital Historical Newspapers (NewspaperCat) which is a tool facilitating the discovery of online digitized historical newspaper content. The records for the newspapers are all searchable and browsable within NewspaperCat. Further, NewspaperCat only includes records for fully and freely available newspapers. NewspaperCat was developed from a grant from the UF Libraries to serve the reference need for finding historical newspapers from around the US and the world.[5]

Statistics[edit]

UFDC includes books, articles, newspapers, photos, videos, audio, and more. As of August 2011, the collections had grown to over 7 million pages. This is an accelerated growth rate compared to the earlier million-page milestones (UFDC began in April 2006, reached 1 million pages in August 2007, and reached 2 million pages reached in July 2008).

UFDC's statistics page maintains a running tally of loaded items broken down by collection: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/stats/.

Findability[edit]

Along with loading new items regularly, UFDC was optimized for search engine findability using static pages and adding RSS feeds in 2008. Initially, this process included creating static pages for all items on the mirror site UFDC2 (http://www.uflib.ufl.edu/ufdc2 instead of http://www.uflib.ufl.edu/ufdc) and then in November 2010 re-optimizing the site with the single URL (http://ufdc.ufl.edu/), creating RSS feeds automatically for new items loaded and for all items, and optimizing all code for faster loading. These changes were necessary because of the deep web structure of UFDC which, like so many digital library collections, has many directory levels and dynamic URLs that cause difficulty for search engines even with properly implemented sitemaps.[6]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

List of Collections[edit]