grant

IMLS grant will help build new geospatial search interface

November 7, 2013

The UNH Library and its partner, the Earth Systems Research Center of the Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space, have been awarded a grant in the amount of $474,156 from the Institute for Museum and Library Services though its National Leadership Grants for Libraries Program. The grant will help fund the building of PLACE, the Position-based Location Archive Coordinate Explorer.

PLACE will be a geospatial search interface, available to the general public through the library website. Access to embedded geospatial information in a flexible visual interface will enable library users to develop important skills such as visual, global and environmental literacy.

The PLACE project will develop:

  • new tools not currently available in a geoportal, including a new geospatial gazetteer tool for improved searching
  • new time series capabilities to easily assess changes over time
  • usability driven interface improvements

By developing code to enable the Open Geoportal to interoperate with Fedora (the software platform used for the library’s digital collections), we will be providing other Fedora libraries with collections containing geospatial or geographic content a mechanism for making those collections searchable in Open Geoportal for the first time. All PLACE modifications to Open Geoportal will be shared with the geoportal community and may be incorporated into future releases of the technology.

The PLACE project will build on the library’s existing digital collections. In the 1990s the UNH Library was a pioneer in scanning historic USGS topographic maps and has continued to develop its digital library capabilities since then.

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