Digitization projects of museum collections have been institutionalized since years in order to address societal issues of compliance, conservation, publishing and accessibility.
As keepers of a priceless cultural heritage, the mission of museums is to preserve their collections including large formats artworks while at the same time making sure that they are available both to present-day users and to future generations.
With the development of new information technologies, museum practices have been radically modified. A growing number of museums is now engaged in campaigns to digitize their collection including large format artworks. The digitization of museum collections has become essential for several reasons like providing a substitute of consultation, giving access to a search tool for a corpus or a collection, proposing a printing service, conducting workshops, creating educational materials, distributing locally or remotely to public through an online library, …
The museums issues could be summarize into three main points:
- Structuring, in the best ways, the digitization policies at different levels (locally, nationally and internationally),
- Improving access to digital documents,
- Guaranteeing a long term digital conservation.
The digitization of museum collections has more than one interest:
- Preservation and conservation of originals through an electronic substitute for consultation (online library),
- Instant and simultaneous access of a work in multiple location,
- E-consultation giving a better reading than the originals, possibility to zoom, to go into the heart of a document, to obtain the finesse of details, to make comparisons between multiple documents simultaneously…
- Promoting corpus and/or collections: a digitization project can be an opportunity to enhance a fund or a prestigious collection of rare, sometimes unpublished, works,
- Communicating the document outside the museum through an online library or networks, like a remote access to documents between museums.
i2s DigiBook offers the most complete solutions, in 3 steps, for the digitization of museum collections:
The first stage of a digitization project is to found the most appropriate scanning solution. Thanks to i2s DigiBook + Kirtas Technologies the most complete range of scanning solutions, the digitization of museum collections can be applied to any kind of work including large format artworks : drawings and watercolour, tapestry works, maps, plans, bound documents… These scanning solutions guarantee both productivity and high image quality, from 300 to 1000 dpi, consequently making easier to zoom on images or even to re-print documents.
In a second step, LIMB™ solution makes possible to process, enrich and convert digital document. Limb™ makes easier to process to mass digitization on raw data, to both structure and enrich the documents (knowledge management), to share knowledge on different media (Internet, smartphone, touchpads…), and to make documents permanent (digital archiving).
Final step, LIMB Gallery, the digital library solution, makes possible to present and promote digital documents, includes a search engine that optimizes the semantic relevance and makes easier to refine research, and makes these digital documents shareable and interoperable.
Over a hundred of museums have made their digitization projects possible with i2s DigiBook solutions.
In addition, i2S DigiBook is able to work with their customers for the full duration of their projects. Specialists are on hand to assist them in identifying their requirements, guiding them towards the solutions best suited to their problems and assisting them in the implementation and optimization of their products.
i2s DigiBook solutions’ benefits for digitization and accessibility to museum knowledge:
- Long lifetime and preservation of fragile and precious works
- Saving of a copy of the original documents in electronic format,
- Limitation of risks related to the handling or distribution of works.
- Database organization
- Better document classification,
- Ease of retrieval,
- Reduced communication time.
- Better service to the public
- Ease of viewing works on-site or remotely through an online library,
- Ease of reproduction (printing) or transfer (USB key, server, Internet).
- Development of knowledge sharing
- Access to documents not generally available to the general public because of their great value and fragility,
Organization of educational, scientific and cultural demonstrations (exhibitions, events, publications, virtual books, web sites, etc.).