Image directories by RSS aggregation

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Information about Image directories by RSS aggregation

Published on January 24, 2008

Author: philb

Source: slideshare.net

Description

Presentation given to a meeting of HE Academy technical representatives about case study on creating a visual directory of image collections using RSS, See http://www.icbl.hw.ac.uk/images/ for more details.

Image directories by RSS aggregation Phil Barker (1) , Lisa Rogers (2) (1) Engineering Subject Centre & (1&2) ICBL, Heriot-Watt University. Phil Barker, Jan 2007. You may reproduce all or any part of this presentation but please retain acknowledgement of authorship & copyright. Also I would appreciate it if you let me know how you are using it and sent me any feedback <philb@icbl.hw.ac.uk>.

Background CLIC (Community Led Image Collections) Report: Exist many (sometimes small) image collections run by enthusiasts / specialists focussed on narrow topics Visual image directories might be useful in disseminating information about these Kick-start interoperability using RSS feeds http://www.jisc.ac.uk/uploaded_documents/CLIC_Report.pdf

CLIC (Community Led Image Collections) Report:

Exist many (sometimes small) image collections run by enthusiasts / specialists focussed on narrow topics

Visual image directories might be useful in disseminating information about these

Kick-start interoperability using RSS feeds

http://www.jisc.ac.uk/uploaded_documents/CLIC_Report.pdf

Background JISC offered funding to (some?) subject centres to test this idea. We agreed to Appraise value of the image collections CLiC had found Build a demonstrator Try to get collections to implement RSS to populate demonstrator ... 22 days work (work done in middle of 2007)

JISC offered funding to (some?) subject centres to test this idea.

We agreed to

Appraise value of the image collections CLiC had found

Build a demonstrator

Try to get collections to implement RSS to populate demonstrator

... 22 days work

(work done in middle of 2007)

Value of engineering image collections Commissioned reviews from engineering academics of relevant collections in CLiC report. Did want to use images Want series of images or animations showing current technical practice: processes Found static images of historic interest

Commissioned reviews from engineering academics of relevant collections in CLiC report.

Did want to use images

Want series of images or animations showing current technical practice: processes

Found static images of historic interest

Value of engineering image collections “ Really the only use for these images would be in giving a historical perspective on civil engineering and the types of projects which were undertaken. There is not much to excite a prospective student, nor to assist in the learning process for current undergraduates. In my view, only around five or six of the images [out of the 50 available online] would be useful for teaching and learning purposes” http://www.flickr.com/photos/thepatersonsphotos/457035018/

“ Really the only use for these images would be in giving a historical perspective on civil engineering and the types of projects which were undertaken.

There is not much to excite a prospective student, nor to assist in the learning process for current undergraduates. In my view, only around five or six of the images [out of the 50 available online] would be useful for teaching and learning purposes”

Demonstrator No problems finding tools to create and aggregate RSS feeds Most of the aggregators didn’t handle images well Image as enclosure, as in podcasts ... but don’t want “play” icon instead of image being displayed.

No problems finding tools to create and aggregate RSS feeds

Most of the aggregators didn’t handle images well

Image as enclosure, as in podcasts ... but don’t want “play” icon instead of image being displayed.

Demonstrator Found RSS2HTML (JavaScript) will handle images well http://www.rss2html.com/ But only from a single feed per page So used iFrames to several pages in one window http:// www.icbl.hw.ac.uk/images/images.html

Found RSS2HTML (JavaScript) will handle images well http://www.rss2html.com/

But only from a single feed per page

So used iFrames to several pages in one window

http:// www.icbl.hw.ac.uk/images/images.html

 

Demonstrator Gives good visual overview of image collection Slooooooow for each page need Real-time connections to multiple sites Download many images (which aren’t always thumbnails!)

Gives good visual overview of image collection

Slooooooow

for each page need

Real-time connections to multiple sites

Download many images (which aren’t always thumbnails!)

Demonstrator Asynchronous approach to downloading images (AJAX) Grazr (http://www.grazr.com/) http:// www.icbl.hw.ac.uk/images/engimages.html

Asynchronous approach to downloading images (AJAX)

Grazr (http://www.grazr.com/)

http:// www.icbl.hw.ac.uk/images/engimages.html

 

Demonstrator Faster But less effective at giving quick overview of collection Since have to look at images one by one

Faster

But less effective at giving quick overview of collection

Since have to look at images one by one

Demonstrator If doing this now would looked at slideshow / carousel widgets, but didn’t find any at the time E.g. http:// billwscott.com /carousel/ Technology of demonstrator qualified success

If doing this now would looked at slideshow / carousel widgets, but didn’t find any at the time

E.g. http:// billwscott.com /carousel/

Technology of demonstrator qualified success

Getting feeds We couldn’t get any. Not one. Most collection owners (all the ones we could find) were agreeable to concept (though they didn't all see the point) but They had no time, or no money, or it had to be done by someone else within/outwith their organization.

We couldn’t get any. Not one.

Most collection owners (all the ones we could find) were agreeable to concept (though they didn't all see the point)

but

They had no time,

or no money,

or it had to be done by someone else within/outwith their organization.

Conclusions A simple technical solution is possible ... if a little limited. Loads of possible enhancements No way to implement interoperability after development Need commitment from the right people at the right time Organizational issues matter

A simple technical solution is possible ... if a little limited.

Loads of possible enhancements

No way to implement interoperability after development

Need commitment from the right people at the right time

Organizational issues matter

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