Aron D. Roberts's picture

UC-wide repository for managing digital resources goes live

Staff who create, manage, and provide access to digital resources at the University of California Libraries can now store these resources, together with their descriptive metadata, in a new UC-wide digital asset management system (DAMS).

As described in The DAMS is live!, the opening of the DAMS to libraries throughout the UC system, on July 16, 2014, represents a major milestone at the halfway point of the two-year UC Libraries Digital Collection (UCLDC) Project. Over the next 12 months, the UCLDC project will now be focused on two goals that build on and extend the DAMS: harvesting and indexing additional digital assets managed by the UC Libraries; and providing public access to the full, aggregated collection via a new, responsive website and an API.

When the new website launches in summer 2015, it will provide researchers and the public with significantly improved online access to the unique treasures of the UC Libraries, and the project’s infrastructure work will set the stage for a more consistent stream of new digital content in the future.

The UCLDC project is spearheaded by a project team at the California Digital Library (CDL) in the UC Office of the President, managed by Sherri Berger and Brian Tingle, in partnership with UC Berkeley's Research IT department. Four members of Research IT – Richard Millet, Amy Wieliczka, Lam Voong, and Patrick Schmitz – as well as Yuteh Cheng of Political Science, herself a former member of Research IT, have contributed their systems architecture, software development, user experience design, and data management expertise to this work.  As a representative example of Research IT’s contributions, Amy Wieliczka customized the user experience for managing metadata, by creating custom user interface widgets and layouts. She also wrote DAMS end-user documentation, and she is currently developing a prototype of the public website.

This productive CDL-Research IT partnership came about, in part, because the DAMS is based on Nuxeo, an enterprise content management system. Nuxeo also helps power CollectionSpace, an open source, web-based museums collections management and information system, built through a collaborative effort involving Research IT and several international partners, and used by four UC Berkeley campus museums, as well as museums elsewhere across the US and in several other countries. As Sherri Berger noted in mid-August 2014, “partnering with Research IT has enabled the CDL to make rapid progress on our project. The Berkeley staff were instrumental in helping us configure Nuxeo and tailor the system to meet the needs of our users, and they continue to bring both expertise and a thoughtful approach to all aspects of this complex initiative.”