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Volume 32, Issue 3


Information Management beyond Digital Libraries: Alexander von Humboldt in the Web

D. Doherr / A. Brahaj
Published Online: 2009-10-05 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/piko.2009.0030


After approximately 200 years, a comprehensive access to the texts of Humboldt's extraordinary exploration of the Americans is within sight. To open the legacy to the public for free access the Humboldt Digital Library (HDL) Project has been developing a dynamic amount of data related to studies of Alexander von Humboldt. The Library includes a range of texts, tables and images, as well as many tools that assist mining the data and navigating the system.

The HDL aims to provide an environment in which researchers can work more effectively with a wider variety of primary source materialsùtextual as well as visual. Moreover, the greatest advantage of this dynamic system is its capability to connect data from diverse locations in Humboldt's twenty-nine volumes and allow comparison with modern scientific knowledge and developments.

HDL can recreate the context of a particular text, making it possible to view images, geo-referenced and interactive maps, information about plants and animals, as well as scientific data relevant to Humboldt's observations. By introducing Web 2.0 technology implementations, we are providing new visualizations of the information published in this Digital Library. The perception of the Information Architecture is changing in the era of Web 2.0. By providing more search facilities, creating an academic network around our library and implementing new ways of multi-dimensional navigation we argue that Information Architecture can be extended to new methods of information representation. Facilitating the user navigation to the required information will always be an aim for the managers of high volume data systems. This can be achieved by implementing Information Retrieval modules based on user profiling and by improving the visualization features.

About the article

Published Online: 2009-10-05

Published in Print: 2009-09-01

Citation Information: PIK - Praxis der Informationsverarbeitung und Kommunikation, Volume 32, Issue 3, Pages 161–166, ISSN (Online) 1865-8342, ISSN (Print) 0930-5157, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/piko.2009.0030.

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