Fresh & New(er)

discussion of issues around digital media and museums by Seb Chan

Fresh & New(er) header image 5

Entries from August 31st, 2007

Social production, cut and paste – what are kids doing with ‘your’ images?

August 31st, 2007 4 Comments

It has been one of the worst kept secrets of web statistics – deep linked image traffic. While this has been going on for years, since the beginning of the WWW actually, it has increased enormously in the past few years. On some cultural sector sites such traffic can be very substantial – a quick […]


How to do low cost transcription of hand written and difficult documents

August 28th, 2007 1 Comment

So your museum has already done the easy part of digitisation – taking digital photos of your objects, but now you have a complex hand-written materials you need to digitise . . . what can you do? This is a question that has popped up in several meetings over recent months. Our Curator of Information […]


Filtering memory – SEO, newspaper archives, museum collections

August 27th, 2007 Comments Off on Filtering memory – SEO, newspaper archives, museum collections

When Bad News Follows You in the New York Times (via Nick Carr) is a fascinating article about what can happen when ‘everything’ is put online. The article looks at the new array of problems that have come about as a by-product of the NYT optimising their site and archives for Google with SEO techniques. […]


Content aware image resizing from Siggraph 07

August 23rd, 2007 4 Comments

A common bugbear encountered when working with diverse collections and images is the inability to gracefully created resized versions. We have never found a suitable solution to creating thumbnails of our collection for the OPAC and Design Hub – the current solution is to take the existing large image, resize it to be 500 pixels […]


The new Google Maps, Google Earth and Google Sky

August 22nd, 2007 1 Comment

Everyone is buzzing about the new features that have popped up with the easily embeddable GoogleMaps today. This is a big step towards making map mashups completely mainstream – increasing the popular acceptance of the map as a user interface. For a look at how things might work for the museum and cultural sector take […]


Blogs as a ‘community strategy’

August 22nd, 2007 Comments Off on Blogs as a ‘community strategy’

New Matilda has an short but interesting piece by Kevin Anderson, blogs editor at The Guardian. In the article he stresses that blogging is about generating and engaging the community, not just a new means of publishing. Rather than see blogging as a threat to traditional publishing, it should be viewed as a new strategy […]


Wikipedia, Wikiscanner, revealing the hidden power struggles over knowledge production

August 14th, 2007 1 Comment

Last week featured a rather robust debate in the office about whether museums should encourage the use of Wikipedia, and, perhaps participate in adding and editing entries themselves. Now most Fresh + New readers will be familiar with the arguments – they’ve been around since Wikipedia began. Of course what most anti-Wikipedians, if they don’t […]


Valuing different audiences differently – usability, threshold fear and audience segmentation

August 12th, 2007 Comments Off on Valuing different audiences differently – usability, threshold fear and audience segmentation

It is important to realise that to deliver more effective websites we need to move away from a one-size-fits-all approach not only when designing sites but also when evaluating and measuring their success. We know that some online projects are specifically intended to target specialist audiences – a site telling the histories of recent migrants […]


OPAC2.0 – Latest features update

August 12th, 2007 Comments Off on OPAC2.0 – Latest features update

We’ve added a whole range of new features to our OPAC that we think further enhance its usability. Tooltips – Each ‘feature’ on the search results and object view pages now has an explanatory tooltip. Given the OPAC has become quite complex and there is a lot going on on the screen now, we felt […]


Authority in social media – Why We Twitter: Understanding Microblogging Usage and Communities

August 9th, 2007 Comments Off on Authority in social media – Why We Twitter: Understanding Microblogging Usage and Communities

From Akshay Java, Xiaodan Song, Tim Finin, and Belle Tseng comes an interesting academic paper titled Why We Twitter: Understanding Microblogging Usage and Communities. Following my recent post looking at diffused brand identity in social media, this paper is a useful examination of the emergent ‘authority’ and ‘connectedness’ of users amongst a dataset of 75,000 […]