NOTE: The clipboard feature described below is currently unavailable. We are working on the problem.
Our online search has been upgraded to version 2.4 of AtoM and with that has come many changes in its look and behaviour. We’d like to guide you through the major differences.
COPYRIGHTED DIGITAL OBJECTS
One of the more exciting new features is the change in your access to copyrighted digital objects. Previously, if you were searching the database from home you could only access the thumbnail of a digital object under copyright to a third party (that is, not the City of Vancouver) or of unknown copyright. If you tried to look at a larger image, you would see a warning that said “This digital object can only be accessed in person at the Archives because of the associated rights”. You would have had to come to the Archives to see the full image online.
With our upgraded system, you will now see the larger image in the full record page. Continue reading
We’ve recently updated our online search to add a few new features.
In response to your suggestions, we sponsored development of an improved date search. It’s in Advanced Search, on the left sidebar. Continue reading
You may have noticed that our SearchArchives database looks a little different. For example, the information for a full record is in a more compact form, reducing the amount of scrolling you’ll have to do.
Screenshots of identical dimensions show the dramatic difference. The old version is on the left and the new one on the right.
The software has recently been upgraded to version 2.1 of AtoM. Most of the changes in the updated version affect how things are handled behind the scenes. Besides the example above, there are other changes that affect users:
Improved search times. Updates to the search index have reduced the time it takes the database to respond to your search query.
Searchable subject and place terms. There is a search box that appears on the Browse Subjects and Browse Places pages that allows you to search for specific terms, rather than just browse them. Be sure to hit the magnifying glass symbol (indicated below) to search.
Search results for subject term “building*”.
Better list of search results. There has been a change to the results algorithm that will give you results in a slightly different order.
Results of searching for “dog”. The old version is on the left and the new one on the right.
We are anticipating further improvements to our SearchArchives database with the AtoM 2.2 release later this summer.
We’ve updated our online search and we think you’ll like the changes in both function and design. Here are some of the main ones.
It’s much faster. The search engine is completely new and the difference in search times is noticeable.
Simple search gives suggestions as you type a search term. This gives you another way to find holdings.
When we first told you about our new search system, we said that it was on a rapid development cycle and that there would be improvements. We’re pleased to tell you about one upgrade that gives you on-site access to thousands more digital objects and another that makes it easier to do research at home. Developed for us by Artefactual Systems, these open source enhancements could be adapted by other institutions using the same database software.
The big change
Until now, digital objects that were under the copyright of a 3rd party (other than City of Vancouver’s copyright) could only be viewed online as a tiny thumbnail. Now they can be viewed in full resolution in our Reading Room through our online search. This works on your laptop in the Reading Room (using our wifi) as well as at our public computers. Continue reading
The City of Vancouver Archives has a new online search! We’re excited about it for a number of reasons:
- It allows us to show you the relationships between records and between records and their creators
- Browsing by subject, place or creator is much easier
- You can view and download larger digital objects, so you can study more detail
- Search result URLs are permalinks
Racan Souiedan volunteered with the Archives for several months in 2011. He left us to focus on writing his masters thesis, titled, “‘The Duties of Neutrality’: The Impact of the American Civil War on British Columbia and Vancouver Island, 1861-1865.” In addition Racan is kept busy with his duties as a Teaching Assistant at the University of Victoria and teaching history and English literature at a private school. Canadian social history has been a constant theme in Racan’s academic career. As a student at SFU, where he completed a BA in history with a minor in political science, he enjoyed researching in archives for his own research and that of the professors he was working with.
Racan with catalogue card drawer ‘A’
The career of archivist has drawn many historians over the years. Racan chose to explore this potential career path through volunteering at the Archives. Several projects benefited from his help and we hope they have helped him decide if archival work is in his future. Continue reading