Islandoracon 2019

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Use-a-Thon Dividends: Islandora + Alexa

manez's picture
Submitted by manez on

We're taking another look back at Islandoracon this week, to highlight another one of the amazing projects that came from our Islandora 8 Use-a-Thon. We've seen how to build exhibits and how to generate audio thumbnails; now, let's dive into the deep end of Drupal contributed modules with team Blue Lobster's recipe to integrate Islandora with Amazon Alexa. You can see the pitch on these clever slides, but the basic premise is that since Islandora 8 plays nicely with pretty much any Drupal contributed module, even boundary-pushing tools like Alexa integration are on the table. The use case for the team was to use Alexa to create interactive exhibits that pull information from similar collection across multiple institutions (it turned out that both team members' home institutions have collections centered around the experiences of African American  nurses), but the true applications of this recipe are as varied as its components. Potentially, you could use this recipe to build an Islandora integration that can:

  • Send Citations, metadata, whatever we want to the user if they have set up their email
  • Creating a collaborative exhibit
  • Play audio and video objects and read transcripts
  • Respond to user search queries (like how many objects match the subject in the repositories)
  • Answer specific questions about the object (“Invocation Name, when was this recorded?”)
  • Interact with other applications or modules (got a print ordering system? Want to add event calendar items to your exhibit?)
  • Be accessed via web page, Alexa device, or phone app

Many thanks to Brad Spry (UNCC) and Mariee Vibbert (Case Western) for this innovative idea.

Use-a-Thon Dividends: Creating Exhibits in Islandora

manez's picture
Submitted by manez on

As we noted in last week's Look Back at Islandoracon, our Islandora 8 Use-a-Thon was a huge success and participants solved some pretty significant use cases using nothing but Drupal modules and configuration. This week I'd like to showcase one of the entries that didn't, but that presents a well-researched, very well demo-'d start list of options for creating exhibits in Islandora 8. Presented by The Exhibitionists (Mark Jordan, David Keiser-Clark, Don Richards, Lucas van Schaik, Alan Stanley, Charlie Tillay), we have Islandora 8 Exhibitions and TimeLineJS.

In the main thrust of the use case, the group lays out how to deploy a sleek, interactive timeline tool that can present your resource nodes. It's user friendly both to the manager who populates it, and the end users who use it to browse your exhibit, and it's already perfectly deployable in Islandora 8 (as we saw in a live demo!). They also explored some other ways to build exhibit-type views of resource nodes in islandora; it's well worth checking out the full recipe. TimeLineJS in action: 

A screenshot of a TimeLineJS timeline featuring Nelson Mandela

Stay tuned for more from the Islandoracon Use-a-Thon in coming weeks! We have eight amazing entries, every one of which produced valuable recommendations for anyone deploying Islandora.

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