Cary collection web presentation & digital image database

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Title: Cary collection web presentation & digital image database
Author: McCombe, Cynthia
Abstract: The Melbert Cary, Jr. Graphic Arts Collection in the Wallace Memorial Library is one of the treasures the RIT community has had available for years. For this thesis project, selected materials from the collection were scanned and made available on the Internet so people at any location can experience the rare and invaluable items the facility houses. Not only has the result of this project created an educational tool for others to use, but it also challenged the author to master web publishing while developments rapidly occur on the most powerful mass communications media to arise in decades. While the primary purpose of this thesis project was to create an aesthetically pleasing and information rich web presentation for the Melbert Cary, Jr. Graphic Arts Collection, many secondary goals had to first be achieved. Those secondary goals are outlined in this list: 1. To acquire high quality color electronic images for others to access remotely. 2. To design a searchable database of 300 records. 3. To learn the ins-and-outs of web publishing by: Creating cohesive and consistent documents in the HyperText Markup Language (HTML). Developing an aesthetically pleasing interface for users to explore documents. This included keeping up-to-date with developments in HTML and using techniques created by web publishing experts to make the text as typographically pleasing as possible. Placing the necessary documents and images on a web server. Advertising the address of the presentation, or URL, to the appropriate audience. 4. Developing clear and concise instructions on how to maintain the presentation, including procedures for adding categories and images. After a substantial amount of work on this project was completed, it was linked to the Wallace Memorial Library's home page. A home page is the first site a person reaches upon typing in an Internet address on the World Wide Web. Home pages can be created by individuals or organizations and serve as points of departure for exploring textual and graphical information available at these sites. The Cary presentation has a section explaining the history and growth of the collection. A user can continue by taking a virtual tour of the facilities or by reading about recent acquisitions. The main feature of the presentation is a subject library and digital image data base which contains an initial collection of approximately 300 searchable records ranging from medieval manuscripts to portraits of printers. Instructions on how to perform various types of searches, as well as what type of searches are feasible, are also integrated into this project. Finally, information about image acquisition, graphics presentation, and database installation and setup are integrated into this project. In addition, a secondary home page for the American Printing History Association has been created, and sample articles from its journal Printing History will be available in a digital format on an ongoing basis. All images were prepared to be as faithful to the originals as possible, keeping in mind the drawbacks inherent in viewing images and text on today's monitors. Retaining accurate colors and details while paying heed to practical speed requirements of transmission was of great importance. A feedback form has also been made available for individuals who wish to communicate any comments, problems, requests or suggestions via e-mail. The documentation that follows is the methodology used in creating the Cary Collection's web presentation.
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Date: 1995-11

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