Gazetteers as downloadable archives
Posted by marcus.bingenheimer on 2011/01/15
The 234 temple gazetteers are now available as downloadable archives at buddhistinformatics.ddbc.edu.tw/fosizhi/. Both the 13 full-text and the image-only archives come with copious metadata. Next to the TEI Header, there is MIX data for all images, and, crucially content related metadata concerning the structure of each gazetteer. As the TEI and the MIX metadata, the content metadata is included in the METS metadata wrapper that comes with each archive. It includes all headings as well as the first three characters of each page thereby allowing for a shallow search across all gazetteers.
To make these archives available in a distributable documented format is an important step forward for us. It enables other researchers to use the data in their own projects and digital librarians to include our datasets in their collections. Though the zip-archives might not be all that attractive for the general user, who will probably prefer to access the data via the online interface, they represent what we have been aiming for all along: free, distributable, and documented datasets.
With the production of these archives the first phase of the temple gazetteer project has come to an end. The second stage will close the circle and turn the digital objects back into print in a way that will show how much information was added in the encoding process. The 13 full text gazetteers will be published with Xinwenfeng 新文豐 in 2013. This gives us time to improve the text, the punctuation, the person database, and further identify relevant places. The set will include a person name index, CE dates for all Chinese calendar dates, as well as maps. All gazetteers will be introduced by a scholar in the field in English or Chinese.