PATHS has developed a first prototype of our proposed system for demonstrations and testing by end users, cultural institutions and others.  Two demonstrators of the PATHS prototype are available based on collections from Europeana and the Alinari archives. 

We would like to hear your feedback on these demonstrators!  Please complete the PATHS Project User Evaluation survey  - the feedback you give will contribute to the development of the second PATHS prototype.

PATHS Prototype Screenshot

About the PATHS prototype

Digitisation of the cultural heritage in recent years means that a significant amount of material is now available through online digital library portals such as Europeana.  The quantity of material that is available and limitations in the available metadata can make exploration and discovery of content difficult for end-users. The PATHS project, with funding from the European Commission’s FP7 programme, is exploring ways of extending and enriching the metadata that is available to offer end users with alternatives to standard search portals as the means of item discovery and exploration.

Our aim has been to demonstrate a collection discovery environment for users which combines search, narrative Pathway and visualisation techniques in an integrated system. The current prototype is based on user requirements gathered early in the project and represents the core part of a flexible and adaptable system which will be developed further in the next stage of this project following evaluation and testing. The user interface has 3 main areas:

  • PATHS – enable users to follow Pathways (or narratives) published by users. Users can follow a Path from beginning to end or they can leave the path at any time by following recommendations and links. Users who are logged in to the system can save items to their workspace and then create, edit, publish and share Pathways.
  • SEARCH – supports discovery of both collection items and Paths through keyword search.
  • EXPLORE – enables users to explore the collections using tools which are being designed to appeal to different user preferences.

The PATHS prototype incorporates two collections of data which have been provided to the project for test purposes by Alinari 24 ORA and by Europeana.  The Europeana demonstrator includes around 2 million content items from Spain and the UK, while the Alinari demonstrator includes around 12,000 images from its archive holdings.  In both cases the metadata which was provided has been processed and augmented with additional indexing and linkages before being integrated into the prototype application.

More information about the development of the prototype is available from:

Terms and conditions of use  are available on http://www.paths-project/eng/Resources