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L-85. Publishing EAD Finding Aids

Daniel Pitti

This course will introduce students to standards and software used for publishing Extensible Markup Language (XML) encoded documents, with a focus on EAD encoded finding aids. It is aimed at systems support personnel in archives, libraries, and museums, or self-supporting archivists, librarians, and museum staff who would like an introduction to EAD publishing technology and methods. The course will focus on writing stylesheets using Extensible Stylesheet Language-Transformation (XSLT), but will also cover Web server technology, available software for indexing and searching XML encoded information, and use of Extensible Stylesheet Language (XSL) Formatting Objects to produce printed finding aids. Topics include: in-depth introduction to the Extensible Stylesheet Language (XSL); authoring of stylesheets using the XSLT language, focusing on XML to XML, and XML to HTML transformations; use of multiple stylesheets and frames; survery and functional evaluation of available indexing and searching software; use of XSL Transformation and Formatting Objects to produce PostScript, PDF, RTF, and other printable encodings; survey and functional evaluation of XSL and XSLT software. The course will conclude with a discussion of management and administrative issues presented by Web publishing.

The class will jointly write stylesheets for a complex finding aid. The stylesheets will involve XML to XML transformations, for example, transforming from one version of EAD to another, and XML to HTML conversions involving different design and navigation strategies. Students also will be given an opportunity to work with each other and the instructor on complex transformation challenges found in their own institutions. Applicants must have an excellent understanding of EAD encoded finding aids, a good understanding of HTML encoding, and an aptitude for computer technology as demonstrated by past experience. In their personal statement, applicants should document their qualifications in these three areas, and also describe their role (present or future) in the implementation of EAD in their home institution.

Course Resources

Course History

2002

Daniel Pitti teaches this course for the first time.