[Mirrored from: http://www.rlg.org/strat/projarch.html]


Arches -- Archival Server and Test Bed

To build the conceptual and physical foundation for collaborative projects that will create long-lasting, internationally accessible digital resources of all types. Arches involves both an online repository for digital files and the software environment that makes this repository accessible and maintainable.

With the completion of this project and an operating archival server, RLG will have the capacity for new services based on providing access to whole information objects from RLG projects, from member sites, and from commercial providers. Arches will be the home for resources from the first RLG digital collections project, for some of the finding aids from the FAST project, and for some of the documents made accessible through the WebDOC project. It will also point to (and thus virtually include) resources on other, remote servers.

Strategic Objective
Goal 1. Transformed Research -- coordinated digital collections.

Related Strategic Value
Goal 1. Transformed Research -- delivery to the end user.
Goal 2. Global Resource -- primary research information.

Together, Arches and the Digital Collections Project specifically address the RLG Mid-Decade Planning Group's recommendations to:

Project Tasks
These fall into three areas:

The Arches testbed approach puts these pieces together drawing on other, concurrent projects.

A modest first step links images to RLIN bibliographic records and provides access via a Web browser that communicates with RLG search and retrieval systems. Subsequently, SGML-encoded text files such as finding aids will be added to the repository, linked to RLIN records. At first, a user will view these finding aids and navigate within them using a viewer, such as Panorama. Links can also be made from finding aids to actual page images from the collections. When SGML-encoded full-text documents, with images of their illustrations, are added to the repository, software that takes advantage of the retrieval power of SGML will be integrated to support extensive searching facility.

Time Frame
The three deliverables targeted for late 1996 are:

A fourth deliverable in early 1997 will be:

Additional Information
Other projects that intersect with Arches include: Digital Collections; FAST; Web Access; and WebDOC.

The recommendations of the joint RLG - Commission on Preservation and Access Task Force on archiving digital information will guide Arches design. You can also use the Contents or Search button to find background in other RLG Web pages.

Last updated 3/96
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