Tech Talks Presentation by William Hicks, February 25, 2009


SIMILE is a joint project conducted by the MIT Libraries and MIT CSAIL.  One of the most successful projects to come out of  SIMILE is Exhibit, a JavaScript framework which allows an individual to create interesting Web-based representations of data without a reliance on server side technology or a database.  Exhibits consist of a single HTML file and a data source only.  An exhibit can generate faceted navigation; items within the collection can be searched, styled, and manipulated in various ways.  Exhibits can integrate with external services and APIs to create mashups, and can be used to (fairly) easily publish Web-based bibliographies, ratings/review lists, mapping applications, data tracked over a scale of time, etc. Example

In this Tech Talk we explore various methods of creating exhibits, starting with simple integrations/creations from the Firefox add-on, Zotero, and from an Excel or Google spreadsheet.  We create data structures to integrate with external services, and do some mapping and plotting of data on a timeline.  We conclude by diving into the HTML to see how data is represented and discussing how these things can be used in the wild.

About the Author:  Librarian William Hicks is the technology coordinator for the UNT Libraries' Multimedia Development Lab.