Reuse of Europeana content for fun!

Author: Eliza Papaki
7 March 2016 Comment

As more and more digital content is created and ingested in digital libraries, there is a growing need for creative reuse of this content by the public, researchers or the GLAM sector, for producing new digital outcomes. This need is also identified as one of the goals of Europeana Research for encouraging further engagement of researchers with digital content lying within Europeana, implementing it in their research.

In a different context, the relation between the public and digital content is among the core points of discussion in a different project entitled ARK4. This Norwegian project aims to create a virtual dialogue between the public and partner institutions through gaming activities. In its new phase, the project attempts to re-use digital content from the Cultural Heritage sector, mainly deriving from Europeana, to reach a wider audience through knowledge testing games.

"Animals" by Ernst Enno, illustrated by Richard Kivit, published by "Loodus" in 1938, Estonia. Conservation Centre Kanut, Kadriorg Art Museum, National Library of Estonia, Rights: CC0

The collaboration among these two initiatives has resulted in the creation of knowledge games inspired by the content held within Europeana, freely available to the public. This work was an initiative undertaken by the Digital Curation Unit, Athena RC, project partner of Europeana Research and ARK4. To this purpose, results deriving from the work conducted within Work Package 1 of the project Europeana Cloud were explored (Deliverable 1.3/1.6). More particularly, the suggestion for more specialized approaches to communities within the target audience of the project, in order to better capture user needs, led to the identification of different research topics. These were examined in terms of the current research practices, available tools and resources in the respective areas. Some of the identified topics thus served as the content inspiration for building games on top of them for the purposes of the ARK4 project.

Children’s Literature is the first of a series of knowledge testing games that will be produced in this context. Launched on March 3, on the occasion of the World Book Day, it is a joyful topic that aims to travel its users back to their childhood and test what they have been reading and remember from then. Among the questions, the users can have a look at beautiful visual records lying currently within Europeana.

Illustration from "The Adventures of Oliver Twist", 1893, British Library. Rights: Public Domain

ARK4 is a project-collaboration among four institutions in Trondheim: NTNU University Library; NTNU Department of Computer and Information Science (IDI); Regional State Archives in Trondheim and Norwegian Deaf Museum and an international partner, Digital Curation Unit, Athena RC in Athens, Greece. During this collaboration, workshops were held focusing on introducing new technologies in teaching.

You can play the quiz here - Let’s see how much you score!