Geotagging

One of the long-term goals of the NCDHC is to create a geobrowse feature for the images hosted on their website. At the moment, they have not developed such a map, but the makings of one are in progress. One of my low-priority tasks is to contribute to the development of this feature, by adding geographic information to images in the collection. All items already have basic location metadata, but advanced metadata includes coordinates, and a geo-id. To do this, I first find the location of the image on Google maps. I don’t always have an exact address, and sometimes have to do a little research. For example, I was easily able to located a particular building on the campus of Johnson C. Smith University. However, another building on that same campus was more difficult to pinpoint because it no longer exists. I have to use clues in the existing metadata, and sometimes do a little research to determine where a demolished building once stood. I can then go to the GeoNames database, find that location on the map, and either add a marker, or use an existing one on the map. Each marker has coordinates, which I can add to the metadata for the item. Each marker also has a unique GeoNamesID, that is used to help connect the image to the location. This is also added to the metadata. Once the item is updated with this information, it will be able to be integrated into the geobrowse feature in the future.

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