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Glenbow Archives

 

The Glenbow Archives has used Inmagic products to raise its profile and has actually increased revenues by using DB/Text WebPublisher to make its unique collection of photographs available to people around the world. Read on and learn how they have done it:

DB/Text WebPublisher provides Glenbow patrons with a do-it yourself solution

The Glenbow Archives, one of Canada’s largest non-governmental repositories, is a major research center for historians, writers, students and the media. The Archives’ records, which date to the 1870s, document the social, political and economic history of Calgary and southern Alberta.

Areas of specialty include the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Native North American Tribes, ranching, agriculture, the petroleum industry, labor, women, and business.

The collection encompasses three miles of shelf space, two miles of textual records, over a million photographs, 350 hours of film footage, and 1,500 sound recordings.

When it came time to place their large and varied collection on the Internet, the Glenbow Museum archivists had to come up with a software solution that would make the user self-reliant.

"People won’t use a system unless it is user friendly. DB/Text WebPublisher is just that, so people don’t need much help with it, and that frees up our time to deal with other matters."

Susan Kooyman, Glenbow archivist

"With cutbacks in funding, we are not able to hold the customer’s hand," said Susan Kooyman, a Glenbow archivist. "Therefore, it was important for us to have a system that makes the customer as self-sufficient as possible."

Such criteria made DB/Text WebPublisher the logical choice.

"It may sound ironic, but part of good customer service is making the customer as self-sufficient as possible," said Kooyman." With DB/Text WebPublisher, the customer is able to do as advanced or as simple a search as necessary. It is really a very flexible product.

Since archivists often spend lots of time searching for specific information, documents, photos, or footage, it is imperative to have a system that provides fast and flexible searching capabilities. DB/TextWorks®, the underlying structure of DB/Text WebPublisher, provides such features.

"We really appreciate the speed of DB/Text WebPublisher," said Kooyman. "We’ve tried it in the Museum and from our homes, and it always moves very quickly.

"The highlighted search term and flexible length of the query are also invaluable. It really makes the searching process go very smoothly."

Kooyman appreciates DB/Text WebPublisher’s ability to handle images. The Glenbow has mounted more than 50,000 pictures on the Internet using DB/Text WebPublisher. As a result, revenues from picture orders has gone up over 25 per cent while saving staff time and lowering administrative costs.

"Before DB/Text WebPublisher, if someone wanted a picture, we’d send them a fax or a letter describing the picture; it was a very unwieldy process," said Kooyman. "Now people from all over the world can look at what they would receive, and make an informed decision."

Ultimately, that’s what DB/Text WebPublisher is all about; helping people make informed choices.

To check out the Glenbow’s outstanding collection of photos, please go to http://www.glenbow.org/lasearch/photo.htm

 

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Revised: 03/19/04