Metadata from the database of the Manuscripta Mediaevalia (ManuMed) online catalogue provide the basis of the Handschriftenportal. However, in ManuMed, the core information contained in the descriptions often lacks a consistent standardisation.
As a result, one of the project aims is to carry out a ‘data quality approach’. This means adding missing digital full texts from printed catalogues via OCR (Optical Character Recognition), standardising structures and linking core metadata with the controlled vocabularies provided by the Gemeinsame Normdatei (German Integrated Authority File, GND). Each manuscript is represented by a so-called Kulturobjektdokument (culture-object document, KOD/COD), which is assigned a unique identifier. The COD serves as the central reference point for all available descriptions and digital copies. In a later project phase, these identifiers will be transferred to the GND in order to ensure the persistent linking of information via authority data sets for manuscripts, the so-called ‘written heritage’ documents. This means that the Handschriftenportal will not only adhere to standards to ensure clear referencing, but also set standards itself.
The new web-based interfaces will enable libraries, archives and other institutions holding manuscript collections to add new information about their manuscripts – both descriptive texts and digital copies – to the Handschriftenportal. Clear standards must be developed and followed in order to guarantee a consistently high quality of the data available on the Handschriftenportal. Equally important is a validation of the data prior to uploading on to the Handschriftenportal.
Learn more about the data quality approach (German only)