LoCloud was a Best Practice Network of 31 partners co-funded under the CIP ICT-PSP programme of the European Commission, which ran from 1 March 2013 for three years.
There were two main aspects in LoCloud’s work:
- the exploration of the potential of cloud computing technologies for enhancing Europeana, working on the development of a cloud infrastructure (IaaS) and on the creation of software services (SaaS) aimed to benefit content providers and users;
- a specific focus on small and medium sized institutions, whose digital collections are still under-represented in Europeana.
In particular, LoCloud aimed to facilitate the role of small and medium-sized institutions by:
- Supporting them in making their content and metadata available to Europeana, by using the cloud to provide services and tools which help to reduce technical, semantic and skills barriers.
- Making available cloud-based software services which enable them to render their content more discoverable and interoperable;
- Enabling smaller institution types such as house museums, which currently fall outside most aggregation infrastructures, to contribute their content to Europeana.
- Exploring the potential of cloud computing for aggregation, enrichment and re-use, with a special focus on geographic location.
- Exploring and trial a cloud based architecture as a scalable platform for Europeana metadata aggregation and harvesting with higher efficiency and reduced maintenance costs.
- Provide guidance, training and support facilities to serve the needs of content providers.
To learn more about Locloud read the final report or see LoCloud: Local Cultural Heritage Online and in the Cloud, Kate Fernie, in Uncommon Culture Vol. 6, no. 2 (12) (2015): Creative Digital
If you have any questions about the project you can contact CARARE and we will try to help.
The consortium of LoCloud included:
- a strong group of technical partners
- national and regional aggregation services or content providers who will both provide new content and act as pilot implementers of the cloud services.
- a number of partners acting as content providers representing specific content domains (such as ‘house museums’, specialised museums, public libraries and local archives).
- a group of partners with specific expertise in key aspects (e.g. vocabularies).
The consortium members:
- Arkivverket (National Archives of Norway) - Coordinator, Norway
- Angewandte Informationstechnik Forschungsgesellschaft mbH, Austria
- provincie Limburg, Belgium
- Pencho Slaveykov Regional Library, Bulgaria
- Gradska knjiznica Rijeka, Croatia
- Cyprus University of Technology, Cyprus
- Národní památkový ústav (National Heritage Institute), Czech Republic
- Kulturstyrelsen, Denmark
- Conseil Général de la Gironde – Archives Départementales de la Gironde, France
- University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany
- Future Library, Greece
- National Technical University of Athens, Greece
- Athena Research and Innovation Centre in Information Communication & Knowledge Technologies, Greece
- Minjastofnun Íslands /The Cultural Heritage Agency of Iceland, Iceland
- The Discovery Programme, Ireland
- Fondazione Ranieri di Sorbello, Italy
- Vilniaus universiteto Komunikacijos fakultetas, Lithuania
- The Ministerie van onderwijs, cultuur en wetenschap – Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed, The Netherlands
- Asplan Viak Internet AS, Norway
- Instytut Chemii Bioorganicznej PAN – Poznań Supercomputing and Networking Centre, Poland
- Fundação Museu Nacional Ferroviário, Portugal
- Biblioteca Judeţeană O.Goga Cluj, Romania
- Biblioteka grada Beograda (Belgrade City Library), Serbia
- Univerzita Komenského Prírodovedecká fakulta Katedra aplikovanej a environmentálnej geofyziky, Slovakia
- Javni Zavod Republike Slovenije za Varstvo Kulturne Dediscine, Slovenia
- Jara. Zavod za razvoj knjižnic, Slovenia
- Ministerio de Educacion, Cultura y Deporte, Spain
- Universidad del País Vasco (University of the Basque Country), Spain
- ABM Resurs Västernorrland, Sweden
- Hacettepe Universitesi, Turkey
- University of York – Archaeology Data Service, United Kingdom
- 2Culture Associates, UK
Many years of collaboration with cultural institutions allowed the project to develop technical solutions which met their requirements, promoted cultural heritage and allowed for collaboration with Europeana. Thanks to the spread of cloud technologies, the project was able to propose a professional solution allowing the smallest institutions to publish their collections on the Internet.
LoCloud Collections allows quick and easy creation of your own digital library, museum or archive and supports publishing of data to Europeana. This service is available in a Software-as-a-Service model; this means that institutions do not need to own the IT infrastructure but access the services online.
For more information and to try LoCloud Collections go to: https://www.locloudhosting.net/
For LoCloud collections documentation go to: http://support.locloud.eu/LoCloud Collections/
LoCloud Enrichment Services
The project developed a suite of enrichment services including:
- Two Geolocation enrichment services - a Web Service API and a Microservice to facilitate geocoding of existing cultural heritage data that do not have location information that can be resolved to coordinates. Using these tools, existing content can be tagged with both coordinates, geographical names as well as persistent URIs of known geographical concepts such as Geonames.
- A Historical place names service - an application to enable local cultural institutions to collaborate in the development of an historical place name microservice, which is developed on the basis of HPN Thesaurus.
- A Vocabulary service - based on the federated thesaurus model, which allows for independent vocabularies from various languages in the same domain aligned via concept identifiers. A well-established open-source vocabulary platform, TemaTres, was chosen as baseline for the development. This supports the importing of vocabularies and online collaboration in the creation and updating of vocabularies. API services are available for use in local cataloguing systems.
- A Wikimedia Application - built as a WebService using a REST interface to communicate with Wikimedia commons. An API console has been built on top of the REST service to demonstrate its functionality. The user provides the URL to the Wikimedia installation endpoint (e.g. http://commons.wikimedia.org/w/api.php) plus the identifier for the User that provided the content to be harvested (e.g. PMRMaeyaert) from Wikimedia. The application then uses the API in to retrieve the metadata records associated with this user. The harvested metadata is then mapped to EDM and in this way made available for aggregation to Europeana.
The MOnument Repository (MORe) was implemented to provide a store for the metadata aggregated from content providers and offers services including the delivery of content to Europeana. For more information see: http://support.locloud.eu/MORE
Below are the public deliverables produced in the course of the LoCloud project. Clicking any of the links will redirect you the Zenodo research data repository.
WP1: Planning, preparation and requirements
WP2: Design and implementation of aggregation
WP3: Micro services for small and medium institutions
WP4: Enabling and supporting small and medium institutions
WP5: Evaluation and impact assessment
WP6: Dissemination and exploitation
The project published a series of presentations on Slidshare which you can find by following this link: https://www.slideshare.net/locloud/presentations. They include:
LoCloud Support Centre
LoCloud's support centre provides an introduction tot he applcations, APIs and microservices developed by the project. http://support.locloud.eu/