Does Arches record movable heritage?

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Yiannis Avramides

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Sep 12, 2013, 10:15:49 AM9/12/13
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We often get asked if Arches can record movable heritage and I thought I would try to address this question here. Please feel free to expand on this explanation or ask questions if something is not clear:

Arches has been designed to record all types of immovable heritage. The Core Data Standard for Archaeological and Architectural Heritage, on which the design of the Arches data structure is based, only deals with immovable sites (the two standards that have been combined to create this document are available here: http://archives.icom.museum/object-id/heritage/contents.html). The one exception is that the CDS provides for recording artifacts discovered at a site, and we have built this ability into Arches. If you download Arches currently, you will see in the test dataset records for knives, cups, vessels, pottery etc. In Arches, these fall under the "Archaeological Heritage (Element)" type of Heritage Resources. Based on the CDS, Arches allows for ways to track some special pieces of information that pertain to these records, such as "Distinguishing Features" of an object (e.g. a flaw or a fracture).

But Arches has not been designed as a collections management tool, and you will not find built-in ways to keep track of things like accession, loans, items that are on exhibit, etc. Of course, if an item is now in a collection, you can also add an External Reference to that item in the collection that identifies it uniquely. Arches can also be freely modified to track additional pieces of information (by creating a new graph and, ideally, mappings to the CIDOC CRM), but movable heritage has always been beyond the scope of the Arches Project until now.

I hope this is helpful to anyone who was wondering! For those looking for more information on the CDS, there's a bit more at http://archesproject.org/standards.

Best,

Yiannis




Karl Fogel

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Sep 12, 2013, 10:58:59 AM9/12/13
to Yiannis Avramides, arches...@googlegroups.com
Yiannis Avramides <ioannis....@gmail.com> writes:
>We often get asked if Arches can record movable heritage and I thought
>I would try to address this question here. Please feel free to expand
>on this explanation or ask questions if something is not clear:

This is a great explanation! Maybe worth adding to the FAQ at
http://archesproject.org/faq/ ? (That is, add it to the FAQ, but from
there also link back to this thread -- that way, if there is followup
discussion here, people would be able to get to it from the FAQ item.)

Best,
-Karl

Yiannis Avramides

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Sep 15, 2013, 7:21:12 PM9/15/13
to arches...@googlegroups.com, Yiannis Avramides, Karl Fogel
Thanks for the suggestion Karl. In the absence of any other comments on this topic for now, I will add this explanation and a link to this post in the FAQ.

Yiannis
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