Access Featured OHMS — 06 March 2012

Three years ago, I worked with Eric Weig, who managed the Kentucky Digital Library (KDL), to create a better way to present oral history online. The Nunn Center was focusing energy on transcription and the KDL was putting our interviews online with the transcripts. After several conversations and napkin drawings, we contracted a programmer to design a system that would take online oral history for large collections to the next level the Oral History Metadata Synchronizer (OHMS) was born. Since launch, we have uploaded over 700 interviews into the OHMS system ( but are now taking OHMS to the next level.

In the past few months, OHMS has been reprogrammed completely. It is programmed in very simple PHP and will be released as open source in the near future. One hitch has always been that most do not have the money to transcribe. We have implemented an indexing module so that you can use OHMS to create index points containing searchable metadata (Title, Summary, Keywords and Subjects, Partial Transcript, GPS coordinates, Hyperlinks) and present the dynamic index so the user can browse and search an interview and be taken to the relevant segment within seconds. Indexing is a good way to get the interview online faster while you are fundraising for the creation of transcripts. Many of our interviews at the Nunn Center will have both!





We just received an IMLS grant to take this open source package and create pathways to implementation so that OHMS can work as a plug-in with some of the more common systems such as CONTENTdm, OMEKA, KORA, and Drupal. We are also just about to hire a programmer to begin work on this over the next year.

The newest version of OHMS is being implemented on the Kentucky Digital Library and a new repository called Explore UK which is hosting University of Kentucky’s archival material. I will let you know when they are live.

I just presented a the 2012 Webwise conference in Baltimore, MD and gave a sneak peak to the newest version of OHMS and, as soon as I can, will be converting that presentation to video so you can get the full tour. Until then, the video above will give you a glimpse of the new indexing module on the user side.


About Author

Douglas A. Boyd

(0) Readers Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please type the characters of this captcha image in the input box

Please type the characters of this captcha image in the input box