The system we built is based on three distinct components. Firstly, there is a Laravel build for the API, which enables the upload of collections data from any participating museum into a central metadata store. This data store can be accessed via a public api which is documented here.
Secondly, we built a CultureObject provider for our data store which queries the API system on a regular basis in order to bring in updated or new records.
Finally, we built a robust and flexible web platform based on WordPress multisite which supports the public SWCE website as well as any participating museum sites. Each can have their own web presence, with collections data displayed uniquely for each site, while the “mothership” at http://swcollectionsexplorer.org.uk shows the entire collections recordset for all museums.
Further developments have included a widget builder, CSV export and a flexible tool which enables anyone browsing the sites to create and curate their own collection.
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