Encoding and processing
Selected books are transcribed in their entirety in XML, validated against a slightly customized version of TEI Lite and encoded in UTF8. The corpus is then processed to create a single file which is used as the data source for browsing the pages and emblems/impresa. A second version of this file is further optimised for free text searching, using text processing features available in XSLT2.This allows for case insensitive searches that also ignore accented characters. In this version of the text words separated by hyphens at the end of lines are joined and it is also possible to search for regular spellings of words as well as the text displayed. The website content is delivered using PHP5 XML extensions based on the libxml2 library. Searches are processed and content delivered using XSLT.
Text transcription standard
For the transcription of the texts, Unicode is the medium adopted, as it is the best available option to represent the obsolete characters and abbreviations of the 16th-century books.
Books have been reproduced on a page-by-page basis in a format suitable for archival purposes (TIFF, 24-bit colour, 300 dpi) and then converted in a suitable format for the web (JPEG).
Encoded with TEILite, slightly customized in order to store and make searchable in the most appropriate way emblem and impresa books (write to the Contac address for further details).
Adopted a set of data categories which is inspired by the "Spine", a set of metadata headings developed within the Glasgow Centre for Emblem Studies, in particular for the typological distinction of the different parts composing emblem books, but modified to take into account a series of specific structural features of the emblematic materials selected (notably, in many cases, length of prose sections and irregularity of structure).
The project aims to be part of the Open Emblem initiative, whose Web portal is projected to help emblem researchers to increase collaboration and share, making different digital corpora searchable under that portal in a unified way, thanks to the adoption of a standard data harvesting protocol (the OAI: Open Archives Metadata Harvesting Protocol).