Friday, October 26, 2012

October launch of The Google Cultural Institute

Google's Cultural Institute, launched earlier this month, is a virtual museum with the aim of preserving and promoting culture in online. As well as an imposing website aesthetic, the resource also excels in presenting digitised exhibits of archives which chronicle historical figures and events from the twentieth century up to the present day. Not only do the archives provide a comprehensive visual account of a certain period, they also interweave the personal stories of individuals in the form of narratives which run through each of the 42 exhibits. Major world events such as D-Day, the Holocaust and the anti-apartheid movement are documented with reference to manuscripts, old photographs, artifacts and videos. 
Google have worked with a number of international partners to bring the highly visual and personal nature of the archive to life. Perhaps most useful to GSA researchers is the ability to zoom in and out on the images on the site as found in studying the digital collections of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and the facility to search across the archive for specific persons, places, events or dates.