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Section 5: Documenting Data from a Virtual Reality Project#

5.2 Project documentation#

This section looks at documentation for the project itself and is based on Dublin Core metadata (see Miller and Greenstein 1997). The documentation recommended provides a record of the project team, the background to the project and the archive that has been created. It is important because it supports discovery (see Section 7.1 and Section 7.2) of the resource on the World Wide Web and in the digital archive.

The types of information recommended for inclusion in the project documentation are listed below.

The name of the subject, project or model. It may be either the name used for the published model (e.g. 'Dancing in Virtual Spaces') or the familiar and/or published place or monument name (e.g. 'Wroxeter').

The name and address of the organisation or individual(s) who created the world. Include the name(s) and address(es) of those who have made a significant contribution to the world, for example educationalists, artists, translators.

Keywords or phrases that describe the subject or content of the resource. This may include:
  • Subject discipline; e.g. Archaeology, Architecture, Fine Arts, Visual Arts, Theatre Studies
  • Subject type; Fort, Dance, Sculpture etc.
  • Temporal period; e.g. Roman, MedievalIt is recommended practice to make reference to controlled vocabularies or classification schemes when indexing the subject content of the model (see Appendix 3).

A brief summary (max. 300–400 words) of the main aims and objectives of the project for which the model was developed and a brief description of the model and its features. The projected lifespan of the virtual reality should be noted.

The name(s) and address(es) of the organisation or individual(s) who have facilitated access to the resource. This may include:
  • The organisation or agency who funded or grant-aided the creation of the resource
  • The client who commissioned the creation of the resource
  • The person or organisation who deposited the resource in an archive repository.
Dates associated with the creation and dissemination of the resource. Useful dates include:

  • Project start and end date
  • Release date for the electronic resource
  • Dates associated with the lifespan of the resource, e.g. maintenance cycle, update schedule.

This is the general form of the resource, e.g. virtual reality presentation, electronic learning resource, digital archive.

The data formats which make up the resource, e.g. html, vrml, jpeg image, mpeg.

The identification number or reference used to identify the resource. This may be an internal project reference number.

References to the original material for any data derived in whole or in part from published or unpublished sources, whether printed or machine-readable. Related archives may include plans or section drawings which have been used to create 3-D graphics.

Details should be given of where the sources are held and how they are identified there (e.g. accession number). If a digital collection is derived from other sources there should be an indication of whether the data represent a complete or partial transcription/copy, and the methodology used for its computerisation. Also full references to any publications about or based upon the modelling project should be provided.

The language(s) of the intellectual content of the resource.

Record the relationship to other resources, for example:
  • Bibliographic references to publications about the project
  • The name and address of the organisation or individual(s) holding the primary data for the world. Primary data may include image files, 3-D graphics files, sound files etc.

Where the model relates to a real world location it is useful to record information about its spatial coverage. Where appropriate this may include:
  • The country in which the model lies
  • The current and contemporary name(s) of the country, region, county, town or village
  • The administrative areas (e.g. County, District, Parish) to which the world relates
  • The map co-ordinates of the SW and NE corner of a bounding box enclosing the study area. For Britain, Ordnance Survey National Grid co-ordinates are recommended.Use of the standard area names from an appropriate documentation standard is recommended (see Appendix 3).

A description of any known copyrights held on the model or the source materials used in its creation.

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