Kim H. Veltman

Future Strategies and Visions: SUMS and SUMMA (Abstract)

EVA 96', London, 1996.

SUMS stands for System for Universal Media Searching. SUMMA stands for System for Universal Multi Media Access. These grew out of the needs of a scholar trying to organize and display material for a standard bibliography on perspective and research on Leonardo. The project began as a front-end using D-Base and Toolbook as frameworks. The limitations of Toolbook led to a decision to develop our own solution using C++ with the help of a small team of young programmers.

Since this work involved materials in major libraries and museums, it gained the attention of the Canadian Heritage Information Network (CHIN), through a keynote lecture in Winnipeg in 1990, and to a wider audience through a keynote at the CIDOC section of ICOM (Quebec, 1992). In February, 1995, SUMS was chosen as one of 18 national projects to represent Canada at the G7 Information Society Exhibition in Brussels. It was chosen again for the World Summit in Halifax (June 1995). On that occasion the members of G7 agreed to go ahead with 11 pilot projects relating to the major areas of the information society. Each of these projects had a lead country. Italy was chosen to head Pilot Project 5, Multimedia Access to World Cultural Heritage, which focusses on museums. At the Information Society and Developing Countries (ISAD) Conference in Midrand, South Africa (May 1996) four projects from Italy and Canada were chosen to represent Pilot Project 5 (fig. 1).

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