The need for the digitisation of natural history collections is enormous. It is estimated that museums worldwide store up to two billion specimens. This number keeps on rising. Luckily, however, newer specimens often get digitised already at the time of collection.
Digitarium has delivered an automatic imaging line for pinned insects for the Finnish Museum of Natural History at the University of Helsinki. The line is identical to the one operating in Joensuu.
Four new research assistants have been recruited for distance work in the ESF project Digitisation goes rural. During the autumn 2015, the research assistants will test from their home offices the new DigiWeb portal for transcribing data from images.
These positions were filled only for a fixed period of three months for the purpose of testing the new system. There were a whopping 121 applicants for these positions, which demonstrates great interest in new, digital ways of working.
"Every major museum needs to build their own mass-digitization laboratory." This is the message Digitarium wants to convey at SPNHC 2015.
The SPNHC 2015 Annual General Meeting will take place in Gainesville, Florida, on May 17-23. Visitors to the SPNHC tradeshow will get presentations of Digitarium’s production systems, and can discuss their implementation with Digitarium staff. Digitarium has crafted blueprints for affordable digitization assembly lines, covering most types of collection objects. The assebly lines can be custom built, as needed.
Ambassador of the United States to Finland Mr. Bruce Oreck visited Digitarium on 6 March 2015, during his tour in Joensuu.
The Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment in South-Savo has granted 155,757 euro for a new project "Digitisation goes rural". The aim of this European Social Fund project is to explore distance work in transcription of digital information. This is a joint project of Digitarium, the Finnish Museum of Natural History LUOMUS, and the Joensuu Regional Development Company JOSEK.
A novel automatic imaging line for pinned insects and other small objects has been taken in production at Digitarium. Using the imaging line, an entire beetle collection of 15,000 specimens was digitised in two months.
Cooperation with the University of Oslo continues. During the summer 94,000 herbarium sheets were imaged in Joensuu. The Digitarium hall is again fully loaded with material.
At the EGI Community Forum meeting, May 19-23, in Helsinki, Finland, Yuliya Fetyukova presented a study led by the BioVeL-project partners at the University of Eastern Finland: "Large scale modelling of the distribution of butterfly biodiversity in Europe using the BioVeL portal on the EGI infrastructure".
Species distribution modelling allows determining variation among species and their shifts over time as responses to climate and environmental changes. Butterflies are good and viable biological indicators. They react quickly to changes.