The Edition Production Technology (EPT) and the ARCHway and Electronic Boethius Projects

multipaper session
  1. 1. Kevin Kiernan

    English Department - University of Kentucky

  2. 2. Dorothy Porter

    Research in Computing for Humanities - University of Kentucky

  3. 3. Alex Dekhtyar

    Computer Science - University of Kentucky

  4. 4. Ionut Emil Iacob

    Computer Science - University of Kentucky

  5. 5. Jerzy W. Jaromczyk

    Computer Science - University of Kentucky

  6. 6. Neil Moore

    Computer Science - University of Kentucky

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Session Statement

This session is based on the collaborative research and interdisciplinary education that have gone into the development of a generic Edition Production Technology (EPT) for building image-based electronic editions of damaged Old English manuscripts and, by extension, any representation of digitized cultural materials for contemporary users.

The concept of an effective, modular, extensible, Edition Production Toolkit (EPT) arose from the difficulties encountered while producing an electronic edition of the Beowulf manuscript. To solve these problems for the Electronic Boethius project, we set out to create a modular Java and XML software framework, including an edition production management system, a native XML database, graphical user interfaces, and a suite of editorial tools, customized to the needs of textual scholars in the humanities. The goal was to allow for the efficient assembly of complex scholarly editions from high-resolution digital facsimiles and XML-encoded texts, apparatus and ancillary materials. While our general approach was sound and the Electronic Boethius project in a few months developed a suite of Java editorial tools operating under an XML framework, and successfully used these tools to begin the edition, the extensible development of the Electronic Boethius toolkit was hampered by the lack of computer science expertise in software engineering.

We were accordingly fortunate to attract computer scientists to join in the ARCHway Project, which deeply involved them and their students in an interdisciplinary effort to create an overarching technology for image-based electronic editions. Guided by the Eclipse programming environment, ARCHway has established an infrastructure for collaborative research and teaching between computer science and the humanities. Our interdisciplinary teams, working together at each stage, have designed formal methodologies for collaborative teaching and research, based on practical goals. Eclipse, our chosen programming environment, maintains an open-standards architecture with modular, extensible, interoperable components to coordinate research and development of novel methods, tools, and associated technologies in a teaching and learning environment involving undergraduate and graduate students. EPT has guided the definition and coordination of well-encapsulated collaborative student projects from semester to semester in specified research projects related to documenting, editing, storing, accessing, and searching image-based electronic editions.

The complementary projects allowed our research teams to pursue these shared goals from both a specific and practical standpoint, with the Electronic Boethius and the Electronic Beowulf projects, to a more general and theoretical standpoint, with the ARCHway Project. In the following papers, we first present how specific problems of preparing an electronic edition from damaged Old English manuscripts help to define the range of tools required in the EPT; we then show how the computer scientists designed and implemented an EPT with specific components crucial to image-based, document-centric editing; and finally, we present the EPT’s architecture, centering on the utilities that constitute its underlying infrastructure.

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Conference Info

In review


Hosted at University of Victoria

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada

June 15, 2005 - June 18, 2005

139 works by 236 authors indexed

Affiliations need to be double checked.

Conference website:

Series: ACH/ICCH (25), ALLC/EADH (32), ACH/ALLC (17)

Organizers: ACH, ALLC

  • Keywords: None
  • Language: English
  • Topics: None