As a part of my Writing for the Web class (the class for which I finally started this blog) I have been working on a feature story as a final project. My feature story is a multi-modal, interactive website where you can virtually explore the 19th century city of Bath in the time when Jane Austen lived there. In order to create this blog in the way I envisioned it, I needed to use a new application, a new plugin, and lots of assistance! Keep reading to learn more about how I learned to use Omeka to create an online exhibition for this project.
Check out this blog which turned into a pre-write for the feature story project!
Starting the Project
Because I own the domain for Oxford Comma Blog through Reclaim Hosting, that is where I logged in to manage the files through the FTP (File Transfer Protocol). I knew that I wanted to use Omeka Classic, which is open source platform for online exhibitions, as my publishing platform. Everything that I was doing was completely new to me, so I had to do lots of research to understand how to bring my plans to fruition.
My professor gave us some guidance during one of our Zoom classes on how to install a new app to Reclaim Hosting. First, I went to the Application Browser in Reclaim Hosting, which brings me to an area called “Installatron”. In this section, there are different applications, and even a nice little definition describing what a web application is!
I clicked on the small Omeka square. In the new page, there is a button on the top right which says “Install this Application”. I installed Omeka and then created a domain name for my new site. Once I had done that, I was able to go to the domain name: http://oxfordcommablog.com/regencycityofbath/ and see the bare bones of my site.
Adding the Plugins
To make the site more customizable and to fit the idea I had for an interactive map, I needed to add a plugin. I downloaded Neatline from the list of Omeka plugins. Then I had to transfer that zipped package to my public html in the file manager on Reclaim Hosting. I did this by going to the public html folder in Reclaim Hosting and then clicking ‘upload’ and uploading the zipped package from my downloads. Once I had the package there, I had to “extract” it (which just means right clicking on the zipped package and clicking extract). This was actually where I hit my first real snag, because I didn’t know I had to extract it, and I couldn’t figure out how to do anything with the zipped package. However, once I extracted the files, I simply had to go to the admin page on my Omeka site and go to plugins where I had to make sure the plugin was installed from that side.
Once Neatline was installed on Omeka, it showed up in the left side under the dashboad. I could click on Neatline and edit the way it appears. It was here that I changed the background of the interactive map by uploading a picture of a map from 1803 into the image layer.
Once I had finished customizing a slug and the image layer, I went to import items. I added each item and a location to their information on the map. In addition to the map, I also created collections with items containing information about the different locations in Bath. By doing so, I completed my work for an interactive project!