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Harper staff design winning software

Posted 1 March 2011

Software designed by staff at Harper Adams University College, that automatically adds copyright information to images, won the Picture This Developer Challenge at a recent conference.

Picture This! Was a one day workshop run jointly by the Metadata Forum and the Application Profiles Support project, as part of the Dev8D+ programme of events at the University of London.

It brought together developers and non-technical practitioners to explore the issues around image-based metadata.

Roger Greenhalgh and Rob Baker work for Openfields - an online library for food, farming, the environment, energy and rural business based at the University College in Shropshire.

They identified the problem of the use of photographs and materials from image libraries in teaching materials, without the necessary copyright information.

The solution to this, as found by Roger and Rob, is to automatically generate Creative Commons license and attribution information onto images when they are downloaded. A prototype was then created at the workshop.

Roger Greenhalgh, Information Manager, said: “We are extremely pleased to be recognised for our work on this project. Through our work creating objects for wider use, we realised the need for a solution to this widely recognised problem.

“We now plan to implement this service for official use at Harper Adams and then possibly release the software as an ‘open source’ for wider public use.”

The team’s solution was so impressive that it scooped first prize, beating IT developers from a wide range of UK HE institutions.

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