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Home | DTI | 2004–05 funded proposals | Anne Pusey, Shashi Shekhar, Jaideep Srivastava

Initiatives in Digital Technology: 2004–05 Funded Proposals

Anne Pusey, Shashi Shekhar, Jaideep Srivastava

A digital library to archive research material from Jane Goodall's Gombe chimpanzee project

The study of the chimpanzees of Gombe National Park, Tanzania, has been continuous since 1960. The archive of all the research materials from this world famous study is maintained at the Jane Goodall's Center for Primate Studies at the University of Minnesota. These materials are of immense value both for scientific research in biology, anthropology and medicine, and for the education and entertainment of the general public. The long-term goal of the Center is to convert all these materials into a digital form and create a searchable digital library that can be accessed by qualified users through the web. Over the whole study period, thousands of 35mm photographs have been taken of the chimpanzees, both black and white, and color. Since 1993, over six hundred hours of video have been shot during daily follows of the chimpanzees through the forest. Digitization and storage of still images and video on computers in the DTC is currently underway. The goal of this project is to begin the creation of a database to index and access this visual material. This process will proceed from the creation of a simple meta-database to investigation of content-based retrieval techniques. The project will strengthen an already existing collaboration between faculty and students of the EEB and CS departments, and will increase the potential for federal support. Considerable interest in the project has already been expressed by a number of computer, software and entertainment companies. This project will produce a demo of the digital library that will greatly increase the chances of outside support and collaboration.