Jörg RÄTHER / Eicke SIEGLOFF
(Archaeological Museum Hamburg, Germany)
Keywords: excavation database, document management system,open source/ free software
The design of an archaeological database or the decision for a particular application often depends on special scientific interests or the requirements of a single project. In the context of the preservation and care of field monuments with the need to document everything from a find notice to a longtime excavation, from prehistoric sites to development led urban archaeology, the requirement profile is more complex. Besides the acquisition of homogenously structured archaeological information through both, staff members and external contractors, under varying operational conditions, the management of the increasing amount of digital files is a main task. Meeting those requirements archaeoDox was on the one hand developed as a common relational database for scientific information like the documentation of finds, contexts, stratigraphic relations etc. and on the other as a document management system. It builds up a file system upon the documentary steps of each project which can be searched directly within the application linked to the scientific information. The development of archaeoDox was undertaken by derbrillIT in cooperation with the Archaeological Museum Hamburg and the State Archaeological Department of Schleswig-Holstein, where archaeoDox serves as a standard application at archaeological excavations and for the revision of archived documentary and the storage of digitalized analog files. The technology of archaeoDox is open source and a community edition of it was published as free software under GPLv3 in April 2014. A general aim of the development of archaeoDox was a simplification of working processes within a data-centric architecture. archaeoDox can be applied as a client-server-application as well as a stand-alone-application on site and a geo-data extension is currently planned. archaeoDox is also considered to be a necessary step towards the possibility of long term digital preservation later on.