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University of Florida Digital Collections

A photograph titled "11 Women in costumes" (1930s) from the University Archive Photo Collection, one of the collections in UFDC.

The University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC) are supported by the University of Florida Digital Library Center in the University of Florida. The University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC) comprise a constantly growing collection of digital resources from the University of Florida’s library collections as well as partner institutions. Opening in April 2006,[1] UFDC has added over 300,000 items - books, newspapers, oral histories, videos, photos, and more - with over 8 million pages.


  • Preservation and Access 1
  • Technologies 2
  • Statistics 3
  • Findability 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6
    • List of Collections 6.1

Preservation and Access

All materials are freely and openly accessible (Open Access) and full text searchable. In UFDC, all items can be text searched simultaneously or certain collections can be selected for a faceted search. Because UFDC grew out of the efforts of the University of Florida Libraries' Preservation Department, all items are scanned at preservation quality and all are digitally preserved through the Florida Digital Archive. The page images are particularly important for the preservation of artifactually significant materials such as maps, artifacts, illustrated children's literature from the Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature, and other materials.


The UF Digital Collections are powered by the open source SobekCM software engine and suite of associated tools. The associated tools include online user tools and standalone software for use in digitizing and curating born digital materials. The online system is deployed with Solr and other technologies for optimal functionality.

Because of the highly visual nature of so many items, the pages are displayed as zoomable images (through a JPG2000 server) and all can be browsed as thumbnails at the item and the collection level.[2] Artifacts with multiple photos from multiple angles can be seen in motion, rotating in an Adobe Flash video view,[3] and items can be searched by their geographic information (city, county, state, latitude and longitude) or viewed on a map through UFDC's use of the Google Maps API.[4]

Additionally, UFDC hosts record-only collections like the Catalog of Digital Historical Newspapers (NewspaperCat) which is a tool facilitating the discovery of online digitized historical newspaper content. The records for the newspapers are all searchable and browsable within NewspaperCat. Further, NewspaperCat only includes records for fully and freely available newspapers. NewspaperCat was developed from a grant from the UF Libraries to serve the reference need for finding historical newspapers from around the US and the world.[5]


UFDC includes books, articles, newspapers, photos, videos, audio, and more. As of August 2011, the collections had grown to over 7 million pages. This is an accelerated growth rate compared to the earlier million-page milestones (UFDC began in April 2006, reached 1 million pages in August 2007, and reached 2 million pages reached in July 2008).

UFDC's statistics page maintains a running tally of loaded items broken down by collection:


Along with loading new items regularly, UFDC was optimized for search engine findability using static pages and adding RSS feeds in 2008. Initially, this process included creating static pages for all items on the mirror site UFDC2 ( instead of and then in November 2010 re-optimizing the site with the single URL (, creating RSS feeds automatically for new items loaded and for all items, and optimizing all code for faster loading. These changes were necessary because of the deep web structure of UFDC which, like so many digital library collections, has many directory levels and dynamic URLs that cause difficulty for search engines even with properly implemented sitemaps.[6]


  1. ^ See the opening announcement for the University of Florida Digital Collections.
  2. ^ Viewing and browsing are explained on the Help pages:
  3. ^ "Female Twin Figure (ere ibeji) Yoruba people" from the African Arts Collection
  4. ^ "Citadelle HENRI christophe" from the Digital Library of the Caribbean
  5. ^ The NewspaperCat grant proposal is available online:
  6. ^ UF Digital Library Center blog, "Search Engine Optimization" and "RSS feeds"

External links

  • University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC)
  • SobekCM, the technology of the University of Florida Digital Collections and the Digital Library of the Caribbean
  • University of Florida Digital Library Center
  • George A. Smathers Libraries
  • Link to all of UF's libraries
  • Florida Digital Archive

List of Collections

  • University of Florida Baldwin Library and the Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature Digital Collection
  • Florida Digital Newspaper Library and Florida Digital Newspaper Library
  • Digital Library of the Caribbean and Digital Library of the Caribbean
  • Florida Aerials
  • Pioneer Days in Florida
  • University of Florida Panama and the Canal Collection and the Panama and the Canal Digital Collection
  • Jean-Marie Derscheid for the Jean-Marie Derscheid Digital Collection
  • African American Collections
  • Africana Digital Collections
  • Florida Architecture & Landscape Design Digital Collection
  • Asian Digital Collections
  • Comics Digital Collection
  • Parkman Dexter Howe Library Digital Collection
  • Education Module Digital Collection
  • Florida Cities Digital Collection
  • Oral History Digital Collections from the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program and Matheson Museum
  • Florida History and Heritage Digital Collections
  • Historic Newspaper Catalog Record Collection
  • Florida Law Digital Collection
  • Florida Photographs Digital Collections
  • Oral Histories Digital Collection
  • Food and Agricultural Sciences Digital Collection
  • International Farming Systems Collection
  • European Digital Collections
  • Graphic Art Digital Collection
  • Jaqi Languages Digital Collection
  • Judaica Digital Collections
  • Natural Sciences Digital Collection
  • Open Stacks Project
  • Performing Arts Digital Collection
  • Psychological Study of the Arts Digital Collection
  • Radical Women in Gainesville Digital Collection
  • Rossica Digital Collection
  • Sanborn Maps Digital Collection
  • Sciences and Technologies Digital Collection
  • South American Digital Collections
  • Spanish Borderlands Digital Collections
  • Southwest Florida Library Network (SWFLN) Digital Collections
  • The Floridians Digital Collection
  • Theology Digital Collection
  • Health Science Archives Photographs Collection
  • Herbarium Specimens Digital Collection
  • University of Florida Institutional Repository
  • Wetlands Digital Collection
  • Women in Development Digital Collection
  • World Maps Digital Collection
  • Unearthing St. Augustine's Colonial Heritage

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