The Osher Map Library is in the midst of a multi-year project, funded with a $500,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, to digitize 24 of their historic globes by making 3-D images available online to scholars, students and others.
Some of the almost 300 globes at the University of Southern Maine, in their Osher Map Library, have been hidden from public view for hundreds of years. Others were on display, but under glass or too fragile to handle.
To display the digitized globes at http://www.oshermaps.org, OML has decided to present all the results of their imaging process. The display will use Zoomify to display all of the high-resolution “flat” images taken of each globe. Viewers can examine each high-resolution image and, should they wish, request images of particular portions of the globe. From the default display, clicking on the 3D icon launches the 3D animation. The globe can be rotated a full 360° by clicking on the image, holding, and dragging away from the area you want to view. Both Zoomify and 3D animation are coded in HTML5 so that they work on all types of computers and mobile devices.