Saturday, April 11, 2009

JSC Digital Image Collection

The collection was maintained by NASA's Johnson Space Center. NASA's Johnson Space Center provided this collection of press release images from the manned space program, from Mercury to the STS-79 Shuttle mission. This collection represents over 9,000 images and these images are available in 640x480 JPEG format (average size 40k each).

The website itself is very easy to browse. Clicking the “Browse” button from main menu, and then users can browse by Institutional, Apollo, Gemini, Mercury, Skylab, and Shuttle. For each item, the collection first provided a thumbnail picture, a simple title, a link of 640x480 JPEG image and a link about details. The metadata can be accessed by clicking the Details link. The collection provides a thumbnail picture, Photo ID, Program name, Mission, Date Taken, Film Type, image title, and Description, Subject Terms. Especially, for convenience use, in the same webpage, the collection also provided a link of 640x480 JPEG format under the snail picture.

Furthermore, users can search by date range, NASA photo ID, and keyword. However, Searches are case-insensitive. Wild card (pattern matching) operators are not supported. Symbols (*, &, @), single-character words and abbreviations (a, i.e.), and single-digit numbers (1, 2, 3) will be ignored.

The collection provided guidelines for use of NASA imagines. As a government entity, NASA does not "license" the use of NASA materials or sign license agreements. In addition, the website provided some quick links and other useful external links such as NASA Human Space Flight, NASA Home Page, NASA Photo Gallery, JSC Home Page, Earth From Space, and Earth Sciences & Image Analysis.

Overall, the website is a well-organized collection. Obviously, the intended audience is students, researchers, and any person who may interested in space technology.

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