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End-users' feedback for IIIF

Over 300 people have participated in the Mmmonk IIIF Workshop. On this page, we have gathered and condensed their feedback on the design and functionalities of IIIF applications so it can be used to improve IIIF UX.

  • Some participants were put off by the technical challenges, others had no problem at all fulfilling the assignments and taking their first steps in the world of IIIF. Most of the participants were situated somewhere at the middle of the spectrum: (VERY) enthusiastic about the possibilities, but with some remarks about UX.
  • The feedback on this page was compiled and further developed by Evelien Hauwaerts. I'm not an IT specialist so please pardon any oversimplifications or wrong use of technical lingo. I welcome suggestions and feedback.

A huge thank you to all the developers, software engineers, programmers, designers and data managers who dedicate their time to building and improving IIIF!

IIIF in catalogues

1. Make it easy to find manifest URLs

  • Publish the IIIF manifest URL on the item's record page.
  • Do not hide the IIIF manifest URL behind scary headers or navigation tabs like 'for developers' or 'APIs'.
  • Provide option to filter 'show IIIF compliant items only'.
  • Show the IIIF logo or label 'IIIF manifest URL' next to the IIIF manifest URL.

2. Make it easy to understand what the IIIF manifest is (for end-users' purposes)

  • Provide a short explanation about IIIF, for instance when you hover above the logo. Example: Biblissima Portal.

3. Make it easy to use the digital items in different IIIF environments

  • Provide a copy-to-clipboard button for the IIIF manifest URL.
  • Provide options to view the item in other viewers or tools, with a clear explanation (e.g., 'Open in advanced Viewer', 'Drag-and-drop to a IIIF viewer or tool', 'Open this item in Mirador viewer to compare it with other items'). Example: Leiden University Libraries.
  • Provide drag-and-drop functionality with the IIIF logo.

4. Integrate applications (dream scenario)

Integrated applications are a win for institutions, because their images will be used more actively. They can familiarize end-users with various aspects of IIIF, sparking enthusiasm to also work with IIIF tools outside the institution's environment.

5. Language, please!

  • Try to provide translations if the local language is not English. Learning new technical tricks is challenging enough without the added barrier of language.
  • Try to avoid technical jargon in the user-interface. The terms 'IIIF' and 'manifest' can be intimidating (but unavoidable... or are they?), so let's avoid adding further complexity.

About UV and Mirador

General sentiment: As soon as there's any code or words like 'export' or 'dev', it gets too "scary". "What if I break my computer?"

  • Mirador: importing/exporting/sharing collages by copying and pasting code is, again, scary, but also cumbersome since it is hidden behind the three dots. Suggestions:

  1. Use 'save collage' instead of 'export', and 'open saved collage' instead of 'import'? When the user clicks on 'save', provide a non-technical explanation on what to do next. E.g., "It is not possible to store your collage on this website. But you can save your work by copying and pasting this bit of code into a document on your computer. When you want to return to this collage, click 'open saved collage' and paste the code into the provided area." Something along these lines could work to guide less confident end-users?
  2. Don't hide the save/share options behind the three dots and label 'workspace options', but put them in plain sight. They are crucial for end-users.

Workshop Working with IIIF images in education, communication and research

Step by step workshop on the use of IIIF images in research, teaching and communication. No technical knowledge required, we promise.