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Institute of Computer Science (ICS)
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  Title SYNTHESIS: An Information System for administration, documentation and promotion of cultural instances >> See brochure
  Laboratory Information Systems
  Contact person Chryssoula Bekiari
Research and Development Engineer

SYNTHESIS is a cultural information system for scientific and administrative documentation of museum objects and monuments. The system has a generic and flexible documentation process model, and the user interface environment is provided through the internet and is specially adapted for describing knowledge for cultural instances for administration and scientific use, for curators and administrative staff of a cultural institution.

SYNTHESIS is a multilingual system. It supports the documentation in Greek, English, French, Italian, Arabic and data exchange with other systems in xml format.

The system exploits XML technology, multi layered architectures, open source software, and international standards and provides remarkable capabilities concerning the data organization, documentation process and system architecture and system functions. The data are organized in xml documents and is fully compatible with ISO 21127. SYNTHESIS supports the documentation for Museum objects, Monuments, Open sites and settlements, Multimedia objects (photos, designs, studies etc), Bibliography, Evidences, Persons, Organizations, Departments, Places, Materials, Events.

The architecture of the system is a 3-tier architecture, which allows the application logic, the data and the user interface to be separated and ensures open architecture, expandability, adaptability and flexibility. The general idea is that the data is stored in xml documents in a central database and the users, through the internet can use the functions of the system according to their type and permissions they have.

The major parts of the system are:

  1. Database Server Tier which is implemented in e-xist (http://exist.sourceforge.net/) - a native xml database. The e-xist is an open source software.
  2. Application tier whose implementation is based in Web service technology (http://www.w3.org/2002/ws/), which gives the system great flexibility in the terms of adaptability, expandability, integration and exploitation of the functions of the system.
  3. Client Tier is the user interface component. It has been built on internet browser(internet explorer ή Netscape), on java (http://java.sun.com/) and on the Altova Authentic©2005 (http://www.altova.com/download_authentic.html) xml editor or alternative in HTML forms.
The following information systems are based on SYNTHESIS:
  • The ANNA KOMNENE: Information System for administration, documentation and promotion of Byzantine Monuments that is in use in the European Centre of Byzantine and Post Byzantine Monuments located in Thessaloniki.
  • The IInfforrmattiion Managementt Systtem for the museum objects of Monastery of Mountain Sina that is in use by Mount Sinai Foundation, located in Athens.