A facilities grant received in 2008 from the National Science Foundation has allowed us to the install a compactor system and to acquire new steel cabinets, new drawers and supplies. The new system resulted in 66% increase in storage capacity while reducing the collection’s footprint by 30%. Secondary objectives were the databasing of the primary type specimens and linking the specimen data to digital copies of the original literature and images of the labels on the specimens. To date all the primary types in the collection have been databased and we continue working on the scanning and linking specimen data with literature information.
Images of smaller specimens are made using extended-focus imaging systems, one from GT Vision using Cartograph and Archimed software, and a second system from Syncroscopy using AutoMontage software. Larger specimens are imaged using a Canon EOS 5D digital SLR camera.
We have an array of computer servers that house the xBio:D database platform and its underlying Oracle relational database; web servers; phylogenetic and bioinformatics software; and digital library. The servers are running on Linux Ubuntu and Microsoft Windows Server operating systems.