IIIF MfN Example

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Screenshot of the Data Portal showing a drawing by Christian Gottfried Ehrenberg

With the implementation of the Zukunftsplan, the collection of the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin with more than 30 million objects is being sustainably opened up as an international research infrastructure. The goal is to build an open, digital-analogue and internationally available collection infrastructure. The recently launched Data Portal is part of this process and promotes knowledge-based debates about the future of society and the relationship between humans and nature. At the time of its first release in early 2021, the Data Portal already contains over 40,000 entries from three different sub-collections, which are now publicly accessible and usable for everyone interested.


To offer the best user experience all images are delivered through IIIF. Thus allowing users to smoothly zoom in and zoom out high-resolution images even when only a limited download bandwidth is available.

We use a range of technologies to offer IIIF integration. These include 3rd party tools and libraries as well as self-developed utilities. For example, all tiles are pre-generated with libvips. For the frontend, we use the well-known OpenSeadragon library and customized IIIF viewers, namely Mirador.

Future development

In the future, we plan to reimplement our IIIF server to improve maintainability and to allow for better integration of upcoming technologies such as JPEG XL. Also, we will continue our contribution to community-driven projects such as Mirador or Tify.

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