Getting Started with SIMILE Widgets

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Hello there. So, you want to get started using a Simile widget? I think we can help.



The first thing to note is that there are several different Simile widgets. These are web-based widgets (you insert them into your own web page) that were created as part of a large semantic-web based project at MIT called SIMILE (Semantic Interoperability of Metadata and Information in unLike Environments.)

The current wiki site you are reading is dedicated to creating documentation and fostering communication for the community of web developers who wish to use one (or more) of these widgets. There is also a primary home site that describes these products a bit more and includes a blog and news items.

Sometimes the best way to learn about something is to see it in action.

Widget Name Description
Babel Babel lets you convert between various data formats. In particular, it lets you convert data into the Exhibit JSON format and preview the data right inside Exhibit.
Citeline A web application to facilitate the web publishing of bibliographies and citation collections as interactive exhibits and facilitate the sharing of this type of data.
Exhibit Create web pages with support for sorting, filtering, and rich visualizations by writing only HTML and optionally some CSS and Javascript code. No database and no server needed.
Painter Creates map markers and other images for various Simile widgets
Runway This widget lets you display images in a rich interactive visualization similar to that of Apple iTunes known as Cover Flow. It is a Flash-based implementation.
Timegrid Render temporal information to a number of different, configurable, dynamic views.
Timeline Visualize temporal information on an interactive drag-able timeline.
Timeplot Plot time series and overlay temporal events over them.

The second thing to note is that there is no package to download. These widgets are hosted on All you need to do is link to them in your web page. That's it.

Of course, it you are running a moderately trafficed site (a few thousand hits/day or greater) or a site that requires fast performance or 100% uptime, then it is recommended to download the source code to your own server and point your web pages there. (More information how to do this can be found in the Reference or HowTo sections of this wiki.)


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