The Munich DigitiZation Center (MDZ) has been providing the rich holdings of the Bavarian State Library (BSB) on the Internet since 1997. It is the central innovation and also production unit of the BSB for developing, testing and implementing new products and processes related to the multifaceted, far-ranging subject of the 'digital library'.
Due to many years of expertise and the presence of a high quality scanning equipment, high quality digitization and mass digitization can be realized equally at the MDZ. Given the task of digitizing cultural treasures from 15 different centuries, it can be taken for granted that strict conservation requirements must be observed. The work steps from production to provision to long-term preservation in digitization follow a largely automated workflow. Scanner selection and processes for scanning particularly valuable works are carried out in close cooperation with the Institute of Conservation and Restoration (IBR).
On the website of the Bavarian State Library, a short film offers an overview of the digital 2D and 3D production at the Munich DigitiZation Center.
Depending on the original, the appropriate scanning system and process are selected for the digitization process. After the scanning process, the produced images are technically validated and intellectually checked. Optionally, tables of contents are added to allow convenient navigation within the digitized copy in the viewer. The master TIFFs of the processed images are moved to the long-term archive, whereas appropriate presentation formats are generated for the presentation. The generated URNs and URLs are reported to the central URN service of the German National Library and added to the catalog records. The digitized materials of the MDZ can thus be accessed via the Digital Collections, the OPAC of the Bavarian State Library, as well as various different reference tools and portals.
In the course of the digitization process, various bibliographic, technical, administrative, and structural metadata are created that require appropriate management. All necessary editing, presentation and archiving processes are carried out in a partially automated workflow.
The cooperation project with Google includes the digitization of over 2 million titles from the BSB's copyright-free stock. Most of it is already digitized and available online. The Munich DigitiZation Center fulfils an important task within the project. It handles the processing and online provision of the so-called 'library digital copy' – the digital copy of the books that the BSB receives as part of the collaboration – and organizes the long-term preservation of the images in the archive of the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre.
Beside of digitization of two-dimensional objects such as texts, maps or images, the Munich DigitiZation Center is also dedicated to digitization in 3D. The beginnings of the 3D digitization date back to the year 2007. In the context of the bavarikon project financed by the Bavarian State, several dozen 3D models from archives, libraries and museums in Bavaria are now available for interactive online viewing. The colored, photorealistic 3D measurement of cultural artifacts is often a complicated process, as the diverse materiality of cultural objects requires elaborate and time-consuming post-processing. Four different 3D scanners are available for this purpose. Since the process results in very large files with a high resolution, the data volume has to be reduced afterwards in order to provide the 3D objects via Internet. MDZ has developed a special 3D viewer for internet presentation. It allows the user to control and set the virtual light source, as well as color and gloss individually.