Discover Your National Library – Launched at the National Library and Online

Maryann Jardine and I checking out the Surface


On Wednesday January 20th, the National Library launched a brand new exhibition on Kildare Street called “Discover Your National Library.”   It’s a fantastic exhibit, not just because of the wealth of the collection of rare books, manuscripts, photographs, prints and drawings, but also because the experience can also be enjoyed online!


Check out to see this brand new application, developed by one of Ireland’s most creative Microsoft Surfacecompanies, Martello Students playing with the new Surface applicationMedia.  Martello Media met with me last year about their interest in possibly creating a Surface application for this project.  They loved the technology and decided to bring that in as part of the exhibit.  The project grew  to include an online presence, and with the touch technology in Silverlight 3, Martello Media decided to use that to build the online application, using Deep Zoom to show off the items in the collection at a very high resolution and to allow for easy sorting and searching using metadata.

Maryann Jardine (a student of the original Silverlight Jumpstart course!) developed the application at Martello Media, and she did an absolutely stunning job.  Both Martello Media and the National Library are very much to thank for their innovative approach to online museum archival, and I couldn’t be more excited that this learning experience is now available for audiences all over the world.  I Zúmáil / Zoomhope this inspires more organizations to think creatively about the possibilities online and digital preservation here in Ireland.

The Surface tables deployed at the National Library are the first in Ireland.  To see them for yourself in person, visit the National Library’s new exhibition at 2-3 Kildare Street in Dublin city centre.  To see the Silverlight application online, go visit  And you, too, can learn how to say “Zoom” in Irish!

Cross posted from Martha's Blog.