We are installing Omeka for the first time for one of our customers, and they wanted something that was not included in Omeka, a date selection field.
Omeka is structured around “contents”, composed of several “elements” that can be filled by the user. The only problem is, these elements are filled on simple text zones, that do not check if the data is properly structured.
Thankfully Omeka allow the addition of plugins. This allow the basic software to be really light, and to the user to improve the software features according to its needs.
First step: verify that it did not exist an extension adding the needed feature.
The Omeka community gather a extention list on its website. Infortunately no extension was adding a date selector to Omeka. We had to create one.
We skip the developments details, but if you are interested in them, the official documentation (http://omeka.readthedocs.org/en/latest/) is a really good starting point to create one.
At this step, we had an extension displaying a date selector and also a extensible framework we will reuse to create other input helps as well as an administration interface that will be able to manage all the future components.
Only one final step was missing: send this extension to the Omeka community to display it on the official plugin page, to make it available for the many.
The process is rather simple:
- Prepare the extension for its inclusion on omeka.org
- Create an account on the official website omeka.org
- Make the plugin available online (via GitHub for example)
- Post a message on the discussion group omeka-dev to present the plugin (what it is about, how to use it, …)
- Listen to the feedback from the community and ask the right to add an addon on omeka.org
- Once the rights obtained, you just need to send the extension via the omeka.org administration interface and that’s it!
All things considered, only ten days were needed to validate and show our addon on the official page.
You can download it here : Omeka plugin, Elements Types