I'm trying to decide whether Omeka is the right tool for my task. That task is to build a Web site regarding a school of thought that extends for centuries and involves hundreds of authors. The primary objects to represent are works and authors.
Omeka seems to offer me many tools for the works. I already have a Zotero collection containing a good number of them, from which I should be able to populate the database of items. My only concern here is whether the plugin is capable of updating the items as I add more works to the Zotero collection.
However, my main concern is representing the authors (creators). I want to link each item to a description page regarding its creator, and link the creator to back to items. I don't see any sign of this in Omeka's data model, although I would have thought it would be a common interest (one might do the same thing with paintings and artists in a school).
Basically my question is this: does Omeka offer a good way to make creators first-class objects? Would it be an easy addition with a plugin, or am I better off building my site with a CMS like Drupal that lets me create my own data model?
The Zotero Import plugin does one-time imports and does not sync.
You could map creators to Omeka collections and assign items to the relevant collections. But there's no need for creators to be first-class objects, at least not explicitly. Omeka items are abstract representations of anything that can be described, including creators. You could create a "Creator" item type, including any elements needed to describe a creator, add creator items, and link resource items to the relevant creator items using the Item Relations plugin.
Also, you could write a plugin that extends the Omeka data model to add creators as first-class objects.
Another thought: instead of using the Item Relations plugin to link the item to the creator, you could just provide a URL to the creator show page in the item's Dublin Core Creator field, and provide the URLs to the related item show pages in the creator's Dublin Core Relation field.
For organization purposes, all the creators could belong to a "Creators" collection.
I've now installed Omeka and imported the data from Zotero. The Person item type is adequate for representing creators. It seems odd to me that persons would be items, because the DC data is irrelevant, but that doesn't greatly bother me.
Item Relations are sufficient for linking creators and works, and offer the possibility of recording many other relationships.
It looks like I'll having to do some customizing of the way the template displays item data to make the pages read more naturally. However, that and other issues I've encountered seem off-topic here.