Omeka for private collections?

Hi there. First post!

I build digital art and object collections for private individuals and some corporations.These entities sometimes require additional privacy controls: particular objects need to be hidden, sometimes only for a small set of approved users. Is this possible with Omeka?

Also, most items have a valuation history: they accumulate a list of appraisal values over time, requiring an additional parameter: the type of value (replacement or fair market). These values definitely would need to be hidden from casual visitors. Can Omeka accommodate such values?

Finally, can I access collection data via an API? I have (vague) plans in mind for eventual iPad apps, for example.

Thanks very much!

For the private objects, Omeka lets you set items to public or not, so you could keep some items not public and give people an account that will let them log in to see the non-public ones. However, there is not currently a system to make only some items visible to some users -- once someone has logged in, there are no restrictions on what they can see.

For the hidden valuation information, there is nothing out-of-the-box, but it would be a fairly easy modification to the theme you use.

Data about items and collections are available in a variety of output formats, such as xml and json.

Thanks for your feedback! I really appreciate it.

So let me get this straight... there are public and private items: public items can be seen by anybody, and private items are simply restricted to registered users? Can you make whole collections private?

OK, so I could hide the valuation information by modifying the theme. Makes sense. But where would that data live in the first place? I.e., into which DC field would I put appraisal values? And would I be able to add descriptive parameters to the value?

Awesome re: XML and JSON. That's great. I'll have to play with that.

Yep--that's correct for public items. The privacy on Items has to be set for each -- changing whether a collection is public or not only changes whether the collection info can be seen -- not whether items in that collection can be seen.

For valuation info, you can create an item type in Omeka, and create whatever additional fields you need, with descriptions of the fields.

Thanks again.

For adding additional fields, can I do that in the interface, or do I need to write PHP somewhere and do a database migration? This seems fragile in the long run, especially if I want to eventually upgrade to Omeka 2.0...

The additional fields can be done in the interface, under Item Types. You'd create a new Item Type, probably, add the valuation field (and whatever else) there, then make all your items that item type to get to the fields.

OK! great news. I guess it's time for me to stop asking, and start using. Thanks for answering my questions.