The purpose of this paper is to determine whether TAMS Analyzer and Viewshare are viable free and open source software data sharing and creation tools for those with limited funding and technological skills.
The participant observer method was used to collect experiential evidence while applying the tools to a collection of text-, image-, and video-based digital cultural records.
TAMS Analyzer was found to be a low barrier to entry tool for those with coding and qualitative data analysis experience. Those with general experience will be able to create datasets with the support of manuals and tutorials, while those with limited experience may find it difficult to use. Viewshare was found to be a low barrier to entry tool for sharing data online, and accessible for all skill levels.
TAMS Analyzer supports Mac and Linux platforms only, so a low-cost software recommendation was made for those in Windows environments.
Librarians can use these tools to address data access gaps while promoting library digital collections.
With a greater understanding of data tools, librarians can be advisors, collaborators, agents for data culture, and relevant participants in digital humanities scholarship.
The research evaluates both the capabilities of the tools and the barriers to using or accessing them, which are often neglected. The paper addresses a need in the literature for greater scrutiny of tools that are a critical component of the data ecology, and will further assist librarians when connecting scholars to tools of inquiry in an environment with limited funding and technical support.
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