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Schöch, Christof, University of Würzburg, Germany,
Achler, Stefan, University of Kassel, Germany,

This contribution presents the TEICHI Framework, a light-weight set of modules for the Drupal content management system serving to display, search and download electronic documents encoded according to the Text Encoding Initiative’s Guidelines for TEI Lite (Burnard & Sperberg-McQueen 2006). This publishing framework was developed jointly by humanities scholars at the University of Würzburg and computer scientists at the University of Kassel in Germany. To showcase the various features and concrete usability of the framework, we present a poster as well as a tool demo.

In comparison to other available solutions for the publication of electronic scholarly editions, such as the combination of an eXist database with a Fedora Commons repository or the Scalable Architecture for Digital Editions (SADE), the focus of the TEICHI Framework is clearly to be a lightweight, low-resource, and easy-to-use solution. Instead of competing directly with more comprehensive but also more demanding solutions, the TEICHI Framework focuses on low technical barriers and optimal usability (see Pape, Schöch & Wegner 2012). The overall feature set of the TEICHI Framework focuses on the requirements of humanities scholars working on straightforward, small-scale digital edition projects and the needs of teachers of electronic textual editing. It allows both these target groups to set up a complete web-based digital scholarly edition with minimal resources and technical support and see the results of their or their students’ work online in a timely manner.

Currently, the TEICHI framework consists of four modules, one each for displaying documents, for searching them, for downloading them, and for browsing associated digital facsimiles. The modular approach means that not all of the modules need to be installed for the others to function, and additional modules may be added in the future. In addition, any digital edition published with the TEICHI Framework can take advantage of the full website infrastructure and community support Drupal provides, including useful features such as revision history for each page or fine-grained users’ rights management and optional extensions such as blog or forum modules. 

At the core of the framework is the TEI Content module, which lets editors upload TEI documents via the Drupal GUI, order them in a hierarchical structure, and modify them online. The module stores XML/TEI documents in the Drupal database and displays them through an XSL transformation and a CSS stylesheet using Drupal’s content filter mechanism. The default stylesheet included with the module provides specific support for many of the features that are part of the TEI Lite (P5) set of elements: author and editor notes are displayed in the right sidebar and scribal corrections and editorial emendations are catered for. A toggle mechanism allows for the display of two alternative readings via the ‘choice’ mechanism. There is currently no support for the use of encoded names, dates and places in an index.

There are several additional modules for the framework. The TEI Download module allows downloading various renderings of TEI-encoded documents. The editor/administrator can choose which of the downloading options should be available to the user for each document: EPUB files for ebook readers, plain text files for use with basic analysis tools, and XML/TEI files for more advanced analysis. There are various additional user-side options for downloading: either one of the alternative readings can be chosen, editor notes can be included or excluded, and several pages can be downloaded as one large file or as separate files. The TEI Image Viewer module allows to associate the displayed texts with their corresponding digital facsimiles. This module is based on Seadragon Ajax, a JavaScript library for interactively viewing high resolution images. It lets the user call up any given digital facsimile, scroll through the available facsimiles, and zoom in and move around in each of them. The TEI Search module, which is still experimental, adds some basic TEI-aware search functions to the framework, allowing the users of the edition to limit their search in ways, for instance, to exclude results from editor notes, to only include results from quotes, or to restrict the search to one of two alternative transcriptions distinguished by the ‘choice’ mechanism. A basic TEI Editor module is in development.

All modules are fully integrated into Drupal’s administrative graphical user interface, allowing the editor or administrator to adjust various settings online. For instance, many settings of the TEI Content module, such as color schemes and button texts can be modified with a few clicks; also, the TEI Download module lets the administrator select metadata fields and a cover image for the EPUB files made available for download; finally, the TEI Image Viewer’s control panel is defined as a block which can be moved to any block region on the website.

The poster will indicate the features each of the modules provides to the overall publishing framework and visualize how each of them is embedded into the Drupal environment from a technical point of view. The tool demo will showcase both the frontend and the backend of the framework: the ways in which readers/users can interact with an electronic scholarly edition supported by the framework will be shown based on one project using the TEICHI framework, the digital edition of Bérardier de Bataut’s Essai sur le récit (Bérardier de Bataut 2010). A local installation will be able to show how easy it is to perform some of the typical tasks of editors/administrators of an electronic edition using the TEICHI framework, such as installing the modules in a Drupal environment, adding, organizing and modifying XML/TEI files, changing some basic settings and associating digital facsimiles to the transcriptions.


Bérardier de Bataut, F.-J. (2010). Essai sur le récit, ou entretiens sur la manière de raconter [1776], digital edition ed. by Ch. Schöch

Burnard, L., and M. Sperberg-McQueen, eds. (2006). TEI Lite: Encoding for Interchange. Text Encoding Initiative

Pape, S., Ch. Schöch, and L. Wegner (2012). TEICHI and the Tools Paradox. Journal of the Text Encoding Initiative 2; DOI: 10.4000/jtei.432.




Fedora Commons Repository.

Scalable Architecture for Digital Editions (SADE).

The TEICHI Framework.

Seadragon Ajax.