The Crossroads of Embracing Content Management: Using the BeagleBone Black Microcomputer to Host Omeka01/01/2015
Over the past decade, the technical marketing term “cloud computing” has led users and organizations to enter into contractual agreements that sometimes result in the inappropriate use of content without their knowledge and additional risk for breaches of privacy. These agreements also can end up “vendor locking” organizations into services that take on a subscription model as opposed to true data ownership from self-hosting. While this shift occurred, processors evolved at a pace that allowed the adoption of smartphones which now equal pocket computers. Many smartphones run on the ARM based processor platform, that facilitates powerful processing and relatively low power consumption. With the arrival of the successful ARM processor based, educational microcomputer called the “Raspberry Pi”, a whole new market of credit card sized microcomputers has started to flourish. These microcomputers have the capability of running web server applications that can be used in libraries of all sizes. This potential “desktop datacenter” advancement is profound for small libraries like those found in churches and seminaries around the world. With low power consumption, these single board servers give the capability to service areas that have never had the opportunity to host application servers due to unstable electricity. This paper illustrates the use of the single board computing platform named “BeagleBone Black” running Ubuntu Linux, to host the institutional repository application Omeka. This work guides a small library to build an IR site, supporting Dublin Core metadata with Omeka, for under a $200 while assuring complete content ownership.