This article was originally printed in Numismatic News.
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MANTIS, a new interactive search tool, was unveiled by American Numismatic Society Director Ute Wartenberg Kagan April 6.
Located online at http://numismatics.org/search, MANTIS provides access to all 600,000 records for objects in the ANS collection.
The new search tool is an open source implementation of several applications used in the library, archive and museum communities. It enables users to interact with the ANS collection through keyword searches or by browsing and sorting on numerous categorical and physical attributes common to numismatics.
“The collections database is the work of a generation of expert catalogers, and was originally designed to allow curatorial staff to manage the massive holdings of the Society, said Wartenberg. “MANTIS marks a huge leap forward in making this work available to the general public”
Traditional searches by mint, person, date and numismatic categories are catered to and supplemented with a new maps interface. This feature, still under development, will eventually allow the user to find coin, medal and bank note issues around the world by clicking on points on a map.
The design of MANTIS is the work of ANS Web developer Ethan Gruber, working in close collaboration with ANS research scientist Sebastian Heath.