Archival Resource Keys

This persistent digital object identifer technology is currently being implemented and tested by the California Digital Library (CDL) for collections that it manages.

The ARK identifier is a specially constructed, globally unique, actionable URL designed to be without semantic association to the related item. Each ARK links end-users to three things:

  • Digital object metadata
  • Digital object content files
  • A commitment statement made by the CDL concerning the digital object

An ARK includes a name mapping authority, the ARK label, the name assigning authority number, the name (random characters), and a qualifier supported by the Name Mapping Authority. So it looks like:

<a href="http://foobar.zaf.org/ark:/12025/654xz321/s3/f8.05v.tiff">http://foobar.zaf.org/ark:/12025/654xz321/s3/f8.05v.tiff[/geshifilter-code] The name mapping authority is optional/replaceable; the part following the ark: label is an immutable, globally unique core identity.

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