Digital Florida will serve as a web portal for biodiversity information and allow a worldwide audience to access data and media (e.g., images, video, audio) associated with museum collections. Digital Florida will support collections-based research, e-learning, and other formal and informal science education opportunities (including curriculum and course development). For example, users will be able to run interactive map-based queries (e.g., What’s in my backyard?) that return biodiversity information across collections databases (i.e. from fossil and living birds and bugs to reptiles and plants;), map species distributions, browse image galleries, and search for web sources of biodiversity information.
Digital Florida will support web activities, including geochronological mapping of species to show changes in distributions in relation to land-use, climate change, and other environmental impacts, species identification through online keys, and analytical workflows such as species distribution modeling.
Digital Florida is a pilot project to be expanded to Digital Earth with intermediate steps focusing on biodiversity hotspots and areas of interest to conservationists and other clients. Downstream applications include climate research, invasive species management, locating areas of high endemism, natural resource management, and public policy development.