Celebrating 20 Years 2005: Google Starts Digitising The World’s Books & New Zealand Culture Goes Global With Te Ara

Posted by Optimation Editor on 25 September 2012

2005 marked the year Google started digitising the world’s books. It was also the year YouTube hit our screens with the first of thousands (millions?) of cute cat videos. Here in New Zealand, the Ministry for Culture and Heritage was celebrating a major innovation of its own with the launch of Te Ara, the world’s first fully online national encyclopedia.

Te Ara is a visionary project created with the goal of sharing all the riches of New Zealand’s peoples, natural environment, history, and culture with the world. Optimation was a founding technology partner, working with Shift to build the content management, workflow, and search functionality that underpinned the original site’s stunning design and made its resources easily accessible. Te Ara’s uniqueness and exceptional quality have been recognised with multiple awards, including winning the 2005 Bearing Point Innovation Award in two categories: Public Service and Services to Maori.