Open Tour Builder: Putting Emory on the Map

Tour Graphic

The Emory Center for Digital Scholarship is delighted to announce the launch of the OpenTour Builder, a free and open-source software platform for building geospatial tours that are optimized for mobile devices.  This project was possible thanks in part to a generous grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and to the invaluable expertise of the Robert W. Woodruff Library’s Information Technology Services team.

With this new tool, tour builders can easily create interactive, attractive tours that guide users from stop to stop using their smartphone’s GPS and OpenTour Builder’s native Google Maps instructions.  At each location, the designer can include images, video, text, and external links to provide historical and cultural context, tying that information to the physical space.

Already, the platform has been used to construct a tour of the Battle of Atlanta, a momentous Civil War battle narrated in 12 stops throughout the city with visits to monuments and battlefield remnants.  In addition, the Open Tour Builder has been used to create a historical tour of Emory’s own campus, supplemented with photographic materials from the Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library and interviews with members of the Emory community.

The installation package is available through GitHub, with accompanying instructions.