Category Archives: Category 1

ADASilk. Travel into Silk Heritage

Although silk textiles were for many centuries very precious trading goods across the Eurasian continent and further, the knowledge about how production started in Europe and its culture surrounding it is not very known or easily accessible anymore. Textiles, clothes, furniture and so many other objects are scattered around museums and collections and information about them are not easily accessible, neither for researchers nor for the fashion industry and the broader public.

To solve this issue, we created ADASilk (Advanced Data Analysis for Silk heritage), which integrates an exploratory search engine and a Spatio-temporal map, is built on top of the SILKNOW’s knowledge graph that contains nearly 40,000 fabric entries with images and other relevant information describing them (e.g., production place, production timespan, material, technique, etc.). This repository is named ADASilk after Ada Lovelace, the British mathematician whose connection to the origins of computers is well known by now.

The data contained in ADASilk comes from the archives of Boston Museum of Fine Arts, CDMT Terrassa, Garín 1820, Joconde Database of French Museum Collections, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Mobilier International, Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Musée des Tissus, Paris Musées, Red Digital de Colecciones de Museos de España, Rhode Island School of Design, Sicily Cultural Heritage, Smithsonian, Versailles, Victoria and Albert Museum.

ADASilk is based on a generic exploratory search engine for knowledge graphs being developed at EURECOM and includes scientific contributions from Universitat de Valencia, Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique – Lyon 2, Universita Degli Studi di Palermo, GARIN 1820 S.A., Institut Jozef Stefan, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Universitaet Hannover, Monkeyfab, and Instituto Cervantes.

The Virtual Loom and Spatio-Temporal Maps visualizations have been developed by Universitat de Valencia.

From Museum documentation to digital data curation. Challenges and opportunities for open access.

Cultural heritage organizations produce a vast quantity of heterogeneous datasets which are often held inside their walls and are not open to the public. Even when they are, sometimes they are not easily accessible, for technological and organizational reasons. This has led to the loss of information essential both for the general audience and researchers. The problem gets worse when dealing with textile collections that require a high specialization to document and conserve them.

SILKNOW aimed to provide answers for some of these challenges, thanks to digital tools and approaches, combined with scholarly expertise (from silk specialists, art historians and historians, textile engineers…). One of its goals was to provide methods and best practices for heritage institutions that want to take their textile collections into the information and knowledge society. It pays particular attention to institutions that lack the technical resources and staff to venture into ICT and research.

Three workshops were held where the ultimate goal is to develop together a document of good practices in textile conservation.

The first workshop was held on 15th February 2021. It was attended by 13 professionals specialized in textile collections, some of them coming from 8 Spanish museums, such as:

The second workshop was held on 25th February and was carried out in Italian. It gathered representatives from 9 small museums, all of them belonging to Catholic dioceses: 

The third workshop was held on the 6th April, and gathered participants from Europe, America and Asia. The 15 attendees included representatives from 9 museums and one EU-funded research project, plus 2 independent scholars, including:

SILKNOW partners with ICCROM

SILKNOW is partnering with ICCROM, the IInternational Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property, to participate in the Our Collections Matter programme.

This programme puts the spotlight on sustainable development in the cultural sector, recognising this as an important aspiration and responsibility among museums and other collections-based organizations globally. The programme aligns with the goals set out in the UN 2030 Agenda and embodies the same determination to make this decade one of concerted action and transformation, during which no one is left behind.

SILKNOW tools will be part of this international toolkit. Together, we will continue to weave the past into the future.

SILKNOW meeting, “in Palermo”

On the  25th and  26th of November, the SILKNOW team held an online meeting to discuss the project’s progress. This is the second meeting held virtually, due to the COVID-19 circumstances. It was, initially planned to take place in Palermo, with our partner UNIPA as host.

Each team from each work package presented their advancements & progress and we continued our task of cooperation on the interdisciplinary work.

We discuss and make some steps in the integration of all of our tools that would be available through ADASilk website.

Also, we scheduled the evaluation calendar & content, that will be open to evaluators soon.

Weaving Europe: Online International Conference on Silk heritage and Digital Technologies

The University of Valencia (Universitat de València), a SILKNOW Project partner, organized from 30th November to 4th December 2020 the congress “Weaving Europe. Online International Conference on Silk heritage and Digital Technologies“.

The organization of this conference was shared with all the other partners of the European Project SILKNOW, and entirely sponsored by the Conselleria d’Innovació, Universitats, Ciència i Societat Digital, from the valencian autonomous government, Generalitat Valenciana. (Science, Universities & Digital Innovation Department).

For 5 days, technicians, experts, researchers, students and creatives gathered, in a virtual way, in a meeting focused on silk heritage, its conservation and restoration, its digitization, about information technologies (ICT), tourism, creative industries, social innovation and communication of textile heritage.

After few months of an open call for papers, a sum of fifteen communications were selected, which were presented in four simultaneous panels during one of the main days of the meeting.

Registration for the congress was very well received, with more than 150 registered people during the days in which the conferences were held.

Due to the COVID-19 socio-sanitary circumstances, the conference organization made up for the virtual modality, facilitating the participation of more than 50 speakers. All these virtual sessions have been recorded on video, for later dissemination, thus allowing their subsequent viewing.

In addition, the authors will see their presentations published in a proceedings book, which will be available both printed & digital.


The Università degli Studi di Palermo will participate at the Sharper Night.
This event aims to involve all citizens in the discovery of what a researcher does and which is their role in building the future of society through the investigation of the world based on facts, observations and the ability to adapt and interpret increasingly complex and evolving social and cultural contexts.

During this event, we will showcase the importance of silk heritage and a live demonstration on the Virtual Loom will be done.

Date and hour: 27 November from 16:00 – 17:00

Register here.

Aprende español con SILKNOW

La Ruta de la Seda

El material didáctico La Ruta de la Seda ha sido especialmente diseñado para el aprendizaje de español a través de diferentes aspectos relacionados con la seda en Europa. El objetivo de su publicación en el portal SILKNOW es el de difundir nuestro patrimonio cultural y poner en valor el intercambio cultural que supuso y todavía supone la producción y el comercio de la seda.

El material puede ser utilizado por estudiantes de nivel B1 de español para el aprendizaje autónomo y también por profesores para el trabajo dentro de un curso, en el aula o fuera de ella. La Ruta de la seda consta de cuatro temas relacionados con la Ruta de la seda y las huellas que ha dejado en nuestra historia y nuestro presente:

  1. Las ciudades de la Ruta de la Seda
  2. Historia de la seda en Europa
  3. Procesos y creación de la seda
  4. Historia de la moda

Cada uno de los temas puede trabajarse de manera independiente, supone aproximadamente tres horas de trabajo e incluye tres capítulos y un total de 18 actividades interactivas para aprender variados contenidos culturales, ampliar el repertorio léxico y consolidar su conocimiento gramatical. 

Las actividades se han desarrollado en variadas dinámicas como arrastrar, colorear, elegir opciones, escribir, relacionar, etc. Ofrece una retroalimentación automática que permite al alumno conocer si ha realizado correctamente la actividad, y si lo requiere, puede siempre acceder al sistema de corrección automático, que ofrece la solución de la actividad.  Al final de cada tema el alumno accede a una actividad de autoevaluación para revisar los contenidos más relevantes. Igualmente, la plataforma ofrece un sistema de seguimiento automático que indica al alumno qué ha hecho y qué le falta por hacer, y sitúa al alumno en el punto en el que dejó la última sesión. Estas características hacen que el material sea idóneo para el trabajo autónomo. 

El material ha sido desarrollado por la Universidad de Valencia, que ha contado con los desarrolladores de la empresa ALTEN, con la colaboración del Instituto Cervantes, que ha asesorado en el proceso de diseño y revisiones, y lo ha pilotado en su red de centros. Agradecemos desde aquí la participación en el pilotaje de este material de los alumnos y profesores de los centros del Instituto Cervantes en Belo Horizonte, Bucarest, El Cairo, Lyon, Orán, Sao Paulo y Varsovia.

El material es de acceso libre y se puede consultar en:

Información para profesores. Tabla de contenidos.

Me pareció tan interesante que empecé a ver la serie “Marco Polo” en Netflix.

Me gustó el contenido cultural y descubrir cosas nuevas sobre ciudades conocidas en mis viajes

Combinación entre textos con muchas palabras nuevas y gramática.

Testimonios de alumnos que participaron en el pilotaje

Se trata de un tema poco conocido por mis estudiantes. Además de ser una experiencia muy dinámica, interactiva y de aprendizaje lingüístico.

Material atractivo, divertido, cultural, enriquecedor.

Testimonios de docentes

Información en inglés

Learn Spanish with SILKNOW

La Ruta de la Seda (The Silk Road)

La Ruta de la Seda (The Silk Road) educational material has been specially designed for learning Spanish through different aspects related to silk in Europe. The aim of its publication in the SILKNOW portal is to disseminate our cultural heritage and to highlight the cultural exchange that the production and trade of silk involved and still involves.

The material can be used by B1-level students of Spanish seeking autonomous learning and also by teachers for work within a course, in the classroom, or outside it. La Ruta de la Seda consists of four units related to the Silk Road and the traces it has left in our history and our present:

  1. The cities of the Silk Road
  2. History of silk in Europe
  3. Processes and creation of silk
  4. History of fashion

Each unit can be worked on independently, involves approximately three hours of work and includes three chapters and a total of 18 interactive activities to learn various cultural contents, broaden the lexical repertoire and consolidate grammatical competence.

The activities have been developed in various dynamics such as dragging, colouring, multiple choice questions, writing, relating, etc. It offers automatic feedback that allows the students to know if they have done the activity correctly, and if required, they can always access the automatic correction system, where the solution to the activity is provided. At the end of each topic, the students have access to a self-evaluation activity to review the most relevant contents. Likewise, the platform offers an automatic follow-up system that shows the students what they have done and what is left to be done, and places them at the point they were when they left the last session. These characteristics make this material ideal for autonomous work.

The material has been developed by Silknow researchers of the University of Valencia (Universitat de València), which has relied on the developers of the company ALTEN,  and in collaboration with Instituto Cervantes, which has provided advice on the design and revision process, and has piloted it in its network of centres. We would like to thank the students and teachers of the Cervantes Institute centres in Belo Horizonte, Bucharest, Cairo, Lyon, Oran, Sao Paulo and Warsaw for their participation in the piloting of this material.

La Ruta de la Seda is freely accessible through

Information for teachers. Table of contents.

I found it so interesting that I started watching the “Marco Polo” series on Netflix.

I liked the cultural content and discovering new things about cities I had visited in my travels.

Combination between texts with many new words and grammar

Students who participated in the pilot

This is a subject little known to my students, besides being a very dynamic, interactive and fun language learning experience…

Attractive, fun, cultural, enriching material

Teachers who participated in the pilot

Information in Spanish

New version of the Virtual Loom

We have launched a new version (v1.00) of the Virtual Loom. This version is available as a desktop app and can be downloaded either for MAC users or Windows.

Screenshot of the new version (v1.00) of the Virtual Loom

New features and improvements are:

  • It has more help issues to users
  • A new splash screen
  • A new weave viewer
  • New visual appearance to improve user experience
  • Weaves selection menu improved
  • Weaves & yarns revised
  • 3D navigation has been revised & improved
  • Language menu

Download the desktop version for MAC or WINDOWS

Working with design schools

During the very first days of October 2020 we have continued our dissemination tasks with design schools and students.

We have presented to EASD colleagues, in València, our almost finished tools as the Thesaurus, the Virtual Loom and our prospective website where all the collections we have worked with would be available. During their creative process and during the academic year, they would use and work on the basis of our tools.

After explaining all the tools, we encouraged the students to take a look on them, use them, and evaluate them in order to improve the user’s experience.

As we consider silk as alive heritage, we started a very interesting conversation on how all the compiled knowledge, methods, processes, etc. could motivate and inspire new creative professionals with the aim of valuing the silk tradition and importance and on how to spread the word into society.