During the first stage of the project (from May 2001 to April 2002) a prototype of the portal was created. This prototype consisted of a central database. XML technologies were applied to standardise the heterogeneous data sets from the three institutions. All partners of the project contributed metadata regarding a selected subject (waterpower and industrialization) to show the benefits of a common portal.
During the second stage of the project (from May 2002 to April 2003) a distributed search was installed. The BAM-Portal was now able to search the metadata of several different databases: the catalogue of the Southwest-German Library Network (SWB) the finding aids of the Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg and the inventory of the Landesmuseum für Technik und Arbeit.
During the third stage of the project (from October 2005 to March 2007) the technical basis of the BAM-Portal was revised completely. The distributed search had proven to work slowly and deficient. The portal now uses a stable datawarehouse-solution like most search engines do, based on the open source software Apache-Lucene. Besides, a contract was drawn up to create a consortium of the former project partners which will maintain the portal after the end of the funding period.
An important goal during this stage of the project is the integration of more metadata. Regarding the archives, in addition to the finding aids of the Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg the finding aids of the Bundesarchiv are meanwhile integrated. The finding aids of the State Archives of Hessen, Rheinland-Pfalz and Saarland will soon follow. As standard data exchange "Encoded Archival Description" (EAD) is used. This will also facilitate co-operation with other portals (e.g. a planned portal for German archives).