A treasure Trove!

May 8, 2010

The National Library of Australia has released/developed Trove (http://trove.nla.gov.au), which contains links to nearly 100 million of resources held in Australia’s national and state libraries, as well as millions of images.

I only did a very quick search to test it out. I searched for my (reasonably uncommon) surname, and found pictures in my State Library that I didn’t know existed (including one from the late 60s/early 70s of my parents’ shop), and references to art works done by my aunt!I also found some scans of newspaper articles prior to 1954 mentioning possible relatives.

The scanned newspaper articles were interesting — not so much for the content, but for the fact that the OCR text translation displayed on the left of the article wasn’t very readable. However, I had an image of the article on the right and I was able to edit the OCR text inline without registering or logging in or proving my credentials. So I did. It was very easy and was a great idea for engaging volunteer help.

OCR on left before editing, original on right

The NLA has removed the usual barriers to editing online — registration, confirmation of registration, and knowledge of a particular form of mark-up (I’m sure the special mark-up prevents a lot of casual Wiki editing). You only have to enter some Captcha text to edit, though you can register if you want to and thus have your edits tracked.

Well done, National Library of Australia! First, for providing a fabulous resource online, and secondly for allowing casual editing of scanned text by those searching for information.

[Links last checked May 2010]

One comment

  1. […] In some of my spare time, I transcribe information for various genealogical projects and digitized newspapers. I do this from my computer, so it’s easy to volunteer a few minutes here and there, and […]

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