Tuesday, July 8, 2008

68 Km of uScript

Today, we visited the Venice State Archives with Giovanni Caniato. It is hosted inside the ancient Frari convent and contains the entire history of Venice fragmented into millions of government acts filed away into thousands of parchment binders over 68 kilometers of shelves. For years, we have been working on the development of a software application to aid scholars in the transcription of these ancient manuscripts. The current version is an AJAX-based online "emergent" application called uScript, whose philosophy is to assist transcribers by learning handwriting over time, while allowing successive refinements of the transcriptions by multiple scholars (with varing reputations), all contributing to cumulatively unlocking the secrets contained in these tomes. It is our goal to release this application as part of the Venice 3.0 activities following this anniversary year. We will be applying for funding for this activity in the next few weeks.
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