Thursday 8th November, 2012
3:30pm to 4:00pm
Many historical documents contain records of interest to historians, scientists and the general public, from census records in government publications to tables in scientific journals, even in personal diaries -- in some cases, records not available from any other sources. Extracting these records can be a time-consuming and expensive process, requiring painstaking attention to detail; however, crowdsourcing this task to citizen scientists has the potential to simultaneously involve a larger pool of interested transcribers, thus parallelizing the work.
In this presentation, we outline a workflow to crowdsource the annotations for 352 pages of previously transcribed biology fied notebook text. Within sixteen weeks, citizen scientists had identified 2,342 species, locations and dates marked up in a computer-readable format. We used freely available technology, in particular Wikisource and Wordpress, to recruit volunteers, coordinate efforts and to extract the records from the transcribed text while maintaining a link between annotation and content.
Biodiversist, museophile, community builder, data mobilizer, geek-in-training, eater, pop bio from Twitter
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