Showing posts with label Digital Newspapers. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Digital Newspapers. Show all posts

06 October 2014

Love Hate Relationship with OCR -- So much digital content now available though accessing can still be a challenge



When you search GenealogyBank, Newspapers.com, Internet Archive (digitized books), or any large wholesale digitization effort of published/written materials, our ability to search is typically because OCR was used (OCR and Genealogy Go Hand-in-Hand (September 2013, Upfront with NGS).

I am reminded of this daily when I search on newspapers for information and have adapted my search strategy to think of all the ways (which is impossible) that OCR might not be able to read the name I seek or might misinterpret a name.  A favorite lately has been Abbott yielding search results for About ... “close but no cigar!”  Obviously, I love that I even have the option to do wholesale searches of a newspaper collection though there is some hate that it’s not a perfect system.  How quickly we forget that in the past I would have had to locate the newspaper of interest and then manually scroll through each page on a microfilm or flip each page of a physical copy!

It is hard to get automatically scanned and OCR’d files fully and accurately searchable.  A post on the Library of Congress, The Signal, Digital Preservation blog, titled Making Scanned Content Accessible Using Full-text Search and OCR, a guest post by Chris Adams from the Repository Development Center at the Library of Congress, the technical lead for the World Digital Library.

We live in an age of cheap bits: scanning objects en masse has never been easier, storage has never been cheaper and large-scale digitization has become routine for many organizations. This poses an interesting challenge: our capacity to generate scanned images has greatly outstripped our ability to generate the metadata needed to make those items discoverable. Most people use search engines to find the information they need but our terabytes of carefully produced and diligently preserved TIFF files are effectively invisible for text-based search.

I suggest you read this article to gain more of an appreciation for what goes into creating an archive where search results are correlated to an original image that us human readers can view using an entirely automated system.

With our unlimited appetite for searchable digital material, it’s important to understand what goes into providing us with the ability to search on material versus linearly browsing the same in the hopes of finding what we seek.








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copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
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NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
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Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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Think your friends, colleagues, or fellow genealogy researchers would find this blog post interesting? If so, please let them know that anyone can read past UpFront with NGS posts or subscribe!
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Suggestions for topics for future UpFront with NGS posts are always welcome. Please send any suggested topics to UpfrontNGS@mosaicrpm.com
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Unless indicated otherwise or clearly an NGS Public Relations piece, Upfront with NGS posts are written by Diane L Richard, editor, Upfront with NGS.
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03 October 2014

Upfront Mini Bytes -- German Church Books, Irish Archives, Scottish Indexes, Virgin Islands, Norwegian Maps, Denver, California Newspapers and ShipIndex.org

Welcome to our newest edition of our periodic feature Upfront Mini Bytes.  In Upfront Mini Bytes we provide eight tasty bits of genealogy news that will help give you a deeper byte into your family history research. Each item is short and sweet.  We encourage you to check out the links to articles, blog posts, resources, and anything genealogical!

We hope you found the past editions helpful.  Use your favorite search engine with “Upfront with NGS” “Mini Bytes” or use this Google search link.

Do you have questions, suggestions for future posts, or comments?  Please post a comment or send an e-mail to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org.

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A German Digital Church Book Portal is now online.  The entire website is in German.  I suggest you read EOGN for a nice overview of the site.  Remember that you can always use Google Translate to get a rough translation of non-English language websites and documents.

Keeping with international records, there is a now a portal that links together hundreds of archival collections and archives in north and south Ireland, Irish Archives Resource.

Might as well include a mention of Scottish records also!  Especially since my one Scots ancestor came this area.  The Historical Indexes for Dumfries and Galloway are now online.

What about the Virgin Islands?  The Territorial Archives are housed at two libraries. “The collections contain early records written in Danish, funeral booklets, yearbooks, local government documents, former Delegate Ron deLugo's congressional papers, and much more.” Scroll down the page and you will see links to searchable archives. Thanks to Genealogy’s Star for making us aware of this.

Last and not least on the international front, there is a Historic Map Site that has 8000 historical maps of Norway from the Norwegian national mapping Authority. The historic collection is accessible here. Again, you can use Google Translate to help you navigate this collection.

The Denver Public Library has a new genealogy portal. You can access the Denver Obituary Project or check out Research Guides for Marriage and Divorce Records and much more!

Are you researching California ancestors?  Check out the California Digital Newspaper Collection. The collection currently contains 72,729 issues comprising 603,681 pages and 6,876,356 articles!  Wow!

Was shipping part of your heritage, whether as a mode of travel or a business enterprise?  If so, you might find ShipIndex.org worth a visit.  Per the website “tells you which books, magazines, and online resources mention the vessels you’re researching. With 153,649 entries in the free database and 3,374,638 entries available with premium access.”










~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
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Think your friends, colleagues, or fellow genealogy researchers would find this blog post interesting? If so, please let them know that anyone can read past UpFront with NGS posts or subscribe!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Suggestions for topics for future UpFront with NGS posts are always welcome. Please send any suggested topics to UpfrontNGS@mosaicrpm.com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Unless indicated otherwise or clearly an NGS Public Relations piece, Upfront with NGS posts are written by Diane L Richard, editor, Upfront with NGS.
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Want to learn more about interacting with the blog, please read Hyperlinks, Subscribing and Comments -- How to Interact with Upfront with NGS Blog posts!
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27 May 2014

NGS 2014 Family History Conference – Session T219 – Tech Tools That Catapult the Newspaper Research Process into the Twenty-First Century


Another in the series on sessions I attended at the NGS 2014 Family History Conference.

T219 Tech Tools That Catapult the Newspaper Research Process into the Twenty-First Century, Lisa Louise Cooke, Syllabus page 177

We love newspapers.  They are sometimes the only source of data, as well as color, about a person we are researching.

As someone who has done a lot of newspaper research, online and offline, my biggest (though not only) takeaways from this talk were:
2. Learned about www.NewspaperMap.com (check it out)
3. Encouraged to use the free Web clipper for Evernote (which strengthened my resolve about using Evernote; another in this series talks about a presentation on Evernote that I attended)

I had previously been introduced to the Stanford Newspaper Data Visualization website from the perspective of seeing the big picture of newspaper growth over time -- The Growth of Newspapers Across the U.S.: 1690-2011. I just hadn’t thought to use it as a visual means to identify where newspapers were located for a locale I was researching; imagine me slapping my forehead when I heard about this.  Even though the State Library of North Carolina has a neat newspaper locator tool, it doesn’t have a visual component and it doesn’t help me when dealing with border communities.  On this map, I can see newspapers at a certain time (say 1829 – see image above) and in the case of NC, I can also see what newspapers were published in VA, SC, TN and GA which may have relevance to the NC locales I am researching.

The associated syllabus pages provide lots of details about sources for information about extant newspapers and also Lisa’s Top 5 Newspaper Tips.


Editor’s Note: This session was NOT recorded.  Hopefully a friend attended the conference and you can learn more!
Editor’s Note: This series is not presented in any particular order.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
copyright © National Genealogical Society, 3108 Columbia Pike, Suite 300, Arlington, Virginia 22204-4370. http://www.ngsgenealogy.org.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Want to learn more about interacting with the blog, please read Hyperlinks, Subscribing and Comments -- How to Interact with Upfront with NGS Blog posts!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
NGS does not imply endorsement of any outside advertiser or other vendors appearing in this blog. Any opinions expressed by guest authors are their own and do not necessarily reflect the view of NGS.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ 
Republication of UpFront articles is permitted and encouraged for non-commercial purposes without express permission from NGS. Please drop us a note telling us where and when you are using the article. Express written permission is required if you wish to republish UpFront articles for commercial purposes. You may send a request for express written permission to UpFront@ngsgenealogy.org. All republished articles may not be edited or reworded and must contain the copyright statement found at the bottom of each UpFront article.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Follow NGS via Facebook, YouTube, Google+, Twitter
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Think your friends, colleagues, or fellow genealogy researchers would find this blog post interesting? If so, please let them know that anyone can read past UpFront with NGS posts or subscribe!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Suggestions for topics for future UpFront with NGS posts are always welcome. Please send any suggested topics to UpfrontNGS@mosaicrpm.com
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Unless indicated otherwise or clearly an NGS Public Relations piece, Upfront with NGS posts are written by Diane L Richard, editor, Upfront with NGS.


Read more