Over at the O'Reilly Radar, Peter Brantley reprints an interesting debate between Paul Duguid, author of the much-discussed recent article about the quality of Google Books, and Patrick Leary, author of "Googling the Victorians." I'm sticking with my original negative opinion of the article, which Leary agrees completely with.
One of the things I added to this blog when I moved from my own software to WordPress was the red and yellow box in the comments section, which defends this blog against comment spam by asking commenters to decipher a couple of words. Such challenge-response systems are called CAPTCHAs (a tortured and unmellifluous acroynm … Continue reading Understanding reCAPTCHA
Is it possible to have a balanced discussion of Google's outrageously ambitious and undoubtedly flawed project to scan tens of millions of books in dozens of research libraries? I have noted in this space the advantages and disadvantages of Google Books—sometimes both at one time. Heck, the only time this blog has ever been seriously … Continue reading Google Books: Champagne or Sour Grapes?
Among other things learned by the original five libraries that signed up with Google to have their collections digitized is this gem: "About one percent of the Bodleian Library's books have uncut pages, meaning they've never been opened." I used to find books like this at Yale and felt quite bad for their authors. Imagine … Continue reading The “Google Five” Describe Progress, Challenges
The American Historical Association's Rob Townsend takes some sharp jabs at Google's ambitious library scanning project. Some of the comments are equally sharp.
Thanks to the hard work of my colleagues at the Center for History and New Media, led by Sharon Leon, you can now go behind the scenes with the curators of the National Museum of American History. This month the discussion begins with the famous Greensboro Woolworth's lunch counter and the origins of the Civil … Continue reading “The Object of History” Site Launches
I've spent the past two weeks trying to get a better understanding of the agreement signed by the National Archives and Footnote, about which I raised several concerns in my last post. Before making further (possibly unfounded) criticisms I thought it would a good idea to talk to both NARA and Footnote. So I picked … Continue reading A Closer Look at the National Archives-Footnote Agreement