The David Livingstone Spectral Imaging Project

November 2nd, 2011 § 0 comments § permalink

We are proud to announce the launch of the David Livingstone Spectral Imaging Project, a collaboration with Professor Adrian Wisnicki of Birkbeck, University of London and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. This project is a collaborative, international effort to use spectral imaging technology and digital publishing to make available a series of faded, illegible texts written by Livingstone when stranded without ink or writing paper in Central Africa. Please see the Washington Post article about the project.

Dr. Livingstone, I presume?

You may remember David Livingstone from the famous rumored utterance of Sir Henry Morton Stanley, upon finding Dr. Livingstone after 6 years without contact in Africa.

The 1871 Diary web site includes critical, textual, and historical essays and notes; a detailed project history and archive that chronicles the rediscovery of Livingstone’s original text, including over 60 downloadable documents and files produced in the course of the project; and a set of web pages that provide browsing of the images and the transcribed text, full-text searching, and the simultaneous searching and comparison between the original 1871 Field Diary, the highly revised 1872 Journal created by Livingstone, and a further revised 1874 posthumously published version.

The separate, but intimately related, Spectral Image Archive┬ádigitally preserves all the pages of Livingstone’s 1870 and 1871 Field Diaries as high-resolution spectral images with full metadata, thus providing direct access to all the primary Livingstone data on which this critical edition is based. The Archive is “designed to be self-documenting” and “provides data and metadata in a regular and predicable structure.” This is a very significant part of the project in that it provides access to all the raw data for the project under a Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial license. The raw data to which the public has access totals 655GB.

The UCLA Digital Library Program is the digital publisher of this project. The diary texts are marked up in TEI P5, indexed in Solr for searching, and displayed using XSLT.