By Tim Causer, on 19 December 2014
Welcome along to the Transcribe Bentham progress update for the period 13 to 19 December 2014, during which time further excellent progress has been made by TB volunteers.
11,950 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed, which is an increase of 40 on this time last week. We continue to close in on the 12,000th transcript, which will make a very pleasant Christmas present!
Of these transcripts, 10,858 (91%) have been checked and approved by TB staff. We’ve made a good dent in the backlog of submissions, having checked 172 transcripts this week, and we thank volunteers for their ongoing patience as we work through them.
The more detailed state of progress is as follows:
|Box||No. of manuscripts worked on||No. of manuscripts in box||Completion|
|Add MS 537||729||744||97%|
|Add MS 538||658||858||76%|
|Add MS 539||833||948||87%|
|Add MS 540||50||1012||4%|
|Add MS 541||257||1258||20%|
Among the transcripts checked this week were a series from 1793 in which Bentham discusses what he called ‘conversation tubes’, which he conceived of as a means for which the panopticon prison inspector to communicate from his office with inmates in their cells. Bentham describes how ‘even a whisper was heard perfectly’ through one of these tubes, and that a network of these tubes could be an effectual method of maintaining security. Recalling the Gordon Riots of 1780, Bentham argued that establishment of a ‘chain of Conversation Posts’ could allow the alarm to be raised ‘with a degree of celerity hitherto inconceivable’. Bentham also notes concerns – perhaps anticipating phone-hacking – over securing the secrecy of communication between government ministers and others using conversation tubes. We’re very grateful to Keith Thompson for transcribing these manuscripts!
UCL closes for the Christmas and New Year break on Tuesday 23 December, and re-opens on Monday 5 January. During this time, submissions will not be checked and there may be some delay in responding to messages. We apologise for any inconvenience which this may cause, and thank you again for your patience.
In the meantime, we would like to wish everyone who has contributed to TB during the last twelve months a very happy festive period, and the very best for 2015. Your support of the project is enormously appreciated by us all. TB would be nothing without you and your efforts.