Archive for the 'Transcription' Category

Progress update, 14 to 20 June 2014

By Tim Causer, on 20 June 2014

Welcome along to the progress update for the period 14 to 20 June 2014, which has seen volunteers continue to transcribe at a tremendous rate.

9,328 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed, which is an increase of 164 on this time last week. Of these transcripts, 8,484 (90%) have passed our quality-control process, up 167 since last Friday. The completion rate has dropped a little in the last few weeks, as we continue to work our way through the rather large backlog of transcripts submitted during the last few weeks. We’re getting there and thank volunteers for their patience and bearing with us while we catch up. Many apologies for the delay in getting round to transcripts.

The more detailed state of progress is as follows:

Box No. of manuscripts worked on No. of manuscripts in box Completion
Box 1 105 794 13%
Box 2 465 753 61%
Box 5 163 290 56%
Box 15 45 914 5%
Box 18 2 192 1%
Box 27 350 350 100%
Box 29 7 122 5%
Box 31 10 302 3%
Box 34 23 398 5%
Box 35 286 439 65%
Box 36 20 418 4%
Box 37 14 487 2%
Box 38 42 424 9%
Box 39 5 282 1%
Box 41 77 528 13%
Box 42 67 910 7%
Box 44 50 201 24%
Box 50 159 198 79%
Box 51 372 940 39%
Box 57 11 420 2%
Box 62 55 565 10%
Box 70 295 350 84%
Box 71 663 663 100%
Box 72 612 664 92%
Box 73 151 151 100%
Box 79 199 199 100%
Box 95 123 147 83%
Box 96 534 539 99%
Box 97 111 296 37%
Box 98 218 499 43%
Box 100 183 422 41%
Box 107 498 538 89%
Box 115 276 307 89%
Box 116 498 864 57%
Box 117 312 853 36%
Box 118 181 880 20%
Box 119 283 990 28%
Box 121 125 526 22%
Box 122 286 717 39%
Box 139 40 40 100%
Box 150 118 972 12%
Box 169 161 728 22%
Add MSS 537 532 744 71%
Add MSS 538 249 858 29%
Add MSS 539 371 948 39%
Overall 9,328 23,881 38%

Dr Michael Quinn, Senior Research Associate at the Bentham Project, is preparing the authoritative edition of Bentham’s economic writings for publication in the Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham. Dr Quinn is currently working on manuscripts in boxes 1, 2 and 150. Boxes 1 and 2 contain Bentham’s ideas on political economy, whilst Box 150 focuses on preventive police (more specifically the Thames Police Bill, which Bentham drew up in conjunction with the magistrate, Patrick Colquhoun). Dr Quinn (and the rest of us!) would be particularly grateful if volunteers chose to direct some attention towards manuscripts from these boxes.

As we mentioned last week, on 1 July the TB editorial team will be holding a focus group at UCL to discuss the application of handwritten text recognition technology to Bentham’s manuscripts, as part of our work on the tranScriptorium project. Any interested parties are warmly invited to attend, and lunch will be provided. For more details, please see this link or email k.grint@ucl.ac.uk.

Thank you, as always, to everyone who has so generously given their time to Transcribe Bentham during the last week. It is as greatly appreciated as ever.

 

Assistance from TB volunteers in completing the transcription of these three boxes would be gratefully received. Full acknowledgement in the resulting published volume will be given to the transcribers of manuscripts used.

Progress update, 24 to 30 May 2014

By Tim Causer, on 30 May 2014

Welcome along to the progress update for the period 24 to 30 May, during which time Transcribe Bentham volunteers have broken another record. This week has been the busiest ever seven day period, with 214 manuscripts transcribed or partially-transcribed; this just beats the previous record of 212, received during the week commencing 12 April 2014! We have also been able to lock our 8,000th transcript this week. These are two further fantastic achievements on the behalf of transcribers.

We do have to apologise that we haven’t quite been able to check all those transcripts submitted this week, but are working to get through the backlog – apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.

8,685 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially transcribed, of which 8,132 (93%) have been checked and approved by TB editorial staff.

The more detailed state of progress is as follows:

 

Box No. of manuscripts worked on No. of manuscripts in box Completion
Box 1 96 794 12%
Box 2 465 753 61%
Box 5 157 290 54%
Box 15 34 914 4%
Box 18 2 192 1%
Box 27 350 350 100%
Box 29 3 122 2%
Box 31 9 302 2%
Box 34 16 398 4%
Box 35 286 439 65%
Box 36 14 418 3%
Box 37 6 487 1%
Box 38 28 424 6%
Box 39 4 282 1%
Box 41 74 528 12%
Box 42 63 910 6%
Box 44 50 201 24%
Box 50 159 198 79%
Box 51 372 940 39%
Box 57 5 420 1%
Box 62 55 565 10%
Box 70 295 350 84%
Box 71 663 663 100%
Box 72 612 664 92%
Box 73 151 151 100%
Box 79 199 199 100%
Box 95 123 147 83%
Box 96 534 539 99%
Box 97 84 296 28%
Box 98 217 499 43%
Box 100 183 422 41%
Box 107 472 538 87%
Box 115 276 307 89%
Box 116 497 864 57%
Box 117 263 853 30%
Box 118 88 880 10%
Box 119 195 990 19%
Box 121 121 526 22%
Box 122 282 717 38%
Box 139 40 40 100%
Box 150 105 972 10%
Box 169 153 728 21%
Add MSS 537 419 744 56%
Add MSS 538 186 858 21%
Add MSS 539 279 948 29%
Overall 8,685 21,451 34%

Thank you, as always, to everyone who has given their time and effort to Transcribe Bentham during the last week. Your generosity remains, as always, greatly appreciated.

 

Progress update, 17 to 23 May 2014

By Tim Causer, on 23 May 2014

Welcome along to the Transcribe Bentham progress update for the period 17 to 23 May, during which time transcription has continued at a terrific pace. 65,014 words were transcribed this week, including the TEI mark-up, which is a phenomenal effort on the part of volunteers: that such a consistently high rate of transcription has been maintained since the turn of the year is testament to the enormous amount of work they have put in.

8,471 manuscripts have now been transcribed, up 176 on last week’s total. Of these transcripts, 7,977 (94%) are complete and have been locked, which is an increase of 195 on this time last week.

The more detailed state of progress is as follows:

 

Box No. of manuscripts worked on No. of manuscripts in box Completion
Box 1 96 794 12%
Box 2 465 753 61%
Box 5 153 290 52%
Box 15 30 914 3%
Box 27 350 350 100%
Box 29 1 122 1%
Box 31 6 302 1%
Box 34 12 398 3%
Box 35 286 439 65%
Box 36 8 418 1%
Box 37 2 487 1%
Box 38 12 424 2%
Box 39 2 282 1%
Box 41 71 528 12%
Box 42 59 910 6%
Box 44 48 201 23%
Box 50 159 198 79%
Box 51 372 940 39%
Box 57 2 420 1%
Box 62 55 565 10%
Box 70 295 350 84%
Box 71 663 663 100%
Box 72 612 664 92%
Box 73 151 151 100%
Box 79 199 199 100%
Box 95 123 147 83%
Box 96 534 539 99%
Box 97 82 296 27%
Box 98 217 499 43%
Box 100 183 422 41%
Box 107 471 538 87%
Box 115 276 307 89%
Box 116 497 864 57%
Box 117 245 853 28%
Box 118 71 880 7%
Box 119 169 990 17%
Box 121 120 526 21%
Box 122 281 717 38%
Box 139 40 40 100%
Box 150 102 972 10%
Box 169 149 728 20%
Add MSS 537 395 744 53%
Add MSS 538 163 858 19%
Add MSS 539 244 948 25%
Overall 8,471 21,451 34%

As we mentioned earlier this week, colleagues at the Edvard Munch Museum in Oslo have launched their project to crowdsource the transcription of Munch’s correspondence. We were thrilled to see that the Munch platform is an adapted version of the TB Transcription Desk, and wish them nothing but success in their endeavours. If you are thinking about crowdsourcing a manuscript collection, the code for the Transcription Desk is available on an open-source basis via GitHub.

Needless to say, we are hugely grateful to everyone who has contributed to Transcribe Bentham during the last seven days. Your efforts are, as always, very much appreciated by us all.

Progress update, 12 to 25 April 2014: over 8,000 transcripts worked on!

By Tim Causer, on 25 April 2014

Welcome along to the progress update for the period 12 to 25 April 2014, during which time quite astonishing progress has been made by TB volunteers, who have broken all sorts of records. Though UCL was closed from 16 to 22 April, that didn’t stop transcribers working away at a rate of knots: during this two week period, 357 transcripts were worked on! This breaks down into 212 transcripts from 12 to 18 April—a new record—and a further 145 from 19 to 25 April.

This means that 8,002 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed. Since Transcribe Bentham launched in 2010, it has taken an average of four to five months for a thousand transcripts to be worked on; however, volunteers have gone from 7,000 to 8,000 transcripts in little over eight weeks (and we’ll write more about this soon). This is an amazing effort of the part of transcribers, and we are thrilled with this progress – it will make a real difference to our work and in providing access to Bentham’s manuscripts.

We are very grateful to volunteers for their patience as we work through checking their transcripts, and we hope to be back on an even keel early next week and will be able to report more fully on the number of words transcribed, and the number of transcripts which have been locked. Our apologies for any inconvenience caused, but we’re almost there!

The more detailed state of progress is as follows:

Box No. of manuscripts worked on No. of manuscripts in box Completion
Box 1 95 794 11%
Box 2 465 753 61%
Box 5 152 290 52%
Box 15 18 914 2%
Box 27 350 350 100%
Box 29 1 122 1%
Box 31 0 302 1%
Box 34 6 398 1%
Box 35 286 439 65%
Box 36 4 418 1%
Box 37 0 487 1%
Box 38 0 424 1%
Box 39 0 282 1%
Box 41 70 528 12%
Box 42 57 910 6%
Box 44 0 201 1%
Box 50 159 198 76%
Box 51 372 940 39%
Box 57 1 420 1%
Box 62 55 565 10%
Box 70 295 350 84%
Box 71 663 663 100%
Box 72 612 664 92%
Box 73 151 151 100%
Box 79 199 199 100%
Box 95 123 147 83%
Box 96 531 539 98%
Box 97 79 296 26%
Box 98 216 499 43%
Box 100 182 422 41%
Box 107 466 538 86%
Box 115 276 307 89%
Box 116 497 864 57%
Box 117 231 853 27%
Box 118 62 880 7%
Box 119 111 990 11%
Box 121 120 526 21%
Box 122 280 717 38%
Box 139 40 40 100%
Box 150 97 972 9%
Box 169 144 728 19%
Add MSS 537 308 744 41%
Add MSS 538 137 858 15%
Add MSS 539 91 948 9%
Overall 8,002 21,451 32%

Some great material has been transcribed during the last two weeks. We find that Jeremy’s personal life continued to have its problems, as he expressed his frustrations at not having a reply to his letters from Sarah Stretton. Writing in 1776 to his brother Samuel, Jeremy bemoaned that despite having written her ‘an enormous long one [letter]‘, it was ‘now Wednesday and in all this time not a syllable have I heard from the little vixen’. (Thanks to Simon Croft for transcribing that one). A thirteen-year old Jeremy was forced to explain, in 1761, to his annoyed father why he had failed to write to him recently:

Sir I would have wrote to you as I promised if it had not been for a deep cut in my finger which I gave myself while I was mending a pen to write you with, just where I hold my pen; so that I could not hold it well enough to write intelligibly.

Surely that’s the eighteenth century version of ‘the dog ate it’ or ‘I didn’t get your text message’. Must try harder, JB (thanks to Iris van der Zwaag for submitting this transcript).

There is also a hint of Bentham’s unhappiness at Oxford in another letter of 1761 to his father:

I wrote a Letter or at least part of one
last Night, but being fatigued and not finding any of my
Acquaintance I sat down to it so melancholy, & made it
such a Melancholy Letter I was resolved to day I would
not send it: I do not know when I wished for your Company
so much as then; or when I have been so low-spirited : but
a good Night’s rest brought me to rights again.

(Thanks again to Iris for transcribing that one).

Finally, another cause of annoyance to Bentham at Oxford were his damp, dark rooms, where the furniture was ‘allways covered with dust’. Student digs: some things never change. (Thank you to Diane Jonker for transcribing this one).

As always, thanks so much to everyone who contributed to Transcribe Bentham over the past two weeks. The generosity of volunteers in taking part never ceases to amaze us.

New material to transcribe: education and Constitutional Code

By Tim Causer, on 8 April 2014

We are delighted to say that a further eight boxes of UCL’s Bentham manuscripts have been uploaded to the Transcription Desk, and are now available to explore and transcribe. (This is another 2,500 images, fact fans). Boxes 18, 29, 31, 37, 38, 39, 44, and 57 contain material pertaining to Bentham’s proposed Chrestomathic school and his thoughts on education, his massive, unfinished Constitutional Code, his writings on a proposed Civil Code, and much more besides!

You can access this material, and descriptions of the contents of the various boxes, via the list of untranscribed manuscripts.