Progress update, 28 June to 4 July 2014

By Tim Causer, on 4 July 2014

Welcome along to the progress update for the period 28 June to 4 July, during which time TB volunteers have continued to make phenomenal progress.

9,674 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed, which is an increase of 119 on last week’s total. Of these transcripts, 8,895 (92%)are now complete and have been approved, up 256 on this time last week. We continue to close in on the 10,000th edited transcript, and are continuing to thin down the backlog of submitted transcripts – thanks again to all volunteers for bearing with us while 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
Box 1 126 794 15%
Box 2 465 753 61%
Box 5 167 290 57%
Box 15 53 914 6%
Box 18 2 192 1%
Box 27 350 350 100%
Box 29 12 122 9%
Box 31 11 302 3%
Box 34 29 398 7%
Box 35 286 439 65%
Box 36 21 418 2%
Box 37 16 487 3%
Box 38 47 424 11%
Box 39 8 282 2%
Box 41 77 528 13%
Box 42 69 910 7%
Box 44 52 201 25%
Box 50 159 198 79%
Box 51 373 940 39%
Box 57 13 420 3%
Box 62 55 565 9%
Box 70 298 350 85%
Box 71 663 663 100%
Box 72 613 664 92%
Box 73 151 151 100%
Box 79 199 199 100%
Box 95 123 147 83%
Box 96 537 539 99%
Box 97 113 296 38%
Box 98 218 499 43%
Box 100 188 422 42%
Box 107 481 538 89%
Box 115 276 307 89%
Box 116 499 864 57%
Box 117 329 853 38%
Box 118 204 880 23%
Box 119 321 990 23%
Box 121 129 526 23%
Box 122 289 717 39%
Box 139 40 40 100%
Box 150 163 972 16%
Box 169 170 728 23%
Add MSS 537 546 744 73%
Add MSS 538 327 858 38%
Add MSS 539 386 948 40%
Add MSS 541 20 1258 1%
Overall 9,674 25,139 40%

This week, another batch of the British Library’s Bentham manuscripts were uploaded to the Transcription Desk, this time containing Bentham family correspondence for the period 1789 to 1794.  This time was dominated by the start of Bentham’s attempts to have his panopticon prison built, though elsewhere he wrote about the events of the French Revolution, and produced perhaps his most well-known work, An Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation. You can read a fuller description of this material, and access the other available British Library manuscripts as well. Another batch will follow shortly, which will feature Jeremy’s long and dangerous journey to Russia to visit his brother, Samuel. (Thanks to our colleagues at the Digital Archives group of the University of London Computer Centre for getting this material uploaded). We hope that you enjoy exploring these manuscripts!

Thank you, as always, to everyone who has given their time so generously to TB during the past week. It remains as greatly appreciated as always.

Progress update, 21 to 27 June 2014

By Tim Causer, on 27 June 2014

Welcome along to the progress update for the period 21 to 27 June 2014, which has been another mammoth week of transcription – the second busiest week, in fact, in TB history! Thank you to all who’ve contributed this week, and for continuing to bear with us while we work through our backlog of transcripts – we’re getting there.

9,555 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed, which is an increase of 227 on last week’s total. Of these transcripts, 8,639 (90%) are now locked after being checked by TB editors. The completion percentage should increase in the next couple of weeks when we catch up with transcripts which need to be checked.
The more detailed state of progress is as follows:

Box No. of manuscripts worked on No. of manuscripts in box Completion
Box 1 114 794 14%
Box 2 465 753 61%
Box 5 166 290 57%
Box 15 51 914 6%
Box 18 2 192 1%
Box 27 350 350 100%
Box 29 12 122 9%
Box 31 11 302 3%
Box 34 29 398 7%
Box 35 286 439 65%
Box 36 21 418 5%
Box 37 15 487 3%
Box 38 47 424 11%
Box 39 6 282 2%
Box 41 77 528 13%
Box 42 69 910 7%
Box 44 51 201 25%
Box 50 159 198 79%
Box 51 372 940 39%
Box 57 12 420 2%
Box 62 55 565 10%
Box 70 298 350 85%
Box 71 663 663 100%
Box 72 613 664 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 100 188 422 42%
Box 107 481 538 89%
Box 115 276 307 89%
Box 116 499 864 57%
Box 117 325 853 38%
Box 118 195 880 22%
Box 119 316 990 31%
Box 121 129 526 23%
Box 122 288 717 39%
Box 139 40 40 100%
Box 150 112 972 15%
Box 169 169 728 23%
Add MSS 537 544 744 73%
Add MSS 538 303 858 35%
Add MSS 539 376 948 39%
Overall 9,555 23,881 40%

At the current rate of transcription, the 10,000th transcript should be worked on in the next two or three weeks. We never imagined, when first conceiving of TB, that this figure would be reached so soon. It will certainly be a cause for celebration!

Thank you, as always, to everyone who has contributed to TB during the past seven days. It is as greatly appreciated as ever.

 

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.

Jeremy Bentham and the escaped convicts: an exhibition at UCL

By Tim Causer, on 16 June 2014

20140616_110854I’m delighted to announce that a new Bentham-related exhibition has just been installed here at UCL. This is based upon the Memorandoms of the transported convict, James Martin, and tells the story of how he, seven male convicts, one female prisoner, and two infant children, absconded from the recently-founded penal colony of New South Wales on the night of 28 March 1791. Martin and his fellows stole the colony’s six-oared cutter, sailed out of Port Jackson and over the next nine weeks navigated the eastern and northern coastlines of Australia, enduring ferocious storms, privation, and encounters with Aboriginal Australians. They eventually reached their destination of Kupang, West Timor, on 5 June 1791, where they successfully (for a while, at least) passed themselves off as the survivors of a shipwreck. This was an astonishing feat of seamanship and endurance, in surviving this journey of over five thousand kilometres in an open boat.

20140616_110903The exhibition introduces the prisoners and their incredible journey, and discusses Bentham’s interest in convict transportation, and why he was interested in acquiring Martin’s narrative. UCL is incredibly fortunate that the Memorandoms is part of its Special Collections: it is the only first-hand account of this famous escape, and is the only narrative written by a First Fleet convict.

A fully annotated edition of the Memorandoms was published earlier this year, and can be read free of charge online, or downloaded as PDF from UCL Discovery.

The exhibition will run until around mid-August, and can be found in UCL’s South Cloisters, next to Bentham’s auto-icon: simply follow the extracts from the manuscript on the floor to the opposite wall. For directions around the UCL campus, please consult this map.

This work has been generously supported by the UCL Faculty of Laws Research Environment and Impact Fund, for which I am extremely grateful. I would also like to thank the following for their help and assistance in seeing the exhibition to fruition:

  • Joey O’Gorman, the designer of the exhibition
  • Sussanah Chan, Exhibitions Manager, UCL Museums and Public Management
  • Professor Cheryl Thomas, UCL Laws Vice-Dean of Research
  • Nick Booth, Curator, UCL Teaching and Research Collections
  • Tatjana Wingender, UCL Laws
  • Raheel Nabi, UCL Creative Media Services
  • UCL Library Special Collections
  • and my colleagues at the Bentham Project

 

Progress update, 7 June to 13 June 2014: Record-breaking week for Transcribe Bentham

By Kris Grint, on 13 June 2014

It is my pleasure to announce that this week on Transcribe Bentham has seen the breaking of three records.

The first to report is that 9,164 manuscripts have now been transcribed or partially-transcribed since the project began. This is an outstanding achievement by our volunteers, not least because on 25 April 2014 the total surpassed 8,000, meaning over 1,000 transcripts have been added in just 7 weeks – the quickest ever.

Secondly, this week also saw the record for number of manuscripts transcribed smashed, with exactly 300 transcribed or partially-transcribed, eclipsing the previous record by 88.

Last but not least, our 2014 transcription rate, which is the average number of manuscripts transcribed per week, has topped 100 for the first time.

A hearty congratulations to all our transcribers who continue to amaze us with both the quantity and quality of their work.

Of the total 9,164 manuscripts that have now been transcribed or partially transcribed, 8,287 (90%) have been checked and approved by TB editorial staff. We are still working through a significant backlog of submitted transcripts which should be resolved by next week’s update.

The more detailed state of progress is as follows:

Box No. of manuscripts worked on No. of manuscripts in box Completion
Box 1 103 794 12%
Box 2 465 753 61%
Box 5 163 290 56%
Box 15 43 914 5%
Box 18 2 192 1%
Box 27 350 350 100%
Box 29 5 122 4%
Box 31 9 302 2%
Box 34 23 398 5%
Box 35 286 439 65%
Box 36 19 418 4%
Box 37 14 487 2%
Box 38 42 424 9%
Box 39 5 282 1%
Box 41 76 528 13%
Box 42 67 910 7%
Box 44 50 201 24%
Box 50 159 198 79%
Box 51 372 940 39%
Box 57 9 420 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 85 296 28%
Box 98 218 499 43%
Box 100 183 422 41%
Box 107 476 538 88%
Box 115 276 307 89%
Box 116 498 864 57%
Box 117 304 853 35%
Box 118 167 880 18%
Box 119 255 990 22%
Box 121 125 526 22%
Box 122 286 717 39%
Box 139 40 40 100%
Box 150 114 972 11%
Box 169 161 728 22%
Add MSS 537 498 744 66%
Add MSS 538 230 858 36%
Add MSS 539 354 948 37%
Overall 9,164 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). 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.

Finally, on 1 July 2014, the TB editorial team will be running a focus-group at UCL discussing the application of handwritten text recognition technology to Bentham’s manuscripts. 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.