I am still traveling away in Bangalore etc. seeking out sources and
opportunities for old texts and other media for Wikimedia commons from
various locations of India. I think different people look at the issue
through different layers and perspectives. This might call for a detailed
write-up on the state of the current affairs in the field of *effective*and
*reusable* mass digitization from Indian sources. Shall do so as soon as I
reach back my station.

-Viswam



On Tue, Aug 20, 2013 at 12:01 AM, Vishnu T <visdav...@gmail.com> wrote:

> A brief account about the Workshop as a participant.
>
> The workshop was meant as a DIY digitization without having to invest in a
> scanner and to use a simple digital camera for effective digitization of
> books and documents.
>
> The following were covered during the Workshop by Viswaprabha, who mainly
> led this workshop, along with Subhashish (who was trained by Viswaprabha
> beforehand) and Shiju Alex:
> a) Best practices in capturing images using a camera and tripod through
> demonstration; intro to types of scanners;
> b) how to hold books and the need to treat old books with respect; (very
> critical)
> c) discussion on image formats and some basic comparison (i.e. djvu, PDF,
> JPEG, TIFF, BMP, GIF);
> d) Introduction and practical use of SM Tether (using Nikon dSLR) in
> capturing images;
> e) Practical demonstration of using Scan Tailor (a Free Software) in
> post-processing of scanned pages. Splitting, Deskewing, Rearranging
> borders, De-speckling of scanned pages; f) some basic discussion on
> Copyright and introduction to Wiki Source;
> g) importance of online archival resources (DLI, DSAL, Archive.org, etc)
> and when to do or not to redo scanning of books (i.e. image resolution)
> that are already available in scanned format;
> h) OCR and Indian languages.
>
> Basically the workshop focused on how an 'ordinary' Wikimedian without
> access to high tech infrastructure can effectively undertake digitization
> of old books (especially in Indian languages) in a collaborative manner and
> use Wiki Source to openly share this knowledge.
>
> This was an impromptu workshop that was suddenly decided because of the
> availability of Viswaprabha (WMIN EC member), who was in Bangalore for WMIN
> EC meetings. It was also conceptualized as an Alpha stage presentation and
> meant to be improved further. All the participants were asked to better the
> presentation, in true Wiki style, Viswa made all the participants also the
> authors.
>
> I think it was a successful workshop, especially since I had personally
> witnessed how much money various institutions and govt. are spending on
> ineffective digitization.  Such similar 'small-scale' workshops can
> potentially empower interested Wikimedians and can create a decentralized,
> effective, need-based collaborative digitization of books (our cultural
> heritage), especially in Indian languages.
>
> The workshop was collaboratively organized by WMIN and CIS-A2K and no
> expenditure other than coffee and snacks was incurred.  Going forward it
> wold be useful to further improve this presentation collaboratively,
> preferably by practice than by discourse. Also to train atleast 3-4
> Wikimedians from each language community across India, who can further
> impart this knowledge to others.
>
> Best,
> Vishnu
>
>
> On 19 August 2013 21:00, L. Shyamal <lshya...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> Thank you Subhashish for the response at:
>>
>> http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/Talk:India_Access_To_Knowledge/Events/Bangalore/Digitization_workshop_18August2013
>>
>> Dear Shyamal, this workshop was for demonstrating the participants about
>> create a home made set up to scan the books, edit the scanned images and
>> make an eBook. OCR is not still stable for Indic languages and would need
>> another workshop for presentation. Here the "creating text based documents"
>> is basically the manual editing on WikiSource. Please feel free to edit and
>> correct if any mistakes found. --Subhashish 
>> Panigrahi<http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Psubhashish>(
>> talk <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Psubhashish>) 10:34, 19
>> August 2013 (UTC) That sounds too basic. Almost any office assistant
>> these days is expected to know how to use a scanner and create at least a
>> PDF. It would be good if you can post your proposed workshops. There are
>> really excellent (and local if I may add) resources who can be proposed by
>> the community. Shyamal <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Shyamal> (
>> talk <http://meta.wikimedia.org/wiki/User_talk:Shyamal>) 15:00, 19
>> August 2013 (UTC) ----
>> To abstract a bit from this - may I suggest that any planned workshops
>> actually work out the topic coverage on-wiki so that the structure is
>> useful and the expectations are clear. Asking potential attendees for areas
>> of interest or expectations may also help. Since there appears to be a plan
>> to do this on an India-wide scale I think it would be good to include
>> several other topics. Some of the things that I have had to consider in the
>> course of scanning thousands of pages of documents for the Internet Archive
>> are included below. Hope others can add to it.
>>
>> * Image formats - djvu, PDF comparisons, PDF/A - grey shade, black&white,
>> use of JPEG2000, TIFF
>> * Online archival options
>> * Digital libraries - also good to bring in people (librarians,
>> archivists) involved with Indian digital library projects - including the
>> ICAR http://www.icarlibrary.nic.in/ DLI - (even if their website is
>> terrible http://dli.ernet.in/ ) - other local digital library/archive
>> ventures http://statelibrary.kerala.gov.in/rarebooks/ ,
>> http://dspace.gipe.ac.in/jspui/ )
>> * Book-scanners
>> * Home scanning tricks and solutions eg. how to scan large sources (such
>> as a newspaper that is bigger than the scanner bed)
>> * OCRs - use of layers, Indic language problems, approaches (is it
>> possible to crowdsource manual transcription, can the technology be
>> extended to allow people who do not know the language to help in manual
>> transcription)
>>
>> best wishes
>> Shyamal
>>
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