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Reading the First Books: Multilingual, Early-Modern OCR for Primeros Libros

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Reading the First Books: Multilingual, Early-Modern OCR for Primeros Libros was a "two-year, multi-university effort to develop tools for the automatic transcription of early modern printed books." This project used an optical character recognition (OCR) tool called Ocular to transcribe texts from the Primeros Libros de las Americas (First Books of the Americas) collection, which is an impressive feat considering the texts from the Primeros Libros collection were printed on hand presses in the fifteenth-seventeenth centuries. The goal of the project is to provide more access to scholars, students, and the general public by providing high-quality digital surrogates of these historic texts. The digital collection of Primeros Libros de las Americas is available via a link from the homepage of the site. Those interested in finding material published about Reading the First Books should visit the publications section, where academic publications, workflow documentation, and presentations about the project have been made available. Ocular, which is open-source OCR software, is explained more in-depth on the Ocular FAQ page. Also available in that section is a link to Ocular's GitHub repository.
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Scout Publication
Date of Scout Publication 2018-10-19
Archived Scout Publication URL https://scout.wisc.edu/report/2018/1019

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