Data Processing and Analysis

Crowdsourcing the Cultural Heritage - Library Hackathons

On this page we've collected information on how to participate in the online hackathons 30 March - 3 April.

Did you know you can help the library from your living room? Help us transcribe or correct the OCR in our older catalogues! This can be done 24/7 and all you need is a computer with internet access. If you also long for social coffee breaks and/or help with deciphering the handwriting or abbreviations the library regularly organises online hackathons.

At the hackathons, we meet up on Zoom, drink coffee, and answer questions regarding the catalogues. The Zoom link will be published further down on this page before each hackathon event starts. All hackathons are listed in the library's calendar.

Hackaton 101
1. If you haven't done this before - start by looking at the instructional videos below.

2. Choose which catalogue you want to work with from the list Catalogues to hack.

3. Join the Zoom room if you have questions or want to hang out with other participants.
The room is open between 2pm and 5pm.

Questions? Please contact Karolina Andersdotter.

What do I do at a library hackathon?

In this hackathon we'll be working with transcription and OCR correction of digitised catalogue cards at Uppsala University Library. If you scroll down this page, you'll find two short films: one which describes how to do the OCR correction and one which explains what Occasional Poetry is. The films are in Swedish, with English subtitles.

What do I do if I have question (or if I want to hang out with other participants)?

On Friday, we'll set up a Zoom channel which will be open during the day (unless something happens, like internet overload). Watch this place for a link!

If you're affiliated with Uppsala University you can find more information about Zoom here:  Information till studenter vid UU för att ansluta till Zoom; Information till anställda vid UU för att ansluta till Zoom. As far as we understand, it should be possible to join the Zoom conversation even if you're not affiliated - we'll try and see what happens. (If it doesn't work, we'll keep in touch through Twitter! #LibHack #HackatonUUB)

Image from the occasional poetry hackathon at the Karin Boye Library in November 2018. Photo by Karolina Andersdotter.

Catalogues to hack

All of the catalogues in the list below have the "correct the OCR scan" function so you can choose to work with any of them. They're a mix of printed and handwritten catalogues, so you can choose whether you want to improve OCR scanned text or if you want to transcribe handwriting. To see how it works, watch the instructional video on OCR correction in the Occasional Poetry catalogue - it can be found further down on this page or at MedFarm Play.

The purpose of this task is to improve the searchability of the catalogues. Instead of a user having to look through all the catalogue cards (sometimes thousands of scanned images), they can search through a full text of its contents, making it easier to find personal names, place names, or other relevant keywords. That way, our users can spend less time searching and more time researching!

You can read more about the special items and collections we have at the library on this page. You'll find information on the collections listed in the catalogues we work with at the hackathons as well as on other treasures in the library's collections.

The Swedish Biography catalogue. Image by Helena Backman.


Zoom Links

Instructional videos

Occasional Poetry: OCR Contribution

Occasional Poetry: Personal tributes on special occasions