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Grant number: PW-51041-12

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Missouri Botanical Garden (St. Louis, MO 63166-0299)
Christopher Freeland (Project Director, 07/22/2011 - 11/27/2012); Trish Rose-Sandler (Project Director, 11/28/2012 - present)
Creating Digital Access to Natural History Illustrations

The development of software tools to identify and describe natural history illustrations in digitized books and journals in the Biodiversity Heritage Library.

The Art of Life project seeks to liberate natural history illustrations from the 90,000 digitized books and journals (34 million pages) in the online Biodiversity Heritage Library through development of software tools for automated identification and description of visual resources. Missouri Botanical Garden and Indianapolis Museum of Art will build a new research environment for humanities scholars through development of new software tools for algorithmic assessment (data mining) and new interfaces for community enhancement of digital resources (crowdsourcing). The project will deliver: New software components for the identification and description of visual resources that can be reused by any digital repository; Preservation management techniques for visual resources contained within a digital library of scanned literature; and Enhanced access to millions of natural history illustrations, many never before made available for advanced inquiry and inspection.

[Grant products]
Project fields: Interdisciplinary Studies, General
Program: Humanities Collections and Reference Resources
Division: Preservation and Access
Total amounts: $260,000 (approved); $260,000 (awarded)
Grant period: 5/1/2012 – 4/30/2015

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