Oxford Releases Video About Digitization Services


Last month a film crew spent several days shadowing staff in the Bodleian Library's Imaging Services and Digital Library Systems and Services departments in order to create a short video about the process of book and manuscript digitization. The aim of this project was to illustrate the complexity and the cultural importance of digitization. This video, "Saving the Past," is now complete and can be seen here. In it, James Allan (Head of Imaging Services), Christine Madsen (Head of Digital Programmes), and Nicole Gilroy (Head of Book Conservation) discuss the minutia of scanning technology and book conservation, as well as the bigger picture of preserving historical resources for posterity. This narration is illustrated with footage of Bodleian staff at work repairing books, capturing images, and writing the software that allows the images to be transmitted to a global audience.


As Christine Madsen points out in the video, digitization is much more than simply taking pictures of a book, and this video offers a glimpse of the many steps involved in projects like this one. To learn a bit more about the work shown in the video, check out our posts on conservation, imaging techniques, and page metadata.