Update: 1921 History of Maynard now searchable

We were so happy with how the automatic text recognition worked on the 1971 history book I went back and did a pass over the 1921 Gutteridge book. It, also, worked pretty well and I have uploaded the book with the text.

For those who don’t know what I’m yabbering about, the documents we are making available online are “scanned” pages, essentially pictures of each page all bound together in a single file (the PDF file). Your computer only knows that there are umpteen of these images (which it calls pages) but nothing else. The fact that there is text on them or not is irrelevant. But with some extra work we can instruct a program to “read” these pages and try to locate the text on it and turn it into words that the computer can understand. This is a task that in recent years has become pretty reliable for printed materials (handwritten work or poorly typed pages is typically unusable). This is what we did to the 1921 Gutteridge PDF file and now you can search for words, names, etc. within it — not just flip through pages. The process is far from perfect, but we’re seeing a high enough level of accuracy to make it available to the public. This makes the file much more useful for research.

So, for anyone who downloaded the book prior to today (18-Mar-2010) please download it again to get the updated version with the searchable text:

History of Maynard – 1921 – WIlliam Gutteridge

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