Electronic admittance to Dead Sea Scrolls opening up

Submitted by adamferns on Wed, 09/28/2011 - 03:17.

In terms of historical texts, the Dead Sea Scrolls are considered one of probably the most essential historical texts found in the last couple of years. The Israel Museum has been lambasted previously for not supplying more extensive access to the fragile and broken documents. Now, through a relationship with Google, the Dead Sea Scrolls are being digitized and supplied online. Article resource: Digitized Dead Sea Scrolls providing worldwide access

Dead Sea Scrolls digitization project

There has been a lot of progress with the Dead Sea Scrolls digitization job. For a few years, people have been working on it. A new camera had to be developed to photograph the files clearly at 1,200 megapixels in the specialized environment that helps keep the documents from deteriorating more easily. Each scroll and fragment is being carefully photographed, then gathered and placed online in a searchable database. The main goal is to give access to the scrolls to as many individuals as possible. By 2016, all scrolls will, in theory, be accessible for reading.

Getting some support from Google

Google has had very heavy involvement with the Dead Sea Scrolls digitization job. The database of scroll photos is stored on Google Storage, and the website is run on the Google Apps engine. The pages are all searchable, transcribed and indexed for search outcomes. That is one thing the Google team has been working on. This partnership is comparable to Google's Art Project, Prado Museum and Holocaust photo collection.

Scroll comments

Direct commentary is allowed on the digitized version of the Dead Sea Scrolls which is very unusual. The Dead Sea Scroll sections can have comments posted to them by viewers. Over time, researchers are going to be keeping an eye on what amateur researchers find in the scrolls as potential further areas for research. This might be especially helpful in deciphering the tens of thousands of scroll document fragments and pieces as they become available. The Israel Museum doesn't own all of these pieces and fragments, but Google has supplied to help in digitizing those fragments if the owners wish to make them available.


PC World: http://www.pcworld.com/article/240590/dead_sea_scrolls_post_in_time_for_...

Official Google Blog: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2011/09/from-desert-to-web-bringing-dead-...

Digital Dead Sea Scrolls: http://dss.collections.imj.org.il/

MSNBC: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44672791/ns/technology_and_science-science/t...

Bloomberg: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-09-26/dead-sea-scrolls-go-online-as-g...

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