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Curious Images – Celebrating the British Library 1 Million images collection

Yesterday British Library Labs hosted the one day workshop “Curious Images: Image Processing, Pattern Recognition, Artistic Use and a celebration of the British Library 1 Million images collection.” It was a fascinating showcase of the ways in which artists and researchers have interacted with the British Library 1 million images on Flickr.

Moving from the power of art to the possible impact of technology, the creativity and innovation in the presentations showed us the enormous potential of cultural heritage content on the web.

From artist David Normal’s use of the images to create huge backlit installations as part of the Burning Man festival to Mario Klingemann’s cluster recognition tool identifying and classifying thousands of images automatically. Advances in handwriting-to-text analysis through the University of Valencia’s tranScriptorium and Queensland University TILT projects. Cardiff Universities Lost Visions tagging interface and Oxford Universities projects on object recognition and the temporal ordering for objects with no date attached. This was a day full of imagination and foresight. It’s exciting to look towards to realisation of these projects, and the development and impact of the tools being conceived in the area of digital resource discovery.

By Karen Colbron

I focus on access and use of digital content in learning, teaching and research, offering guidance and support through the ‘Making your digital collections easier to discover’ online guide and training aimed at Jisc’s higher education members.
Additionally, I run the digital archival collections group purchasing scheme – an innovative purchasing model based on a very simple principle – the more products collectively purchased by our members, the lower the price for everyone involved.

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