I’ve been busy performing quality control on the first batch of page scans and OCR files I’ve received from our vendor. So far, I’d have to say that they really do impressive work! Here’s an example to illustrate the digital image quality. We’ll start by looking at the front page of a Portland New Age (vol. 9 no. 35, issued December 22, 1906)–pictured here at about 30% of original document size:
Here is a screen shot of a word from the main body text of the page shown above (small point size!) It has been enlarged to about 2x its actual size on the page:
Here is an illustration from the same issue–again, enlarged to about twice the size at which it was originally printed:
The resolution, sharpness and contrast of the digitized pages are very good. Our vendor can de-skew, contrast-correct and otherwise “clean” the images for maximum legibility, while still maintaining the “newsprint” look of the originals. With scans of this quality, we are confident of our ability to provide Web service of the newspaper content that is both highly useful and user-friendly.