Monday, April 21, 2008

Digitization of legacy resources at HOORC's Library

Digitization project team Olebogeng Suwe and Anastacia Monageng

Portion of Peter Smith annotated map

HOORC's Library, supported by the BIOKAVANGO Project and working with the University of Botswana's Library Services Archives team, is digitizing selected historical materials from the library's special collections. The first project is electronic capture of 60 1:50,000 scale maps of the Okavango Delta region used by the late Peter Smith to document findings made on his field trips. Smith annotated the maps with observations about sightings of plants, local place names and water depths -- information that is being captured to produce an online searchable index of the maps' content that will be linked to images of the maps. plantsand peoplefor africa's Alison and Roger Heath are currently assisting with interpretation of botanical names on the maps, which will be linked to a database of Smith's herbarium specimens. Other digitization work planned includes biodiversity information contained in the archives of the late Dr Hans Joachim Heinz, anthropologist, and of the late Dr Richard Bell, ecologist.

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