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The Digital Laboratory

In line with the BA overall mission of building a universal digital library, and since many of the projects hosted by ISIS require specialized digital services, ISIS has built its own digital laboratory equipped with state-of-the-art technologies.

The laboratory's staff, composed of 120 highly trained members, work 7 days a week, two shifts per day, for digitizing various media including slides in multi-formats, negatives, books, manuscripts, pictures, and maps. The laboratory is equipped with the necessary tools used for indexing, archiving and managing digital media, thus allowing for centralized digital control of the entire workflow. The lab is governed by an in-house developed workflow DAFv2. Over 50,000 books have been digitized at the laboratory, in addition to 35,000 images, over 30000 slides, 100 manuscripts and hundreds of magazines and periodicals. Currently, the production rate of the digital lab is 120 books/day.

The lab occupies about 500 m2 with various equipment:

  • 2 high resolution coloured scanners with sizes A0 and double A0. These scanners are used for large size books, maps and manuscripts.The technique used by these scanners does not include thermal radiation, which is very suitable for scanning rare books and manuscripts as such radiation may affect them negatively.
  • 10 book scanners donated by Carnegie Mellon University, 5 of which were donated in 2003, and observing the remarkable progress achieved by the digital laboratory, Carnegie Mellon University was encouraged to donate to BA 5 high end book scanners (Zeutchel OS-5000) to extend the capacities of the digital laboratory.
  • 3 specialized scanners for slides and negatives

The creation of the laboratory was an essential starting point in digitizing BA collections and the collections of other international libraries that are interested in pursuing the goal of "Universal Access to Human Knowledge". Many of the Library's projects are highly dependent on the digital laboratory to achieve their goals.



Last updated on 19 Feb 2008