RootsTech 2014

Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Wednesday, February 26, 2014 adds Online Transcription

A very interesting announcement was just released by They are adding the ability of users to transcribe handwritten documents within the program. This feature is based on the hand-writing detection system they announced some time ago. Here is a quote from the announcement made by Matt Garner:
Everyday at Mocavo we’re looking for new opportunities to bring more of the world’s historical content online for free, forever. We are excited to share a new service that will be launching soon – our own web-based transcription tool. 
We’re very proud to release 1,000 databases everyday; but within those databases are signatures and hand-written notes that could be the answer to a riddle one of our community members (maybe you!) has been trying to solve for decades. 
Our transcription tool will soon be “ready for prime time” and we will be inviting our community members to help index these valuable resources. The tool is being tested internally, and the initial experience is so exciting that we wanted to give you a sneak peek of what’s to come.
 I will be very interested in seeing how this works and how it compares to the online indexing program that has already been announced and is still pending. The system relies on popover windows that will appear above the handwritten text and allow you to easily transcribe without leaving your keyboard. They will also have an arbitration process to review every submission.

If you are already a member of, they will send you an invitation when the project is ready with a tutorial to explain how to get started. They will also have a webpage showing all of the recent activity in the transcription project and will also show the transcription leaders. The date of the release was not announced.

1 comment:

  1. For comparison, also check out the German online indexing projects of the Verein für Computergenealogie. They have been indexing the "Verlustlisten des 1. Weltkrieges" for some time now with considerable success.
    (There are other online indexing projects too.)
    It will be interesting to see the development of all these projects on different sites with different formats.

    Some time back, you did a little test run with the US census, comparing the indexing results on familysearch and ancestry, right?
    It would be interesting to compare all these different platforms ... although it seems to be difficult, as the content is so different.

    If you search the Verlustlisten, indexed by the volunteers with the Computergenealogen, you get far better results than by going through a (refined) ancestry search on (the German website). And the volunteers haven't finished their work yet! (All the pages that have been indexed and checked, can be searched online.) Now that is quite amazing.