Welcome to the home of uScript, the open-source computer software that will revolutionize the way manuscripts are viewed, transcribed and referenced worldwide. There is a lot of information about uScript on this website. From very bare-bones explanations of the functionalities of the system for the Average Joes out there, to the very technical descriptions of how the system works for all the computer savvy individuals that are interested. There are some animations scattered throughout, so make sure to check those out, as they are designed to help you visualize how uScript will work. If you have any further questions, any fun, interesting ideas, or just want more information, go to the Get Involved tab to see our contact information!
While the Venice State Archive allows scholars and experts to examine documents from the early time periods, the method is somewhat flawed. There is no efficient way to determine what information lies within a certain manuscript without manually searching page by page. Additionally, the manuscripts are not permitted to leave the study room in the Archive. This limits access for the historians that wish to utilize the information. They must be physically present in the Archive in order to access and study the manuscripts, creating an inconvenience during their research. Also, all of the information collected by a historian is strictly for his own personal use. There is no easy way to document his transcriptions for future. This means that many of the same documents are read and reread, transcribed and retranscribed, translated and retranslated.
The various designers of uScript envisioned the program as an easy and effective way to search and transcribe the manuscripts of the Venice State Archive, or potentially any archive around the world. To begin, a user would query the server of the Archive, using already established metadata search standards. If the Archive has a page that matches these standards, then the server will respond to the query, and a downloadable image will be available to the user. The Transcription Assistant feature of uScript is responsible for helping a user create a digital transcription of a particular manuscript. It uses adjustable boxes to frame words or phrases, which can then be transcribed by the user. The completed transcription would then be sent back to the uScript server, and linked to the original page for reference by subsequent users. Additional completed transcriptions allow users to search using both metadata standards and actual transcription keywords.