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Workshop: Computer Vision in Book History

27 March 2019
The Hague, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, the National Library of the Netherlands

Computer vision is making rapid progress in its ability to extract information from documents. Libraries, academic digital humanists and publishers are now moving from experimenting with computer vision to considering how to implement it in their search platforms or research methods, or support it for their users. This one-day symposium will combine presentations on current research using computer vision with hands-on training in computer vision tools. It will both showcase the state-of-the-art in the field and discuss how it can be made more accessible to users of libraries and digital repositories.

Image courtesy Dr. Guyda Armstrong, John Rylands Research Institute ‘Envisioning Dante’ project

Organising committee

Giles Bergel of the Visual Geometry Group, University of Oxford,
Etienne Postumus of Brill Publishers, Leiden Amsterdam,
Lotte Wilms of the KBLab at the Koninklijke Bibliotheek, the National Library of the Netherlands,
Marieke van Delft, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, the National Library of the Netherlands and
Marian Lefferts of CERL, The Hague


9.30 Registration

10:00 Welcome

10.10 Introduction: Giles Bergel (Visual Geometry Group, Oxford)

10.30-13.00 Hands on workshop on tools developed by the VGG Oxford : Giles Bergel and Etienne Posthumus (Brill)

13.00-14.00 Lunch

14.00-15.00 Lightning talks - preliminary list, details will be added as they become available

  • Jessie Wei-Hsuan Chen, Utrecht University, Tracing the printing history of the botanical woodblocks at the Museum Plantin-Moretus using VGG Image Search Engine (VISE)
  • Lise Stork (Leiden University), Semi-automated semantic annotation of natural history archival collections.
  • Cristina Dondi and Matilde Malaspina (15cBOOKTRADE, Oxford), Tracking the movement of 15th-century books and illustration with 15cVISUALISATION and 15cILLUSTRATION
  • Marieke van Delft, Koninklijke Bibliotheek, the National Library of the Netherlands and Etienne Postumus of Brill Publishers, Leiden Amsterdam, on the CERL Provenance Digital Archive (see https://www.arkyves.org/r/section/him_CERLPDA/)
  • Thomas Smits, Radboud University, Nijmegen, Advertising Gender. Using Computer Vision to trace Gender Displays in Historical Advertisements (see also https://academic.oup.com/dsh/advance-article/doi/10.1093/llc/fqy085/5296356)
  • Heleen Wilbrink, Egyptologist and owner of social enterprise Aincient, on Computer Vision to support cross searching collections with materials from Ancient Egypt (see also https://cleo.aincient.org/pages/en/ai/)

15.00-16.00 Keynote: Dr Cornelis van Lit (Utrecht University), 'Getting Ready for the CV Revolution.'
(Eric van Lit is also known as the the Digital Orientalist).
A video registration of the key note is available here.

16.00- 16.30 Break

16.30-17.00 Discussion


This event is free, and now fully booked.

You can register for the whole day, only the morning workshop (maximum number of participants is 25), or the afternoon programme with lightning talks, key note presentation and discussion (max. 50). If you wish to attend the morning workshop we ask you to explain in one or two sentences why it would be important for you and your research to attend. If we receive more than 25 registrations, we will select participants on the basis of the reasons you gave.

No prior knowledge of computer vision is required. Participants should bring their own laptop, ideally one on which they have installed Docker in advance (see instructions for Mac, Windows or Linux in the section ‘Docker Version’ at http://www.robots.ox.ac.uk/~vgg/software/vic/). The workshop can, however, be followed without installing Docker.


VGG Oxford KB CERLBrill


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 services/seminars/cvinbookhistory.txt · Last modified: 2019/04/16 11:33 by lefferts



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