From Plant Press, Vol. 20, No. 1, January 2017.
The Botany Digitization Conveyor project continues to work full speed ahead to digitize the pressed specimens of the U.S. National Herbarium. The conveyor is currently working at a rate of 15,000 new specimen images per week, which are transcribed by an outside contracting company. To date, the Onagraceae, Asteraceae, gymnosperms and pteridophytes have all been completed, and the Fabaceae and Cyperaceae are currently in production. As of early December 2016, over 810,000 specimens have been imaged, and 445,000 new records with full record data including the image have been added to the catalog. The next plant family to be digitized is the Rubiaceae, which is expected to be completed by March 2017, and a small subsection of the algae collection.
The botany catalog records are available for viewing at: http://collections.nmnh.si.edu/search/botany/. The two million record mark was reached in October 2016, and we look forward to many more to come.
In October, Sylvia Orli, IT and Digitization Manager, presented a webinar, “Mass Digitizing a Working Herbarium using a Conveyor Belt: Workflows, Strategies, Challenges” through iDigBio (Integrated Digitized Biocollections), a project funded by the National Science Foundation. Orli spoke about conveyor belt workflows, tips and tricks to keep the data flowing efficiently, and lessons learned from a fast-paced digitization project. The webinar is archived for viewing at https://www.idigbio.org/content/mass-digitizing-working-herbarium-using-conveyor-belt-workflows-strategies-challenges, and will appeal to those who work on cyberinfrastructure, sustainability, data management, current digitization, and those planning future digitization efforts.