Digital and computational tools and methods are becoming increasingly part of scholarly activity, including in Digital Scholarly Editing. One example of this is in transcribing texts from manuscripts, where machine learning is becoming more and more effective. To this end, eScriptorium is being developed to leverage Machine Learning to help in transcription, whether automatic, semi-automatic or manual. In principle the software should be useful for any type of edition, in any language and script and from any date. In practice, however, this raises many questions, including to what extent AI can or should be employed in preparing editions, how much the expert should remain ‘in the loop’, but also to what extent it is even possible to develop a single tool that can work for everything from Greek papyrus to 20th-century notebooks to Old Vietnamese inscriptions and beyond. This talk will therefore present the current state of the art while also addressing some practical and theoretical questions that remain for the future.
Peter Stokes is Directeur d’études (approximately ‘research professor’) at the École Pratique des Hautes Études – Université Paris Sciences et Lettres where he works on digital and computational humanities applied to historical writing. He is co-director of eScriptorium, and other major projects include Principal Investigator for DigiPal, a European Research Council Starting Grant on new methods in palaeography, as well as Co-Investigator of Exon Domesday and Models of Authority, Work Package leader for the Horizon 2020 project RESILIENCE, and coordinator of a Cluster in Biblissima+ funded by the French PIA.
This lecture is organized in conjunction with the Antwerp Summer University Summer School “Digital Humanities: Genetic editing, from manuscripts to born-digital writing processes”. Registration for the summer school itself has closed, but attending the speaker’s keynote lecture is free and open to all. Please register by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.