Unseen Illustrations - British Library Labs Data Days

Thursday, 12 December, 2013
1400 - 2000
Foyle Suite, Centre for Conservation, The British Library, St Pancras, London, NW1 2DB

This FREE event is the first of a series organised by British Library Labs and the Open Knowledge Foundation (British Library Labs Data Days) aimed at showcasing open content and data which are freely available for research and development.

We have identified an exciting range of illustrations, photographs, and other evocative images held in digital formats that are available for research and in many cases, available for any purpose. They provide a rich record of creativity, endeavour and beauty, a record of history that encompasses many cultures and countries. While much of the Library’s collections have been extensively researched, there are still many thousands of photographs and illustrations that it holds that are comparatively unseen.

With your help, we hope that we can change this.

We want to get in touch with those who have burning research questions to ask, as well as those who have the capability and skill to answer them. You may also be looking for tools to facilitate your research and we want to introduce you to some that you may find useful or you could tell us about ones you have found that are helpful.

We want to talk to digital arts and humanities researchers, computer scientists, statisticians, artists, hackers, and historians - and more importantly, we want them to talk to each other.

British Library Labs 2014 Competition

Would you like to win £3000 and a chance to work on your idea in ‘residence’ at the Library?

British Library Labs wants to hear about project ideas that need access to the digital collections held by the British Library. We will run a competition for the best ideas and will contribute support and some resources for the winning entries. The competition will launch during this event, with the winning entries picked by April/May of next year 2014. It is open to any research that might involve the Library’s public domain or openly licensed digital holdings:

• Over a million illustrations, maps, plates, cartoons, posters, playbills and handbills and other decorative imagery, ranging in date from the 16th to the late 19th century.
• Other open image collections as identified by the OKFN.

This is only a small sample of the available collections, and more will be shown during the day.




Tea and Coffee

Introduction and overview of British Digital Library content
Mahendra Mahey (BL Labs)

Open image collections
Sam Leon (Open Knowledge Foundation)

Tools to be used with image collections
Ben O’Steen (BL Labs) and Sam Leon

Cake, Cake more Cake..tea and coffee…see people's ideas, discuss, getting into groups
Mini Christmas Cakes, Mince Pies and Victoria Sponges

Looking at the data and ideas
Discussion based on the ideas, tools and services that emerge.

Announce second British Library Labs Competition
Mahendra Mahey

Coffee break
Tea and Coffee

Repeat (if needed for newcomers) of:
  • British Library and Open image collections
  • Tools used with image collections
  • British Library Labs second competition
  • Pitching and feedback of your ideas (if needed)

And / Or
Continue with looking at the data and ideas
People work on their ideas and look at the data

Break and nibbles (you are free to continue working on your ideas)
Mulled Wine with a selection of cold and hot nibbles

Continue with looking at the data and ideas

Summary, review / feedback of ideas, next steps


Booking Form

Click here for a booking form for this FREE event*.

*Please note, we will be expecting you to bring your own laptops. We will provide free wifi, food and refreshments.