The project is based on the extensive periodicals collection held at the Library and Museum of Freemasonry, London. The original concept was by Andrew Prescott, and the technical developments have been carried out by staff at the Centre for Computing in the Humanities at King’s College London, including Marilyn Deegan, Eleonora Litta Modignani Picozzi, Harold Short and Paul Vetch.
The periodicals are provided as facsimile page images which have been digitized from microfilm. Optical character recognition (OCR) has been used to provide searchable text. Search hits are highlighted on the page image for easy retrieval. Before OCR is carried out, software specially developed for the digitization of newspaper and periodical literature by Olive Software is used to segment the content into ‘zones’, which means that the content can be assigned to a number of categories: ‘article’, ‘advertisement’, and ‘image’. Tables of content are also created automatically by the software which recognises different styles of heading, from which the tables of content are created. The tables of content are manually corrected for readability, but the zoning itself is automatic, and therefore subject to occasional errors.