Massive Volunteer Collective Proofreads 25,000 Public-Domain Books
Give these people a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records, because they surely deserve one: As of today, 100,000 people around the world have taken part in a massive proofreading project to correct the electronic texts of 25,000 publicly available books on the Project Gutenberg site.
Project Gutenberg relies on computers to “read” scanned books and convert the print into e-book-ready texts. The problem with this is that when it comes to reading a scanned text, a computer’s “eyes” are inferior to a human’s. In the process, tons of small errors creep in — and humans are the only machines we have for ferreting them out. This is where the Distributed Proofreaders project comes in.
As a result, 25,000 of Project Gutenberg’s e-books aren’t just free; they’re free of small, computer-induced copy mistakes too.