The OSU Library participates in the creation and maintenance of the emerging global digital library by digitizing and sharing electronic information.
The OSU Library Electronic Publishing Center, founded in 1996, will pursue this vision by expanding and enhancing access to published and unpublished materials of potential interest to the academic community and general public, especially those unique to OSU or the State of Oklahoma.
There is a wealth of information in older printed materials and in special collections documents such as letters and diaries. However, many of these documents are in poor condition, and are too fragile for frequent use. It is important to capture a digital copy of these works before they deteriorate completely. Researchers can use a digitized version for most purposes, saving wear and tear on the original. By digitizing the unique documents in special collections and archives, we make them available to a far wider audience. Researchers no longer have to travel to the place where the document is held; the document can come to them. People who would never be allowed to handle rare documents - schoolchildren, college students, casual researchers, hobbyists - can actually use these historical artifacts in their studies.
Digitization is a long and complicated process. There are many steps involved, as illustrated in the flowchart below. Every project is different, but the four basic stages include:
Stage 1. Select Material
Stage 2. Convert normal text into electronic text
Stage 3. Format electronic text for the Internet
Stage 4. Create website for access and navigation