The British Library: Georeferencer Pilot

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The British Library announced a pilot project where general public is asked to help to georeference some of the treasures of British mapping. With the help of the online visitors the maps are for the first time overlayed on top of 3D terrain in Google Earth.
The scanned maps become also searchable by their geographic location, because the metadata in a library catalog are enriched with the numerical coordinates (formatted as MARC 034 or DCMI Box) - after review by librarians.

Would you like to try this tool and help British Library to georeference some of the maps? The process is very simple and documented in this video:

You can get assigned a random map by clicking on a button "Fix the location of a map" displayed at or you can choose a map of your own preference in the BL Online Gallery.

After one day almost 300 maps were georeferenced by the volunteers! It seems to be a successful example of crowdsourcing in libraries.

The pilot is powered by the Georeferencer technology, which can be easily applied on the online maps in other libraries and archives too.

The British Library is a partner in our project, and therefore these maps will be in a near future added to the federated map search engine allowing search by location and time.
Tags: georeference, metadata, Georeferencer