More on Volunteering

Here is an e-mail I sent earlier. It explains itself. Anyone else who’d like to join the good work knows where I am.

Dear Xxxx,

Thanks for offering to help with getting the LA archive ready for
publication as html documents. Our ambition is to have everything
available on our website as both pdf (pretty in hard copy) and html
(more useful for web viewing).

Here is the complete Religious Notes archive – our smallest, that
is. I’ve converted the pdf files to MSWord. That was an automated
process. The time-consuming bit is to reformat the documents so they
can be poured into the LA website as html documents. That means
doing the following:

1. Turn double column to single column

2. Remove all text from boxes and paste at the top of the document

3. Revise pasted text to standard form

4. Clean up main text – ie, remove unnecessary hyphens and take out
all mention of LA officers (most are dead or retired)

I supply a sample file that I’ve cleaned up, to show the sort of
thing that we need. I could give detailed instruction about how to
make the necessary changes. But I think it a good idea to leave you
to sort out your own method.

There is nothing hard about all this. My problem is that it’s fiddly
and I am at a time in life when I can’t just sit at the computer
doing the same clean up 800 times.

No great hurry – it’s been years in the waiting, and a while longer
can’t do any harm.

Best wishes,


5 responses to “More on Volunteering

  1. I’ll try to see what I can do, when I know how many students I have got for this academic year. I’m sure that the Chimpanzee Type-writers in the Nissen Hut can do something here and there.

  2. You see, I’m trying also to show students that there is such a thing as liberty – it’s hard at first for they don’t really understand it.

    There is a ravine to cross. You libertarians all know where that was.

  3. Julie near Chicago

    Sean–A fine initiative in principle, but do you really want to remove the names of L.A. officers? Doing that destroys half the point of truly archival records, which is availability of original sources, unaltered, to scholarly historical research. Consider the case of redacted FOIA documents and the problems caused when they are redacted. The names ARE in fact part of the history, and if the L.A. is important then so are they.

    Even for those who are simply interested in, and are never going to publish on, the UK’s Libertarian history, such eliminations are frustrating.

  4. Julie near Chicago

    You wish! *g* No, I was just kibbitzing…alas, I am occupied elsewhere. :(