The "scribes" here are a combination of people and custom-built machines that can each scan up to 500 book pages in an hour. Multiply that by 13 such set-ups and two seven-hour shifts every weekday and you can see how the scanning centre manages to copy more than 1,000 books a week.
...The only sounds are repeated soft "swooshes" and the subdued click of cameras. The swooshes come from the rise and fall of V-shaped glass plates that press the pages of books flat to allow high-resolution photography.
The human half of each scribe turns the book pages, pumps the glass up and down with a foot pedal and fires the cameras. All 13 scribes are cosseted inside a light-proof cowling of black fabric, increasing the resemblance to monks in a scriptorium.
The project is efficient in getting the materials online, with some materials available within 24 hours.
Technorati tag: Digitization