It’s a long road with many steps before we can make our millions of documents available online. The support of our volunteers is all the more important as it is at the heart of the indexing process. In this “Behind the Scenes” Special, we show you all the other stages the digitized documents go through before they reach the online archive. 

What are the steps between selecting documents for #everynamecounts and putting them online? What happens to them before they are transcribed on Zooniverse? And what happens afterwards before they can be uploaded to the online archive? Many of our volunteers are eagerly awaiting the answers to these questions. We’ll explain what the full indexing process looks like at Arolsen Archives!

Once or twice a year, in cooperation with our partner Yad Vashem, we upload packages of transcribed documents to our online archive. But a lot of time can pass before that happens. Some steps are quite quick, others take a long time. The goal, of course, is to collect and make available 100 percent accurate data. 

This happens before the transcriptions of the volunteers… 

A big team stands behind #everynamecounts. Our archivists and data specialists work together, selecting the documents in advance, preparing them for the upload on Zooniverse and writing the explanations of the different document types:

»The volunteers work very conscientiously. Many people consult other sources if they are not sure of the spelling of a name or place, for example.«

Giora Zwilling, Deputy Head of the Archive at Arolsen Archives

… and this happens after the community’s help

After you transcribed the documents on Zooniverse, we need to validate and provide the data entered by the volunteers in the next step. In some cases, we work with an AI to validate the data. However, if there is still doubt, it is our employees who check the entries again for quality assurance in a specially developed app. 

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