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Humanist Archives: May 5, 2022, 8:15 a.m. Humanist 35.684 - a challenge: text-recognition for Greek papyri & Byzantine mss

              Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 35, No. 684.
        Department of Digital Humanities, University of Cologne
                      Hosted by DH-Cologne
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        Date: 2022-05-04 08:52:08+00:00
        From: Franz FISCHER <>
        Subject: Improving HTR output from Greek papyri and Byzantine manuscripts - HTREC challenge 2022

Dear digital humanists, dear AI crowd,

Training material has been released for preparation of the HTREC 2022
challenge, 1-8 June 2022, to improve Artificial Intelligence driven text
recognition from Greek papyri and Byzantine manuscripts! - An AI crowd
challenge organised by the Venice Centre for Digital and Public Humanities
(VeDPH), Ca' Foscari University of Venice. See:

Handwritten text recognition (HTR) concerns the conversion of scanned
images of handwritten text into machine-encoded text. This is a challenging
task that can lead to transcribed text with multiple errors or even to no
transcription at all when training data (e.g., on a specific script) are
not available. This challenge aims to post-correct automatically any HTR
transcription errors, attempting to build on recent NLP advances, such as
on Grammatical Error Correction.

Why Is This Challenge Important?

New, unpublished data will be released with this challenge and the state of
the art in the field will be drawn. A workshop, that will take place in
Venice in November
2022, will discuss the results.

What is the dataset like?

The training instances consist of images of handwritten texts that have
been transcribed by human experts (the ground truth) and by a state of the
art HTR model (the input). The texts comprise Greek papyri and byzantine
manuscripts. First, more than 1,800 lines of transcribed text will be
released in order to serve as training and validation data. The use of
other resources for training is allowed and suggested. Next, an evaluation
set will be released, for which we will only share the input. A very small
part of the evaluation set is used to keep an up to date leaderboard.

What Are The Key Tasks?

The task involves the correction of any errors present in the HTR-ed text,
provided the system transcription of the manuscript in question. The ground
truth of the evaluation set is used to score participating systems in terms
of character error *reduction* rate (CERR). A starter kit notebook is
 provided here  to assist with system development and evaluation.


The Participant with the best performing system will be invited to attend a
workshop in Venice, upon the completion of the challenge, and present the
respective system description paper with all expenses covered.


Training data release date: May 1st, 2022
Evaluation data release date: June 1st, 2022
Predictions submission deadline: 11:59, June 8th, 2022
Rankings release date: July 1st, 2022
System description paper submission deadline: 11:59 September 1st, 2022
Best system description paper announced: October 1st, 2022
Workshop: November 7th & 8th, 2022, Venice, Italy

All deadlines are in UTC -12h timezone (anywhere on planet earth).

Best of luck!


Franz Fischer
Direttore, Venice Centre for Digital & Public Humanities (VeDPH)
Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici
Università Ca' Foscari
Palazzo Malcanton Marcorà
Dorsoduro 3484/D - 30123 Venezia

Tel.: +39 041 234 6266 (ufficio), +39 041 234 9863 (segreteria del centro)

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