Compiling the Latin dictionary has also given glimpses of life in the medieval era.
In establishing the Latin word for "muzzle", there was a record from 1252 showing that a muzzle had to be made for a polar bear, kept in the Tower of London, which had to be restrained when it was brought to fish in the river Thames.
The word for chimney - "caminus" - was sourced from a description of an earthquake which hit England in the 1340s which toppled chimneys.
There were also strange tales from coroner's courts, such as an account of a cat chasing a mouse down a well and then a woman drowning when she tried to rescue the cat.
The first 'modern' fashion photography -- photographs of models in poses -- appeared in the April 1911 issue of Art et Decoration with the designs of couturier Paul Poiret photographed by Edward Steichen.
Mr Leetaru began work on the project while researching communications technology at Georgetown University in Washington DC as part of a fellowship sponsored by Yahoo, the owner of photo-sharing service Flickr.
To achieve his goal, Mr Leetaru wrote his own software to work around the way the books had originally been digitised.
The Internet Archive had used an optical character recognition (OCR) program to analyse each of its 600 million scanned pages in order to convert the image of each word into searchable text.
As part of the process, the software recognised which parts of a page were pictures in order to discard them.
Mr Leetaru's code used this information to go back to the original scans, extract the regions the OCR program had ignored, and then save each one as a separate file in the Jpeg picture format.
The software also copied the caption for each image and the text from the paragraphs immediately preceding and following it in the book.
Each Jpeg and its associated text was then posted to a new Flickr page, allowing the public to hunt through the vast catalogue using the site's search tool.
The young man is a Yankee sailor from Salem named Jonathan Lambert, and he is the world’s newest and most eccentric head of state. A year earlier, Lambert had formally declared his “absolute possession of the island of Tristan d’Acunha… and the other two, known by the names of Inaccessible and Nightingale Islands, solely for myself and for my heirs for ever.” Lambert reasoned that “as no European, or other power” had ever publicly claimed the islands, they were free for the taking. And renaming: Lambert jettisoned the name Tristan da Cunha, a Portuguese toponym that the main island had borne since the sixteenth century. He rechristened them as the Islands of Refreshment. “Refreshments,” Lambert proclaimed, “may be obtained at my residence,” and he hoped that “all vessels, of whatever description, and belonging to whatever nation, will visit me for that purpose.” The new nation’s naval emblem was a white flag.
Lambert’s statement of possession was self-confident, even lawyerly, grounded on “rational and sure principles”—despite an eccentric mention of “the laws of nations (if any there are)” towards the end. Of course, the truly strange feature of this document was only apparent to those present on the day it was written. Lambert literally represented one quarter of the new nation. The Islands of Refreshment consisted of four people.
aximilian Schich, an art historian at the University of Texas at Dallas, and his colleagues used the Google-owned knowledge base, Freebase, to find 120,000 individuals who were notable enough in their life-times that the dates and locations of their births and deaths were recorded.
The list includes people ranging from Solon, the Greek lawmaker and poet, who was born in 637 bc in Athens, and died in 557 bc in Cyprus, to Jett Travolta — son of the actor John Travolta — who was born in 1992 in Los Angeles, California, and died in 2009 in the Bahamas.
The team used those data to create a movie that starts in 600 bc and ends in 2012. Each person’s birth place appears on a map of the world as a blue dot and their death as a red dot. The result is a way to visualize cultural history — as a city becomes more important, more notable people die there. The work that the animated map is based on was reported on 31 July in Science1.
The animation reflects some of what was known already. Rome gave way to Paris as a cultural centre, which was eventually overtaken by Los Angeles and New York. But it also puts figures and dates on these shifts — and allows for precise comparisons. For example, the data suggest that Paris overtook Rome as a cultural hub in 1789.