Today was a really typical day with no excitement but a pretty good feeling of accomplishment at crossing things off my List. I basically worked on two things. The first was performing QA (quality assurance) on several curatorial log books that we've sent for scanning. Each one comes back in both JPG and PDF formats and I have to look at both for the QA. Not every single page, but enough to know the scans are up to snuff. You might wonder why I have to look at both formats. That's because when we first started scanning books the jpegs came back in whatever lovely color they actually had, but the PDFs inexplicably were in grayscale. I don't know that we ever figured out how or why, and they were fixed, but now I look at both. By the way, these books will eventually be uploaded to the Internet Archive. In my spare time.
The other project of the day had to do with a new book published by the Borden Institute, the publishing arm of the Army Medical Department and School. It's called War Surgery in Afghanistan and Iraq: a Series of Cases 2003-2007. We received a couple of discs of the pictures used in the book and while waiting for huge PDFs of the books I talked about above to load, I matched the loosely identified images from the discs to the ones in the book. I'm making a spreadsheet of captions for all of the pictures that will be uploaded, along with the images, into our (still internal) database as part of our Medical Illustration Service Library.
What I find compelling about this book, aside from the miracles the docs over there are working on our soldiers, is that it's fulfilling a mission much like the Medical and Surgical History of the War of the Rebellion did at the time of the Civil War; it's a valuable teaching tool. As Dr. David Lounsbury, one of the three authors, said in an interview with the International Herald Tribune, "The average Joe Surgeon, civilian or military, has never seen this stuff... "It's a shocking, heart-stopping, eye-opening kind of thing. And they need to see this on the plane before they get there, because there's a learning curve to this."