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System Simulation / Digital Domesday - The Domesday Book on CDROM - Alecto Historical Editions
Digital Domesday - The Domesday Book on CDROM - Alecto Historical Editions
Using Index+ software and tools, we designed and developed a series of CD-ROMs with images of all folios from the 1089 Domesday Book held in the National Archives. All editions include a number of powerful tools - full search and browse of the Alecto Historical Editions modern translation, indexes to people and places, zoom into and pan around images of all folios and articles, maps and glossary.

The CDROM editions:
*Digital Domesday Scholar's Edition with high resolution images of all folios (Gold Edition),
*Digital Domesday General Edition with medium resolution images of all folios (Silver Edition),
*Digital Domesday Translation Edition with no images of the folios (Bronze Edition)
*A series of County Editions.

The amount of information in the Domesday Book is staggering. The document preserves information on peasant population, tax assessment, land values, agricultural productivity and the names of nearly all landowners in the realm. This overwhelming quantity of information has until recently prevented its full exploitation. Searches that would previously have been impracticable or taken many months work can now be completed in seconds. Free text searches can be undertaken throughout the Domesday translation, making it possible to look up and find, almost instantly, information such as the landholdings in each county of a particular baron or bishop, or the location of every vineyard or indeed the number of free women in Norman England (limited searches within County Edition).

A cover feature in The Sunday Times Magazine, 8 December 2002, "Digital Domesday CD-ROM - after 900 years gets a high-tech makeover", tells the story of the creation of the original Domesday Book and describes the stories of the publication of the modern facsimile editions and the CD-ROM editions.

"Seldom have medium and message been more synergistically combined than...in the new Domesday CDs. If the Winchester scribe had a dream, it might have been of a heaven in which any line of his masterwork could be recalled in an instant, with no need to comb through 766 pages of densely written parchment, in which any mention of a village or estate could be compared, his educated words made comprehensible. He would have been dreaming not of heaven but of the CD-ROM" powered by "the almighty Index+ software engine!"
Richard Girling, Sunday Times.



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