Google and Israel Museum Put Dead Sea Scrolls Online

by Susan Waldrop, Staff Writer 538 views0

Google, The Israel Museum and Technology have now made it possible for people that have never had a chance to see the Dead Sea Scrolls see them online.  Five of the Dead Sea Scrolls that have been stored for decades in a climate-controlled exhibit at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem are now available in digital form to anyone with an internet connection.

The Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered somewhere between 1947 and 1956 by a boy watching sheep in 11 caves near the Dead Sea. The Scrolls Date from the third century B.C. to the first century A.D.

A new website created by The Israel Museum and Google now allows people to read the scrolls with the help of a “magnifying glass” feature. Pages for each book also contain videos and notes.

The museum announced what was once hard to see, is now easy as details invisible to the naked eye are made visible through an ultra-high resolution digital resolution up to 1,200 megapixels. Photographer Ardon Bar-Hama used UV-protected flash tubes with an exposure of 1/4000th of a second to minimize damage to the fragile and light-sensitive scrolls, the museum said.

“We have seen how people around the world can enhance their knowledge and understanding of key historical events by accessing documents and collections online. We hope to make all existing knowledge in historical archives and collections available to all, including helping to put additional Dead Sea Scroll documents online.” managing director of Google’s Israeli research and development center Yossi Matias said.

The Dead Sea Scrolls Digital Project is funded by George Blumenthal and the Center for Online Judaic Studies, which first envisioned the project to make these manuscripts widely accessible and to create an innovative resource for scholars and the public.

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