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Google to Digitize Ancient Texts at University in India

Google has agreed to digitize some 800,000 books and manuscripts at the University of Mysore, in Karnataka, India, the Indo-Asian News Service reported. Some of the documents are written on palm leaves, and some on paper. Among them are India’s first political treatise, the Arthasastra, dating from the fourth century BC.

J. Shashidhara Prasad, vice chancellor of the university, said the project would “restore and preserve this cultural heritage for effective dissemination of knowledge,” according to the news service.

The Mysore project joins a growing list of Google scanning efforts overseas. Just last week the search-engine company recruited its first French-language library, the Cantonal and University Library of Lausanne, Switzerland. The University of Oxford, in England, is among the five institutions involved in the company’s original library-scanning endeavor. —Charles Huckabee

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