Mass Observation was a social research organization that attempted to record the every day life of British citizens through questionnaires, observation, surveys, and diaries. The digitized content is available in Mass Observation Online, which the Library has owned for many years.
Because much of the content has been handwritten, the search functionality of the resource is limited. Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR) has expanded this functionality to some extent. A basic or advanced search for key term will still only search the metadata that has been assigned to each document. If there is a hit in the document’s metadata for the term, then the HTR software will automatically search for that term in the full text of that document when a user selects the document from the Search Results list.
While this is not as useful as a full-text search would be, it does help users quickly find where a term is located in a document, making it easier to determine the value of that document to their research.