Trove newspaper & gazette harvester
The Trove Newspaper & Gazette Harvester makes it easy to download large quantities of digitised articles from Trove's newspapers and gazettes. Just give it a search from the Trove web interface, and the harvester will save the metadata of all the articles in a CSV (spreadsheet) file for further analysis. You can also save the full text of every article, as well as copies of the articles as JPG images, and even PDFs. While the web interface will only show you the first 2,000 results matching your search, the Newspaper & Gazette Harvester will get everything.
You can install the Harvester as a Python command line tool, or use it in one of these notebooks below.
See below for information on running these notebooks in a live computing environment. Or just take them for a spin using Binder.
Harvesting search results¶
A simple web interface to the Trove Newspaper and Gazette Harvester – the easiest and quickest way to download all the results from a Trove newspaper or gazette search.
This notebook provides an introduction to the Trove Newspaper and Gazette Harvester command line tool. Edit a few cells and you'll be harvesting metadata and full text of thousands of articles in minutes. This gives you you more control over your harvest than the simple web app, including the ability to restart a failed harvest.
Exploring your harvested data¶
Datasette is 'a tool for exploring and publishing data'. Give it a CSV file and it turns it into a fully-searchable database, running in your browser. It supports facets, full-text search, and, with a bit of tweaking, can even present images. Although Datasette is a command-line tool, we can run from within a Jupyter notebook, and open a new window to display the results. This notebook shows you how to load the newspaper data you've harvested into Datasette, and start it up. If you've also harvested full-text and images from the newspaper articles, you can add these to your database as well!
This notebook shows some ways in which you can analyse and visualise the article metadata you've harvested — show the distribution of articles over time and space; find which newspapers published the most articles. (Under construction)
This notebook suggests some ways in which you can aggregate and analyse the individual OCRd text files for each article — look at word frequencies ; calculate TF-IDF values. (Under construction)
Your harvested data¶
When you start a new harvest, the harvester looks for a directory called data. Within this directory it creates another directory for your harvest. The name of this directory will be in the form of a unix timestamp – a very large number that represents the number of seconds since 1 January 1970. So this means the directory with the largest number will contain the most recent harvest.
The harvester saves your results inside this directory. There will be at least two files created for each harvest:
results.csv– a text file containing the details of all harvested articles
metadata.json– a configuration file which stores all the details of the harvest
results.csv file is a plain text CSV (Comma Separated Values) file. You can open it with any spreadsheet program. The details recorded for each article are:
article_id– a unique identifier for the article
title– the title of the article
newspaper_id– a unique identifier for the newspaper or gazette title (this can be used to retrieve more information or build a link to the web interface)
newspaper_title– the name of the newspaper (or gazette)
page– page number (of course), but might also indicate the page is part of a supplement or special section
date– in ISO format, YYYY-MM-DD
category– one of ‘Article’, ‘Advertising’, ‘Detailed lists, results, guides’, ‘Family Notices’, or ‘Literature’
words– number of words in the article
illustrated– is it illustrated (values are y or n)
corrections– number of text corrections
snippet– short text sample
url– the persistent url for the article
page_url– the persistent url of the page on which the article is published
If you’ve asked for PDFs or text files, there will be additional directories containing those files. Files containing the OCRd text of the articles will be saved in a directory named
text. These are just plain text files, stripped on any HTML. These files include some basic metadata in their file titles – the date of the article, the id number of the newspaper, and the id number of the article. So, for example, the filename
19460104-1002-206680758.txt tells you:
19460104– the article was published on 4 January 1946 (YYYYMMDD)
1002– the article was published in The Tribune
206680758– the article's unique identifier
As you can see, you can use the newspaper and article ids to create direct links into Trove:
- to a newspaper or gazette
- to an article
Similarly, if you've asked for copies of the articles as images, they'll be in a directory named
image. The image file names are similar to the text files, but with an extra id number for the page from which the image was extracted. So, for example, the image filename
19250411-460-140772994-11900413.jpg tells you:
19250411– the article was published on 11 April 1925 (YYYYMMDD)
460– the article was published in The Australasian
140772994– the article's unique identifier
11900413– the page's unique identifier (some articles can be split over multiple pages)
Once you have your data you can start exploring! You'll find some Jupyter notebooks above that provide examples of analysing and visualising both the metadata and the full text.
Run these notebooks¶
There are a number of different ways to use these notebooks. Binder is quickest and easiest, but it doesn't save your data. I've listed the options below from easiest to most complicated (requiring more technical knowledge).
Click on the button above to launch the notebooks in this repository using the Binder service (it might take a little while to load). This is a free service, but note that sessions will close if you stop using the notebooks, and no data will be saved. Make sure you download any changed notebooks or harvested data that you want to save.
See Using Binder for more details.
Using Reclaim Cloud¶
Reclaim Cloud is a paid hosting service, aimed particularly at supported digital scholarship in hte humanities. Unlike Binder, the environments you create on Reclaim Cloud will save your data – even if you switch them off! To run this repository on Reclaim Cloud for the first time:
- Create a Reclaim Cloud account and log in.
- Click on the button above to start the installation process.
- A dialogue box will ask you to set a password, this is used to limit access to your Jupyter installation.
- Sit back and wait for the installation to complete!
- Once the installation is finished click on the 'Open in Browser' button of your newly created environment (note that you might need to wait a few minutes before everything is ready).
See Using Reclaim Cloud for more details.
Using the Nectar Cloud¶
The Nectar Research Cloud (part of the Australian Research Data Commons) provides cloud computing services to researchers in Australian and New Zealand universities. Any university-affiliated researcher can log on to Nectar and receive up to 6 months of free cloud computing time. And if you need more, you can apply for a specific project allocation.
The GLAM Workbench is available in the Nectar Cloud as a pre-configured application. This means you can get it up and going without worrying about the technical infrastructure – just fill in a few details and you're away! To create an instance of this repository in the Nectar Cloud:
- Log in to the Nectar Dashboard using your university credentials.
- From the Dashboard choose Applications -> Browse Local.
- Enter 'GLAM' in the filter box and hit Enter, you should see the GLAM Workbench application.
- Click on the GLAM Workbench application's Quick Deploy button.
- Step through the various configuration options. Some options are only available if you have a dedicated project allocation.
- When asked to select a GLAM Workbench repository, choose 'Trove newspaper & gazette harvester' from the dropdown list.
- Complete the configuration and deploy your GLAM Workbench instance.
- The url to access your instance will be displayed once it's ready. Click on the url!
See Using Nectar for more information.
You can use Docker to run a pre-built computing environment on your own computer. It will set up everything you need to run the notebooks in this repository. This is free, but requires more technical knowledge – you'll have to install Docker on your computer, and be able to use the command line.
- Install Docker Desktop.
- Create a new directory for this repository and open it from the command line.
- From the command line, run the following command:
docker run -p 8888:8888 --name trove-newspaper-harvester -v "$PWD":/home/jovyan/work quay.io/glamworkbench/trove-newspaper-harvester repo2docker-entrypoint jupyter lab --ip 0.0.0.0 --NotebookApp.token='' --LabApp.default_url='/lab/tree/index.ipynb'
- It will take a while to download and configure the Docker image. Once it's ready you'll see a message saying that Jupyter Notebook is running.
- Point your web browser to
See Using Docker for more details.
Sherratt, Tim. (2022). GLAM-Workbench/trove-newspaper-harvester (version v1.1.0). Zenodo. https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.6693925