Granted, I work for this organization, but that does not bias me in any way whatsoever. Maybe not. Either way, Timbuktu is a fairly mysterious sounding name and this webinar goes a long way in establishing why it was so alluring. It chronicles the digitization efforts of Aluka with the Islamic manuscripts of Timbuktu. Some wonderful commentary and visuals. The excerpt below is from the Aluka blog.

Timbuktu Webinar Now Available for Download!

On April 22, 2008, Harlan Wallach of Northwestern University Advanced Media Production Studio (NUAMPS) conducted a live webinar on his experiences in Timbuktu, Mali, as part of a joint effort with Aluka to digitize Islamic manuscripts held in private libraries throughout the city. Mr. Wallach outlined the major players involved in such a vast undertaking as well as some of the technical considerations involved in digitization in Mali. This webinar provides a fascinating glimpse into the rich intellectual tradition of Timbuktu and its importance as a center of Islamic learning.

The webinar is now available for download here.

If you want to see the first digitized Islamic manuscripts, as well as collection information and essays please go to

Please stay tuned for more Aluka webinars in the near future.

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