An open source critical edition is a digital text that makes available to the reader all the sources (e.g. manuscript readings) used and allows the reader to manipulate and reuse those sources. OSCEs are in concept extensions of the 19th-century critical edition, in that the editor's decisions are made utterly transparent, and subject to reuse and post-publication peer review. As of July 2012 there are no examples that deploy all the principles outlined by Bodard and Garcés (see below), although a number of projects are intent on working toward this ideal.
On Friday, 22 September 2006 a workshop/workgroup organised and supported by Methods Network, Perseus, and the Digital Classicist was held at the Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London. The programme lists participants and positioning papers. The OSCE Abstract, submitted to the Methods Network committee in July and formally granted funding in August 2006, laid out the vision of the workshop. It was attended by numerous participants.
Other early events included:
- Collaborative Text Editing: e-Science Theme, June 20, 2007, National e-Science Centre, Edinburgh
- Changing the center of gravity: the future of classical studies in cyberinfrastructure, October 5, 2007, University of Kentucky, Lexington
- Million Books Workshop, Imperial College Internet Centre, Friday March 14, 2008, London.
See Digital Critical Editions of Texts in Greek and Latin and the OSCE category.
- Gregory Crane, 'What Do You Do with a Million Books?', D.Lib magazine 12.3 (2006) [online]
- Gregory Crane, 'Give us editors! Re-inventing the edition and re-thinking the humanities', In Online Humanites Scholarship: The Shape of Things to Come; Proceedings of the Mellon Fonudation online Humanities Conference at the University of Virginia, March 26-28, 2010, ed. J. McGann, 137-170. houston: Rice University Press. [online]
- (Bodard/Garcés) 'Open Source Critical Editions: A Rationale', in edd. Deegan/Sutherland Text Editing, Print, and the Digital World, Ashgate Press (forthcoming 2008).
- (Garcés/Bodard) 'Technologies, Protocols, and Workflow for Open Source Critical Editions' in Digital Classicist volume (forthcoming)