Topics in Digital Mapping: Timelines and Palladio Meeting Report

Digital map makers are often interested in animating the spatial visualization over time or linking their maps to a timeline.  This session provided participants with examples of animations and timelines using Neatline and GeoTemCo.  The workshop also covered data formats and how time and mapping can be combined in Palladio, a free, web-based visualization platform designed for the humanities. All of the information provided to participants is available in a google doc.

We opened with examples of animated map visualizations. Two of particular interest are the Islamic Urban Centers project and the Atlas of Early Printing. While creating an animated visualization was not covered, these projects give a good idea for what the integration of time into our datasets can be used to do.

Abigail Sargent, MVST student, gave a brief presentation on the French of Italy NeatLine exhibit, a project that uses Omeka’s NeatLine plug-in to visualize the locations and dates of medieval French texts of Italian origin.

We then moved into talking about Palladio, and what each of the three main presenters are using it for. David Wrisley introduced participants to the idea of point-to-point data, of seeing the relationships of pieces to things in medieval texts. David Levine demonstrated some of the limitations of Palladio by pulling up a very large data set about medieval woodland and demonstrating how Palladio’s visualizations and network mapping can be useful. Alisa Beer drew on her research into medieval English libraries and demonstrated how Palladio can map points geographically as well as how the timeline function can be used.

We then broke into small groups and trouble-shot an intentionally broken data set, and then had participants create a .csv file based on Amtrak time tables from 1971, including the trip from New York to Boston.

Once participants had created a .csv file, we uploaded to Palladio and discussed the point-to-point map we had created!

Palladio Amtrak Image

Interested in learning more about Palladio?
Check out Miriam Posner’s tutorial to Palladio. Then open this google doc for participants, where you will find an intentionally broken data set to fix and upload into Palladio!

Online Profile Management Workshop

This post is a response and reaction to the workshop I led on April 23rd, Your Online Presence: Google, Facebook, and Life Ahead It is not a summary of the workshop, but instead my takeaways from it, particularly my suggestions and questions for anyone interested in leading a similar discussion.

Many DH-savvy people perhaps take for granted the idea of managing one’s online profile — we know that we will be Googled by other scholars, by potential employers, even by potential dates.  As participants in DH projects, we often have content associated with our names that is readily available.

I think it is easy for us to forget, however, that not everyone is as interested in, or as aware of, their online presence: we may assume too high a level of awareness.  I found, when I presented for a class of undergraduate juniors and seniors, that while most of them understood what an online “presence” consisted of, many of them appeared unconcerned about what it contained.

The idea, for example, that someone might lose their job over a picture of drinking posted on Facebook seemed horrifying and almost unbelievable to some of the students.  The idea of generating content intentionally on sites like LinkedIn and a personal blog seemed foreign to many of them, and the idea of using social media professionally (or of employers using/searching Facebook, much less any other social media site) seemed, in some cases, to be quite a bit to swallow.  Other students seemed to already be quite media-savvy, so it was a mixed group: I don’t mean to imply that all of them were surprised.

My biggest question, which I hope we will have the chance to discuss as a group in the fall, but which I encourage anyone to respond to in the comments, is this:

How essential do you consider online presence management?  Does everyone need to worry about this, or only those who are interested in pursuing a more digitally-oriented job?