Introduction to Digital Humanities

RELI/ENGL 39, Fall 2015, University of the Pacific

Category: Intro to Digital Humanities

Visualizing Data

The graphing tool was surprising simpler than the mapping tool with Palladio. Unlike mapping, with the graphing tool it was simple to recognize the relationship between specific points and to adjust the attributes of the data and it be represented properly on the graph. Visualization of data is a unique way of displaying information aside from one dimensional conceptualizations. I used the sample data from Palladio that represented People and Places. I linked the data in the first image with the coordinates of the birthplaces of the people, linking the people dataset (their birthplace) and the places dataset (the coordinates to their birthplace) and displayed the data that way.

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With the next graph that I did with Palladio I split the sample data, People and Places, and I separated the data by focusing on Gender from the People dataset and the Places data was used to represent cities that were the birthplace of each gender from the People dataset. It was interesting to see this relationship between Gender. One glob is larger than the other in the image which represents more make or females births than the other.

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With the last graph I wanted to show the relationship between the People dataset and the Places dataset with respect to the individual’s birthplace and then their place of death. Weirdly the relationship shows that people’s place of birth is not too far off from their place of death in most cases.

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Palladio, the Death of ME

Palladio was probably the most complicated program we’ve used yet in my opinion. It’s entire concept is customizability of your project. One is supposed to be able to customize their data and organize it however they please. I found it incredibly challenging to get Palladio to do what I wanted with it. I want to create showing locations that Kris Jenner has geotagged on her Instagram photos. I don’t think that I was being over ambitious in my endeavors yet was unable to execute my task. The difficult part was not getting the geocoordinate locations for the photos i selected to focus on but with Palladio itself. I attempted to upload my own spreadsheet with the points I wanted to be highlighted on the map I was to create. I was unable to get the points I wanted to appear on the map and was even less successful in separating 2 datasets in one map and linking them with the map lines.. I was able to upload sample data provided by Palladio. One was places that mapped out to look like this:

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The other map I created was with the Cushman dataset that ended up looking like this:

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At this point I was able to create a map with a dataset (not a unique dataset, but a dataset) and was able to highlight the locations the dataset provided by size and color. I was unable to do much of anything else with my dataset in order to specify individual points by different colors or size. I would love to use Palladio in the future if I’d be able to understand how to use it. I could do a whole bunch of fun things with the program.

 

Spatial History and How Where You Are Determines Who You Are (October 26th, 2015)

Spatial history as it exists in the field of Digital Humanity is fascinating. Our first reading, Humanities Gone Spatial, focuses a lot on the concept of spatial history, and how it is used in a very broad context, while our second reading, Zepher Frank’s Spatial History as Scholarly Practice, pinpoints the Richard Pryor’s Peoria Project as an example of  focused spatial history. This smaller scale something that I have spent a lot of time thinking about without knowing the term for it. My freshman year in college I read Patti Smith’s memoir Just Kids, and the stories that she told of how she grew as an artist and how important the context of where she was living at the time and who she was able to interact with because of where she was spatially really got me thinking about my own life. In conjunction with reading her book, I encountered people who lived completely different lives and has completely different backgrounds and experiences that made me question what a “universal experience” is. How even though we all came from such utterly different backgrounds most of the time, somehow we all still ended up at the same university, and after a brief interaction with each other, we will all go back into the work to leave our mark. Yet in this brief time, we are all influencing each other, even if indirectly. We meet each other, have classes, have lunch, interact with each other through sports or the arts, and each little change and meeting changes us if only for a moment. Using mapping to portray spatial history is a really fantastic way to look at an individuals life, as the Peoria Project did with Richard Pryor, because it lets you look at the influences that person made based upon where they were, as well as seeing how they were being influenced by where they were. Looking back at my life, I’ve spent some time mapping out my own journey, and with my location being written to every photo I take on my phone, or every time I log into Facebook, I have had plenty of geographic data to work with. This type of data, incidentally, will make projects like the Peoria Project easier, because they have the location data attached to photos and videos, so you an match where and when a person was somewhere. When I looked back at my own spacial history, I saw my past year, photos of summer and winter break popping up at my home, then pictures of my time here at university cluttering the areas where I took the photos. The precision is amazing too, because I could zoom in or out, to where photos were clustered by city, or to where I could see where on campus I had taken the photo. Some of the photos are incorrectly matched, because of some wonky GPS coordinates, but they were still correct within city and such. Looking back at my own spatial history I see where I spend the most of my time where I am also making the types of memories that I feel need to be preserved through photographs. The clusters where thousands of photos pop up are rather interesting and allow me to take a step back and have just one more thing to be aware of myself in my life.


Spatial History

An example of photos on my phone with location history allowing me to see where photos were taken in proximity to a building I am frequently in on campus.