November 19th, 2010 | jabauer
Wow I meant to do this earlier. Sorry for the late post, but I thought I should introduce myself before I got on the plane.
I am doctoral candidate in History at the University of Virginia. I also design databases and write visualization tools for humanities scholars.
I would love to have a discussion about historical networks. These days there is a great deal of interest in tracing historical networks of communication, kinship, patronage, etc. Digital tools seem ideal for some of this work (I am building an open source software package, Project Quincy, to do just that). But as I design databases to trace networks, I wonder more and more about how the technology we use shapes our subsequent analysis. When I map a network from the Project Quincy, am I mapping a real network that once existed, or am I simply mapping the data structure I put in place?
A conversation about networks could be far ranging (and include modern, social networking packages which I see several other THATCampers are interested in). It also brings in questions of source gathering, digitization, data structure, interface design, and visualization.
See you tomorrow!