Heritage Jam entry: PARKER

I’m sure it isn’t quite what they were expecting, but I submitted something to HeritageJam.

View it here.

PARKER is an interactive experience in procedurally extracting, uncovering, and reversing, the burial of latent semantic core archaeological knowledge. In this era of neoliberal corporatization of cultural heritage knowledge, PARKER represents the way forward for its creation and appreciation. When we must balance funding for healthcare versus that for archaeologists, in this time of reduced availability of funds, how can we not turn to data mining and revisualization of knowledge? After all, what is the insight of the individual when millions of minutes of youtube videos are being created every minute? Further, PARKER extracts the core insights of archaeology and formats them automatically for patenting, so that DRM can be affixed and rightsholder value be fully realized.

PARKER:  for the archaeology we always dreamed of.

———

This visualization is an interactive story that frames the automatic search of youtube, natural-language parsing, and automatic super cut & re-formatting of those search results to highlight the ways code can frame archaeological knowledge. It applies Sam Lavigne’s ‘videogrep’ and ‘automatic patent generator’ to results from a search for ‘archaeological burials’ retrieved from Youtube, selecting the first few results that included closed-captioning. Videogrep uses natural-language pattern matching on those captioning files to select clips from a variety of pieces, restitching them at random. The result is similar to an I-Ching or other ways of divination of meaning. Similarly, the patent generator grabs the transcription so that elements that fit the language of patent applications. As I have argued elsewhere, digital archaeology is not about justification of results, but rather, the deformation of the familiar.

The result is a making-strange, an uncovering, of deeper truths. Code is not neutral, and we would be wise to recognize, to engage with, the theoretical perspectives encoded in our use of digital tools – especially when dealing with the human past.

 

A method and apparatus for observing the rhythmic cadence; or, an algorithmic alternative archaeology

Figure 1

Figure 1. A Wretched Garret Without A Fire (at least, according to Google Images)

A method and apparatus for observing the rhythmic cadence

ABSTRACT

A method and apparatus for observing the rhythmic cadence. The devices comprises a small shop, a wretched garret, a Russian letter, a mercantile house, a third storey

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Figure 1 illustrates a wretched garret without a fire.

Figure 2 is a block diagram of a fearful storm off the island.

Figure 3 illustrates a mercantile house on my own account.

Figure 4 is a perspective view of the principal events of the Trojan war.

Figure 5 is an isometric view of a poor Jew for 4 francs a week.

Figure 6 is a cross section of a thorough knowledge of the English language.

Figure 7 is a block diagram of the hard trials of my life.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

The present invention is the son of a Protestant clergyman. The device is a wretched garret without a fire. The present invention facilitates the study of a language. The invention has my book in my hand. The invention acquires a thorough knowledge of the English language.

According to a beneficial embodiment, the invention such a degree that the study. The present invention shows his incapacity for the business. The device obtains a situation as correspondent and bookkeeper. The device understood a word of the language. The present invention established a mercantile house on my own account. The invention does not venture upon its study. The device devotes the rest of my life. The present invention realizes the dream of my whole life. The present invention publishes a work on the subject.

What is claimed is:

1. A method for observing the rhythmic cadence, comprising:
a wretched garret;
a small shop; and
a Russian letter.

2. The method of claim 1, wherein said wretched garret comprises a mercantile house on my own account.

3. The method of claim 1, wherein said small shop comprises the principal events of the Trojan war.

4. The method of claim 1, wherein said Russian letter comprises a fearful storm off the island.

5. An apparatus for observing the rhythmic cadence, comprising:
a mercantile house;
a small shop;
a third storey; and
a Russian letter.

6. The apparatus of claim 5, wherein said mercantile house comprises a wretched garret without a fire.

7. The apparatus of claim 5, wherein said small shop comprises a fearful storm off the island.

8. The apparatus of claim 5, wherein said third storey comprises a thorough knowledge of the English language.

9. The apparatus of claim 5, wherein said Russian letter comprises a thorough knowledge of the English language.

—————–
Did you recognize Troy and its Remains, by Henry (Heinrich) Schliemann, in that patent abstract? I took his ‘autobiographical notice’ from the opening of his account of the work at Troy, and ran it through Sam Lavigne’s Patent Generator. It’s a bit like the I-Ching. I have it in mind that this toy could be used to distort and reflect on, draw something new from, some of the classic works of archaeology – especially from that buccaneering phase when, well, pretty much anything went. What if, instead of publishing their discoveries, the early archaeologists had patented them instead? We live in such an era now, when new forms of life (or at least, its building blocks) can be patented; when workflows can be patented; when patents can be framed so broad that a word-generator and a lawyer will bring you riches beyond compare… the early archaeologists were after fame and fortune as much as they were about knowledge of the past. This patent of Schliemann’s uses as its source text an opening sketch about the man himself, rather than his discoveries. Doesn’t a sense of him shine through? Doesn’t he seem, well, rather over-inflated? What is the rhythmic cadence, I wonder. If I can sort out the encoding, I’ll try this on some of his discussion of what he found.

(think also the computational power that went into this toy: natural language processing, pattern matching… it’s rather impressive, actually, when you think what can be built by bolting existing bits together).

Here’s Chapter 1 of Schliemanns account of Troy. Please see the ‘detailed description of the preferred embodiments’, below.

——————-
An apparatus and method for according to the firman

ABSTRACT

An apparatus and method for according to the firman. The devices comprises a whole building, a large block

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

Figure 1 is a block diagram of the north-western end of the site.

Figure 2 is an isometric view of the second secretary of his chancellary.

Figure 3 is a perspective view of a large block of this kind.

Figure 4 is a diagrammatical view of the steep side of the hill.

Figure 5 is a schematic drawing of the native soil before the winter.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

The present invention sells me the field at any price. The device reach the native soil before the winter. The present invention is the highest mountain in the world.

What is claimed is:

1. An apparatus for according to the firman, comprising:
a whole building; and
a large block.

2. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said whole building comprises a large block of this kind.

3. The apparatus of claim 1, wherein said large block comprises the native soil before the winter.

4. A method for according to the firman, comprising:
a large block; and
a whole building.

5. The method of claim 4, wherein said large block comprises the north-western end of the site.

6. The method of claim 4, wherein said whole building comprises the second secretary of his chancellary.

Using Storymaps.js

The Fonseca Bust, a storymap

The Fonseca Bust, a storymap

A discussion on Twitter the other day – asking about the best way to represent ‘flowmaps’ (see DHQ&A) – led me to encounter a new toy from KnightLabs: Storymap.js. Knightlabs also provides quite a nice, fairly intuitive editor for making the storymaps. In essence, it provides a way, and a viewer, for tying various kinds of media and text to points along a map. Sounds fairly simple, right? Something that you could achieve with ‘my maps’ in Google? Well, sometimes, it’s not what you do but the way that you do it. Storymaps also allows you to upload your own large-dimension image so that you can bring the viewer around it, pointing out the detail. In the sample (so-called) ‘gigapixel’ storymap, you are brought around The Garden of Earthly Delights.

This struck me as a useful tool for my upcoming classes – both in terms of creating something that I could embed in our LMS and course website for later viewing, but also as something that the students themselves could use to support their own presentations. I also imagine using it in place of essays or blog post reflections. To that end, I whipped up two sample storymaps. One reports on an academic journal article, the other provides a synopsis of a portion of a book’s argument.

Here’s a storymap about the Fonseca Bust.

Here’s a storymap about looting Cambodian statues.

In the former, I’ve uploaded an image to a public google drive folder. It’s been turned into tiles, so as to load into the map engine that is used to jump around the story. Storymap’s own documentation suggests using Photoshop’s zoomify plugin. But if you don’t have zoomify? Go to sourceforge and get this: http://sourceforge.net/projects/zoomifyimage/ . It requires that you have Python and the Python Image Library installed (PIL). Unzip zoomifyimage, and put your image that you want to use for your story in the same folder. Open your image in any image processing program, and find out how many pixels wide by high it is. Write this down. Close the program. Then, open a command prompt in the folder where you unzipped zoomify (shift+right click, ‘open command prompt here’, in Windows). At the prompt, type


ZoomifyFileProcessor.py <your_image_file>

If all goes well, nothing much seems to happen – except that you have a new folder with the name of your image, an xml file called ImageProperties.xml and one or more TileGroupN folders with your sliced and diced images. Move this entire folder (with its xml and subfolders) into your google drive. Make sure that it’s publicly viewable on the web, and take note of the hosting url. Copy and paste it somewhere handy.

see the Storymap.js documentation on this:

“If you don’t have a webserver, you can use Google Drive orDropbox. You need the base url for your exported image tiles when you start making your gigapixel StoryMap. (show me how)).”

In the Storymap.js editor, when you click on ‘make a new storymap’, you select ‘gigapixel’, and give it the url to your folder.  Enter the pixel dimensions of the complete image, and you’re good to go.

Your image could be a high-resolution google earth image; it could be a detail of a painting or a sculpture; it could be a historical map or photograph. There are also detailed instructions on running a storymap off your own server here.

 

Still playing with historical maps into minecraft

I managed to get my map of the zone between the Hogs’ back falls and Dow’s Lake (nee Swamp) into Minecraft. I completely screwed up the elevations though, so it’s a pretty ….interesting… landscape. I’ve trying again with a map of Lowertown, coupled with elevation data from a modern map. This clearly isn’t ideal, as the topography of the area has changed a lot with 150 years of urbanism. But it’s the best I have handy. Anyway, it’s nearly been working for me.

Nearly.

So I provide to you the elevation and features for your own enjoyment, see if you can make ‘em run with the generate_map.py script. If you get ‘key errors’, try editing the features file in Paint, make sure the blocks of colour are not fuzzy on the edges.

https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/37716296/byward-market/market-maps.zip

 

 

Archeology versus Archaeology versus #Blogarch

I’m working on a paper that maps the archaeological blogosphere. I thought this morning it might be good to take a quick detour into the Twitterverse.

Behold!

'archaeology' on twitter, april 7 2014

‘archaeology’ on twitter, april 7 2014

‘archaeology’ on twitter

Here we have every twitter username, connected by referring to each other in a tweet. There’s a seriously strong spine of tweeting, but it doesn’t make for a unified graph. The folks keeping this clump all together, measured by betweeness centrality:

pompeiiapp
arqueologiabcn
herculaneumapp
romanheritage
openaccessarch
cmount1
groovyhistorian
lornarichardson

top replied-to
hotrodngold
raymondsnoddy
colesprouse
1014retold
janell_elise
yorksarch
holleyalex
bonesbehaviours
uclu
illustreets

Top URLS:

http://bit.ly/1husSFB

http://phy.so/316076983

http://bit.ly/1sqHFu0

http://beasiswaindo.com/1796

https://www.dur.ac.uk/archaeology/conferences/current/babao2014/

http://wanderinggypsyvoyager.blogspot.com/2014/04/archaeology-two-day-search.html?spref=tw

http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2014/04/aerial-archaeology/

http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2014/04/did-europeans-get-fat-neandertals

http://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/HadriansWall

http://ift.tt/PWRYrf

Top hashtags:
archaeology 325
Pompeii 90
fresco 90
Archaeology 77
Herculaneum 40
Israel 24
nowplaying 20
roman 18
newslocker 16
Roman 14

Archeology

Let’s look at american archeology – as signified by the dropped ‘e’.

'archeology' on twitter, april 7

‘archeology’ on twitter, april 7

An awful lot more fragmented – less popular consciousness of archaeology-as-a-community?
Top by betweeness centrality – the ones who hold this together:
illumynous
archeologynow
youtube
heritagedaily
algenpfleger
riosallier
david328124
ogurek3
gold248131
leafenthusiast

Top urls:

http://ift.tt/1hN75Lp

http://wp.me/p4jAM9-1cZ

http://fav.me/d7d95kp

http://bit.ly/1qdaHLD

http://newszap.com

http://www.valencia953fm.com.ve

http://bit.ly/PS6hg4

http://goo.gl/fb/MfmNZ

http://goo.gl/fb/IfRnh

Top hashtags:
archeology
history
rome
ancient
easterisland
mystery
easter
slave
esoteric
egypt

Top replied-to
atheistlauren
nofaith313
faraishah
sebpatrick
swbts
thebiblestrue
animal
christofpierson
simba_83
andystacey

#Blogarch on twitter

twitter search '#blogarch' april 7 2014

twitter search ‘#blogarch’ april 7 2014

And now, the archaeologists themselves, as indicated by #blogarch

We talk to ourselves – but with the nature of the hashtag, I suppose that’s to be expected?

Top by betweeness centrality
openaccessarch
drspacejunk
bonesdonotlie
archeowebby
drkillgrove
fieldofwork
archaeo_girl
brennawalks
ejarchaeology
yagumboya

top urls

http://zoharesque.blogspot.com/2014/03/space-age-archaeology-and-future-do-i.html?spref=tw

http://bit.ly/1gBkNin

http://campusarch.msu.edu/?p=2782

http://wp.me/p36umf-cW

http://www.poweredbyosteons.org/2014/03/blogging-bioarchaeology-where-do-we-go.html#.Uzm7zM8kJUw.twitter

http://ow.ly/3iVK4f

http://wp.me/p3Kfwu-cb

http://bit.ly/PCdEIE

http://wp.me/p1rKjz-V2

http://diggin-it-archaeology.blogspot.com/2014/04/my-future-in-blogging-archaeology.html

Top hashtags
blogarch
BlogArch
archaeology
saa2014
SAA2014
blogging
CRMArch
newslocker
crmarch

Top replied to
electricarchaeo (yay me!)

Top mentioned:
drspacejunk
bonesdonotlie
fieldofwork
openaccessarch
archeowebby
jsatgra
cmount1
archaeo_girl
capmsu
drkillgrove

Put them altogether now…

And now, we put them altogether to get ‘archaeology’ on the twitterverse today:

'archaeology, archeology, and #blogarch' on twitter, april 7

‘archaeology, archeology, and #blogarch’ on twitter, april 7

Visually, it’s apparent that the #blogarch crew are the ones tying together the wider twitter worlds of archaeology & archeology, thought it’s still pretty fragmented. There’re 460 folks in this graph.

Top by betweeness centrality:

openaccessarch
drspacejunk
bonesdonotlie
archeowebby
drkillgrove
fieldofwork
jamvallmitjana
archaeo_girl
brennawalks
ejarchaeology

Top urls

http://zoharesque.blogspot.com/2014/03/space-age-archaeology-and-future-do-i.html?spref=tw
http://bit.ly/1gBkNin
http://www.poweredbyosteons.org/2014/03/blogging-bioarchaeology-where-do-we-go.html#.Uzm7zM8kJUw.twitter
http://campusarch.msu.edu/?p=2782
http://wp.me/p4jAM9-1cZ
http://fav.me/d7d95kp
http://wp.me/p1rKjz-V2
http://diggin-it-archaeology.blogspot.com/2014/04/my-future-in-blogging-archaeology.html
http://bonesdontlie.wordpress.com/2014/04/01/the-future-of-blogging-for-bones-dont-lie/
http://soundcloud.com/vrecordings/l-side-andrezz-archeology-v

top hashtags (not useful, given the nature of the search, right? But anyway)

blogarch
archeology
archaeology
BlogArch
history
ancient
easterisland
mystery
easter
slave

Top word pairs in those largest groups:

archeology,professor 30
started,yesterday 21
yesterday,battle 21
battle,towton 21
towton,weapon 21
weapon,tests 21
tests,forensic 21
forensic,archeology 21
museum,archeology 19
blogging,archaeology 17

second group:
blogging,archaeology 13
future,blogging 12
archaeology,go 7
archaeology,future 7
archaeology,final 6
final,review 6
review,blogarch 6
hopes,dreams 6
dreams,fears 6
fears,blogging 6

third group:
space,age 6
age,archaeology 6
archaeology,future 6
future,know 6
know,going 6
saa2014,blogarch 6
going,blogarch 5
blogarch,post 3
post,future 3
future,blogging 3

fourth group:
easterisland,ancient 10
ancient,mystery 10
mystery,easter 10
easter,slave 10
slave,history 10
history,esoteric 10
esoteric,archeology 10
archeology,egypt 10
rt,illumynous 9
illumynous,easterisland 9

fifth group:
costa,rica 8
rt,archeologynow 7
archeologynow,modern 4
modern,archeology 4
archeology,researching 4
researching,dive 4
dive,bars 4
bars,costa 4
rica,costa 4
rica,star 4

(once I saw ‘bars’, I stopped. Archaeological stereotypes, maybe).

Top mentioned in the entire graph

illumynous 9 bonesdonotlie 8
drspacejunk 8 drkillgrove 4
bonesdonotlie 8 capmsu 4
archeologynow 7 yagumboya 3
openaccessarch 7 drspacejunk 3
macbrunson 6 archeowebby 3
swbts 6 allarchaeology 3
archeowebby 6 openaccessarch 3
algenpfleger 5 cmount1 3
youtube 5 brennawalks 2

So what does this all mean? Answers on a postcard, please…

(My network files will be on figshare.com eventually).

On Research Witchcraft

I’m a fan of Terry Pratchett. I re-read his novels frequently because each time, I find something new to consider. I was recently reading Lords and Ladies, which is part of the witches’ cycle of stories set in Discworld. This passage resonated:

Cottages tend to attract similar kinds of witches. It’s natural. Every witch trains up one or two young witches in their life, and when in the course of mortal time the cottage becomes vacant it’s only sense for one of them to move in.

Magrat’s cottage traditionally housed thoughtful witches who noticed things and wrote things down. Which herbs were better than others for headaches, fragments of old stories, odds and ends like that.

[...]It was a cottage of questioning witches, research witches. Eye of what newt? What species of ravined salt-sea shark? It’s all very well a potion calling for Love-in-idleness, but which of the thirty-seven common plants called by that name in various parts of the continent was actually meant?

The reason that Granny Weatherwax was a better witch than Magrat was that she knew that in witchcraft it didn’t matter a damn which one it was, or even if it was a piece of grass.

The reason that Magrat was a better doctor than Granny was that she thought it did.

Take a look at any github page, and examine the readme page. Strikes me, there’s a lot of the witches about these code repositories. The parallel isn’t perfect, but I feel rather like poor Magrat. For instance (and taken at random*):

Install PostgreSQL.

Install a Java Development Kit.

Install Git.

git clone https://github.com/overview/overview-server.git

Which development kit? What version? How many flavours of PostgreSQL are there? What do I do with that?  As I fumble towards dim understanding, I figure the folks who are building these things are more like Granny, and understand that any will do the trick, because they know what to expect and how to fix it if it goes wrong. Me, I need the right version the first time, because otherwise I’ll just make a hash of it – and I’ll have to teach it to someone! (Although I can git clone from git bash with the best of ‘em – now!)

I don’t have the tacit knowledge of experience built up yet. There’s just so much to learn! Like Magrat, I can write it all down, spell it all out, and in doing so, I’ll eventually become like Granny, where it just flows.

I look forward to that day. But for now, I’ll keep engaging in my research witchcraft, figuring out the bits and bobs that those far more clever than me have devised, and reporting back what I’ve found.

*Well, not totally at random. It comes from the Overview Project who have taken pity on me (and others!) and have worked very hard indeed to simplify setting up a development environment for their text analysis server, ‘Overview‘. Thank you Jonathan and Adam! I’m learning a lot from chatting with these guys, as they shepherd me through the process. I’ll be posting on that process soon, pointing out some of the tacit bits I found I had to uncover in order to make it work. Their platform, conceived for journalists should also migrate its way into history & archaeology as I think we’ll find it very useful!

Getting started with some open source alternatives to 123D Catch

I like 123D Catch, but there is the whiff of ‘black-box’ about it all. Sometimes, you’d just like to know what’s going on. There may also be times when, for various reasons, uploading data to a cloud service hosted in another country is just not the right solution for you.

There are many open source products though; right now I’m playing with VisualSFM. Download and install it; then download CMVS. Extract the zip. Within it you will find folders for various operating systems. Find yours, and copy the files within, to the VisualSFM folder.

Now you’re ready to go, as per the image below. Here’s a longer tutorial too.

You might however find it easier to use this bundle of all the bits and pieces you need, if you are familiar with python. Extract the zip, grab the folder that corresponds to your operating system, and move it to C:\ . Install python (I’m using Python 2.7). Then, open the command prompt (type ‘cmd’ in the ‘run’ box, Windows), navigate to the folder (On my machine, it’s now in c:\bundler, so I had to type:

C:\users\Shawn Graham> cd ..

C:\users> cd ..

C:\> cd bundler

C:\Bundler>RunBundler.py –photos=C:\MyPhotoFolder\

…and the magic begins to happen. I got an error at first: ‘blah blah blah PIL missing blah blah’. PIL stands for Python Image LIbrary. Go here, grab the correct version, download it, and double-click to install. Then try again with the RunBundler.py command above.

So that’s running now on my machine; I’ll update here if it all goes wrong – or if indeed it all goes right!