Spatial humanities can take many shapes, from mapping the routes that characters take in a collection of novels to using 360 photography to create virtual reconstructions of historic places. For some projects, you may want to compare how a place has changed over time. To do that, you could take several maps and overlay them on top of one another through a process call georectification. For other projects, you might be placing points on a map and altering the size or color of the points to reveal a pattern in your dataset.
Methods & Tools
There are numerous tools you could turn to for a spatial project. Popular options for mapping data include: ArcGIS, Carto, and with a litte programming required, Leaflet. To present texts, visuals, videos, and audio alongside maps, try Story Maps.
For augmented or virtual reality (AR/VR), try Unity.
Miriam Olivares is the Yale GIS Librarian. To schedule a consultation with Miriam to discuss your research project or class, please visit her staff page. She holds consultations in the Center for Science and Social Science Information, Digital Humanities Lab, and 17 Hillhouse.
“Geographic Information Systems at Yale: Getting Started with GIS” a Research Guide by Miriam Olivares (GIS Librarian) that outlines tools and support options available to the Yale community for mapping projects
“Introduction to Mobile Augmented Reality Development in Unity” by Jacob W. Greene provides an overview of AR methods as well as a tutorial
How do I get started?
If you're new to digital humanities and are interested in starting a project, stop by the Franke Family Digital Humanities Laboratory in Sterling Memorial Library during our Office Hours.
We also highly recommend looking at our Project Planning and Design Toolkit to learn about the steps involved in a typical project life cycle. In addition to projects at Yale, please check out projects at other digital humanities centers, including:
- Stanford's Literary Lab
- Northeastern's NULab for Maps, Texts, and Networks
- Maryland's Institute for Tecnology in the Humanities
- DHCommons Projects
In addition to on-campus support, there are also off-campus and online resources that you might try. The following programs all offer opportunities for researchers to learn different digital humanities methods and theoretical approaches:What we offer