Week Beginning 19th January 2015

In the run-up to Burns Night there was quite a lot of Burns related activity going on.  Over the course of the week Pauline sent me a bunch of texts and images for the ‘interactive highland tour map’ that we were producing.  This map plots the rout of Burns’s highland tour on a map from around the time the tour took place, with various location pinned to the map linking to information about the significance of these places within the context of the tour.  The base map was provided by NLS and their digital maps specialists also plotted the route on the map using the Leaflet.js library.  I then tweaked the interface for this and added in the pop-ups containing Pauline’s text and selected images.

The main tasks I had to do were to update the map visuals (mainly just changing the colours of the route line and the location circles).  I also switched the order in which the line and the circles were added to the map so that the line is added to the map first and the circles are then overlaid as having the line on top was interfering with mouse interaction with the circles.  I then added in the leaflet.label plugin so that labels appear when the user hovers over a map point.  I then removed the map boundary as pop-ups at the top of the map were extending beyond the boundary and getting cut off and I added in two classes of popups, a standard one for shorter entries and a longer one with a fixed height and a scrollbar for longer entries.  You can see the end result here: http://burnsc21.glasgow.ac.uk/highland-tour-interactive/

I’ve also been experimenting with always visible labels to replicate the look of the original maps created for Nigel’s book and I’ve almost got these working but getting the labels to be clickable and opening up the relevant popup is proving to be a bit tricky.  The opening of the popup on clicking on the label is rather intermittent.  Most of the time it repositions the map but fails to open the popup but occasionally it does open it.  I’m going to continue to look into this next week.

Also this week I had another request from Fraser for some updated Historical Thesaurus category codes for the SAMUELS people in Lancaster.  They need versions of the codes that match the ones used by the OUP people, which I created before Christmas.  However, Fraser had uncovered some further changes that were made and I needed to create and run a few scripts that could replicate these.  I managed to get it all done and hopefully Lancaster have all of the data they need now.

I spent Friday morning this week attending the recruitment and selection training course, meaning I can now sit on an interview panel if the need ever arises.

The rest of my week was devoted to Mapping Metaphor duties once more, continuing with the timeline interface.  I managed to fully integrate the timeline view with the other views available, including providing options to download the timeline visualisation as an SVG file, and adding in a key.  I’ve also integrated the metaphor cards with the visualisation too, allowing a user to click on a point to view the metaphor card or the aggregated metaphor card.  This also involved updating the way the links within the cards worked to ensure that clicking on them (e.g. to expand a category or to view different connections) performed the actions in the timeline view rather than reverting to the visualisation view.  I also looked into dynamically updating the height of the timeline depending on the tallest column in the visualisation.  I got this mostly working now, but I would still like to split the line of metaphor connections into two lines within the same date column when there are more than a certain number of them, primarily to avoid the Old English section being so much longer than other sections in a lot of cases.  I’ll need to spend a bit more time looking into this.  I did begin to implement the timeline view of the ‘top level’ data but I haven’t quite figured out how best to go about this.  If we just take the earliest metaphorical connection within each aggregate category to be the point that gets plotted then we end up with every point being in the OE section, which isn’t much use.  I spoke to Ellen about this and she has suggested some alternatives, which I’m going to investigate next week.