Week Beginning 16th May 2016

I had rather a lot of different things to get through this week, which made the week fly past alarmingly quickly.  On Monday I attended an all-day meeting for the Scots Syntax Atlas project.  The meeting was primarily focussed on the online resources that the project intends to produce, so it was obviously quite important for me to attend, seen as I’ll be creating the resources.  We discussed some existing online linguistic atlas projects, looking at some in detail and figuring out aspects of each that we liked or didn’t like.  We also tried out a few online language quizzes too as the project is hoping to incorporate such a feature.  We also discussed some of the requirements of our intended online resource, and how the ‘general public’ interface that the project intends to create should differ from the ‘academic’ interface.  I have a much clearer idea now of what it is the project would like to develop, although we still need to have a more detailed discussion about the underlying data itself and how this will be presented on the map-based interface.  Things are beginning to take shape, however.

Gareth Roy from Physics and Astronomy got back to me this week to say that one of his colleagues had set up a database on a server for me to use for the Hansard data, which was excellent news.  I didn’t have much time to test this out this week, but did manage to confirm that I can access it from both my desktop machine and the little test server located in my office.  Hopefully I will find the time next week to migrate some of the existing data to this database and start to write a script that can process the thousands of SQL files that contain the actual data.

I also had to spend a bit of time this week doing AHRC review duties, and I attended a Digital Humanities talk on Friday afternoon, which was interesting but perhaps lacking a bit in detail.  I spend some further time on the Mapping Metaphor project, as Wendy and Carole had prepared new batches of both OE and non-OE data that I needed to upload to the database.  This all seemed to go smoothly enough, although as a result of the upload Wendy noticed that the data from certain OE categories appears to have been overlooked.  It would appear that several of the categories that were split off from category H27 were omitted from the spreadsheets at some earlier stage in the data processing and I had to spend some time trying to figure out when and how this happened, which was not easy as this must have happened more than a year ago and it may have been because of one of my scripts or it may have been as a result of some of the processes Ellen and Flora conducted.  We still hadn’t managed to get to the bottom of the issue by the end of the week and I’ll have to return to this next week.

I also spent some time this week helping out Vivien Williams of the Burns project, who is putting the finishing touches to lots of new content for the website.  She needed my help to get some parts of her pages laid out as she required them, and in converting some WAV files and other such tasks.  I also had a detailed email conversation with Alison Wiggins about the proposal she’s putting together, and I think we now have a much clearer idea of how the technical aspects of the proposal will fit together.  I also set up a ‘bare bones’ WordPress installation for Christine Ferguson’s new project and sent some code on to some researchers that were interested in how the SciFiMedHums bibliographic database was put together.  Oh, I also published the Android version of ‘Readings in Early English’, which can be found here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.gla.stella.readings