What do digital timelines offer us? We see their potential both as a vehicle for understanding complex events in history as well as a structure to which students can contribute materials and scholarship. In this way temporal and topical interrelationships are highlighted to make the material more attractive and enlightening.
We’ve had some success with using a publicly viewable timeline to support undergraduate scholarship. But we’ve also come up against some challenges: What are the processes and standards we should use when publishing student scholarship? What are the optimum visualization tools for our material? Are there several?
Our tool is built to separate presentation (through a Flash applet on the web) from content (stored in XML). We want to learn more about how the content could be used by other tools, or how our visualization tool could be used to display content from other institutions.
And, although we’re psyched about publishing student research (and the corollary benefits and motivators it offers), do we need to distinguish visually between student scholarship and the scholarship of senior researchers in the field?
Thinking towards the future, we want to initiate a conversation on how to network and connect with others doing similar research in other institutions. How can we build a community of scholars and students around digital historical timelines?
Molly, with Elizabeth Wood and Ben Brophy