17.269 visualization techniques in the study of history?

From: Humanist Discussion Group (by way of Willard McCarty willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk)
Date: Wed Oct 01 2003 - 01:35:14 EDT

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                   Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 17, No. 269.
           Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London
                         Submit to: humanist@princeton.edu

             Date: Wed, 01 Oct 2003 06:26:51 +0100
             From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk>
             Subject: 3D Visualization of Van Diemens Land history?

    I am posting with permission the following query on the application of
    visualization techniques for the study of history. Please reply to
    Humanist, since Mr Newcombe has just joined. Examples of academic studies
    using such techniques would be keenly appreciated.



    >Date: Mon, 29 Sep 2003 12:16:21 +0800
    >>From: Adam Newcombe <a.newcombe@ecu.edu.au>
    >Dear Sir,
    >I came across the Humanist site via a web search on 3D modeling and history.
    >I'm a design/graphics academic and mature age history PhD research student
    >here in Western Australia. My research is situated in Tasmania where I come
    >from and has been looking at the state's early period of European settlement
    >Recently I've had to transfer my studies from University of Western Sydney
    >to the University of Western Australia where I've been asked to re-write my
    >doctorate proposal. This has opened up the possibility of re-focusing my
    >Van Diemens Land/ Tasmania is an achingly beautiful wild island landscape
    >with a human occupation which goes back at least 30,000 years. It was also a
    >place of brutal banishment and depravity. The British used it as an
    >industrial gulag for fifty years. International Sealers and Whalers
    >virtually wiped out the Bass Straight seal colonies and migrating whale
    >pods. The society and people of indigenous Tasmania, as well as much flora
    >and fauna were wantonly driven to near extinction and beyond.
    >For a small place (about the land mass of Scotland) Tasmania has an
    >extraordinary history. Being an island and my time frame being a tight 50
    >year historical period I believe it will make for very interesting research
    >to use visualization information methods and 3D mapping and modeling to map
    >and show various aspects of Tasmanian history. For example settler numbers
    >vs indigenous populations, convicts to free born settlers and settler
    >patterns, military posts and barracks, alcohol consumptions, land grants and
    >total grant areas, etc.
    >I've become very interested, through looking at the unfolding cartography of
    >Tasmania, in the use of digital 3D modeling methods to analyze and
    >visualize the statistical underpinning of the history of Van Diemens Land.
    >However I can find very little research material into this area. That is
    >until I came across the Humanist site. Do you know of any Australians
    >involved in this sort of work? And is there much world wide historical
    >research going on using these visualizing techniques?
    >Over the last few years I've presented papers questioning the increasing use
    >of 3D modeling and digital re-construction in Documentary film making but
    >manny academic historians seem to be reticent in this use of visual data as
    >a tool for historical discourse and analysis.
    >If you have any thoughts on this approach to a piece of historical research
    >I would certainly welcome comment. Any suggestions,contacts, help or advice
    >you may be able to offer me would also be most welcome.
    >Adam Newcombe
    >Coordinator Graphics and Design
    >Coordinator on-line education
    >School of Contemporary Arts
    >Perth, WA
    >9370 6605

    Dr Willard McCarty | Senior Lecturer | Centre for Computing in the
    Humanities | King's College London | Strand | London WC2R 2LS || +44 (0)20
    7848-2784 fax: -2980 || willard.mccarty@kcl.ac.uk

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