Saturday, March 25, 2006
This project represents a first look at what will probably be a pretty common method of deploying archaeological information. One certain advantage is the price and efficiency of using the Google Maps API. Benefiting most from such efforts will most likely be heritage tourism sites. The ability to locate and access information on public excavation and interpretation efforts from an intuitive and common interface will help bring in the people.
A paper [Abstract] on this project is scheduled for presentation by Vereenooghe Tijl (Catholic University Leuvwn, Belgium at the Computer Application and Quantitative Methods (CAA06) April 18th. I will be talking much more about this conference and certain papers throughout the next few weeks. Held for the first time in the United States, the CAA06 is an international showcase for the use of technology in archaeology.
Thursday, March 23, 2006
Check out A Life of Coding for the script and installation insrtuctions.
Below is an image of the example KML provided by Ynniv.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Created in a very interesting context of movement, destination, and belonging, Seyed states that his geographical tapestry is also intended for humor. Check out his description of the work.
Much to the appreciation of UK archaeologists, a new program entitled VISTA (Visualizing integrated information on buried assets to reduce streetworks) aims to map the roughly 1.5 million kilometers of gas, sewer, water, and electricity utilities now in place under the their streets. With a significant portion of these conduits being nearly 200 years old, current knowledge of their whereabouts is sketchy at best (diagram below shows the complexity of utilities).
This project aims to drastically decrease the number of holes dug to find long lost utilities, increase the response time to fixing utilities, and nullify the reported 30 – 40 injuries per year caused by accidentally digging into electrical lines. Using Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR), Global Positioning Systems (GPS), and pseudolites (essentially ground based GPS satellites) researchers will strive for centimeter accuracy.
Check out this article at BBC news for more info.
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
First, take a look at the data structure of the SDSFIE. The hierarchy starts with the "Entity Sets" which houses numerous "Entity Classes", down to "Entity Types", which contain "Attribute Tables", defined by "Domain Tables". To put this in ESRI lingo:
Entity Classes = Feature Data Sets
Entity Types + Attribute Tables = Feature Classes
The SDSFIE comes prebuilt with a host of Entity elements in place. Generally, these are Entity sets, types, and classes that the DoD felt useful in organizing their facilities and structures, but they are not exclusive to the military. There are a total of 26 Entity Sets, 185 Classes, and 1,122 Types as of the most recent SDSFIE release (2.5). The Sets include Buildings, Geology, Ecology, Communications, and Cultural. I will demonstrate an example using the Cultural Entity Set in a moment. From these sets, the classes and types become more specific.
The Browsers are used to browse the data structure to find attributes and relationships. The Filter Maker is used to create a filter of the data structure for fast and efficient database creation. The Builders/Generator are used to create the database, using filters or manually, for a given application. And the Loader is used for data entry. Also handy is the web based Browser and Filter maker. Use this to take a walk through the data structure.
Here is a quick example using archaeology:
Entity Set: cultural
Entity Class: cultural_archaeological
Entity Type: archaeological_artifact_point
Discriminant Domain: art_type_d
Domain Values: "Fire_Rock", "General", "Unknown"
The table "crarcart" is used to locate and define "Objects or archaeological significance which, due to their size or nature, have not been removed from the site." In an implementation of the SDSFIE, this table would be used in relation to classes representing archaeological sites, testing areas, sensitive areas, cleared areas, and installations.
Creating filters and GDBs takes a little getting used to, but fortunately, there is a free online "Basic Training" available. This consists of 15 short courses which culminate in a quiz and a printable certificate of completion.
Monday, March 20, 2006
The most recent archaeological site in question (#22) is: