Well final blog post for the year. This last stretch has been pretty hard. During the last weeks of the semester I have spent working on the website or studying for exams. So I figure I’ll touch on how the website project is wrapping up but also reflect a little on the class in general.
The website is in its final stage and is really just getting its final once over to make sure everything is working. I’ve found that the manner in which Omeka saves can be quite, for lack of a better word, temperamental. It often feels like small changes you make sometimes aren’t saved when you think they are, making for an aggravating editing/ testing process. Despite the few problems I’ve been encountering I think the website is looking pretty good. This last week I have added tags to all of my items. This will hopefully help viewers searching for a particular image or map without having to manually look through each of the exhibits. That I think is one of the more difficult things about designing websites that I’ve learned. Even if you have a huge source of information, data, or even visuals, the effectiveness of the site diminishes greatly if there is only one way to find said material. This is something I’ve experienced myself when using pdf’s. Despite being very convenient, some pdfs are not fully text searchable and must be combed through manually to find specific information. This is very time consuming especially when the document or source is extremely long and you only need something as simple as a single sentence quote. Hopefully with the implementation of tags I will avoid having anyone try to search through the whole site just to find a picture of Eramosa’s roads or some other simple visual.
Now that class is over I have to say this course was a lot of fun and was very different from the other 4th year seminars I’ve taken. Generally, seminars are the next logical step in the undergrad formula, just more research and writing with some feedback gauging your readiness for the next step in academia. This class however was the first in a long time to make me really think about history differently and apply myself in a totally new way to the tasks. Honestly, I think this class should almost be required for anyone looking to move forward in their schooling. Despite how immersed we are in technology, this course really shows you the amount of work that goes into the simple digital resources we use every day or in our other classes. So that’s my final word on the class, lots of fun but very different from the mainstream histories.
Anyways not sure if I’ll ever update this blog again or even look at it but it has been kind of fun.