Sunday, November 12, 2017

Delivery of Database 43 and a discussion of how to handle ceramic horizon names in searches.

So, I’m sure that my readers are aware that the dating of Mycenaean (and other) sites is based, usually, on the types, shapes, and decoration of ceramic objects that are found on site.  These ceramic horizons are the familiar ‘Middle Helladic’, ‘Late Helladic’, etc. and their innumerable subdivisions.  For example ‘Late Helladic’ is divided into ‘Late Helladic I’, ‘Late Helladic II’, and ‘Late Helladic III’.  ‘Late Helladic III’ is further subdivided into phases A, B, and C.  These can, in turn, be further subdivided.

The upshot of all this is that sites are dated to several very different degrees of precision.  Site A may be dated as ‘LH’ while Site B, perhaps nearby and in reality built at the same time, may be dated more precisely as ‘LHIIIA2’ because a definitely identifiable sherd of that period was found there.  As far as we know the first site may have been built/occupied at any time over some time span of 500 years while the second site is more securely dated to within 50 years.

How do we compare these two sites on the Mycenaean Atlas Project site?    If the user specifies ‘LH’ as a dating criterion then we feel that more should be returned than just those sites which are vaguely dated as ‘LH’.  That criterion should return all sites that are ‘LH’, ‘LHI’, ‘LHII’, ‘LHIII’ and all the further subdivisions all the way down the tree.

Up until now that hasn’t happened on this site.  When a user formerly specified ‘LH’ or ‘MH’ what was returned was only those sites given those vague time scopes.  ‘LH’ as a search criterion returned only ‘LH’ not ‘LH’, ‘LHI’, ‘LHII’, etc.

Now I’ve implemented that common-sense orientation.  Users requesting ‘MH’ get ‘MH’, ‘MHI’, and ‘MHII’.  A request for ‘LH’ returns all the sites with at least one date starting ‘LH-‘, i.e., ‘LHI’, ‘LHII’, ‘LHIII’, ‘LHIA’, ‘LHIB’, etc., etc.  And the same goes for all the other sites which have dates that are, themselves, further subdividable.

All this by way of announcing a new delivery of database and software. 
The database is MAP_Rev_0.043__11_9_17_Test.   Among other things it provides a new table to support the software change outline above.   Many minor changes have been made to the site data.  The most important is that Privitera [2013] is now integrated with sites for Attica.

New software for map creation and .kml/.csv generation has also been delivered.  The major software change is as I explained above.   It also fixes a distressing fact that the numbers of results from both map creation and .kml/.csv creation tended to be different.  The queries that support those things have now been harmonized.

Do you have a suggestion for the Mycenaean Atlas Project?  Let us know in the letters section at the end of this post.  Or write to me at bobconsoli ‘at’


Privitera [2013]:  Privitera, Santo.  Principi, Pelasgi, e pescatori: L'Attica nella Tarda Eta del Bronzo.  Paestum: Pandemos. 2013.

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