Sunday, October 28, 2018

Customized Bibliographies in the Mycenaean Atlas Project

The Mycenaean Atlas Project is happy to announce the delivery of software that can support customized bibliographies.

The bibliography for the Mycenaean Atlas Project now numbers more than 1000 items.  For a long time I have wanted to be able to present the bibliography online in a focused and analytical fashion.

From the beginning it was possible to create a map that showed every location documented by specific scholars.  It was possible to create, for example, a map of the Mycenaean world which showed just those sites for which Simpson’s Mycenaean Greece was one of the sources.  At the present time one can draw such a map for any one of 40 different scholars.

This is useful for tracking the actual coverage that the Mycenaean Atlas gives to any one of these prominent writers and these maps change as more and more of their sites are put into the Atlas.  Here, for example, is a map based on Emilia Banou's Beitrag zum Studium Lakoniens in der mykenischen Zeit from 1996.   These are all the sites for which her work is at least one of the supporting citations in the Mycenaean Atlas.

There is more in the Bibliography than just those forty authors.  At a minimum it should be possible to produce customized bibliographies.  If a user chooses just to look at sites from Arcadia then it should be possible to produce a bibliography of just those writers who are cited in locations from Arcadia.   In other words, to produce a customized bibliography of Arcadia in the Mycenaean period.  And that goes for any other combination of choices.  A customized bibliography for ‘tholos’ and ‘LH’; or a customized bibliography just for ‘Forts’,  etc.

This is now  possible with new software delivered to  In addition to the other reports that are generated from the report page such as ‘Chrono’ or ‘Elevation’ it is now possible to generate a bibliographic report limited to just those categories the user actually chose.

If the user chose ‘Boeotia’ and ‘EHII’ from the control page then, on the report page, pressing ‘Biblio Report’ on the main report page will produce a new page that contains a bibliography of just those authors and sources in the DB who are cited in support of every Boeotian site of the EH II.

A dedicated bibliography for 'Boeotia' in the 'EH II' looks like this:

Your choices are listed in the parameter box at the top left.  Here the PERIOD: is EHII and the REGION: is Boeotia.

The primary feature of this new page is the bibliography table.  This table has four columns, 'Author', 'Citation', 'Comment', and 'ISBN'.

Author: This column displays the author name, if known.  If there is a link associated with the author's name then clicking that link will bring up a map with just the sites in 'Boeotia' in the 'EHII' that use that author as a supporting citation.

Citation: This column displays the title and publisher (or journal information) of the work being cited.  If there is a link in this column then clicking that link will bring the user to the actual text of the work (.pdf or other doc) being cited.

Comment: The comment field displays extra information, if any, about the work being cited.

ISBN: This displays the ISBN number (or ASIN or DOI) of the work being cited.  This is included, when known, to prevent ambiguity.  The ISBN is still the best way to identify the exact edition of a book being cited.

Here's a part of the biblio page for 'Attica':

(You may need to click on this to enlarge it.)  Here there are ISBN numbers for Simpson and Hagel's Mycenaean Fortifications ... and Privitera's Principi, Pelasgi, e Pescatori because those books are not available online.  On the other hand Jeremy Rutter's "Evidence for a Mycenaean Tomb of the Late Helladic IIA period in the Athenian Agora" is online and the page provides a working link to it.  Clicking on that link brings up Dr. Rutter's article.

And what about that first column which is headed 'Author'?  As mentioned above that entry might have a link and, if it does, clicking on that link brings up a new map with sites for which that author/work combination provide bibliographic support.  For example, when you click on Jeremy Rutter's name next to his article 'Evidence for a Mycenaean Tomb of the Late Helladic IIA Period in the Athenian Agora' from Hesperia you are taken to a new map page with just that site on it, in the Atlas, for which Dr. Rutter's article is cited in support.  It looks like this:

Here's the new single citation source page.  Since you clicked on Dr. Rutter's name it brings up the single site in Attica which is in the DB and for which Dr. Rutter is one of the supporting sources.   In this particular case it turns out to be a grave in the Athenian agora (C1835).  In this way you can quickly track those sites for which specific authors/works are cited in support.

At the top of this page the original choice criteria are repeated.  The Criterion Bar says "Source: Rutter [1975]    Number of sites: 1     Region: Attica"

When you mouse over the Source the full citation will pop up.  It looks like this:

Here you can see the black background popup box with the full name of Dr. Rutter's article and its place of publication, namely in Hesperia.

Ceramic Horizon (Period) criteria are handled in a similar fashion.  Here, for example, is a map derived from Simpson's 1959 article on 'Nemesis'.  One selection criterion was 'LH'.  For our search purposes the choice of 'LH' means every subdivision of that period: LHI, LHII, LHIII, etc.  You can see that if you mouse over the 'Ceramic Horizon: LH' string:


The Dynamic Bibliography Report is available to be used now.  That software was delivered in the last week.  A new data base to support dynamic bibliographies has also been released.

Your feedback is very valuable to me.  My e-mail address is: bobconsoli 'at'

Please follow me on Twitter: @squinchpix

I would ask you to follow me on Google Plus but c'est la guerre.

Friends don't let friends use Facebook and if you are using it please stop.

Useful .kml and/or .csv files can be generated directly from all the windows (including the new reports pages) of the website   Try it out!   I'm also willing to generate custom .csv or .kml files from the atlas if you need something specific.

Most researchers in this field use some product like Microsoft's Excel to create a DB.  This is fine; it's what is generally referred to as a 'flat file' - a single table representation of your data of interest.

The Mycenaean Atlas database, on the other hand, is a relational database with several tables.  It was built using MySQL.  I will make dumps of this DB available but you need MySQL (or similar) and a knowledge of Structured Query Language (SQL) to run it.  (I'm pretty sure that you can interface to my database from ArcGIS or QGIS).  

Otherwise it doesn't make much sense to ask for it.  But If you'd like to have a copy of the Mycenaean Atlas database anyway then e-mail me (bobconsoli 'at' and tell me about your project.  I want to share the Database but just remember that it's a relational SQL DB

No comments:

Post a Comment