BAtlas IDs: first full release (all maps)

Grab the whole thing here:

Let me know what problems you find.

README file for Barrington Atlas Identifiers, version published 2008-09-04
This is the first complete release.
Reference URL:

New maps covered in this release: 100, 101, 102
List of all maps presently covered: 1-102 (complete)

Major classes of change from prior versions are listed below. Consult individual files named like map22-diff.txt for output files differencing from prior version to this version.
  • No changes to previously released IDs.

BAtlas ID update: Maps 1-6 and 65

README file for Barrington Atlas Identifiers, version published 2008-09-03
Reference URL:

New maps covered in this release: 1, 1a, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 64
List of all maps presently covered: 1-99

Major classes of change from prior versions are listed below. Consult individual files named like map22-diff.txt for output files differencing from prior version to this version.

  • No changes to previously released IDs.
  • Note that map 64 was erroneously listed as included in previous releases, but was not present. This difficiency is corrected with this release.

What Would TS/SCI Jesus do?

I'm outraged. When I started this blog, I vowed to myself to confine its scope to my professional work and to local matters where I live. But I can't let this pass:

In sum, our investigation concluded that [former U.S. Attorney General Alberto] Gonzales mishandled classified materials regarding two highly sensitive compartmented programs. We found that Gonzales took his classified handwritten notes home and stored them there for an indeterminate period of time. The notes contained operational aspects and other information about the NSA surveillance program that is classified at the TS/SCI level. By regulation, such material must be stored in a Sensitive Compartmented Storage Facility (SCIF). At the time he took these materials home, Gonzales did not have a SCIF at his house. Although Gonzales did have a safe at his residence at this time, we found that he did not use it to store the notes.

We also found that Gonzales improperly stored other highly classified documents about the two compartmented programs in a safe at the Department that was not located in a SCIF. Several employees in the OAG had access to the safe where Gonzales stored the documents even though they lacked the necessary security clearances for this information. We concluded that Gonzales’s mishandling of both the notes and the other classified documents violated Department security requirements and procedures.
You can read the nauseating details via various liberal, elite gay-married terrorist media outlets:
I'll skip most of the rest of the ranting and just say this. There are plenty of folks over the years -- hardworking, well-meaning, patriotic folks in government service, the military and working for defense contractors -- who've been investigated, counseled, sanctioned, disciplined, busted, fired and even confined for accidentally mishandling classified information at levels far lower than TS/SCI.

And the Department of Justice decides not to seek prosecution for a man who was too busy (or something) to properly safeguard this stuff according to well-established procedures?

Public Transit in Huntsville

Good to learn, via the Huntsville Times, that the "City Looks to Improve Public Transit System." I hope that Louise Heidish (the PR/Marketing Specialist they've hired) knows something about the web and can advise the city on some good, working, location-based and webfeed-enabled services to make trip planning and stop-finding easier, and to keep us abreast of route changes and other news. Doesn't look like she has a web presence though ...

Get Paid to Read Greek!

From Greg Crane:

Contribute to the Greek and Latin Treebanks!

We are currently looking for advanced students of Greek and Latin to contribute syntactic analyses (via a web-based system) to our existing Latin Treebank (described below) and our emerging Greek Treebank as well (for which we have just received funding). We particularly encourage students at various levels to design research projects around this new tool. We are looking in particular for the following:

  • Get paid to read Greek! We can have a limited number of research assistantships for advanced students of the languages who can work for the project from their home institutions. We particularly encourage students who can use the analyses that they produce to support research projects of their own.
  • We also encourage classes of Greek and Latin to contribute as well. Creating the syntactic analyses provides a new way to address the traditional task of parsing Greek and Latin. Your class work can then contribute to a foundational new resource for the study of Greek and Latin - both courses as a whole and individual contributors are acknowledged in the published data.
  • Students and faculty interested in conducting their own original research based on treebank data will have the option to submit their work for editorial review to have it published as part of the emerging Scaife Digital Library.
To contribute, please contact David Bamman ( or Gregory Crane (

For more information, see

Barrington Atlas ID update: maps 89-99

README file for Barrington Atlas Identifiers, version published 2008-08-28
Reference URL:

New maps covered in this release: 89, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98, 99
List of all maps presently covered: 7-99

Major classes of change from prior versions are listed below. Consult individual files named like map22-diff.txt for output files differencing from prior version to this version.

  • No changes to previously released IDs.

All 2,183 of you

Sometime this month, the diligent pigeons at Google Analytics tallied the twothousandth unique visitor in the history of this blog. Here's what they tell me about y'all:

The First Thousand Years of Greek

The Center for Hellenic Studies has just announced, via its website, a project led by Neel Smith (Holy Cross) entitled "The First Thousand Years of Greek." I reproduce the entire announcement here, since the CHS website isn't set up to let me link directly to the announcement itself:

The First Thousand Years of Greek aims to create a corpus, to be made available under a free license, of TEI-compliant texts and lemmatized word indices coordinated with the on-line Liddell-Scott-Jones lexicon from the Perseus project. The coverage ultimately should include at least one version of every Greek text known to us from manuscript transmission from the beginning of alphabetic writing in Greece through roughly the third century CE.

In 2008, the capabilities of consumer-level personal computers, the tools available specifically for working with ancient Greek, and above all the publication of digital resources under licenses enabling scholarly use place the dream of the First Thousand Years of Greek within reach. Gregory Crane and the Perseus project have augmented Liddell-Scott-Jones with unique identifiers on every entry, and released this under a Creative Commons (free) license. Peter Heslin, whose work has always been a model of appropriate free licensing, has recently published in Diogenes 3 a polished library for working with the TLG E corpus, and by applying the open-sourced Perseus morphological parser to every word in the TLG E word list and then publishing the resulting index, has shown how even data sets with a restrictive license like the TLG can be used to create valuable new free resources. Hugh Cayless' transcoding transformer has become an indispensable piece of the programmer's toolkit, as support for Unicode continues to mature in a range of programming languages on different operating systems. At the Center for Hellenic Studies, Neel Smith and Christopher Blackwell have led the development of Canonical Text Services (information at chs, or mirrored here), a network service that retrieves passages of text identified by canonical references.

By combining public-domain readings of ancient texts or translations, which can be automatically transferred from digital collections such as the TLG, Perseus, and Project Gutenberg, with existing free resources, the CHS team will automate —and make it possible for others to automate— the most tedious aspects of creating the First Thousand Years of Greek. What we currently lack, and must create manually, is shockingly basic: an inventory of existing ancient Greek texts. The TLG Canon is a useful reference, but it is an inventory of print volumes, not of Greek texts. (So Ptolemy's Geography appears as two works in the TLG Canon because the TLG used two different print editions for different parts of the work; and of course entries for texts in “fragments” collections appear in the TLG Canon even though they do not exist as independent texts.) An inventory of Greek texts preserved by manuscript transmission will necessarily present a selection of material that is radically different from the material found in the TLG Canon.

In addition to historical metadata included in such an inventory, we need to determine for each text how it should be cited, and how that citation scheme should be mapped on to the TEI's semantic markup. There is no way to avoid making these editorial decisions individually for each text included in the First Thousand Years of Greek, but once the citation scheme has been been organized for a given text, we should be able to extract readings automatically from the TLG, Perseus, or Project Gutenberg, and then apply software to the extracted content to generate the new texts and indices of the First Thousand Years of Greek.

The quality of existing digital and print editions across the set of texts covered by the First Thousand Years of Greek will not be perfectly even. This will certainly mean that coverage of some parts of the project will advance more quickly than others. The CHS team expects that by beginning with material already available in good digital and print sources, we can gather a significant corpus quickly, and continue to expand its coverage over time. In the fall of 2008, the project is focusing on the first thousand years of Greek verse, with the goal of creating a complete corpus of all Greek texts in verse known through manuscript copying through the third century CE. The CHS welcomes collaborators, and invites any individuals, groups, or institutions who would like to contribute or just find out more about the First Thousand Years of Greek to email the project lead, Neel Smith, at first1kyears at

The Canadian Epigraphic Mission of Xanthos - Letoon (Lycia)

It's been a long time since I had an interesting conversation about digital approaches to epigraphic publication with Patrick Baker during the Epigraphic Congress in Barcelona. It's been not quite so long -- but clearly too long -- since I had a close look at what he and Gaétan Thériault have been doing since then with the Xanthos/Letoon epigraphy site:

  • Creative-commons licensing (cc-by-nc-nd)
  • Info on the project
  • Yearly reports on the survey seasons
  • Articles, papers, lectures and conferences
  • A documentary database including photographs of inscriptions and squeezes