Blog #4


Voyant tools is an application that is web-based and used for performing text analysis. it is made up of scholarly readings and different kinds interpreted texts that are available to students, teachers, and the general public. It can also be used to analyze and enhance online texts. It is useful because it picks up different trends and readings. Google analytics is used to find the information that is supplied to the user. Its main purpose, however, is for scholarly use and analysis on different documents. It is also useful in the sense that it can point out the important parts of a document and help the user stay focused on what matters in a text, such as a theme.  This can be a very helpful tool for historians because it can help them find the patterns located in readings that they may be analyzing. As much as this may be a very helpful tool, it is not one that can be relied on solely because a lot of research and importance would be left out. When it comes to small sources Voyant tools may not be helpful because it tries to look for repetition amongst a given text in order to point out the main theme and with little being mentioned it could miss important factors within a reading. However, it does not provide the reader with new information, just an easier way to spot patterns amongst what is being read. The Voyant tool is helpful mainly to historians because it helps speed up the process in research and may make things easier to understand. Personally, sometimes when I read historical documents I feel lost and can’t always figure out the purpose of a paper. The Voyant tool would be very helpful for me because it is easy to miss a point when trying to stay focused on a document and it lets you know what is most important. For some people looking for an easy way out of reading a document, Voyant could be a problem and can be used as an excuse to not read something. This is not good because it will not provide enough information to give a proper analyzation.


Blog #3

The HGIS map that I chose from the different options was the Caribbean Cholera map. This map was made in order to show the medical history and natural phenomena’s that existed in the Caribbean during the nineteenth century. It is easy to navigate through and shows the year and months that a certain event took place or type of technology came out. For example, from February to May in 1833 it marks down the dates that different technology was introduced in the Caribbean. Such as, the torchlight, and Salem gazette were discovered in Cuba that year.

Another interesting feature about this map is that it has tracked all of the Cholera outbreaks, hurricanes, tropical storms and news articles that happened in the Caribbean over the years. The map was created in 2011 by the Duke University Haiti Laboratory by a number of representatives. This particular map does not have very many points at the beginning of the nineteenth century but once you scroll ahead it becomes clear of the many events that had happened.

This HGIS map was made very well, it is interesting and easy to navigate through. This can help the society of the Caribbean in a very positive way because it can assist them in tracking different natural disasters, seeing if they were more common in the beginning of the nineteenth century or the end. This can give the locals an idea of the potential danger they may be in and allow them to prepare for the worst.

Second Blog Post: Archives

Online archives are a great way of storing information, this is because they are good for curation, maintenance, space, resources, and preservation. They are used in today’s society for many different ways of accessing information about a certain topic or person and they make it easy to locate research. An example of online archives would be the Darwin Correspondence project and Medici archives. These sites allow anyone to access a numerous number of documents from the past for free. The Darwin Correspondence was built by the University of Cambridge and it consists of many letters written by and given to Charles Darwin. This archive is fascinating because it possesses personal information about Darwin and also has access to the research done by and on him.

Not all archives are free, an example is one that is used to personally track down past research and information in an individual’s life. This website is known as and it is an online archive that stores information about people’s pasts and ancestors. This allows people to get a sense of belonging and makes them feel as if they are learning and becoming a part of their heritage. Even though the website is used by many people, in my opinion, it is a waste of money and should be free. This archive charges up to thirty dollars a month for its services and is known for giving false information of people’s pasts. It is an unreliable source that tries to persuade people in paying for information that may not even belong to them.

Another example of an archive that is older is the Medici Archive Project. This archive holds information on Tuscany and Europe and contains millions of letters from the years 1537-1743. It may be a bit trickier to navigate to different sources on this site because it contains so much information. However, it is still very interesting as to how thousands of past documents can be stored in one area without the worry of destruction and being damaged or lost.

Overall archives are a very useful tool when it comes to organizing documents especially ones from the past. They are very handy to historians who have to research thousands of documents about a certain topic. They give them access to information from any time and place at just the click of a button.

Introductory post: first blog post

Hello! My name is Alexis Rago. I was born in Toronto and lived in the city of Brampton for the majority of my life. When I turned eighteen, my best friend and I decided to move to the city of St. Catharines as a change of scenery. We have an apartment together and got jobs working as waitresses in Niagara Falls. Growing up, my parents owned a cottage not too far from Niagara so we would visit often. I always admired how beautiful the falls are, and the many tourist’s attractions located within the town. Although I loved visiting Niagara Falls, I never thought that I would become local to the Niagara region, but here I am.

When I finished high school I knew I wanted to take my education to the next level, but I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to do with it. I decided that I would take the year off and work full time in order to save up. I then applied to Brock as a geography major, wanting to specialize in environmental geography. However, in order to do that, I had to take physical geography which I didn’t enjoy learning. During my first year, I had a history course that really caught my attention and it was then that I decided to change my major to pursue history. This being my second year at Brock, I now major in history and have many different kinds of past events and adventures to learn about. When I am finished University, I want to complete teacher’s college and become a history teacher. Teaching has always been a passion of mine and a goal I would like to achieve.

Other than school and work, I try to keep a healthy lifestyle. I attend the gym at least 4-5 times a week and try to maintain a good diet. During my spare hours, I enjoy binge watching historical action movies and shows. I also enjoy exploring the many hiking trails and waterfalls located in St. Catharines.

I am very happy with the courses that I have chosen for my second year. Digital history is one of my many choices, and it gives me an opportunity to not only look at the events that took place in the past but also a chance to look at what positive and negative effects technology has had on the world today.

I find it fascinating how advanced technology is and how much it can be used as an educational tool. It provides us with easy answers and makes learning and studying that much faster and more efficient. However, technology has also had many negative effects on societies. It has drastically changed the way people communicate with one another. Instead of people going out of their way to have more personal, face to face conversations, technology has made it possible to talk to each other from anywhere, anytime, losing a certain connection with others. When people are together, they are usually lost in their technology, or wasting valuable time surfing the web and checking social media. Social media has had some negative effects on society as well, pursuing people to look, think and act a certain way in order to fit in with the latest updates and trends. This affects people’s originality and creates problems amongst others who want to stand out and be different.

With the bad, comes the good. Technology allows for diversity amongst the world and helps to educate people on the different cultures and traditions that exist. This makes it possible for lifestyles to blend and become more modernized by learning new traditions aside from their own. This also gives people more opportunity to travel and find jobs that may not be available in their own country. It is also a plus that technology can hold a limitless amount of data making it easier to keep and share documents from the past without running out of space. This is a positive side to technology that historians may find very useful when going over past events. It gives them access to data at the touch of a button, compared to the earlier years when that was not possible. Technology can be an amazing tool when used properly and in moderation. Although useful in many aspects of life, it should not be relied on, which is sometimes the problem.