On 21 May 2001 17:50:59 GMT, in soc.history.moderated jorn@...
Over on comp.ai.nat-lang (a newsgroup about trying to use Artificial
Intelligence to understand 'natural' languages, like English) I've been
trying to stir up interest in an "outline of history" project, using
something like XML...
The general idea would be to treat all history-webpages as timelines--
series of EVENT items, with each event having a DATE attribute, and
normally a PLACE and various PERSONs...
So something like XML (extensible markup language) could be used to
'tag' timeline entries (or even _sentences_ within long prose
descriptions of historical events).
1492: 12Oct: Columbus 'discovers' America
This will allow search-engine queries on dates (or range of dates) or
persons or places, etc, with the search-engine easily returning all
pages that fit the query...
But the hardest thing will be those RELATIONSHIPs-- that attribute has
to capture as much historical context as possible, but still use a fixed
and unambiguous vocabulary.
So a big priority is to sketch an _outline of history_ using limited
vocabulary: starting with migrations, and why groups migrate, and what
happens when they arrive-- relationships between neighboring groups,
like conquest or assimilation or whatever...
I have a very rough start at:
...but the research required to take it the next step is overwhelming
yet playful, polymathic in scope of interests, minimalist
but user-friendly design." --Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel