FORMAL. Mapping Fountains over Time and Place

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Geographic visualisation of the mapped fountains in Naples.
FORMAL aims to trace the shape of public water distribution in the city of Naples over the centuries.
Pamela Palomba and Emanuele Garzia (università degli Studi Suor Orsola Benincasa di Napoli)

As part of a research project on cultural heritage we were looking for a tool that would be able to structure the information on the monuments we were studying, both spatially and chronologically, to link them together in a cross-referenced way and thus obtain new insights into the history of urban transformation.

The city and its architectural evolution gather a vast set of information connecting different fields of research: digital humanities, spatial humanities and cultural heritage. FORMAL Mapping Fountain over time and place aims to trace the shape of public water distribution in the city of Naples over the centuries. The project uses nodegoat to map the movement of monumental fountains in time and space.

The objectives were essentially two: on the one hand, to catalogue and order the study material collected and systematize it through the production of personal and multimedia cards describing the characteristics of each fountain; on the other hand, to obtain for each object the geographical visualization of its position in space and time with the tracking of its movement from one place to another in different historical periods.

nodegoat has made it possible to create a fully customized database, even if we are not experienced users, and perfectly suited to our research needs. Data modelling in the humanities is widely perceived as an epistemological process, rather than an ontological process, and we have verified that the database application interface can create new opportunities or create new challenges.

The research project was conducted by researchers from the Interdepartmental Research and Design Centre of Ateneo Scienza Nuova as part of the PhD in Humanities "Humanities and Technologies: an integrated research path" at the University of Suor Orsola Benincasa, Naples.

Public User Interface:

One Object of a mapped fountain.
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