Yesterday I began working with a data visualization tool called Palladio that allows you to easily create maps, graphs, and other visualizations in your browser. Using Palladio is as simple as cutting and pasting data from your spreadsheet into the tool. I modified a spreadsheet that I had created for Gephi, made another with the locations of a few cities that are important to my research, cut and pasted them into the tool, and voila! I had the above visualization. It is a far more intuitive tool than Gephi and I would argue that the finished product is visually more appealing.
I look forward to working with Palladio more and am excited about the prospect of mapping the ebb and flow of relations between the Nicaraguan Revolution and various states and organizations. Ultimately this work will constitute a digital component of my dissertation. More immediately I will be working more with Palladio in the coming weeks and present on its application to my work at the Rocky Mountain Council on Latin American Studies (RMCLAS) conference in April.
Palladio is currently being developed by the Center for Spatial and Textual Analysis (CESTA) at Stanford University. A special thanks to my friend Jason Heppler for helping create this tool and spreading the word about it.