Since the call for ThatCampFlorence came out, or better since I discovered what a ThatCamp is, I have been thinking about the need to discuss within DH about issues such as the construction of crowdsourced historical gazzetteers (in particular for countries lacking such tools as free resources, such as Italy), the legal and technical and legal limits of the digitization of historical maps, the use of free/open GIS software within historical scholarship.

Now at ThatCampFlorence, at last a camp that I can easily travel to and that does not conflict with the rest of my schedule, there is an atelier planned that may be the right place to discuss these topics: ArcGis, Google Earth, geo-tagging and mapping techniques for historians.

I just question the wording of the title: I would have chosen a generic reference to GIS instead of ArcGIS, which s a commercial brand, if not a free/open solution such as GRASS or QGis, and I would have added also OpenStreetMap beside Google Earth.

Moreover, another problem arises: there is yet no coordinator for the atelier. I do not still feel confident about my technical knowledge to act as a coordinator, and would thus like to know if anybody is interested in doing it or at least in co-coordinating it with me? In case comment here or contact me on twitter @wilkohardenberg. Otherwise I will have to take this chore and try to work out something.

Update (Jan 24, 2011. 17:37):

I have been informed by the organizers that the title of the BootCamp session will be "Geotagging and using Google Maps and Google Earth in historical contexts" solving thus the word choice issues I raised in my post. However, from this page I somehow understood that another GS session was planned also among the THATCamp ateliers and that its title was supposed to be the one mentioning ArcGIS. Now I have been informed that real atelier topic suggestions will be published only later on, when campers' proposals will be made public. All's well that ends well.