I love OpenRefine! It’s obviously very powerful and will take some time to learn how to use properly if I end up utilizing it for my project. The ways in which the program allows data to be sorted, scrubbed, transformed, augmented, and reconciled is very exciting to me and feeds my perfectionist tendencies. I’m all about looking at data in different ways that might bring to the surface an error, inconsistency, or even a trend that may been missed otherwise.
Data – and historical data in particular – is not always complete or accurate. Primary sources are subject to human error, often difficult to find, and open to interpretation. This is especially true of my project, as its success depends on accurately and systematically identifying individuals and their relationships to other individuals and groups. One of the ways I’ll be doing this is through photographs.
Since I’ll be using crowd-sourcing and social media polls as some of my techniques for gathering information, the key will be to not only find sources I can trust, but to do lots of cross-checking with other sources and seeking out second (and third) opinions.