Stories Matter – Phase III: Memory Mapper Plugin

In 2012 The Centre for Oral History and Digital Storytelling released an updated version of Stories Matter, 1.6g. With the progress we’ve made over the last two years in developing an increasingly stable and functional oral history database software, in 2013 COHDS will proceed into the third phase of development for Stories Matter, the Memory Mapper plugin. This phase will see the development of a downloadable plugin for Stories Matter which will allow users to map the spatial relationships that emerge within and among the life stories they annotate and archive.

This free plugin will give Stories Matter users the tools needed to geo-locate interview collections within their Stories Matter databases, and support the creation of maps containing embedded audio and video clips from interview collections. Users will be able to export this information in order to develop interactive mapping applications accessible via personal computers and mobile technologies such as smartphones and tablets, creating new possibilities for developing mp3 audio tours as well as dynamic and interactive audio tour applications.

With the development of the Memory Mapper plugin, users will be able embed geographic locations as well as tag key events and themes within the levels of their database  – within projects, interviewees, sessions and clips. Embedding geographic information within Stories Matter databases will create new opportunities to investigate the connections of stories to places, and subsequently to present those connections in innovative ways using mapping and mobile technologies.

The development of the plugin will be a three stage process in which we will first take the necessary steps to eliminate any remaining bugs in the software, enhance the current search tools and add a few new features to improve functionality, and finally integrate the Memory Mapper plugin into Stories Matter. The Memory Mapper plugin will be developed and tested through the integration of geo-location information into COHDS’s own online Stories Matter database of 1000+ interviews.

This will, in due course, provide registered users the ability to search through our interview collections for stories tied to regions of interest on global and local levels – across continents and counties, or within a particular city, neighbourhood, community centre, or school.

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