Labo Paris XVIII (“LP18”) will be a web-based platform where historians can compile and manage data about the city of Paris in the 18th Century. In particular, it will make it possible to get data from an array of less-researched types of records such as personal journals, police reports and almanacs, which nonetheless contain a wealth of data about people, their movements and associations, and their day-to-day activities. LP18 aims to make it easy to work with these kinds of documents, and to combine them in ways that can help researchers reconstruct the life of the city.
In support of LP18, Performant is working with researchers from the Groupe de Recherche en Histoire des Sociabilités at the Université du Québec à Montréal, to develop database tools and visualizations (collectively called “POLIS”) to help experts and non-experts alike to make sense of those data.
We saw some other, very promising “spatial humanities” projects at DH19, which may well intersect with LP18, not least: the World Historical Gazetteer, timemachine.eu, and of course, the Pelagios Project (which as of very recently has become the Pelagios Network). We’ll be following their progress with interest, and looking forward to collaborating whenever possible.