Pleiades: Lots of Ancient Geodata Released!

Organized by the Ancient World Mapping Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, U.S.A., Pleiades brings together a global community of scholars, students and enthusiasts to expand and enhance continually the information originally brought together by the Classical Atlas Project (1988-2000) to support the publication of the Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World (R.J.A. Talbert, ed., Princeton, 2000). Pleiades is an international research network and associated web portal and content management system (CMS) devoted to the study of ancient geography.

Last month they released the first batch of their data, and what a great job they’re doing. The material is impeccably laid out, in particular:

* They’ve ensured there’s a proper open license on each collection of material (in this case a CC Attribution license)
* They’ve made the material available in bulk as well as through a search facility

More information about the datasets available as well as links can be found on the Pleiades site. This really is a perfect example of what an open knowledge project can be and so a big well done to the pleiades team for the work so far (and long may it continue!).

Open Access News, Nov. 15, 2007