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Teams & Expertise for Temporal Projects

Temporal projects are sometimes built by a single researcher working within their area of expertise, though occasionally they will need to consult or work long term with research assistants, designers, IT experts, or programmers.

Published onOct 14, 2019
Teams & Expertise for Temporal Projects

Temporal projects are sometimes built by a single researcher working within their area of expertise, though occasionally they will need to consult or work long term with research assistants, designers, IT experts, or programmers. Consider these roles, which may all be filled by the same person:

  • Content Collection: Gathering the important moments in time as well as the data or media related to them. This is a research-related role, and it may be largely complete before you even begin the project.


  • Writing & Editing: This role takes the content to be included in the project and puts it into consistent language that fits the needs of the program. That might include thinking about text length, tone, and other factors not directly related to content alone.


  • (optional) Map Design: Many timelines involve custom maps that are created in other programs and then brought into the timeline. This may occur in a separate program, though you will want the person in this role to be familiar with your overall project so that they can think about proportions, legends or other texts, and style.


  • (optional) Video or Multimedia Design: You may need to have someone develop other media features like videos, time lapse loops, or other types of visualization. These should be designed with attention to your larger project, but these are a different skill set and use different programs than you would use for web design or coding.


  • (optional) Web Design and Integration: Some timelines can be displayed directly from the original application, but if you expect to display your timeline in your own website, you may need to do additional coding. It is relatively simple to display a timeline that is hosted elsewhere on your own site using an iframe, but you may need someone with greater expertise in website creation if you want to host your own timeline or make sure that the timeline matches your own site well. If your site was developed within an institutional infrastructure, they will be able to help with this; if you are working on a separate website, you may need someone with experience in CSS and javascript as well.


  • (optional) Custom Programming: If you are customizing an existing timeline application or developing your own custom timeline project from the ground up, you will need someone with coding experience. At its simplest, this might be someone who can edit javascript, but if you want more complicated features they may need other skills. For example, you might need someone who can use APIs to bring external data into a timeline to make it update automatically, or you might want someone who has experience with mobile app development to help you design a timeline that responds to a user’s location.

Continue Reading: Timelines & Workflows for Temporal Projects

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