My experience as a mini Digital Humanist

By Shalian Shaw

For many weeks I worked on my Carisealand project. Many times I thought that the end product would not be so great. I spent countless hours doing online research and even visited  the office of the Forestry, Wildlife and National Parks Division.

Originally I had planned to only do a timeline presenting the changes in the forest and wildlife biodiversity in just Dominica due to climate change. I later had to change my idea as all the information I was being presented with in my research would not have been sufficient to fulfil my idea. Finding information solely on Dominica was really difficult therefore I had to broaden my scope. With the help of Dr Esprit, this is how I arrived at the project I have now. At this point I felt like I had wasted my time doing my previous research but I had to regroup and continue. So now I had the task of creating both a Story map and a timeline to effectively showcase my research. Using these tools were relatively easy to me after spending some time exploring them. The new plan was to showcase the effects of climate change on the forests and wildlife biodiversity in various countries across the region. This encompassed the countries of Brazil, Costa Rica, Belize, Jamaica, Haiti, Puerto Rico and of course Dominica. Researching these countries were quite interesting and also quite alarming. Places like Haiti have very little to no forests left!

The end result was a story map showing how climate change has affected the forests and wildlife biodiversity in the various countries and then a timeline showing the effect of major hurricanes on the forest and wildlife biodiversity of Dominica specifically. Working on my project really opened my eyes and it was a great experience. I am satisfied with the end result and all the work that I put in.

I also have a newfound respect for digital humanists and all the work they put into things such as research and preservation of information. Although my small project is somewhat incomparable to theirs, especially as they use more advanced and complicated technology, I understand better the hard work it takes.

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