Information Access Seminar

"Matching and Merging Entities in Collections of Archive Description Records" and "Californians and Their Earthquakes"

Friday, December 3, 2010
3:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Krishna Janakiraman & Megan Finn

Matching and Merging Entities in Collections of Archive Description Records

Krishna Janakiraman

I will present my final report on the progress made towards matching and merging entities in collections of archive description records. I will discuss techniques that use exact string matching algorithms, approximate string matching algorithms and discuss how information from name authority files can be used to improve matching results. Experiments with clustering algorithms and nearest neighborhood algorithms will be reported. I also plan to discuss efforts towards linking data from dbpedia into the existing data and the possibilities such linkages may provide.

Californians and Their Earthquakes

Megan Finn

I will present a chapter of my dissertation research about Californian information practices after earthquakes. In this talk I will discuss the 1868 Hayward Fault earthquake, the last time an earthquake originating on the Hayward fault shook the Bay Area. The presentation will focus on the circulation of documents about the earthquake, with an eye towards the telegraph and the circulation of reproduced images. Upon the completion of the telegraph, the Sacramento Daily Union presented a view of the telegraph that was not usual for the day: "the lightning has annihilated a continent as an obstacle to intellectual communication." I argue that the relatively new cross-continental telegraph does not alone constitute an infrastructural epistemology, but what Californians learn about the earthquake can be understood in light of existing goals of several groups of people. Specifically, I examine the documentary activities of the powerful San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, the accountability of the San Francisco's government, the newspapers' analysis of the quality of reports available, and the authority of the California Academy of Sciences.

Last updated:

March 26, 2015