1. Mapping the Republic of Letters by Standford University
At first glance the home page seemed promising. I liked the interactive panorama created by one of the team members. I also liked how the site seemed interactive and had a descriptive introduction as well as a video. Clicking on the “Case Studies” link, I also liked how they used portraits of the people they were studying. overall the website was fairly stylish and appealing to the eyes. I enjoyed the ease of access for the site, as everything was simply under one tab.
What I did not like about it was that after a few minutes I was still unclear as to the goals of the site. It took some digging to find where the important information was, which is under a section titled “Cases Studies” which seems like an odd title. Even under this section there is little details giving an overview on what is being done.
Overall I believe that this site is helpful in showing that there are many options to help emulate the personality of the researchers. I think that incorporating its easy accessibility will be very helpful.
2. Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database by Emory University
I really enjoyed looking through this site. I liked how almost everything was accessible through the homepage. The drop down links lets visitors find exactly what they need without sifting through the site. I also enjoyed the map, which gave a brief overview of the region when hovering the mouse over it. There also is a FAQ section and lesson plans.
The one thing I believe that the site lacks is pictures and/or animations. When clicking on the links to find more details, the visitor is almost bombarded by large amounts of text.
Overall I think that looking at the site has helped give me a lot of good ideas on what to include. I think that the layout is extremely easy to use but very effective.
3. The Valley of Shadow by the University of Virginia
I thought this site was very cool! The opening page explains the goal of the site, so the visitor is not confused and forced to extensively search the site. It is probably the easiest site to navigate, by breaking down the sources into time period, type of source, then based on which region. I also liked how there often was a comparison between the two regions. Lastly, they provided a very extensive bibliography and included where to find the sources.
There was not much I did not like about the site. I think the layout was useful, but plain. The content of the site was also very specific, which can be very good, but not very useful for a broad audience.
Overall I think that this site will be very useful for future projects. I think it is important to make the site easily accessible, especially for the content we are researching.