I’m spending the month of November in Leipzig, thanks to a research visit grant from the DAAD. My host is Professor Thomas Riechert of the Leipzig University of Applied Sciences (HTWK Leipzig). Thomas is one of very few people worldwide to have produced a graph database in the domain of history: the Catalogus Professorum. He is currently working to link that list of University of Leipzig professors with other historical databases of European university professors, through the Heloise project.

Leipzig is a hotbed of digital work. I’m spending time learning from two different groups. The Agile Knowledge Engineering and Semantic Web (AKSW) group is a hive of computer scientists who work in a very different idiom from any I’m used to, and I feel lucky to get to hang around them. The Humboldt Chair in Digital Humanities shares a building with AKSW. Its members are mostly classicists, and their work style is more familiar, but also quite exciting.

While I’m here, I’m trying to accomplish a number of things. I’m aiming to post a set of my Prosop data, about persons in turn-of-the-century Alexandria, as a SPARQL endpoint. I’m writing a tutorial about creating small RDF databases for the Programming Historian. Finally, I’m trying to develop a basic schema for Ottoman geo-spatial data that can serve the gazetteer of the Digital Ottoman project.