The aim of the project exploreAT! is to reveal unique insights into the rich texture of the German Language, especially in Austria, by providing state of the art tools for exploring a corpus of Bavarian dialect samples collected between 1911 and 1998 in the region of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The large and uniquely rich collection is estimated to contain 200,000 headwords in approximately 4 million records and includes a five-volume dictionary of about 50,000 headwords, covering a period from the beginning of German language until the present (DBÖ, WBÖ).
In order to create enduring value from this resource, the project will apply open science and citizen science techniques to improve access and to leverage the crowd’s wisdom. The engagement of users with the system will be the subject for mind-brain studies, and the results and records will be enriched and interlinked using the best practices of semantic content publishing of Linked Open Data on the Web of Data. The key tasks are to:
An interdisciplinary, international team of researchers from Ireland (Alexander O´Connor, Trinity College Dublin, ADAPT Centre), Spain (Roberto Theron, Universidad the Salamanca, Departamento de Informática y Automatica), and Austria (Barbara Kieslinger, Zentrum für Soziale Innovation), coordinated by the Austrian Academy of Sciences (Eveline Wandl-Vogt), is currently working towards the following goals:
This project is innovative both from technical and humanities perspectives: there is a key interest in creating effective, reusable, domain-tuned IT infrastructure for hosting historical-lexical content. The platform will include an environment for inquiry of the database and, importantly, the connected and linked knowledge from European and Global infrastructures. This will facilitate scholarly and amateur inquiry from both shallow and deep research from around the world. From a humanities perspective, the insight into how users interact with this content, and what riches they can discover in the corpus will likely greatly advance knowledge of the evolution of German and human language in general.