Eachtra Journal

ISSN 2009-2237

Google Earth, Open Source and other Emerging Spatial Technologies: Innovation and Application in Archaeology

September, 2009 · Written by: Maurizio Toscano Print This Page This entry is part 10 of 11 in the Issue 03

Australian Archaeological Association 2009 Call for Papers

People are invited to submit abstracts for the AAA (Australian Archaeological Association) session this year on “Google Earth, Open Source and other Emerging Spatial Technologies: Innovation and Application in Archaeology”. The session is being convened by Illya Santos and Stafford Smith at the University of Western Australia. If you would like to present then please forward an Abstract by September the 30th.

For further information on the conference please visit http://www.flinders.edu.au/ehlt/conferences/archaeology/aaa2009/aaa2009_home.cfm

Google Earth, Open Source and other Emerging Spatial Technologies: Innovation and Application in Archaeology

In this session will be examinated the ways in which emerging spatial technologies are being used in the study and practice of archaeology in Australia and abroad. Archaeologists have been using aerial photographs for over 70 years to study the ground and provide targets for excavation and survey. Since the 70s, often in tandem with aerial surveys, archaeologists have been using GIS programs to map and analyze sites. Recently however, there has been a proliferation of spatial technologies, from recording devices, to economically viable satellite imagery, to open source software.

Google Earth is probably the best known of these emerging spatial technologies. In addition to its repository of satellite imagery, it also offers an easily accessible platform to distribute spatial data, through Keyhole Markup Language. A number of open source geospatial technologies are also emerging as real alternatives to traditionally expensive options with everything from operating systems specific to archaeology to fully customizable GIS programs. These tools are being used in creative ways for viewing, displaying, analyzing and storing information by research, commercial and education organizations all over the world. How is this reflected in archaeology currently?  What are Australian archaeologists doing with these technologies now and what would we like to do in the future?

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