Everyone will be collecting and annotating written language samples this term. You should submit these language sample via the Fulcrum application. Inside the app you will be able to keep track of the items you have submitted, edit them, delete them and view them on a map. Later in the semester, you will be provided with a data share (a kind of key) to the common dataset. With this, you will be able to make maps–a map-as-argument if you like–in which you will focus on patterns across any particular feature in the common data (language and vehicles, language mixing in beauty parlors, etc). You will also write a reflective essay on the kinds of data that you yourself collected.
Beginning with the week of 13 September, you are required to collect at least four (4) separate items per week. There are fourteen (14) weeks in the term. You can certainly do more than four items if you like. If you have friends who want to join in, this is great, but you should manage the uploading of the images and joining the correct spatial data. If the person would like to have credit for their submission, you can including their name in the comments field. This will not show up on the map, but it will in the common dataset. The richer and more diverse the data you submit, obviously the more you will have to write about.
Tips for data collection:
(1) It is easier to take a picture of the language sample using the application, rather than with your phone camera uploading it later. This is because the spatial information will not be given to Fulcrum. (Incidentally, you will be asked to give your phone access to location services, which you need to accept). If you take a picture and upload at home, the location where you uploaded the picture will be registered, not the location of the language sample. There is a way to correct this (see below). If location services are functioning, you can take a picture in the app and then upload it later when in a wifi area. This means that no internet is needed to take the picture in the app and the location is still recorded.
(2) Items that can not be located to a specific place should not be used.
(3) You can enter the metadata (any typing field) in English, French, Arabic or transliterated Arabic.
(4) The app has been configured to accept a single photo. Do not count an additional picture of the same situation (a close up, the back side) as another of your weekly four. If you feel the need to have multiple pictures of the same item, it would be best to stitch them together in Paint/brush and submit using the instructions below. These can be uploaded via the fulcrumapp.com interface using your laptop.
(5) There are two ways of obtaining the coordinates of where a photo was taken.
A. If you took the picture and did not use the app and you were using a modern smartphone, there are usually GPS coordinates embedded in a file attached to each photo. If you download them to a personal computer or laptop, you can select the file with the photo. With iOS you right click and select “Get Info” and with a PC you right click on “Properties” looking at the EXIF data associated with the image. For more information, see this article. Not all pictures contain such data and sometimes it is given in Hours, Minutes, Seconds format. This does not work for Fulcrum. It must be in decimal form. If you find the coordinates and they look like in the box below (33; 40; 14.74000000), you will need to convert them using a tool like this. NB: Whatsapp strips such data from pictures sent. This means images should be emailed to you.
When you convert them using the abovementioned tool, it should render decimal coordinates, as seen below in yellow:
If you were sent an image, or you have found it online or there is no coordinates attached to it, you can follow Georges’ useful instructions for adding the correct spatial information to an item in Fulcrum.
B. In order to post something retroactively on Fulcrum, you’ll want to go to http://maps.google.com and find the location you took the post’s content in. For instance, if you’ve taken an image facing, say, Crepaway in Jbeil, use the search bar to locate Jbeil and look for Crepaway. If you’re lucky you may even find something more accurate than ‘Jbeil’ (yes, in this case Crepaway is on Google Maps so you can get to it by searching for it).
Double-click on the map to zoom in until you recognise the shape of the street. You can also click on the Earth button to the lower left of the screen to show satellite imagery (if you find it easier to see smaller streets this way or if you recognise a particular building from the way its roof looks, say a rounded building or the such).
I suppose accuracy is important but it would be fine if you were to locate a post within a street (the exact millimetre-accurate location isn’t the point here), so if your post was, say, facing Crepaway and you can’t know exactly which direction it was vis-à-vis the Crepaway building, you could just as well take the building itself as an accurate enough location.
When you know what point you want to consider your post’s location, click on the map and the coordinates of your click (latitude & longitude separated by a comma) will appear in a box to the bottom of your screen. Depending on your browser you may need to right-click and choose “What’s Here?” An infobox should pop up.
Once you have the coordinates from step A or B, now in Fulcrum: Tap the lower-right red plus sign then click the gray plus sign in the top half of your screen. Tap ‘Choose Existing Photo’, choose the picture you are sending in, and fill in the information you need to. Then press the red target sign in the lower-middle of your screen and a small box shows up with the coordinates of your smartphone at present, or in the case of the browser interface, it will be empty. If you are using your phone, tap the ‘Tap to enter location’ bar. Enter the coordinates in the window that appears. The first coordinate on the Google Maps screen goes in the topmost text box and the second in the one just underneath it. Then tap ‘Okay’ and ‘Save’. Tap ‘Save’ again to save your post for submittal.
(6) If you opt out of the mobile data collection and the mobile app altogether, you are still able to upload image data using the interface at the fulcrumapp.com site. You have a couple options (a) you can have friends and family send you pictures which you locate following the instructions above, or (b) you can find other language samples on the internet or social media, but they should be locatable as per number 2 above.