In previous eras, researchers logged their data in notebooks, which were preserved along with photographs, maps and objects, in a physical archive. Rabinowitz can still access the notebooks and negatives of people who conducted research more than a hundred years ago at the same sites he is exploring. Today, archaeologists are more likely to take thousands of digital photos, make notes in a database on a laptop or a tablet, and record careful, geographically referenced information that only a computer can interpret.
“The development of digital technologies has exponentially magnified the amount of data we’re collecting, simply because we have the tools now to collect a lot more information much more easily than we did in the past,” Rabinowitz said.
Story: Aaron Dubrow, Texas Advanced Computing Center | Photo: Institute of Classical Archaeology, The University of Texas at Austin