Carto is a mapping tool which allows the user to explore data in several different ways.
The first step is to log onto Carto and set up an account. There is a free version, as well as several for pay versions with increasingly more options.
Next, one needs to download information, such as the WPA Slave Narratives, to put into the dataset. Once the information is in Carto, it is possible to view this information in Data View and Map View.
Data View allows the user to view the data and to adjust category information and headings as desired. In Map View, the user works with the data set information on the right side of the screen. It is possible to make many kinds of maps with Carto using this data, and it is easy to experiment with different types of maps.
The Simple Point map is the most basic kind of map, but even with that it is possible to utilize the data fields one has, such as, in the WPA information, age, gender, interview subject, interviewer, Where interviewed, and Where enslaved to create a variety of informative maps.
Other options, such as Torque, Cluster, Heatmap, and Category offer more sophisticated opportunities for analysis. Some of these, such as Heatmap and Category, allow for a time element, so patterns of interviews. for example, may be traced.
Carto also provides the opportunity to create up to four layers on the free version. Using layers allows for sophisticated comparisons between different datasets.
When it is time to publish the maps, Carto allows users to name them to add information which will make them understandable, and to provide search opportunitities.
Overall, Carto is easy to learn and is visually appealing. Data which had been in a spreadsheet can come to life through Carto, and many different types of information can be visualized and analyzed.
One drawback to the free version of Carto is the one’s material is available for public viewing. People who want to protect their data would be wise to purchase a plan which would allow the creator to keep the information private until the right time and digital home have arrived.