Prospect 1.8.9 Release

We’ve published a new release of Prospect that contains bug fixes and improvements. Prospect 1.8.9 is an incremental update that fixes compatibility issues after upgrading to PHP version 7. There are updates to the template and attribute admin editors, including additional fields and an enhanced color picker. On template pages, you can now sort by attribute by adding additional parameters to the URL of the page. Additionally, we’ve fixed an issue with transcript files loading.

You can download the newest version from our GitHub repository.


Prospect 1.8.8 Release

We’ve published two new releases of Prospects lately, mostly containing bug fixes and small improvements. You can see all of the details on our GitHub repository.

Prospect 1.8.8  is essentially a maintenance release in which all of the Dashboard Editors have been converted to use VueJS as the underlying JavaScript framework. This framework has been getting a lot of traction and adoption lately, and we hope that this will put Prospect on the best track for future maintenance and updating.


Prospect 1.8.6: Date Slider

We’ve just released a new version of Prospect (1.8.6) that includes a feature that’s been on our “To Do List” for a while: a super simple slider that filters data by date!

You can configure Date Sliders for your Exhibits to filter by date on a Template-by-Template basis. As the end-user slides the handle, a floating tooltip indicates the date at that position. This date is applied when the end-user releases the handle: only those Records which “intersect” this date are displayed.

Prospect’s previous Dates Filters – which allow for more complex filtering conditions – can still be created and applied in an Exhibit.

You can use a Date Slider in the Long Women’s Movement project on this Exhibit.


Prospect Workshop at Digitorium 2017, Uni Alabama

We’re delighted that Prospect will be highlighted at Digitorium 2017, hosted by the Alabama Digital Humanities Center at the University of Alabama, 2-4 March 2017.

There will be a workshop about Prospect on Saturday 4 March 2017 at 11:15-12:30, as indicated on the official program (on this webpage). Please come along and learn about what it can do and how to operate it.

Prospect will also be highlighted in the plenary address by Dr. Anne MacNeil and Dr. Deanna Shemek, whose research into the early modern music of Italy, in the Isabella D’Este Archive, has made extensive use of the Prospect platform.

We hope to see y’all there!


New Prospect Roll Out

The Digital Innovation Lab is pleased to announce the roll-out of a greatly improved version of Prospect – 1.8.4 – and an entirely new website devoted to Prospect and to facilitating its use.

The new version of Prospect offers many new features and enhancements, such as:

  • A new feature set we call “Qualified Relationships” (explained in greater detail in this blog post)
  • Ability to use shapes and images in several visualizations
  • Improved behavior of and controls on Legend and Selection List
  • and more …

The new Prospect website offers much more general information about our data curation and visualization platform, an updated manual, sample projects, and more.

We’ve also translated some early projects from the work of the Digital Innovation Lab into Prospect for demonstration purposes, such as the Mapping the Long Womens’ Movement, which illustrates the use of Prospect for visualization of and access to ethnographic recordings, and the Charlotte 1911 Project, which reconstructs the city center of this North Carolina town as it was in the early 20th century.

And more project translations to Prospect are coming! Stay tuned …


Prospect’s New Qualified Relationships Feature Set

Prospect has an exciting new set of features and functions that have emerged out of our work with faculty research in the Digital Innovation Lab in the last few months of 2016. This feature set centers around what Prospect’s developer, Dr. Michael Newton, calls “Qualified Relationships.” This new feature set brings a new way of describing relationships in Prospect’s existing data structures, a new set of visualizations and a new Filter. Prospect is the first general purpose and reconfigurable data platform to offer this feature set.

Prospect has had the ability to form relationships between data entities (via the “Pointer” data type) since it was created. Using a Pointer Attribute value you can, for example, create a relationship between two entities so that, for example, the Record describing “Jack” can point via a “Spouse” Attribute to “Jill” and thus assert that the two are married. And this relationship can be represented graphically on a number of Prospect’s visualizations.

This data architecture, however, is severely limited, especially when a scholar wants to represent the very messy relationships that happen in the real world. For example, Jack and Jill may have been married for some period of time before marrying other people; if we hope for our data to allow us to see and understand the “tangled web we weave” over time and space, those relationships need further parameters to describe what kind of relationships they were, when they happened, what roles people assumed in them, where they happened, and so on.

This is the purpose of Qualified Relationships: to model and visualize the nuances, conditions and contingencies that are aspects of relationships, not least in the realm of the humanities. Qualified Relationships exploit and are built with Prospect’s powerful pre-existing data model (Attributes, Templates, and Records); Exhibits that wish to show them need a little extra configuration to do so, but once this is done, a versatile filter and innovative set of visualizations is ready to allow you to explore them, namely:

A Network Graph specifically made to deal with Qualified Relationships (such as this network of NBA players and the teams for which they’ve played over time).

A Map specifically made to handle the spatial aspect of Qualified Relationships.

An “Ego-Graph” which allows you to explore the relationship associations of the entity you choose, with from 1 to 6 degrees of separation (such as this view of the characters of “Romeo and Juliet,” focusing on Juliet in the central “ego” position).

A Time Rings view which allows you to display any given entity’s relationships over time (such as this view of the characters of “Romeo and Juliet” over the six days of the play’s timeline, focusing on Romeo in the central “ego” position).

A special Relationships and Roles Filter allows you to remove particular types of QRs from the current display, based on Relationship Type and Roles.


Prospect 1.7.3 Released

You can download the latest release on GitHub.

New Features

  • New custom color icons in front-end GUI
  • Front-end GUI now shows the number of selected items and Selection List shows names of selected items (when open)
  • If Auto-Update checkbox is checked, all user selections result in immediate update of visualizations
  • Record Editor now uses Geonames to allow coordinates to be found and inserted from names of locations
  • Shortcode enables Record data to be output as HTML on any WordPress page
  • Map marker titles can now be given specific colors (on a Template-by-Template basis)
  • Archive page will now output Data Dictionaries for Template definitions


  • Map markers are now brought to the front when they are selected
  • Help Tour can be enabled at the Exhibit/Volume level
  • Custom brush handles have been restored to Dates and Numbers filters, and Timeline visualization
  • CSS files have been minified for efficiency
  • D3 updated to 4.2.7
  • HTML code has been removed from all language strings (for translation)
  • Can now disable Perspectives/Readings for specific Exhibits/Volumes

Bug Fixes

  • 1.7.3 fixes bug in file format of Template export (introduced in 1.6)
  • Closing dialog box via close icon caused problems in past; icon has been removed
  • Fixed bug when term in Legend clicked (in a Volume)
  • Fixed bug on upper bounds of Date brush when restoring from a Perspective
  • Fixed bug when viewing Record (HTML “script” file was in wrong folder)
  • Fixed bug when Exhibit view refreshed/updated with Highlight selection

New Prospect Homepage

Welcome to the new Prospect homepage!