Historical geography is an active, theoretically-informed and vibrant field of study within modern geography, with strong interdisciplinary connections with the humanities and the social sciences. The SAGE Handbook of Historical Geography provides an international and in-depth overview of the field with chapters that examine the history, present condition and future significance of historical geography in relation to recent developments and current research. The Handbook is in two volumes, divided across nine parts. Volume One includes commentaries on the history and geography of historical geography, and reviews how historical geographers have considered the appropriation, management and representation of landscape, the changing geographies of property, land, money and financial capital, and the demographic, medical and political analysis of the world's growing and mobile population. Volume Two shows how historical geographers have made significant contributions to geopolitical debates about the relationships between nation-states and empires, to environmental challenges posed by human interaction with the natural world, to studies of the cultural, intellectual and political implications of modern science and technology, and to investigations of communicative action, artefacts, performances and representations. The final part reviews the methodological and ethical challenges of historical geography as a publicly engaged research practice. Part 1: Histories and Geographies; Part 2: Land and Landscapes; Part 3: Property and Money; Part 4: Population and Mobility; Part 5: Territory and Geopolitics; Part 6: Environment and Nature; Part 7: Science and Technology; Part 8: Meaning and Communication; and Part 9: Studies in Practice.

Chapter 44: Big Data

Big Data

Big data
Jeremy W. Crampton

Introduction: Placing Big Data

The Yongle Encyclopedia

In 1403, Zhu Di, third emperor of the Ming Dynasty, commissioned what would remain the world's biggest collection of information until the information age. Known as the Yongle Encyclopedia, it was 11,095 volumes long, some 370,000,000 Chinese characters, and completed in only five years. Today, only about 400 volumes remain. The goal of the Encyclopedia was to capture all knowledge in the sciences, arts, history, and philosophy. The Yongle dadian, as it is known in Chinese, means the ‘Great Canon’ of the Yongle era, or, more literally, ‘Vast Documents’. It was the Big Data of its day. It was, perhaps, this encyclopedia that Jorge Luis Borges had in mind when he invented the ‘Heavenly ...

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