New StoryMapJS Module Published

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April 19, 2020

The Digital Scholarship team has published a Drupal module designed to help students and faculty create web-based stories that highlight the locations of a series of events. The module, which integrates two popular digital storytelling platforms, StoryMapJS and Drupal, was developed by John LaShomb ‘10, Web Developer and Systems Administrator.

LaShomb explained the Digital Scholarship Program at SLU has long used Javascript libraries created by the Northwestern University Knight Lab, including the fully integrated Views Timeline JS module. But until now the StoryMapJS module had not yet been fully integrated into Drupal, which meant users had to interact with the StoryMapJS interface in order to create an embed code to use in their projects. In addition, only single users could create StoryMap content, making whole-class projects difficult.

“The goal for the new module was to integrate the StoryMapJS Library into Drupal the same exact way that Views TimelineJS had [been],” LaShomb said. “I modeled all of our code to follow the same structure as Views TimelineJS and made sure that it functioned in a very similar way.”

LaShomb said other institutions who decide to use Views TimelineJS could easily pick up and use the new Views StoryMapJS module without any extra challenge. He went on to say that the new module seemed like a good framework for integrating similar Javascript libraries that are already out there.

​“I hope this module will help others utilize Knight Lab's great libraries,” LaShomb said, “and I'm optimistic that this is the start of more contributions to Digital Scholarship and Drupal communities.”

Eric Williams-Bergen, Director of Research and Digital Scholarship, said the new StoryMapJS module is already creating a buzz in the digital humanities community. Williams-Bergen noted, “Geographic visualizations are a key aspect of many student’s projects, and this module makes story mapping much more accessible.”

Last updated
April 19, 2020

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