Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Trove Tuesday: Fun with @TroveNewsBot on Twitter

This week I decided to have a little bit of fun with Trove using Tim Sherratt's (@wragge) new @TroveNewsBot on twitter. Tim has provided TroveNewsBot to the community as another novel way of interfacing with Trove using the Trove API. For readers who are not aware of Tim's fantastic resources I suggest visiting dhistory (which includes QueryPic and Archives Viewer) as well as WraggeLabs Emporium and start exploring from there...you wont be disappointed.

Full details on using TroveNewsBot are provided online at https://github.com/wragge/trovenewsbot, but basically you just send a tweet to @TroveNewsBot with a message which will get treated as a query. This query in turn gets sent off to the Trove API to look for a matching result within the newspaper database. The default settings return the first most relevant result, but this can be overridden by supplying an additional hashtag of #luckdip, #earliest or #latest.

Interfacing with Trove via Twitter

As mentioned above I decided to have a little bit of fun and send it my name to see what result would turn up. So from within Twitter I sent the following tweet:
@TroveNewsBot "jonathan auld" 
Two minutes later TroveNewsBot had replied with the following message:
@Jonathan_Auld 17 Aug 1894: '[From Melbourne Papers.] NEW ZEALAND. AUCKLAND, August 10.' http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9312180 …

Results from Trove

Clicking on the link provided the following article printed in the Hobart (Tasmania) newspaper The Mercury in 1894:

Source: [From Melbourne Papers.] NEW ZEALAND. (1894, August 17). The Mercury (Hobart, Tas. : 1860 - 1954), p. 3. Retrieved June 25, 2013, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article9312180

The two lines of text relevant to my "Jonathan Auld" query can be seen approximately three quarters of the way down the summary of events for New Zealand and relate to a mining agent named Jonathan Auld who had been found drowned at Reefton...oh dear!

More information from PapersPast

A search on PapersPast found an obituary for Jonathan Auld...

Source: Obituary. (1894, August 13). Inangahua Times, Volume XVIII, Issue 337, p. 2. Retrieved June 25, 2013, from http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/cgi-bin/paperspast?a=d&cl=search&d=IT18940813.2.11

The second part of Mr Auld's obituary can be found on the same page, mistakenly connected to another article:

Source: PORT OF GREYMOUTH AUG. 11. (1894, August 13). Inangahua Times, Volume XVIII, Issue 337, p. 2. Retrieved June 25, 2013, from http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/cgi-bin/paperspast?a=d&d=IT18940813.2.5

What will your results be?

If you are a user of Twitter, next time you are online, why not give @TroveNewsBot a try and see what 'your name' results are. You may be surprised...