Since my previous update on the Northern Indigenous Copper Database, I have come to some important realizations about the scope of my project, particularly in light of all of the other priorities that require my attention and time that I am sure everyone is dealing with.  Most importantly, I have realized some of my limitations in digital skills, particularly when venturing into unfamiliar territory.  I have spent a substantial amount of time over the past month trying to understand the software that I had chosen as the framework of my project – Nunaliit.  Although this initially seemed like the ideal tool to use, I have been repeatedly stymied by the (apparently not so) simple task of downloading and installing the software to assess it.  After much trial and error, and some back and forth with developers on the Nunaliit Github, I eventually was able to install the program, but have very little understanding of how to use it and very little remaining patience and time to figure it out.  So far all of my interactions with Nunaliit have been though the Command Line, and I am simply not knowledgeable enough to move forward with my project in this manner.  Although in some respects it feels as if I am back to square one, I feel more invigorated now to move forward with creating my project without being restricted by the choice to use Nunaliit.  I’m sure it would work perfectly well for what I want to do, but it is not the right program for me right now.  The decision to ditch Nunaliit and choose a different software will also allow me to learn from the trials and errors (and successes) of the rest of MSUDAI.

With that being said, the task at hand now is to choose a more user-friendly program to move forward with.  As it seems many other workshop participants have done, I am currently thinking that I will go back to ieldran as a basic framework on which I can use to base the NICD.  Although I would like some differences in functionality, I would imagine that the combined power of Bootstrap and Leaflet will provide me with enough options to create a product that I am happy with, and enough flexibility to be able to update and grow the project in the future.  The way ieldran is designed has also given me some ideas on simplifying the back end database as well.  Because my dissertation work is part of a much larger research effort, the structure of our organizational database is not set in stone.  At the moment, then, the notion that I can simply upload a dataset to github in the form of a CSV file is appealing.  Our data is currently in Excel and Access, and is going through a process of cleaning and streamlining at the moment.  Rather than trying to reinvent the wheel by using a new repository such as Kora, it will probably make my life much simpler to be able to export data from our existing databases into a BootLeaf webmap hosted on GitHub.  I believe this will be a good plan moving forward, and will allow me to focus on actually creating a working website rather than banging my head against data organization and software installation troubles.