Wednesday, March 28, 2012

ChronoZoom - A Timeline of Almost Everything

ChronoZoom is a new timeline project from Microsoft Research. The primary goal of ChronoZoom is to provide a multimedia timeline of the history of the world from the dawn of time to today. The timeline is arranged according to themes and thresholds. Thresholds are eras and major developments in the history of the world. Within each threshold there are multiple videos, images, and texts about that time. ChronoZoom is an impressive display yet it is a little tricky to navigate at first (or at least it was for my click-happy fingers). You should watch this ChronoZoom tutorial from Microsoft to discover all of the functions of ChronoZoom.

I initially learned about ChronoZoom from Audrey Watters then did a little more reading about the ChronoZoom project on the Microsoft Research website. Microsoft describes ChronoZoom as a "an infinite campus in time."

Learn more about the ChronoZoom Project in the video below.

Applications for Education
About ten years ago someone gave me a monstrous-sized book simply titled The History of the World. While it is a nice book, it certainly has some significant gaps. ChronoZoom reminds me a bit of that book in digital form. ChronoZoom has the potential to be a great reference tool for history students and teachers. The option to view images and videos makes ChronoZoom a definite improvement over an giant, printed reference book. Like many reference sites that are slick in appearance, ChronoZoom has the potential to capture a student's attention and launch him or her into a series of quests for more information about a variety of topics.