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How to build an input file for Binford's frames of reference from existing data sources

Author(s): Sarah Lamkin ; Kayleigh Mrasek ; Luke Edwards

Year: 2016

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This poster demonstrates how to build an input file to calculate Binford’s environmental and hunter-gatherer frames of reference using available global data standards and GIS technology. Required input values include latitude, longitude, elevation, distance to the nearest coast in km, soil type, vegetation type, and mean monthly values of temperature and rainfall. All of these data are freely available in global standard data sets (WORLDCLIM: Hijmans et al 2005, World Wildlife Foundation Habitat Types: Olson et al. 2001, Soil Types: FAO-UNESCO 2005 Soil Map, Coast distance: NOAA/NASA 2009) for use as raster files in GIS . Integrating these data with locations of interest through GIS serves to 1) standardize the input data compared to collecting locally available weather station data, 2) eliminate the problem of missing data in some regions, and 3) automize the process of building an input file, making it as easy to compile data for hundreds or thousands of locations as it is for only a few locations. The resulting input file structure can be run through the EnvCalc 2.1 program to calculate Binford’s frames of reference so researchers anywhere in the world could use these variables to leverage learning from the archaeological and ethnoarchaeological record.

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How to build an input file for Binford's frames of reference from existing data sources. Sarah Lamkin, Kayleigh Mrasek, Luke Edwards. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 403322)


ArcGIS WorldClim

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America