CATMA collects your annotations in a text-specific Annotation Collection. This collection also records the corresponding Tag information.
The Tags that you use when annotating a text serve a dual purpose. On the one hand, they are labels that allow you to specify the meaning or the function of a specific text segment. However, taken in their entirety they also present us with a systematic vocabulary that allows us to build a model of a given text. Let’s consider our example sentence again—here it is already depicted as it would look like in CATMA after having been annotated in Annotate:
Snoopy had lunch, and Tigger had breakfast.
We’ve used just two Tags: <Animal> (red underlining) and <Meal> (blue underlining). It’s just one sentence we’re looking at here, and the elementary Tagset which consists of a mere two elements is not overwhelming either: but these two Tags are nevertheless the first building blocks for a conceptual model of this short text. For example, one could argue that in this very basic model, we have conceptualized the semantics of the text as a relation between agents (Snoopy and Tigger) and activities (to have lunch or breakfast). This model then allows us to ask questions, such as: What kind of activity did Snoopy and Tigger engage in jointly? The answer: neither did they have breakfast nor lunch together—but they both had a meal. So the model has allowed us to discover that in this text, similarity between agents only holds true from a certain level of abstraction upwards.
To build (hopefully more profound) models of texts, CATMA offers freely creatable Tags, suitable to apply individually chosen analytical categories to your text. Every Tag has a name and a color, and it can have an unlimited number of likewise freely definable Properties. Tags are allowed to express hierarchical relationships, which helps to model extensive multi-layer analytic categories and apply them to the text. In CATMA, modeling can be a standalone activity, but it can also be part of the typical annotation and analysis work cycle, taking full advantage of the “manipulability that a computational representation provides” (McCarty 2004).
- McCarty, Willard (2004) “Modeling: A Study in Words and Meanings.” In A Companion to Digital Humanities, ed. Susan Schreibman, Ray Siemens, John Unsworth. Oxford: Blackwell, 2004. [last visited 19.12.2016]