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Singapore Research Team Studies Local Chinese News Agency Network Tthrough Big Data


According to Singapore's Lianhe Zaobao, the research team led by Ding Hesheng, the director of the Chinese Department of the National University of Singapore, and senior researcher Xu Yuantai, visited local conference halls, temples, and cemeteries in recent years, and began to collect and code large projects The goal is to build a large database of personal and personal relationships among the eight generations of Singaporean sages from 1819 to 2019, and to compose the Singapore Social Network of Singapore with big data.

The local Chinese community research not only focuses on Chinese leaders, but also looks at the "little people" in history, and further composes a network of Chinese community leaders and low-level social figures through big data.

In 2017, the team began using the Geographical Information System to capture Singapore's history. Since February 2019, the [Singapore Biographical Database", which was jointly created by the National Library of Singapore, Singapore Association of Singapore Clan Associations, and the Chinese Department of the National University of Singapore, has officially launched. The leaders of the Chinese News Agency and their expanded social network have brought research to a new stage.

Xu Yuantai pointed out that the establishment of the database is based on "big men" and has compiled the information of about 1,000 Chinese leaders. Their plan is to build a large database of personal and personal relationships among eight generations of Singaporean sages from 1819 to 2019. Taking every 25 years as a stage, the team is currently collating the data of about 50,000 people included in the "Singapore Chinese Inscription Compilation 1819-1911".

Xu Yuantai said that the 50,000 people are a huge network, collected from halls, temples, and inscriptions. Most of them are unknown little people. Important elements are often ignored by the academic community. "

Collect new information from the tombstones in the special issue cemetery

In addition, the team is also developing new first-hand materials, including the special issue of the halls collected from the various halls, and the death records copied from the tombstones. After the team identified and digitized, the records were collected in 1922 By 1972, there were more than 62,000 names.

"At present, the academic community has never included this batch of data in the research area." Xu Yuantai said that all the records of the tombstones at Bukit Brown Cemetery were retained and provided by the State Administration of Cultural Heritage.

Ding Hesheng and Xu Yuantai also took students to Bukit Brown Cemetery in person to look for earlier tombstones. More than 1,500 names of the Qing Dynasty have been found. Among the tombstones found, the oldest was carved in 1824.

Xu Yuantai revealed that the team has set up an independent database for these tombstones in the past two years, and will also be integrated with the "Singapore Biographical Database" in the future, allowing the geographic information of tombstones and personal information of people to be combined to open up new research perspectives and direction.

The team also cooperated with the Singapore Genealogical Society and collected more than 100 genealogical materials, mainly from Fujian and Guangdong, including families from Chaozhou. Xu Yuantai said that a large number of immigrants migrated to places such as Singapore and Taiwan during the Ming and Qing dynasties. Through the study of genealogy, we can see the correlation and differences between the immigrants separated from the two places.

Xu Yuantai also pointed out that the character research in the United States and Taiwan mainly focused on "officials", that is, intellectuals. "However, in the early days of Singapore and Malaysia, there were mostly businessmen and workers. They often kept their names by building temples and halls. The starting point for our research is therefore very different. Of course, there are a lot of problems and difficulties, and it is not easy to build such a database. "

Zhang Wenbo (23), a master student of the Chinese Department of the National University of Singapore, and Deng Kaien (21), a second-year student of the Chinese department of Nanyang Technological University, are part of the team and participated in the research of temples and tombstones.

Deng Kaien said that the field investigation process is very rigorous, and the information on the tombstone must be carefully classified, identified and proofread. The compiled data must be further coded before it can be included in the database for analysis.

Xu Yuantai believes that this research can help understand the local community's footprint and interaction process in the local community. "Singapore's halls and temples are constantly moving, many records are being lost, and many people's names are also duplicated. And coding can help us connect a network to see what the human brain and the naked eye can't see and ask new questions. "

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