Hall of Languages, Syracuse University, NY

Running Reality for Students

Running Reality can be used by students for homework projects and other research.

Using Running Reality for class projects

Running Reality tries to show the world as it was on any given date in history and at any point on the world. This lets you quickly place sites in context. As more people contribute to our history model, we'll have more and more detail about nation borders, governments, battles, people, migrations, populations, roads and shipping lanes, and buildings.

Map Images and Videos

From the share menu of the app version of Running Reality, you can embed an image or movie into your own work. You can copy-paste an image of the map directly to your computer's clipboard. You can save a JPEG image of a point in time or save an MP4 movie or GIF animation of a span of time.

Note that the web map uses a Mercator projection but the app uses an equi-rectangular projection. In most cases, you might not notice a difference, but at street level, Mercator keeps right angles looking correct and equi-rectangular can show some distortion. Eventually, we will migrate the app to Mercator.

If you want to take a screenshot of the web version, you can hide certain parts of the interface. This can be helpful to remove distractions or if the text doesn't scale well when you copy the image into your paper.

The parameters are:

Use as a Source

Running Reality should not be a primary source. Like an encyclopedia or a historical atlas, it provides a broad context. You can use that context to figure out new avenues for research, following links to cited reference works on topics that might be of value. At this early stage in Running Reality project, you might expect there to still be blank areas or bugs in its model of history, so definitely check yourself against the works cited by the model's factoids.

How your help can be valuable

Running Reality is both a software challenge and a historical research challenge. We need your assistance to help our team ensure that the latest developments in archaeological research can be accessible to our audience. Contributing factoids to the history model will be very valuable to the project and will provide citation links back to your primary sources and research material. Running Reality's timeline branching is meant to facilitate exploration and discussion of new and emerging research.


If you can not find an answer here, please feel free to ask us for help. Send us an email if you would like us to get back to you with a response:

Email the team