Open Objects: Museums, Libraries, Archives and the Digital Humanities – get involved!

Open Objects: Museums, Libraries, Archives and the Digital Humanities - get involved!:

computatiohumanitatis:

Museums, Libraries, Archives and the Digital Humanities - get involved!

The short version: if you’ve got ideas on how museums, libraries and archives) and the digital humanities can inspire and learn from each other, it’s your lucky day! Go add your ideas about concrete actions the Association for Computers and the Humanities can take to bring the two communities together or suggestions for a top ten ‘get started in museums and the digital humanities’ list (whether conference papers, journal articles, blogs or blog posts, videos, etc) to: ‘GLAM and Digital Humanities together FTW’.

A note on nomenclature: the genesis of this particular conversation was among museumy people so the original title of the document reflects that; it also reflects the desire to be practical and start with a field we knew well. The acronym GLAM (galleries, libraries, archives and museums) neatly covers the field of cultural heritage and the arts, but I’m never quite sure how effective it is as a recognisable call-to-action.  There’s also a lot we could learn from the field of public history, so if that’s you, consider yourself invited to the party!

The longer version: in an earlier post from July’s Digital Humanities conference in Hamburg I mentioned that a conversation over twitter about museums and digital humanities lead to a lunch with @ericdmj, @clairey_ross, @briancroxall, @amyeetx where we discussed simple ways to help digital humanists get a sense of what can be learnt from museums on topics like digital projects, audience outreach, education and public participation. It turns out the Digital Humanities community is also interested in working more closely with museums, as demonstrated by the votes for point 3 of the Association for Computers and the Humanities (ACH)’s ‘Next Steps’ document, ”to explore relationships w/ DH-sympathetic orgs operating beyond the academy (Museum Computer Network, Nat’l Council on Public History, etc)”. At the request of ACH’s Bethany Nowviskie (@nowviskie) and Stéfan Sinclair (@sgsinclair), Eric D. M. Johnson and I had been tossing around some ideas for concrete next steps and working up to asking people working at the intersection of GLAM and DH for their input.

However, last night a conversation on twitter about DH and museums (prompted by Miriam Posner’s tweet asking for input on a post ‘What are some challenges to doing DH in the library?’) suddenly took off so I seized the moment by throwing the outline of the document Eric and I had been tinkering with onto Google docs. It was getting late in the UK so I tweeted the link and left it so anyone could edit it. I came back the next morning to find lots of useful and interesting comments and additions and a whole list of people who are interested in continuing the conversation.  Even better, people have continued to add to it today and it’s already a good resource.  If you weren’t online at that particular time it’s easy to miss it, so this post is partly to act as a more findable marker for the conversation about museums, libraries, archives and the digital humanities.

Explaining the digital humanities to GLAMs

This definition was added to the document overnight.  If you’re a GLAM person, does it resonate with you or does it need tweaking?
“The broadest definition would be 1) using digital technologies to answer humanities research questions, 2) studying born digital objects as a humanist would have studied physical objects, and or 3) using digital tools to transform what scholarship is by making it more accessible on the open web.”

How can you get involved?

Off the top of my head…

  • Add your name to the list of people interested in keeping up with the conversation
  • Read through the suggestions already posted; if you love an idea that’s already there, say so!
  • Read and share the links already added to the document
  • Suggest specific events where GLAM and DH people can mingle and share ideas/presentations
  • Suggest specific events where a small travel bursary might help get conversations started
  • Offer to present on GLAMs and DH at an event
  • Add examples of digital projects that bridge the various worlds
  • Add examples of issues that bridge the various worlds
  • Write case studies that address some of the issues shared by GLAMs and DH
  • Spread the word via specialist mailing lists or personal contacts
  • Share links to conference papers, journal articles, videos, podcasts, books, blog posts, etc, that summarise some of the best ideas in ways that will resonate with other fields
  • Consider attending or starting something like Decoding Digital Humanities to discuss issues in DH. (If you’re in or near Oxford and want to help me get one started, let me know!)
  • Something else I haven’t thought of…

I’m super-excited about this because everyone wins when we have better links between museums and digital humanities. Personally, I’ve spent a decade working in various museums (and their associated libraries and archives) and my PhD is in Digital Humanities (or more realistically, Digital History), and my inner geek itches to find an efficient solution when I see each field asking some of the same questions, or asking questions the other field has been working to answer for a while.  This conversation has already started to help me discover useful synergies between GLAMs and DH, so I hope it helps you too.

computatiohumanitatis: What are some challenges to doing DH in…



computatiohumanitatis:

What are some challenges to doing DH in the library?

You may be familiar with the scenario: the faculty member groaning (often justifiably) that it’s taken so long to get one simple project off the ground that she’s given up on trying to work with librarians. Or the administrator who wonders why librarians aren’t trying harder to learn new skills.

Having actually done some digital humanities in the library, this attitude frustrates me, though I understand where it comes from. In my experience, many of the barriers to completing digital humanities projects in the library arise not from librarians themselves, but from a set of institutional and administrative factors that will be familiar to most people in Libraryland.

This is not to say that DH isn’t done in the library. It is, and well (though, as my colleagues and I found, it’s often being done in a pretty piecemeal fashion that relies more on individual librarians’ persistence than on institutional support). And it’s important to note that DH was being done in the library (and in the archive) well before it made its way into academic departments.

But I’m thinking of the libraries where DH hasn’t really found a foothold, where a faculty member or administrator is starting to wonder what’s wrong with their librarians that they can’t seem to marshall the resources and expertise to collaborate on DH projects.

I’m writing an article for the Journal of Library Administration on some of the barriers to getting DH done in the library, and I could use your help making my list. I think that these challenges all have solutions, and that there are really excellent reasons to persist in doing DH in the library. But as Bethany Nowviskie has said, librarians’ vaunted service ethic sometimes prevents them from being candid with faculty and administrators about the challenges they face and the resources they need. I promise to offer solutions, too, but I think it’s important for us all to be on the same page about what we need in order to do DH well.

I have a number of ideas, based on experience, discussions, and research, but I would really appreciate your additions and corrections to my list in the comments. Or perhaps you’d prefer to email me at miriam.posner@gmail.com.

Insufficient training opportunities

This challenge comes up quickly in any discussion of DH with librarians. Funding for training opportunities is often scarce, and it can be very hard to justify to supervisors why one needs to take a class in, say, Python, when one’s job responsibilities don’t currently include Python. Moreover, it’s not always clear where to go for training. Computer science classes are often too, well, computer-sciencey, and it’s very hard to know which language or skill one needs to start with.

Lack of support for librarian-conceived initiatives

In a library, responsibilities and opportunities are apportioned in ways that faculty sometimes have trouble relating to. Libraries are very concerned with metrics, with assigning roles efficiently, and with meeting patrons’ demonstrated needs. Projects often get assigned from the top down, and it’s not unusual for a project sponsor to be asked to prepare a business case to show that an initiative will meet a need and benefit the library. Many DH projects don’t meet any particular demonstrated need — they’re done to find an interesting answer to an interesting question. This can be very difficult to explain to one’s supervisors in the library.

Brian Mathews has urged libraries to “think like a startup“: to “face the future boldly” and “implement new ideas.” But libraries can’t do this unless librarians can do this, and right now, many of them aren’t being permitted to implement the bold new ideas Mathews and others would like to see. (To see what happens when librarians are encouraged to conceive new initiatives, check out the Harvard Library Lab.)

Too many tasks, too little time

With all the hand-wringing about whether the library has a future, it can be easy to overlook the fact that many librarians actually feel overburdened. Most subject librarians cover multiple disciplines, and with purchasing, instruction, outreach, professional development — well, it all adds up. Time for a DH project has to come from somewhere else, and many librarians don’t feel they can keep doing their existing jobs well if they add in something else.

Lack of authority to marshall the appropriate resources

In my mind, this is one of the biggies. When I worked in the library, I’d sometimes fight the urge to hide when I saw a faculty member coming at me with a project idea — even if it was a great idea, even if I really wanted to do it. I’d start tabulating the resources it would take to get this thing done: time from a developer, time from a designer, time from a metadata specialist, time from a sys admin, project management expertise, server space, a commitment to host the project in the long term … I just didn’t have the authority to make all these pieces fall into place, and neither do most individual librarians. In fact, very few individuals within a library have the ability to bring all these parts together. If a librarian has assembled these resources for you, he or she has probably (unbeknownst to you) gone from desk to desk, pleading for time from each of the people involved. That’s also probably why it’s taken so long to get your project off the ground. You can imagine why most librarians aren’t eager to do this over and over again.

Lack of incentive

It may not be all it should be, but for scholars, there’s some professional payoff to accomplishing a DH project: some name recognition, something to take on the conference circuit. It’s less clear what the payoff is for the librarian who has helped to shepherd the project through its development cycle. Too often, the “completion” of a DH project means more headaches down the road (about upgrades and server space and support) for the librarian, while it’s the faculty member’s name that’s associated with the project. If the librarian’s institution isn’t providing support and recognition for librarians involved with DH, it’s hard to see what would motivate someone to subject herself to such hard work.

The complexity of collaborating with faculty

If a DH project involves collaboration between faculty and librarians, it’s important to be attuned to the peculiar dynamics of this kind of relationship. Frequently, faculty approach librarians as service providers (and too often, librarians approach faculty that way, too). The flaw in this relationship becomes clear a few weeks into the collaboration, when the librarian really needs that dataset, decision, or brainstorming time in order to make progress on the project, but doesn’t feel entitled to make demands from an unresponsive professor. There’s no one to appeal to and no one who can help, and so the request languishes. The project will suffer if the relationship isn’t truly equitable.

Overcautiousness

You’re a faculty member who wants to write a book. Whose permission do you need? No one’s. The book may fail, but it may wildly succeed, and that’s a risk you can take on yourself. If, on the other hand, you’re a librarian who wants to work on a DH project, you’ll probably need to check with your supervisor, maybe the legal department, whoever’s in charge of the technical team, maybe the people in branding. And frankly, for most of these decisionmakers, the safest answer is “no.” When so many stakeholders are involved, the incentives for risktaking become so diffuse as to be almost imperceptible.

Lack of a real institutional commitment

When libraries do DH well, they’re in it for the long term. That means permanent staff, hard funding, real space to work, and an understanding that some projects will succeed and some will fail. But what we often see now is libraries hedging their bets: willing to wager a postdoc or two, but not more. Alas, this strategy often leads to more frustration than cool DH projects. DH takes time, and an investment in relationships across the campus. When that commitment isn’t there, librarians know it, and so do faculty and students.

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(for respobses, see original)

computatiohumanitatis: Duke’s PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge:…



computatiohumanitatis:

Duke’s PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge: Accepting Local Applications Now

HASTAC Content
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In Fall 2012, Duke will be starting a new PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge, residing in the John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute at Smith Warehouse and partnering with many existing programs on campus.  For more information, go to:  http://fhi.duke.edu/opportunities/phd-lab-scholars-2012-13

Description

Co-directed by Professors David Bell and Cathy Davidson, the Lab will be event-based in its first year. Our events will be shared with and across a variety of programs already on the Duke campus and in the Triangle, as a way of connecting the most innovative new research and teaching technologies, methods, practices, and theories we have available. We will also be sponsoring a number of related workshops, symposia, and learn-by-doing initiatives designed to help doctoral students use new methods in their research, develop new teaching methods, and also face the job market with the most cutting-edge theories and practices surrounding digital forms of learning, teaching, online instruction, and collaborative online publishing and research. The PhD Lab will cover everything from practical professional advice (such as resume building and cover-letter writing around one’s online publications and multimedia productions) to learning new skills to making a www.hastac.org group where students in the lab can share ideas, resources, and other conversation among themselves and with the vibrant HASTAC Scholars community (over 500 past and present students, 80% graduate, and over 9500 interested learning and research interdisciplinary professionals around the world).  

(continued at Duke’s PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge: Accepting Local Applications Now | HASTAC)

computatiohumanitatis: Duke’s PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge:…



computatiohumanitatis:

Duke’s PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge: Accepting Local Applications Now

HASTAC Content
Printer-friendly version

In Fall 2012, Duke will be starting a new PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge, residing in the John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute at Smith Warehouse and partnering with many existing programs on campus.  For more information, go to:  http://fhi.duke.edu/opportunities/phd-lab-scholars-2012-13

Description

Co-directed by Professors David Bell and Cathy Davidson, the Lab will be event-based in its first year. Our events will be shared with and across a variety of programs already on the Duke campus and in the Triangle, as a way of connecting the most innovative new research and teaching technologies, methods, practices, and theories we have available. We will also be sponsoring a number of related workshops, symposia, and learn-by-doing initiatives designed to help doctoral students use new methods in their research, develop new teaching methods, and also face the job market with the most cutting-edge theories and practices surrounding digital forms of learning, teaching, online instruction, and collaborative online publishing and research. The PhD Lab will cover everything from practical professional advice (such as resume building and cover-letter writing around one’s online publications and multimedia productions) to learning new skills to making a www.hastac.org group where students in the lab can share ideas, resources, and other conversation among themselves and with the vibrant HASTAC Scholars community (over 500 past and present students, 80% graduate, and over 9500 interested learning and research interdisciplinary professionals around the world).  

(continued at Duke’s PhD Lab in Digital Knowledge: Accepting Local Applications Now | HASTAC)

computatiohumanitatis: Teaching Digital Humanties: Digital…



computatiohumanitatis:

Teaching Digital Humanties: Digital methods elective: PhD Coursework Subject

I have started teaching in a PhD coursework subject here at the University of Melbourne; the first year that this type of subject have been offered in PhD research. And as part of this, we have started teaching our very first Digital Humanities subject in the faculty; a lot of fun and somewhat experimental.  There are 5 of us teaching it (and about 20 PhD students); and all the instructors have many years teaching, research, and computing experience (and ways of understanding and applying computing to teaching and research problems).  The aims of the course is as follows (and we have put together our syllabus from a number of excellent sources and thanks to University of Victoria in Canada and especially Brett Hirsch of UWA for blazing a path for us). It is only a 5 week course of 2 house sessions, so barely getting our feet wet in such a large and vibrant field (and sorry some of the links may not work as you will need particular University log-in credentials to access them).

(continued at Teaching Digital Humanties: Digital methods elective: PhD Coursework Subject |)

chicagopubliclibrary: Computers For CPS Students While kids are…



chicagopubliclibrary:

Computers For CPS Students

While kids are out of school during the school strike, all our locations have reserved computers for CPS students to use to complete online course work. Simply bring your student ID and/or library card to the front desk and ask to be logged onto one of the computers set aside for this use.

We also have extra activity and discovery areas set up in the Children’s rooms for kids to to take part in. Stop in and see us.

Photo courtesy of YoChicago1.

Call For Proposals: Queering Anti-Imperialism: Stories of Queer Resistance Against Empire

Call For Proposals: Queering Anti-Imperialism: Stories of Queer Resistance Against Empire:

tranqualizer:

PLEASE FORWARD WIDELY

Call For Proposals:
Queering Anti-Imperialism: Stories of Queer Resistance Against Empire

Queers have always been involved in anti-imperialist/ anti-colonial struggles— including both queer folks who have endured empire/ colonialism themselves as well as queer folks involved in solidarity campaigns. However, the stories of queers involved in combatting empire are often left untold. This both results in, and is fueled by, the false notion that anti-imperialism and queer liberation are “separate issues.” The result is that the complex ways in which gender and sexuality are intertwined with empire, militarism, and settler colonialism, often get ignored. This anthology, Queering Anti-Imperialism, will be dedicated to telling the stories of queer resistance against imperialism and colonialism, as well as queering the ways in which we think about empire.

The terms “empire” and “imperialism” refer to many different kinds of violent practices. We welcome proposals about queer people involved in campaigns against any of these kinds of practices. These practices can include, but are not limited to: settler colonialism, non-settler colonialism, war and militarism, US/ European cultural hegemony, globalization and neoliberalism, economic sanctions, gentrification, military occupation, US “aid” to repressive regimes, international “development” work, incursion on and destruction of communities by invasive NGOs as well as academic researchers and other “well-intentioned” outsiders, water and land privatization, resource extraction, ecological destruction, cultural assimilation, and “population control.”

We are interested in non-fiction pieces by queer writers involved in anti-imperial struggles. We are open to a variety of formats, including but not limited to: personal stories, critical essays, poetry, and other formats. Pieces may be more personal (focusing on ones’ own experiences) or analytic (focusing more broadly on gender and sexuality issues in anti-imperialist struggles.) Preference will be given to queer authors who are struggling against or have experienced imperialism or colonialism themselves, however queers who are heavily involved in solidarity work are also encouraged to submit. We especially encourage submissions from trans, intersex and gender non-conforming writers. Any proposal must meet the following criteria in order to be considered:

- The proposal must foreground experiences of queer people and/or focus on an analysis of gender and sexuality within anti-imperialist struggles
- The proposal must focus on anti-imperialist/ anti-colonial struggles.
- The proposal must be non-fiction.
- The author must either identify outside of western categories of gender and sexuality or they must identify somewhere under the queer, trans, or lgbti umbrellas. In other words, we are not seeking submissions from non-trans straight people.
- While we encourage proposals that take a critical, theoretical approach, the piece must be accessible to a general audience.

Possible topics could include (but are in no ways limited to):
- Race, empire, and gendered body policing
- Decolonizing “queer”/ the idea of “queer” as a western label/ “queer” identities outside the west
- Pinkwashing, homonationalism, and Israeli apartheid
- Gay gentrification and queer resistance
- Queerness and the colonized colonizer
- Queers of privilege doing solidarity work, and how this complicates notions of allyship
- Queerness and notions of family and belonging in diasporic communities
- (Trans)gender, militarism, and the police/ security state
- Indigenous resistance and western notions of gender and sexuality/ Indigenous notions of gender and sexuality
- Two-spirit resistance and queer settler colonialism
- “Single-issue” politics and LGBT complicity in empire
- Military violence, trauma, and healing in queer spaces
- Homonationalism and LGBT identification with the nation-state
- Gay “inclusion” in militarism
- Liberal/ NGO “saviors” and colonized queers
- Queer (in)visibility in anti-war and anti-colonial movements
- Sexual and bodily politics of colonialism and empire
- Queers and the impact of US leftists’ complicity with “anti-imperialist” repressive regimes (i.e. Iran, Syria)
- Iranian queers, economic sanctions, and the threat of war with the US/ Israel
- Queer perspectives on decolonizing the environmental movement
- Gender, sexuality and the nation-state, nationalism and national liberation discourse
- And, of course, queer perspectives on any of the above-mentioned forms of imperial violence

This is a call for abstracts/ proposals. Please submit: (a) proposal/ abstract (max 800 words), plus (b) biographical statement (max 300 words), to queeringantiimperialism@gmail.com, by September 12th, 2012. We should be clear that we do not yet have a publishing deal, but we are in the process of assembling a manuscript to submit to publishers.

PLEASE FORWARD WIDELY

computatiohumanitatis: 20 Schools Innovating With Digital…



computatiohumanitatis:

20 Schools Innovating With Digital Tools

Co-written by Tom Vander Ark and Sarah Cargill

Hans Renman in Stockholm (@tankom_hans) asked on Twitter, “Do you know any US schools that are REALLY using digital tools in an INTERESTING way for communication, marketing, or learning?” That tweet kicked off a few days of snooping around. Here is the list of 20 we came up with. We look forward to your additions!

1. Show & Tell. High Tech High does a great job using video to showcase its unique project-based learning model schoolwide. Ninth graders produce a film festival.

2. Visual math. About 1,400 schools use the visual game-based ST Math featuring JiJi the penguin. For example, the Orange County math initiative tripled math proficiency.

3. Student motivation. Innosight’s Heather Staker says Acton Academy in Austin puts motivation first. Acton turned to programs like Dreambox,Khan AcademyMangahigh, andST Math for high engagement.

4. Classroom assessment. As featured in a recent Getting Smart blog, the staff at Leadership Public Schools in Oakland built Exit Ticket, a classroom assessment and competency tracking system. LPS is the best example of a collaborative and distributed innovation agenda across a network of schools.

5. Adaptive learning. Public Schools (PS) 49 in Bronx, NY used i-Ready to provide differentiated and personalized instruction in a blended rotation model to build reading skills. Within just 14 weeks, more than three times as many students using i-Ready were scoring on or above grade level in reading.

(via 20 Schools Innovating With Digital Tools - Getting Smart by Tom Vander Ark - DigLN, edchat, edteche)

Feeling suicidal? Can’t talk on phones?

holybat:

iim0kay:

cuddlemequickly:

sillysymphonic:

blithebereavement:

horrorpeach:

crankyskirt:

IMAlive is a live online network that uses instant messaging to respond to people in crisis. People need a safe place to go during moments of crisis and intense emotional pain.

https://www.imalive.org/

Holy shit this is brilliant

Oh my god thank you

signal boosting

forwardiiiing

Wow yes this is a good thing 

myimaginarybrooklyn: Dilemmas of the Digital Humanists Armed…



myimaginarybrooklyn:

Dilemmas of the Digital Humanists

Armed with computers, humanities scholars have been performing once-unimaginable feats. They have recreated early modern London and American Civil War battlefields with the help of geospatial imaging. They have trawled, or “text-mined”, the vast corpus of Google-digitized books to establish how many times certain words or linguistic patterns appear. They have created a searchable database of almost 198,000 trials held at the Old Bailey between 1674 and 1913 (www.oldbaileyonline.org). They have mapped the Republic of Letters by tracing the journeys of 50,000 letters written and received by Voltaire, Locke, Franklin and other seventeenth- and eighteenth-century luminaries (https://republicofletters.stanford.edu/www.oldbaileyonline.org). They have mapped the Republic of Letters by tracing the journeys of 50,000 letters written and received by Voltaire, Locke, Franklin and other seventeenth- and eighteenth-century luminaries (https://republicofletters.stanford.edu/).

All this falls under the expansive label “digital humanities”. Humanities computing dates back decades but has taken on a new lustre lately. The list of digital editions and visualizations and experiments grows and grows as the tools become more sophisticated and the datasets larger. Funding agencies such as JISC (formerly the Joint Information Systems Committee) and the National Endowment for the Humanities have created grant programmes to support such work. The New York Times has documented some of the most eye-catching work in its “Humanities 2.0” series. No wonder that William Pannapacker, an English professor and blogger for The Chronicle of Higher Education (my employer), described the digital humanities as “the next big thing”.

That was in 2009, the year in which digital humanists (as they are often called) stole the spotlight at the annual conference of the Modern Language Association (MLA). One might have expected them to sit back, let the algorithms run, and bask in the glow of attention. But success, it seems, breeds its own set of worries. By 2011, Pannapacker was fretting publicly that the digital humanities had become so fashionable that they had given in to cliquishness. At the MLA gathering that year, Stephen Ramsay, an associate professor of English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, gave a deliberately provocative talk arguing that true digital humanists build things – by which he meant things such as software programs for computers. “Do you have to know how to code?”, he asked. “I’m a tenured professor of digital humanities and I say yes.”

(More…)