New and Noted: “Digital Humanities: A Resource List.”

McDayter, Mark, comp.  The Digital Humanities: A Resource List.  Research Group for Electronic Textuality and Theory, Western University. 3 May, 2012. Web.<http://ett.arts.uwo.ca/site/dhResources.html>

The Digital Humanities is a huge and sprawling field.  It encompasses within its “big tent” a diverse range of disciplines, subdisciplines, theories, and practices, ranging from text encoding to text mining and employing technology for pedagogy.

It has also spawned an enormous variety of tools, manuals, guides, theoretical discussions, discussion groups, organizations, and open access journals.

A little more than a month ago, I published, on the web site for the Research Group for Electronic Textuality and Theory in the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Western University, a resource list of online materials to assist those finding their way through the maze of approaches and tools in the Digital Humanities.  “Digital Humanities:  A Resource List” was also compiled for my own sake, in an attempt to get some kind of handle on what was available.  Here is part of my “Introduction” to the resource:

This web site has been designed to provide a quick and simple reference source for information about, and resources for, the theory and practice of Digital Humanities. While it has been assembled for the particular use of scholars and students working in the Digital Humanities at Western University, it is open to anyone, and (it is hoped) will prove a particularly useful resource for those new to the field.

This resource list is avowedly neither comprehensive nor complete. The focus is upon free and open access tools and sources of information that can be of immediate assistance to those who wish to begin to engage with technology directly. Doubtless I have overlooked a great deal that is of value, and I will be updating these pages periodically with new materials as I become aware of them; a list of recent additions is to be found immediately below. All of the resources listed here are, for the moment, available online (although some exist in print as well); future iterations of this list may additionally include conventional print sources, as well as exemplary projects in the Digital Humanities. Additional areas that I will be adding in the future include digital archives, linguistics, and virtual worlds.

It has occurred to me that I have, rather oddly, neglected to make note of this resource here.  I am now making good that omission.

The site continues to expand on a nearly daily basis: I have added 52 entries since it was first published, and it now includes 171 entries in total (although a handful of these are repeated in multiple sections of the site).  They are distributed according to the following categories:

  • Introduction
  • Digital Humanities – General -19 entries
  • DH & Literary Studies – 31 entries
  • DH & History – 10 entries
  • Pedagogy & Technology – 31 entries
  • Digital Tools – 41 entries
  • Text Encoding Initiative – 19 entries
  • Content Management Systems – 4 entries
  • Learning Management Systems – 4 entries
  • Discussion Groups – 3 entries
  • Organizations – 9 entries

All entries include links to the resource in question, as well as a pop-up panel providing a more-or-less detailed description of the resource, most often lifted from the web pages of the resource itself.

I hope this proves useful to others.  It has already proven a useful exercise for myself.

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New and Noted: “Collaborative Research in the Digital Humanities” (Ashgate)

Marilyn Deegan and Willard McCarty, eds. Collaborative Research in the Digital Humanities, Farnham: Ashgate, 2012.

This is a new collection of essays on a subject that is, really, central to the way Digital Humanities has evolved, and perhaps a necessary adjunct of its methodologies:  collaborative work and research.  The volume is edited by two stalwarts in the field, Willard McCarty and Marilyn Deegan, and contains essays by a great many familiar names.  It prompts two reflections on my part.

  1. I wish I were better at working collaboratively than I am.  (My reluctance stems less from a personal or professional dislike of collaboration than it does from laziness.)
  2. I wish scholarly books weren’t so hideously expensive.

This looks like a future “must read,” however. I am personally particularly looking forward to reading the pieces by Roueché, by Kathryn Sutherland and Elena Pierazzo, and by the HCI-Book Consultative Group and the INKE Research Team.

Here is the description as given on Ashgate’s page for the new volume:

Collaboration within digital humanities is both a pertinent and a pressing topic as the traditional mode of the humanist, working alone in his or her study, is supplemented by explicitly co-operative, interdependent and collaborative research. This is particularly true where computational methods are employed in large-scale digital humanities projects. This book, which celebrates the contributions of Harold Short to this field, presents fourteen essays by leading authors in the digital humanities. It addresses several issues of collaboration, from the multiple perspectives of institutions, projects and individual researchers.

And here is a breakdown of its contents:

  • Marilyn Deegan and Willard McCarty, “Foreword”
  • Willard McCarty, “Collaborative research in the digital humanities”
  • John Bradley, “No job for techies: technical contributions to research in the digital humanities”
  • Hugh Craig and John Burrows, “A collaboration about a collaboration: the authorship of King Henry VI, Part 3”
  • Julia Flanders, “Collaboration and dissent: challenges of collaborative standards for digital humanities”
  • Susan Hockey, “Digital humanities in the age of the internet: reaching out to other communities”
  • Laszlo Hunyadi, “Collaboration in virtual space in digital humanities”
  • Jan-Christoph Meister, “Crowd sourcing ‘true meaning’: a collaborative markup approach to textual interpretation”
  • Janet L. Nelson, “From building site to building: the prosopography of Anglo-Saxon England (PASE) project”
  • Geoffrey Rockwell, “Crowdsourcing the humanities: social research and collaboration”
  • Charlotte Roueché, “Why do we mark up texts?”
  • Ray Siemens, Teresa Dobson, Stan Ruecker, Richard Cunningham, Alan Galey, Claire Warwick, and Lynne Siemens, with Michael Best, Melanie Chernyk, Wendy Duff, Julia Flanders, David Gants, Bertrand Gervais, Karon MacLean, Steve Ramsay, Geoffrey Rockwell, Susan Schreibman, Colin Swindells, Christian Vandendorpe, Lynn Copeland, John Willinsky, Vika Zafrin, the HCI-Book Consultative Group and the INKE Research Team, “Human-computer interface/interaction and the book: a consultation-derived perspective on foundational e-book research”
  • Kathryn Sutherland and Elena Pierazzo, “The author’s hand: from page to screen”
  • Melissa Terras, “Being the other: interdisciplinary work in computational science and the humanities”
  • John Unsworth and Charlotte Tupman, “Interview with John Unsworth, April 2011”

New and Noted: “Digital Humanities in Practice” (Facet)

Claire Warwick, Melissa Terras and Julianne Nyhan, Digital Humanities in Practice (Facet) (Forthcoming)

http://www.facetpublishing.co.uk/title.php?id=7661

Edited by three members of the UCL Centre for Digital Humanities, this collection contains, according to the blurb offered by the publisher, a wide variety of perspectives upon its subject:

Key topics covered include:
• social media and crowd sourcing
• digital images and digitisation
• 3D scanning and museums
• studying users and readers
• electronic text and corpora
• archaeology and GIS
• open access and online teaching of digital humanities
• books, texts and digital editing

It is, we are informed, moreover an “essential practical guide for academics, researchers, librarians and professionals involved in the digital humanities,” and will be “core reading for all humanities students and those taking courses in the digital humanities in particular.”  Strong claims indeed!  The paperback is listed at nearly CAN$80 on Amazon, so I’m not sure how many “humanities students” will be able to afford it, but I certainly look forward to seeing it myself.