January 03, 2017

The TriCo Digital Humanities Newsletter 2.1: events, courses, readings, tools, projects, jobs, internships, CFPs, and more

The TriCo Digital Humanities Newsletter

vol 2 no 1.  January 2017. We are still here edition.


Happy New Year. In this issue: theorizing the web, fake news, virtual reality, digital Islamic studies, Humanities Commons, data visualization for all, decoding hardcoded gender roles, the Wayback Machine, corpus linguistics, Hack the Trico, Beyond Penn’s Treaty, digital Islam, #datarefuge, queer internet studies, musical chord progression arpeggiator, in-copyright text analysis, and internships at Google News, Locus Analytics, and the Berkman Center for Internet and Society,


As always: Have an idea for a DH course or project? Get in touch to draw on our DH consultancy of Tri-Co faculty and outside experts. Have an item you would like included in this email? Let us know about it. Have an idea for a Spring 2017 or 2017-2018 TDH workshop, speaker, or other event? Or something we might co-sponsor? Let us know.


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Coming up at the TriCo: workshops, talks, events, resources


TriCo hackathon next semester! Hosted at Bryn Mawr, March 24-25th. A hackathon is an event where students form teams to generate, develop and/or implement a new idea from scratch in order to learn and have fun. You don't have to be a CS major or know anything about coding - hackathons are a place to learn and create something regardless of skill level. People of all backgrounds and majors are encouraged to attend. Sign up and save the date!


Haverford Digital Scholarship, Haverford Quaker & Special Collections, and the Swarthmore Friends Historical Library are preparing to launch Beyond Penn's Treaty, an explorer for documents related to Quaker contact with American Indians in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. In addition to digitized manuscripts, the project includes encoded texts, a transcription tool, interactive maps, and a database of people, places, and organizations.


Eight Swarthmore faculty have received digital humanities curricular grants. Projects include using GIFs to analyze film, mind-mapping philosophical arguments, studying activists’ social media profiles, distant reading Spanish literature, analyzing linguistic corpora, building language databases, expanding Wikipedia, and more. Faculty will archive teaching materials they create and make them openly available in Swarthmore’s institutional repository, Works; take a look at the first results, David Harrison and Jamie Thomas’s assignment introducing students to basic methods in corpus linguistics and accompanying Anthropological Linguistics syllabus and course site.


The Bryn Mawr ETS team has been brainstorming educational applications of virtual and mixed reality devices like the HoloLens; read more about ways virtual reality technology being used to convey indigenous stories, histories, and experiences in this blog post by BMC ETS team member Melanie Bahti.


Call for Proposals: Blended Learning Conference 2017, Wednesday, May 17 – Thursday, May 18, 2017 at Bryn Mawr. These conferences are intended to be a forum for faculty and staff to share resources, techniques, findings, and experiences related to blended learning. Our definition of blended learning is quite broad, encompassing any combination of online and face-to-face instruction that supports close faculty-student interactions and high-impact, student-centered pedagogies, promotes life-long learning, or otherwise contributes to the goals and mission of a liberal arts education. Proposals by February 15, 2017.


Digital Sociologies: a conversation with Tressie McMillan Cottom and Jessie Daniels has been rescheduled for the spring; specific date forthcoming.


Bryn Mawr’s Digital Scholarship Reading Group, led by Alicia Peaker, Bryn Mawr’s new Digital Scholarship Specialist, serves “as an open forum for learning and critically assessing the plurality of digital approaches to scholarship. Because digital scholarship discussions develop in many different types of venues, readings will be drawn from a wide range of genres including book chapters, peer-reviewed articles, digital projects, and published blog posts.” Spring semester meetings to be announced shortly.


The Swarthmore Digital Humanities Student Reading Group (DiHum) is an ongoing, informal group of students interested in digital humanities and social sciences broadly conceived; this form for more information and to express interest. Students from across the Tri-Co are welcome to attend in person or via machine. Come share your interest in digital archive studies, critical informatics, social media research, videogame studies, computational text analysis, and more. Take a look at DiHum’s New Digital Humanities Manifesto, and follow them on Twitter @SwatDiHum to meet their mascot, the cyborg Hu-Manatee.



Coming up in the region:


There are at least 51 DH-related panels at the Modern Languages Association’s annual meeting in Philadelphia this Thursday, January 5 - Sunday, January 8th.


QIS2 is the second Queer Internet Studies Symposium, Friday, February 17th at the Institution for Contemporary Art at Penn, is a day long series of conversations, brainstorming sessions, panels, and chats dedicated to broaden thinking about the internet. QIS2 is a space to think about and act on the intersections of technology and media, sexuality and queering, gender and feminism. Rather than a formal conference of people presenting their research, QIS is intended (1) to identify what a queer internet might look like (2) to give a sense of research that’s being done in this area, and (3) to collaborate on artistic, activist and academic projects. Attendance is free and the conference is open to the public.


Temple University’s Digital Scholarship Center has a number of ongoing workshops and events that are open to all this spring: Using Unity 3D (1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month, 12:30 PM – 1:30 PM from February 7 through April 18), From 3D Model to 3D Print (2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month, 12:30 PM – 1:30 PM from February 14 through April 11), Meet and Build: Making and Community (1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month, 12 PM – 1 PM from February 1 through April 19), Text Analysis with R (Thursdays, 12:30 PM-1:30 PM from February 2 through February 23), Network Analysis (1st and 3rd Thursday of the month, 12:30 PM -1:30 PM from March 2 through May 4), Scraping the Web with Python (1st and 3rd Friday of the month, 12 PM – 1 PM from February 3 through April 21)


The Changing Shape of Knowledge in the Nineteenth Century, CHAT Distinguished Faculty Lecture Series with Peter Logan, Temple University. January 26, 2017, 12:30-1:50 pm, CHAT Lounge. What can historic reference works tell us about the changing shape of knowledge in time? This talk looks at the pilot stage of a large research project designed to track changes in key cultural concepts by applying textual analysis tools to historic editions of the Encyclopedia Britannica from 1797-1911.


The Science of Information, 1870-1945: The Universalization of Knowledge in a Utopian Age. February 23-25, 2017. Kleinman Center, fourth floor, Fisher Fine Arts Library, University of Pennsylvania. “Between about 1870 and 1945, for visionaries and planners around the world, projects for assembling universal knowledge and projects for effecting a universal political order went hand-in-hand. This symposium will investigate the development of intertwining utopianisms in internationalist politics and in the science of information during this period.”


The W0rdLab is a text analysis research interest community at the University of Pennsylvania Libraries for all related research and disciplines; all are welcome. http://w0rdlab.org/



Archives, online courses, tools, and tutorials


Humanities Commons is a free scholarly communication network and repository for people working in the humanities, broadly defined - like a non-profit academia.edu. Create an account and profile, deposit and share open-access work, create a website, join discussion groups! Read more about it.


The Wayback Machine - the Internet Archive function allowing you to search snapshots of old web pages - has a new search function; try it it out. (If you don’t know the Wayback Machine, try it out by taking a look at haverford.edu on Nov 5 1996; swarthmore.edu on February 19, 1999; and brynmawr.edu on November 13 2002.)


Temple University’s library has digitized a large number of photojournalist John W. Mosley’s photographs of life in Philadelphia between the 1930s and the end of the 1960s. Read more or see the exhibit at the Woodmere Art Museum in Delaware. Via Edwin Mayorga.


Free online course: Data Visualization for All, via Trinity College and edX. Introductory course aimed at “non-profit organizations, small business owners, local governments, journalists, academics, or anyone who wants to tell their story and show the data.”


Publishing web pages with GitHub Pages just became even easier.


GoMix aims to make it “as easy to make an app as it is to edit a blog post or to change a formula in a spreadsheet.” Free trials.


As always: UCLA’s Intro to Digital Humanities course materials are full of resources, tutorials, and readings to help get you started with some basic DH methods and approaches.The Programming Historian’s well-tested tutorials are an excellent path for those seeking more in-depth, detailed guidance on specific methods and topics. Alan Liu’s DH Toychest indexes many, many useful tools, tutorials, and datasets. A Reclaim Hosting account is one way total beginners can get started hosting their own websites and experimenting with and customizing your own instances of web applications like WordPress, WikiMedia, Omeka, Drupal, Moodle, databases, and RSS feed readers. Their quick-start four-video guide that will take you through each step of getting up and running; BMC’s exciting new pilot of the Domain of One’s Own initiative is an institutional version of Reclaim.




Elias Muhanna lists of some of the digital projects that were display at the recent "Activism, Advocacy, and Scholarship on Islam in the Digital Realm" workshop at Boston University: SHARIAsource, whose “continuing mission is to organize the world’s information on Islamic law in a way that is accessible and useful”; the Islamicate Texts Initiative, “a multi-institutional effort to construct the first machine-actionable scholarly corpus of premodern Islamicate texts”; the Zaydi Manuscript Tradition Portal, which is “meant to serve as a comprehensive research guide to relevant collections of Zaydi manuscripts” and as “a portal to digitized Zaydi manuscript materials that is housed by a variety of institutions and libraries around the globe”; the Mizan Project, “a digital initiative dedicated to encouraging informed public discourse and interdisciplinary scholarship on the culture and history of Muslim societies”;  MuslimARC, providing “provide racial justice education and resources to advance racial justice”; Sapelo Square, “an online resource on Black Muslims in the United States”; Muslimah Media Watch, a forum for Muslim feminist media critique;  Muftah, “incisive analysis on countries in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) that eschews the Western media’s focus on terrorism, oil, and Islamism”; and the Knowledge Production Project, which “endeavors to gather, organize, and make available for analysis all knowledge produced on the Middle East since 1979.”


The Medieval Kingdom of Sicily Image Database: A Visual Resource of Historical Sites c. 1100 - c. 1450. This recently-launched art history resource “is a collection of historic images that represents the medieval monuments and cities of the Kingdom of Sicily collected from museums, libraries, archives and publications.”


Visualization of flipped counties in the 2016 election by Kieran Healy.


Computationally analyze in-copyright texts with (relative) ease! The newly updated HathiTrust Research Center (HTRC) Extracted Features Dataset is comprised of page-level features for 13.7 volumes in the HathiTrust Digital Library. This version contains non-consumptive features for both public-domain and in-copyright books. Features include part-of-speech tagged term token counts, header/footer identification, marginal character counts, and much more. For an exhaustive tutorial on how to use the dataset, see Programming Historian’s new Text Mining in Python through the HTRC Feature Reader (featuring Jupyter Notebooks).


Related, the most recent round of HathiTrust Research Center (HTRC) Advanced Collaborative Support (ACS) projects, which offer help mining the HTRC collections, have been announced, and may be of interest; a call for the next round should be forthcoming (and will be mentioned in this newsletter’s Grants section).


On the AI frontlines, here’s what happens when you ask a computer to sing about a Christmas tree. Via Clayton Purdom writing about it for The A.V. Club.





What Could Have Entered the Public Domain on January 1, 2017? Counterfactual copyright expirations from the Center for the Study of the Public Domain at Duke Law.


Ted Underwood on the value of concentrating on academic research intellectual work in the midst of political upheaval.


Tressie McMillan Cottom, Digital Redlining After Trump: Real Names + Fake New on Facebook, a bibliography of resources on fake news by Jeanine Finn, and a podcast on fake news and how to stop it from the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society.


How RimWorld’s Code Defines Strict Gender Roles, by recent Swarthmore alum Claudia Lo.


A collaborative attempt to answer the age-old question "What happens when you type google.com into your browser and press enter?"


Cathy O’Neil’s Weapons of Math Destruction: How big data increases inequality and threatens democracy is available in hard copy via Tripod.


Predictions for Journalism 2017 from the NiemanLab. “Each year, we ask some of the smartest people in journalism and digital media what they think is coming in the next 12 months. Here’s what they had to say.”


The University of Toronto’s Technoscience Salon and Research Unit, is a home for critical and creative research on the politics of technoscience, is hosts a “guerrilla archiving” event to “save environmental data from Trump.” Read more about it. Related, read TDH alum Jen Rajchel writing in Technical.lyPhilly on the team at Penn that’s building a ‘refuge’ for data in the Trump era. Also of related interest: Net Neutrality Faces Extinction Under Trump.


2016 Workshop on Visualization in the Digital Humanities took place in Baltimore, MD on Oct 24 as part of IEEE VIS 2016. Read the papers on new research directions in visualization for the digital humanities and on pathways for collaboration between visualization and digital humanities research.

Notable new syllabi and teaching resources


Hannah Walser, The Text in the Machine: Digital Approaches to Literature syllabus


Whitney Trettien, Technologies of Literary Production syllabus


Repeat notice of some important teaching resources:


Get started with text analysis right away with the just-released new and improved Voyant 2.0! Read the quick start guide, explore examples of assignments on their website, and read the companion book, coming soon to Tripod. Highly recommended. The TDH faculty consultancy can connect you with fellow instructors who have successfully worked with Voyant in the classroom.


If you are thinking about integrating Wikipedia editing work into your teaching, WikiEdu has amazing resources, and the TDH faculty consultancy can connect you with fellow instructors and outside experts who have successfully worked with Wikipedia in the classroom.


The in-progress Modern Languages Association’s project Keywords for Keywords for Digital Pedagogy in the Humanities: Concepts, Models, and Experiments is a curated collection of downloadable, reusable, and remixable pedagogical resources.


As always, the Digital Humanities Slack run by Amanda Visconti and others has more than 51 channels where you can learn from and talk to scholars and students from many different backgrounds and levels of expertise about topics ranging from annotation to crowdsourcing to visualization to involving students in DH projects. Sign up here.



CFPs, grants, workshops, opportunities




Digital Humanities Advancement Grants from the NEH. “The NEH is eliminating both the DH Start-Up Grant Program and the DH Implementation Grant program and replacing them with a single program that will be offered twice per year that will combine features from both programs. The new program is called Digital Humanities Advancement Grants (DHAG).” First deadline: January 11, 2017, with opportunities to apply every six months from that time forward.


ACLS Digital Extension Grants support “digitally based research projects in all disciplines of the humanities and related social sciences. It is hoped that these grants will help advance the digital transformation of humanities scholarship by extending the reach of existing digital projects to new communities of users.” Deadline: January 25, 2017.


The Digging into Data Challenge has been funding cutting-edge digital research in the humanities and social sciences since 2009. Now under the auspices of T-AP, the program will support collaborative research teams from three continents: Europe (Finland, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Portugal (to be confirmed) and the United Kingdom); North America (Canada, Mexico, the United States); and South America (Brazil and Argentina). A great grant for anyone doing international digital research.




NEH Office of Digital Humanities-funded Digital Native American and Indigenous Studies workshop, May 16-18, 2017. The Digital Native American Studies Project offers a three-day workshop that will educate participants on issues of digital humanities research and methodology in the context of Native American Studies. Native American Studies, an interdisciplinary field of study exploring the history, culture, politics, issues, and contemporary experience of indigenous peoples of America, intersects with a number of issues related to access, preservation, and methodology that are problematized through the development and deployment of digital tools and methods and the conduct of digital research. These workshops seek to pay attention to the ways in which digital objects, practices, and methods function within Native communities and through Native American Studies scholarship. Apply by February 1, 2017.


Digital Humanities Summer Institute (DHSI) 2017 at the University of Victoria, June 5-9 & 12-16,  2017. Dozens of exciting week-long courses from foundational beginnings for faculty new to DH to advanced topics. Participants report that these courses are a great way to skill up quickly, think conceptual about DH possibilities for your research and teaching, and begin to build professional networks around these topics. Rolling deadline, but they fill quickly.



Theorizing the Web (NYC, April 7th and 8th, 2017)

“Theorizing the Web is an annual event for critical, conceptual conversations about technology and society. Theorizing the Web begins with the assumption that to talk about technology is also to discuss the self and the social world. Debate around digital social technologies too often fails to apply the many relevant literatures of social thought. We do not think “theorizing” is solely the domain of academia, and we value clear and compelling arguments that avoid jargon...Theorizing the Web is a home for thinking about technology by people who may not think of themselves primarily as “tech” thinkers. Activists, journalists, technologists, writers, artists, and people who don’t identify as any of the above are all encouraged to submit. We especially invite submissions that engage with issues of social justice, power, inequality, and vulnerability from a diverse range of perspectives.”


Converge: Disciplinarities and Digital Scholarship. (LA, June 1-3, 2017)

“Converge: Disciplinarities and Digital Scholarship encourages design educators, design researchers, and designers to take advantage of opportunities in digital scholarship, learn how to collaborate on interdisciplinary projects, and find new intersections within their existing research trajectories. This will help us to work together to redefine what it means to be a designer and a design researcher today.”


Workshop on the Histories of Measurement and Self-making (Utrecht, June 29-30)

"Today, people increasingly use digital technologies to collect data on their health, habits and wellbeing and sociologists of science and technology have started to discuss how these development change our notions of identity, autonomy and privacy. This workshop explores the histories of these practices, looking at different forms of measurement and self-management in the 19th and 20th century." Abstracts by Jan. 6. Via Miriam Posner.


Global/Local Experiments in the Arts and Humanities, Bard College Experimental Humanities (March 31-April 1 2017). “The Experimental Humanities (EH) concentration at Bard College will host a two-day conference on the theme of global-local experiments in the arts and humanities. The sciences and the arts have long used experimental methods to move from local circumstances (or, “deracinated particulars” in Francis Bacon’s words) to general, global discoveries, knowledge, and modes of expression. Over two days, this conference will foreground conversations that address the challenge of negotiating place-specific research and teaching with the desire for global interactions and exchanges.” Propose a paper by January 15, 2017.


Canadian Society for Digital Humanities (Toronto, May 29-31)

"The Canadian Society for Digital Humanities (http://csdh-schn.org/) invites scholars, practitioners, and graduate students to submit proposals for papers and digital demonstrations for its annual meeting, which will be held at the 2017 Congress of the Social Sciences and Humanities, Ryerson University, from May 29th to 31st (http://congress2017.ca/). The theme of this year’s Congress is “From Far and Wide: Canada’s Next 150”, and is aimed at encouraging diversity, an awareness of our past, and a critical look at where we are headed." Papers by Jan. 4. Via Miriam Posner.


Digital Approaches to Genocide Studies (USC, Oct. 23-24)

Digital technologies have begun to significantly influence contemporary scholarship, theories, and methods in the social sciences and humanities. The USC Shoah Foundation Center for Advanced Genocide Research invites scholars from all disciplines to examine the relationships between digital methodologies, practices, ethics and contemporary Holocaust and genocide studies. How can digital humanities shape, challenge, or complement contemporary genocide studies and vice versa?" Abstracts by Jan. 15. Via Miriam Posner.


Coordinates: Digital Mapping and the 18th C Visual, Material, and Built Culture, Journal18. In this issue of Journal18, we seek to feature current scholarship that relies on the analytical power provided by digital mapping interfaces for the study of visual, material, and built cultures during the long eighteenth century. How do digital humanities methods and tools shape our understanding of space and place in the early modern period? What impact might digital mapping have on our historical investigations of people, objects, and their environments? Submissions may take the form of an article (up to 6000 words) or a project presented through a digital platform that takes full advantage of Journal18’s online format. We also welcome proposals for shorter vignettes (around 2,500 words) that reflect on projects in progress or consider the potential for particular mapping methodologies for eighteenth-century art history.


New journal! Cultural Analytics is “a new open-access journal dedicated to the computational study of culture. Its aim is to promote high quality scholarship that intervenes in contemporary debates about the study of culture using computational and quantitative methods.”



Selected jobs, fellowships, and paid internships for undergraduates:


The Google News Lab Fellowship “offers students interested in journalism and technology the opportunity to spend the summer working at relevant organizations across the US to gain valuable experience and make lifelong contacts and friends.” Apply by January 6.


The Berkman Center for the Internet and Society Summer 2017 internship applications are open! Deadline:  Monday, February 13, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. ET.


2017 Junior Fellows Summer Internships, Library of Congress. Interns help the Library expose unprocessed collections, participate in digital projects, provide additional services to Congress and the public, and make our collections more immediately accessible to scholars. Interns work under the direction of Library curators and specialists in various divisions. In the past, summer interns have identified hundreds of historical, literary, artistic, cinematic and musical gems representing rich cultural, creative, and intellectual resources. United States citizens currently enrolled in undergraduate or graduate school are invited to apply for consideration as a Junior Fellow. Deadline: January 27, 2017


The Google Online Marketing Challenge. Not really a job or internship, but “a unique opportunity for students to experience and create online marketing campaigns using Google AdWords for a business or nonprofit organization. Over 110,000 students and professors from almost 100 countries have participated in the past 9 years.” Stop for a minute and think about all of the the possibilities. Ongoing through April.


Locus Analytics, Theory Summer Internship. For sophomores and juniors from ALL majors. “Locus Analytics, an economic research start-up in New York City, studies the network of relationships within complex systems. Founded by a veteran biotechnology entrepreneur, Locus has developed patented methods based on computational linguistics, informatics, and graph theory for analyzing large, unstructured datasets...We are seeking curious, creative, team-oriented undergraduates from a variety of academic disciplines. A background in economics is neither necessary nor expected; successful interns have studied fields ranging from engineering and comparative literature to mathematics and philosophy. The only prerequisites are intellectual curiosity, critical thinking, and a strong interest in learning how our economy functions.”


Locus Analytics, Data Summer Internship. “Locus Analytics, a research firm in New York City, studies the network of relationships within the global economy. Locus has developed methods incorporating linguistics, complex systems, and graph theory for analyzing large, unstructured datasets...This past summer, data interns tackled a variety of projects, including: studying how competitor relationships between companies correlated to function, looking for economically comparable geographic areas, and analyzing the performance of our investment portfolios.”


Digital Library intern, Villanova Library. The Villanova Digital Library, part of Villanova University’s Falvey Memorial Library, located in Villanova PA, has available a dynamic and innovative internship position for the Spring 2017 academic semester. The primary mission of Villanova’s Digital Library is accomplished through the ongoing development, maintenance, and preservation of digital collections and online digital library resources. These include materials such as medieval manuscripts, letters, typescripts, books, photographs, maps, sheet music, posters and broadsides, newspapers.


Miriam Posner lists DH-related jobs and internships for undergrads (LA-focused, but including national and international opportunities) on her Pinboard.  


Digital Humanities Now jobs listings also may be of interest.