Preparing for THATCamp (Technology)

Here are some technology-related details about the day and things to keep in mind as you propose sessions and prepare to attend THATCamp OSU:

Where we will be and what to bring: We will be using a variety of spaces in the Thompson Library, all of which should allow for wireless internet access on OSU’s network. We encourage everyone to bring a laptop or tablet computer if possible.

Proposing sessions: Our home base will be room 165, but we will be using 150 A&B and other smaller rooms as needed for sessions. Each side of 150 has a dedicated PC for the a/v system. Other rooms have a laptop hookup or no a/v capacity. As you propose a session, please think about what kind of technology will be required. Would participants need a laptop or other device? Do they need to install software? Do you need to project something for everyone to see? Include as many details as possible in your proposal and contact the organizers with questions. We haven’t yet figured out what kind of tech support will be available to us, so have a backup plan in case something goes wrong! (For example, screen shots instead of live internet, data on a flash drive instead of your hard drive, etc.)

Twitter: Twitter is a helpful tool at a THATCamp – it allows for real-time communication about schedule changes and other administrativa, as well as communication between attendees at the same session or different sessions. (Since THATCamps are informal, participants are encouraged to move between sessions as they like. The Twitter stream can tip you off to a discussion happening elsewhere that you might want to join in on.) It can also form a record of important concepts or discussions, which will help us as we write up the results of the day. If you have never used Twitter, we encourage you to create an account and play around with it. We have set up a Twitter hashtag for the event (#THATCampOSU) – just include it in your THATCamp-related tweets and use it to search to see what other people are saying. (The Twitter feed on the right is based on the hashtag, so feel free to try it out and look for your tweet there.)


Categories: Announcements | 1 Comment

2012 Day of Digital Humanities

Day of DH Today is the 2012 Day of Digital Humanities, “a collaborative publishing project for digital humanists around the world to document what they do.” Started in 2009, Day of DH is another way for digital humanists to explore the scope of their field and document the wide variety of work they do on a daily basis. The participants will document what they do throughout the day in words and photos, and will post the results in journal format. Watch the site throughout the day and in the coming weeks as the content grows and is refined into an online publication. Learn more and see previous years on the wiki.

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New NEH Start-Up Grants offer snapshot of DH

The NEH recently announced 22 new Start-Up Grants. Collectively, the projects provide an interesting cross-section of DH work in progress.

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Copyright and DH (session idea)

Digitization, text mining, creating and using open-source software…digital humanities work is full of potential copyright issues. If you’d like to talk about the rights implications of DH work at THATCamp, we would be happy to set up a workshop or discussion session. If you are interested, just leave a comment on this post. If you have a particular topic in mind, tell us that, too.

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Wait…what is DH again?

Digital Humanities as a field resists definition – for all kinds of very good reasons. Sometimes, however, you only have a couple of sentences (or 30 seconds in an elevator) to tell someone what it’s all about. Those moments are tricky for DHers.

In the interest of helping us all wrap our heads around the topic we’re coming together to discuss, I wanted to share a brief definition of DH I just came across in a very nice post by Jentery Sayers at the University of Victoria, “Making Things in the Digital Humanities.” (With apologies to Mr. Sayers for pulling this particular quote out of a post with a much broader focus and no intention of defining DH in a tidy way. Sorry – it was too good to ignore!)

And in the interests of transparency, I’ll also cough up the definition I typically provide when teaching DH courses at the University of Victoria (UVic): “Digital humanities is the combination of technical competencies in computing with critical thinking in areas such as history, literary criticism, cultural studies, textual studies, media studies, geography, musicology, and information studies.”

I call what I’m doing “digital humanities” when I shift from treating technologies as objects of inquiry (e.g., a cultural history of magnetic recording) to actually expressing my work through them (e.g., using a platform like Scalar).

What do you think, THATCampers? Does this definition make sense? Does it apply to work you do?

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Libraries and digital humanities (resources and session ideas)

It is fitting that the Libraries is the primary sponsor of THATCamp OSU, since libraries are a major player in the digital humanities world. Many DH centers are located in libraries, and librarians often serve as project partners or PIs. The best model for library involvement in DH is still an open question, however. We certainly hope that there will be some discussion at THATCamp of how the Libraries can best support DH at OSU.  Keep reading for some resources and session ideas.

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Categories: Libraries, Resources, Sessions | 1 Comment

Collaborative Context: the CIC Digital Humanities Summit – a working session

The CIC Digital Humanities Summit is being held the week before OSU THATCamp and a few of us will be attending both events.  The purpose of the Summit is to form a stronger CIC faculty community and networks in digital humanities and identify potential collaborative research opportunities in digital humanities that cross CIC universities.  This working session will offer an opportunity for those attending the Summit and THATCamp to share what happened there with OSU colleagues and hear what you think about opportunities and gaps for engaging in cooperative projects with other institutions. In the context of what we learned at the Summit, Louie Ulman, Harmony Bench and I will be asking you to help us identify where the OSU community might engage with other CIC institutions and where there might be a leadership role for us. 

“Problem”:  How might OSU engage and lead digital humanities initiatives in the CIC.


  • Are you collaborating with other CIC institutions on any of your digital humanities projects?  How have those cooperative efforts gone?
  • What might be preventing you from reaching out to your colleagues at other institutions to start up, be included in or include others in a project?
  • As University leadership asks those of us who attended the Summit to report back on opportunities and gaps, what do you want to make sure they know about collaborating with the CIC?
  • What could the University do to encourage you to participate or lead a cooperative project?

In addition to gathering information to include in our evaluation of the Summit, we hope that this session will get participants to reflect on the nature of collaborations and ways to ensure their success.


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Registration is full

Wow! We have hit our 60-participant limit for THATCamp OSU, a full 7 weeks before the event. Thanks to everyone who has registered – we are really excited to spend the day with you all, and we look forward to seeing your session proposals on the site.

If you haven’t yet registered, you have two choices. You can either fill out the registration form and be added to the wait list, or register as a Virtual Camper. Head on over to the Register page for instructions…

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DH and pedagogy (resources)

Lots of you have expressed an interest in talking about DH in the classroom and teaching with digital media. For a straight ‘teaching with digital media’ discussion, there are some other venues on campus (for example, check out Innovate, the DU’s eLearning Events, and the Exploring Learning Technologies Community), so how might we focus the conversation so that it’s relevant to THATCamp and a discussion of what digital humanities means at OSU?

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Categories: Resources, Teaching | 1 Comment

Collaboration (resources and session ideas)

[I’ve had this post in the works for a couple of days now, and Blake Wilder beat me to the punch with an interesting session proposal. I hope the thoughts and links below will inform his and other sessions. –Melanie]

Digital Humanities is a highly collaborative field. There are some practical reasons why this is the case – DH projects tend to be large and complex, and they often require skill sets as diverse as humanities research design, digitization, programming, and organization and description of digital resources. However, the collaborative nature of DH is also a result of its interdisciplinarity. A DH project may involve cutting-edge work, not only in the humanities, but also in computer science, library science, the social sciences, etc. Keep reading for more thoughts on collaboration in DH and some ideas for THATCamp OSU sessions on the topic…

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