THATCAMPCANBERRA – NOTES ON SESSIONS
By KYLIE STEVENSON, EDITH COWAN UNIVERSITY, Perth, Western Australia email@example.com
I too went to thatcampcanberra and it was gret to see Pip there. I chose to attend thatcampcanberra to induct me into the world of digital humanities. As a PhD student and early career academic researcher in higher education in the creative arts, I am able envision a future whereby the digital world provides a platform for capturing and expressing the experience of student artists’ creativity, but I wasn’t quite sure what that digital expression might look like.
I am a fairly typical end-user of digital technology – I facebook (a lot), twitter (a bit), email (way too much) and research using the internet (constantly) – but I wasn’t sure how to bring these experiences of the internet into my academic work with creative artists and their art-making process.
For this reason, I went to thatcampcanberra especially for the bootcamp, and it was the perfect way to meet my need to gain an understanding of the current uses of the digital humanities. I highly, highly recommend bootcamp. Bootcamp gave me the opportunity to understand without being made to feel like I was in way over my head. I think it is part of the unconference thatcamp philosophy to make everyone welcome in a spirit of collaboration and inclusivity, but the bootcamp had the added benefit of extending the arm of inclusivity outside the digital humanities in-crowd.
I am a thatcamp convert. I have been enthusing about it to everyone I meet back in Perth, Western Australia, and encouraging them to attend thatcampmelbourne in 2011. Below are lots and lots of quicknotes made during the sessions I attended which may or may not be of any interest to others.
DAY 1 – SESSION 1 1am Semantic Web and humanities
General discussion of people’s projects and discussion of key terms – open data, semantic web, relational data.
Corey – AUSTAGE – Flinders Uni…using semantic web to keep track of actors’ performances – who has worked with who over a long period of time – to try to track collaborations and career development. http://www.ausstage.edu.au/default.jsp?xcid=27
Basil Dewhurst – National Library – building a database of research and researchers’ interests called People Australia. http://www.nla.gov.au/initiatives/peopleaustralia
Much of this discussion is way above my expertise level. But that’s okay as I am getting great insights into the way people are trying to link research information and data across the web.
Duncan – mentioned Freebase – social semantic base where people can go in and find their own local product because there is a user-generated linked data database. http://www.freebase.com/
He mentions the challenge of working across spaces – time periods for historians, geographical space, and depicting this digitally.
Aaron Corn name– manages the ANU pacific and regional archive for indigenous and endangered cultures database http://www.paradisec.org.au/home.html
Aaron.firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Aaron talked about the problem of capturing data such as indigenous performance in a way that is true to the art form and that allows accessibility for the artist and the cultural participants. National recording project for digital recording of indigenous performance – how digital records can reflect messy human knowledge systems that end-users are comfortable with.
Ann from Auslit – http://www.austlit.edu.au/ mentioned web based ontology frameworks, eg, Swoogle – database for ontology (crowdsourcing) http://swoogle.umbc.edu/
Discussion of whether it is possible to have cross-cultural frameworks of ontology. I googled http://protege.stanford.edu/ to try to understand what ontology is in terms of digital humanities as it has a different meaning in terms of arts practice.
DAY 1 BREAK SESSION 12.30-1.30pm Show us your speedos – 3 minute project overviews.
Keith Russell (Newcastle) – blog across generations – interested in the soft zone between humanities and archivists – the space in-between! Look to Terry Turkel “Evocative Objects”.
Duncan Russell – Uni of Southern Queensland Public Memory Research Centre is using the fascinator as a way to archive knowledge http://www.usq.edu.au/pmrc
Monash Uni PhD student capturing memory objects for therapeutic use with the elderly.
Dr Gillian Fuller, Research Director, Design and Art Australia Online – putting art and design archive online. http://www.daao.org.au/
DAY 1 – SESSION 2 1.30pm Cathy Styles – Australian Museum
Play based experiences in the museum http://www.nma.gov.au/index.html
Brainstorm session about various possibilities for online interactive aspects to the museum experience http://www.nma.gov.au/kidz/learn_and_play/saibai_island_canoe_/
Nick Sherritt posted on twitter his project http://defining.net.au/wall/
DAY 1 – SESSION 3 3pm Visual mapping session by Dictionary of Sydney’s Ian Johnson
The use of digital depiction of place to understand the context of a place in a person’s work – applies for example in ausstage search http://www.ausstage.edu.au/ausstage.jsp?xcid=221
Vector mapping- refers to points, lines, objects for indicating place ie objects attached to data, eg, names of people, timelines, associated with a place.
(As opposed to raster images – images of surface of the earth maps, satellite images…identifying features of interest, and different types of features and digitising these).
Formats for attaching vectors ie data to a map – simple text files, shape files, see mapshaper.org
Formats for attaching rasters are tiles see http://www.zoomify.com/
Projections-method of flattening earth onto map, datums – point of reference; and grid referencing systems to model of the earth,
Macquarie Atlas of Indigenous Australia http://img2.macquarienet.com.au//map3/html/macservhtml?id=anonymous@FFC55407771&file=indigenousatlas2009.html&theme=m12
Using geo-referencing matching to coordinates, street referencing, geographical names register, geo-names.
PHALMS project – the overlaying of four or more aligned maps of one place to understand the history of the use of land in Parramatta for social/development purposes http://www.timemap.net/epublications/2004_phalms/map/disk_PHALMS2004.html
Field collection – go to the field with mobile phones, gps systems, iPads, to get data to overlay on the map. Smartphones now combine the photo and the gps together.
Past digital mapping of crime in Harlem http://acl.arts.usyd.edu.au/harlem/
Mapping of Great Britain parish records http://www.port.ac.uk/research/gbhgis/
Interactive mapping of events in Gallipoli on first night using a time line and spatial data http://www.abc.net.au/innovation/gallipoli/
DAY1 – SESSION 4 4.30pm session – How much does a digital humanist need to know?
What upskilling is needed? What is the base line of skills required?
Difficulties with funding large scale digital humanities projects (other than archival, museum curatorial and libraries of national significance).
Ingrid mentioned a website of interest – Great description of cultural analytics at the moment http://lab.softwarestudies.com/2008/09/cultural-analytics.html
Creative commons http://creativecommons.org/about/
Lexmancer versus wordle- a way to analyse critical events through use of language analytic tools https://www.leximancer.com/ http://www.wordle.net/
The paper paradigm versus the digital paradigm in research in academia.
Presenter states: We have not been teaching the specific skills required for analysis in the humanities disciplines, eg, if you do a fine arts degree in sculpture, you hope that you leave the uni with the skills to make sculpture. If you leave with a degree in history or in literature, what skills do you leave with?
Example of archiving via the computer – http://museumvictoria.com.au/csirac/resources/archive.aspx
UNSW http://www.icinema.unsw.edu.au/ wow – an amazing collaboration and research project working on a cinema interactive database.
SUN 29 AUG 2010 – DAY 2 – SESSION 1: 9.30am The Research Zeitgeist – what research tools are being used or need to be used?
Web archiving – collaboration between zotero and web archiving. http://www.zotero.org/
Online repository for internet material www.archive.org/index.php
Heritrix is the Internet Archive’s open-source, extensible, web-scale, archival-quality web crawler project. http://crawler.archive.org/
Australian research collaborative website http://www.arcs.org.au/
Training available for web archiving http://ands.org.au/
Place to web archive www.instapaper.com
Need for an aggregator that keeps a record of where various record storing sites on the web are.
Monkey-spider is an internet facility for tracking internet traffic http://mac.softpedia.com/get/Internet-Utilities/Monkey-Spider.shtml
Need for digital literacy training for undergraduates and postgraduates – what a great idea as part of a research methodology training program…how to use zotera, archiving, etc.
Online storage facility for data https://www.dropbox.com/
Fantastic website to share information across the web – links to facebook, twitter etc. http://posterous.com/
Turn to youtube to find tutorials for using various research tools http://www.youtube.com/
Visual mapping online website http://vue.tufts.edu/
Various websites to capture, manage and visualise information:
- evernotes www.evernotes.com
- justnotes http://selfcoded.com/justnotes/
- mindjet http://www.mindjet.com/
- devonthink http://www.devon-technologies.com/products/devonthink/
Anna – from aus-e-lit – The Aus-e-Lit project is a NeAT-funded project that aims to address the eResearch needs of researchers involved in the study of Australian literature and Australian print culture http://www.itee.uq.edu.au/~eresearch/projects/aus-e-lit/
Site for the production of scientific publishing of documents: http://www.latex-project.org/
Fantastic website that shares documents and turns any document into a web document. www.scribd.com
What repositories does my university, Edith Cowan, have for e-prints and web documents?
The way ANU are using a repository to assist academics to store data http://scholarskeep.anu.edu.au/
Open graph website forum to collate information about network links online http://gephi.org
Ingrid and Joy Powerhouse Museum http://www.powerhousemuseum.com/
Conference of e-learning Australasia http://www.conferencealerts.com/elearning.htm
DAY 2 – SESSION 2 Data Visualisation
Word cloud generator – a tool that takes a data set and sorts key words and creates word clouds (can also be done on wordle – http://www.wordle.net/ )
Use these visualisations to give people clues about contexts and to preserve the outliers as well as foregrounding the commonalities.
Free web based tool for visualising data http://manyeyes.alphaworks.ibm.com/manyeyes/page/About.html
Presenter went into manyeyes and created a visualisation using the data set of all that camper bios
Suggested we use Schneiderman’s rules for visualisation of data:
- Give overview first
- Then give zoom and filter option
- Then give details on demand
Fantastic demonstration on flickr of how to visualise large data sets and how to highlight the possibilities and what it can reveal. http://www.flickr.com/photos/blprnt/3898990677/
Great demonstration of visualisation of voting data in the recent 2010 federal election
Website that provides geographical data about the world as visualisations AND maps
New York Times is a leader in visualisation of data. Map of Olympic medals in that is interactive and geographically displayed:
Guardian newspaper also a leader. See their datablog:
Showed the work of the artist Jason Salovan who depicts data as visual art images
Visual depiction of the asteroids travelling around earth
Site from power of data visualisation discussion:
Fascinating future possibility for data presentation:
SUN 29/8 – FINAL ROUND_OFF SESSION
Sponsored by Uni of Canberra’s Faculty of Art and Design:
Next thatcamp in Melbourne in March 2011 – Craig Bellamy… organiser for Melbourne.
Craig mentioned a digital humanities website that he helped construct whilst working at Kings College, London: http://www.arts-humanities.net/
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