You’ve Got Your Work Cut Out For You, by Hans-Peter Gustar, Unsplash.com
Getting organized for a new academic year is, if you’re like me, a disorienting process. I’m always worried that I’ve missed something crucial - wasn’t there a meeting today? Is my course set up and ready to go? Does everyone have what they need from me? What do I need from everyone else? This year of course it’s even worse. And if you’re a new graduate student here at Carleton trying to work from home… well, I imagine you’re equal parts stressed out, worried, and excited about the upcoming year.
It’s going to be ok. After all, you’re studying the digital humanities, and in every online course you take you’ll see the immediate impact of the digital on what you’re studying; conversely, what you’re studying is going to change how you understand the digital. It’s in that back-and-forth that I find the most interesting DH to lurk.
If you’re a new DH student at Carleton, I’d like to meet with you one-on-one for an orientation chat. We can do this via Zoom, Skype, Mattermost, phone call, whatever system works for you. I’ll send you an email to sort this out: watch your cmail inbox!
May the usual disorientation of a new September resolve itself quickly, and may y’all find your way to a productive and engaging Fall term!
Orienteering is a sport built on rapidly figuring out the lay of the land, using compass and map, as you race the course. As you get oriented at Carleton, you’ll want to make sure the Library’s GIS resources are one of your first points of call!
Carleton Library’s GIS folks have a number of historical Ottawa resources available. Fire Insurance Plans (FIPs) include detailed building information for Canadian urban areas in the late 19th and early 20th century, and we have digitized and georeferenced FIPs available for Ottawa for 1901 & 1912 . Relatedly, historical City of Ottawa air photos for many years 1928-2017 are viewable on GeoOttawa; click the little camera icon, and all of those images are downloadable by current Carleton students, staff, and faculty. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with Library GIS staff at email@example.com with any questions about these or other resources.
Unless otherwise specified, these are open to all.
Hey DIGH5800 students: these can count towards the course too!
One thing that disappointed me greatly about the cancellation of DH2020 in Ottawa this past summer was that we lost the opportunity to engage with work in Indigenous Digital Humanities (Indigenous DH was one of our core themes). I’m excited then to see this seminar happening this fall- Community-Facing Data Management Platforms for Indigenous-University Partnerships, from the University of British Columbia (link for more info; zoom-based). Presented on Fridays at 3-4:30 PM (PACIFIC TIME) “One of the key challenges to collaborative practice between university-based researchers and Indigenous communities is to foster equitable knowledge co-production with all stakeholders through the sharing of data. Increasingly this task is mediated by digtal systems, but there is no single solution that serves all needs.” This seminar series begins on September 25 with Elroy White/ Q̌íx̌itasu (Heiltsuk) ‘You Can’t Manage What You Don’t Know: Heiltsuk Traditional Use and Site Mapping’.
Tropy is a piece of software for managing research photographs. It has some advance file organization features, including an editor for transcribing text and so on. There will be a webinar just for graduate students on October 9 at 11:00am EDT ‘to talk about doing research, tips and tricks for maximizing your time, and how to keep yourself organized from the very beginning’ with your research photos. Registration required; see the Tropy website. October 9, 2020, 11:00am EDT via Zoom. Registration: Click here.
Datacamp - I’ve arranged to have a ‘classroom’ in the Datacamp online coding tutorials website, for any DH students. If you’d like to be ‘enrolled’ in this, please send me a note and I’ll send you the keys. While it is set up to have ‘assignments’ or ‘courses’ - and I’ve added a few that struck me as useful - you can take whichever bits and pieces seem to be of interest or relevant to your broader interests. If you’d like to count some of this for DIGH5800 that can work too; just get in touch.
From our friends and colleagues in the DH Hub at U of O: ‘Do you have Data! Data! Data! Do you know what to do with it?’ with Dr. Felicity Tayler, Research Data Management Librarian (uOttawa). Open to all; 23 September: 11:30-1:00 via Zoom: “So you’ve collected data, now what? This session will help you understand your data workflow, the importance of documenting it, and other best practices for managing your data with a view towards sharing it with others. We will also address when it is not ok to share your data and what you should do with it instead.” This will be delivered in English but there will be bilingual slides and question period. Contact the U of O DH-Hub (dhnarts@uOttawa.ca) for more information and to register. (Also, keep your eye on dhsite.org).
Practical Digital Ethics, an online self-directed course by Rachel Thomas and colleagues, is available here. Perhaps there might be interest in forming a reading group?
Data Feminism, by Catherine D’Ignazio and Lauren F. Klein, can be read in full online here
In future editions of the Irregular I’ll create a ‘things to read’ section perhaps. Send me things worth sharing!
Silhouette, by Ishika Dewkali, Unsplash
I want to shine the spotlight on one of the DH courses on offer this year, led by Paul Théberge, called CLMD 6105F/MUSI 5008F/DIGH5902G: Issues in the Technologies of Culture. It promises to be a fascinating class - take a look at the abstract!
The course is initially framed by a broad understanding of technology as cultural and social practice; issues discussed include technology and its relationship to science, philosophy, objective/subjective knowledge, economy and ideology. The course then turns to a consideration of the inter-related histories of cinema and sound, music and sound carriers, video games and computers. Issues of innovation, representation, textuality, gender, and social networks are discussed in relation to music, sound, image, and digital technologies. Urban and virtual worlds as visual and aural spaces and spaces of consumption, the construction time and space, infrastructures and ecology, and the technologization of the body are also considered.
…speaking of video games…
Archaeogaming is a perspective that considers video games, digital media & culture (both human and machine made) through archaeological lenses. We’re not talking ‘media archaeology’, which is something else entirely. Give ‘Nothing Beside Remains’ a play and investigate a ruined village…
How many days has it been? Twenty? Thirty? But at last you see it ahead of you - the ruins you seek. A name no longer spoken. A location no longer recorded. A legacy lost to dust. You’ve arrived in a ruined village lost in the desert for hundreds of years. Explore the village, see what remains of it, and see what you can learn about the people who lived here. What did they believe? What caused their downfall? You may never know for sure, but perhaps there’s a clue or two left in the sand…
After you’ve played it, read the developer notes about how it was built, and then perhaps reflect on ways we might communicate complex issues of the Anthropocene to general audiences, or ways we might encourage people to engage more deeply with cultures not their own, or… or… or....
The game’s creator is Michael Cook, who researches artificial intelligence and game design.
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