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Save the Dates! Here are MITH’s Fall 2014 Digital Dialogues speakers

MITH is excited to announce the lineup of speakers for our Fall 2014 Digital Dialogues season!  Our seven speakers come from a wide variety of research specialties ranging from Women’s Studies, Film & Digital Media,  Information Studies and gaming culture.  Reserve the date now for:

Tuesday September 30, 2014: Alison Booth

Tuesday October 7, 2014: Stephanie Ceraso

Tuesday October 14, 2014: Marisa Parham

Tuesday October 21, 2014: Alexis Lothian

Tuesday October 28, 2014:  Andrew Johnston 

Tuesday November 4, 2014: Darius Kazemi

Tuesday, November 11, 2014: Alex Wright

All talks are at 12:30 pm in the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities Conference Room, 0301 Hornbake Library. All talks are open to the public. Talk titles and abstracts will be forthcoming. Speakers will be listed on the Digital Dialogues schedule here, which will be updated with more information about each talk as it becomes available.

Digital Dialogues is MITH’s signature events program, held almost every week while the academic semester is in session. Digital Dialogues is an occasion for discussion, presentation, and intellectual exchange that you can build into your weekly schedule. . . . Continue Reading

MITH Submits Digital Humanities Innovation Testimony to Congress

The following was submitted to the Senate Appropriations Committee by MITH Associate Director Matthew Kirschenbaum.  This was in response to an invited opportunity for researchers and innovators to give testimony for an April 29, 2014 hearing on how federal research dollars can help drive innovation.

Public Witness Testimony

Submitted to the Senate Appropriations Committee

Digital Humanities Innovation from NEH Funding

Matthew G. Kirschenbaum, Associate Professor of English and Associate Director, Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH), University of Maryland

As a scholar and researcher in the new and emerging field of Digital Humanities, it is my pleasure to offer remarks in support of the role federal funding plays in this work at the University of Maryland College Park, specifically the Office of Digital Humanities in the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Digital Humanities involves the application of computational tools and techniques to large bodies of digital material (so-called “Big Data”) drawn from the cultural heritage sector. Examples include textual corpora containing literally millions of books, large-scale image collections digitized by museums, and collections of audio recordings. Digital humanities also involves innovation in new forms of scholarly communication, including social media; and new forms of publication and analysis, such as visualization, GIS mapping, and 3-D animation or reconstruction. . . . Continue Reading

Two New Start-Up Grants

MITH is delighted to announce that the University of Maryland has been awarded two Digital Humanities Start-Up Grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Enhancing Music Notation Addressability (EMA) was awarded $59,971, and will be led by MITH Research Programmer Raffaele Viglianti. EMA originates from the idea that music notation, like text, can be “addressed” in new ways in a digital environment, allowing scholars to identify and name structures of various kinds. However, how can one virtually “circle” a section of music notation? and how can a machine interpret this “circling” to retrieve music notation? To research these questions, we are teaming up with the Du Chemin: Lost Voices project, which is reconstructing songs from 16th c. France.

We will work on analytical music annotations already produced by students and scholars as part of the Du Chemin project and re-model them as Linked Open Data nanopublications. In the sciences, nanopublication is providing the research community with ways of managing attribution and documenting quality of even small contributions. The nanopublication model facilitates accurate citation and promotes massively collaborative scholarship. We seek to extend these benefits to humanities scholarship. . . . Continue Reading

MITH is Now Accepting Fall 2014 Digital Dialogues Speaker Nominations!

MITH is accepting nominations for potential speakers for our Digital Dialogues series in the Fall 2014 semester.  Digital Dialogues is MITH’s signature events program, held almost every week while the academic semester is in session. Digital Dialogues is an occasion for discussion, presentation, and intellectual exchange that you can build into your weekly schedule.

To see a list of previous speakers, see our past dialogue schedules.

Nominations should be submitted by 5:00 pm on Friday, June 13.  Click here to submit your nominations.

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Podcast: Spectacular Stunts and Digital Detachment: Connecting Effects to Affects in US Car Movies

Caetlin Benson-Allott Caetlin Benson-Allott, Assistant Professor of English and Core Faculty Member, Film and Media StudiesGeorgetown University @VideoPhD
MITH Conference RoomTuesday, April 22, 201412:30 pm

Car movies—movies that subordinate plot and character to chases and collisions—typically appear in cycles that coincide with breakthroughs in visual effects production, concomitant changes in production cultures, and—not coincidentally—devastating advancements in corporate globalization. Comparing the construction and ideological framing of automotive effects from the 1970s and 2000s US car movie cycles, I demonstrate how digital effects cultures are promoting neoliberal economies of spectacle through the same tropes their predecessors established to critique corporate culture. This analysis refutes prior critical dismissals of spectacle as mere visual stimulation, suggesting that its sensation also inspires political feelings

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MITH awarded HathiTrust Research Center grant

MITH is pleased to announce that we have been awarded $39,690 from the HathiTrust Research Center (HTRC) for a prototyping grant in support of the HTRC’s Workset Creation For Scholarly Analysis project. In collaboration with HTRC, MITH will develop a prototype application to facilitate the distributed correction and enhancement of HathiTrust metadata records.

This work builds directly on several previous MITH projects, including a system for HathiTrust metadata correction developed by Travis Brown, MITH Assistant Director of Research and Development, as part of a partnership between MITH and the Princeton Prosody Archive, as well as work with Faculty Fellow Peter Mallios and the Foreign Literatures in America (FLA) team. We are excited to be pushing this work forward in ways that will help make the HathiTrust an increasingly useful resource for scholars.

As part of this new project, MITH will continue to collaborate with Mallios and the FLA team to develop a set of services and interfaces that will allow the FLA project (and other projects like it) to pull metadata records from the HathiTrust, correct and annotate these records using standardized vocabularies, gather corrections and annotations from other teams or scholars, and export enhanced metadata in formats suitable for publication as linked data. . . . Continue Reading

MITH’s Research & Collections featured on NPR’s All Things Considered

When National Public Radio’s daily news show All Things Considered wanted to do a piece on the challenges of digital archives and preservation, they contacted MITH about coming to our offices for an interview.  Last week, Audie Cornish came to MITH and interviewed several of our research staff including Executive Director Neil Fraistat, Associate Director Trevor Muñoz, and BitCurator Community Lead Porter Olsen, regarding MITH’s various projects related to digital archives and digital forensics, including the Deena Larsen Collection, the Bill Bly Collection of Electronic Literature, and the BitCurator Project.

The resulting piece will air TODAY, April 9th, on All Things Considered.  Check the NPR site to discover your local air time(s).  If you missed the show, it will be available soon on both the MITH site as well as on NPR.

Click here to visit the blog for All Tech Considered, the featured segment in which the story will air.

And: Join Us for a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” at 3 PM Eastern Time

Associate Director Trevor Muñoz will also be featured on Reddit’s “Ask Me Anything” with NPR librarian Janelle Kinlaw starting at 3:00pm Eastern today, April 9th.   . . . Continue Reading

Podcast: New Voices in Digital Curation

Margo Padilla Margo Padilla, National Digital Stewardship ResidentLibrary of Congress and MITH@margo_padilla
MITH Conference RoomTuesday, April 15, 201412:30 pm

Residents from the National Digital Stewardship Residency cohort in Washington, D.C. will present on the digital stewardship projects they are engaged in at their host institutions. Margo Padilla, resident at MITH, will present her work on developing access models for born-digital collections. Molly Schwartz will discuss her project to make digital resources accessible in research libraries and the development of the Accessibility Toolkit for the Association of Research Libraries. Erica Titkemeyer will talk about her work at the Smithsonian Institution Archives, identifying the digital curation requirements of time‐based media art. Lauren Work will discuss the evaluation of at‐risk media to support digitization initiatives at PBS. More information about the residents and the residency program can be found here.

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Podcast: There Is No Internet

Lori Emerson Lori Emerson, Assistant Professor of EnglishUniversity of Colorado at Boulder
MITH Conference RoomTuesday, April 1, 201412:30 pm

Emerson will discuss her current two-part book project, titled OTHER NETWORKS, and how it moves through both technical and user-based accounts of networks that outside of or before the Internet, asking both how and for whom each network works (in this case the “whom” will mostly be writers and artists). The project then looks at how the shift from rhetoric that celebrates liberationism via telecommunications networks in the 70s and 80s to rhetoric that calls for libertarianism via the Internet starting in the early to mid-90s may have actually been a kind of release of a repression. While you can trace an almost complete reversal of the meaning of ‘free’ and ‘open’ in relation to distributed networks to communitarian and even socialist, networks in the early 70s such as Community Memory and Project Cybersyn, you can also trace an even earlier reversal – perhaps the true seed of what’s called “cyberlibertarianism” – to the 1960s, in the conceptualization and design of ARPANet and ARPA-related networks that, in the spirit of the managerial theory of the day (just as much or perhaps more than in the spirit of the 1960s counter-culture), emphasized creativity, cooperation, and community. . . . Continue Reading

The Walt Whitman Archive

In the past few months, MITH has been developing software for a project related to the Walt Whitman Archive. The Walt Whitman Archive is an electronic research and teaching tool that sets out to make Whitman’s vast work, for the first time, easily and conveniently accessible to scholars, students, and general readers. Working in collaboration with the University of Texas at Austin, as well as the Center for Digital Research in the Humanities at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln, the project team is focusing on Walt Whitman’s annotations and commentary about history, science, theology, and art being discussed during his time. These annotations survived in many forms, either as marginalia and underlinings on books, or as collages of newspaper clippings, or as separate handwritten notes. Studying this material can further our understanding of the poet’s self-education and his compositional methods.

The documents containing Whitman’s annotations have been transcribed and encoded by the project team according to the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) standard, which allows scholars to precisely describe complex texts with paste-downs, doodles, mixed printed and handwritten content, etc. In the case of Whitman’s marginalia, it has also been possible to encode the editors’ understanding of what exactly the poet highlighted, annotated and commented on. . . . Continue Reading