In an effort to give interested parties help with prominent digital humanities tools and strategies, THATCamp New England 2014 will play host to six workshops whose purpose is to introduce newcomers (or veterans) to valuable DH skills. We’re incredibly grateful to the volunteers who’ve agreed to head them up! See the schedule for times and locations.
Introduction to XML with Vika Zafrin
An introduction to what text encoding is and why digital humanists do it. Dip your toes into XML (it only has six rules!), and begin to apply it to your research materials during the workshop. We’ll talk about how to use code to illustrate ideas, index concepts, and even find out new things. This workshop will not present TEI, but does give you the foundational knowledge for eventually working with TEI if that’s your heart’s calling.
Introduction to Omeka with Karen Bourrier and Erica Zimmer
Omeka is a free, open-source content management system, which is being used by libraries, archives, museums, and scholars to display content and scholarship in a flexible and interactive setting. This workshop will provide participants with an overview of the platform and teach them how to create and describe items (i.e. photos, text, maps), organize items within collections, and publish content for the public. In addition, metadata standards (i.e. Dublin Core) will be discussed during the workshop as they relate to creating descriptions of items in Omeka. A list of resources and tips will be provided to participants. This workshop will appeal to participants who are interested in digitizing a collection of texts, images or maps, or who are looking for a content management system for classroom use. For more information about Omeka, visit omeka.net or omeka.org. (Thanks to Anna Kijas for the workshop description.)
Data Visualization and Fusion Tables with Debra Sarlin
Easy-entry tools to data visualization are proliferating. Add Fusion Tables to the grand buffet as a way of enabling inviting investigation and engaging exploration. The recipe for this still experimental gem comes to us from our friends at Google. Functional collaboration is, of course, the special sauce of the Google suite, and it feels as though that tasty zest has been generously poured onto the grand smorgasbord of a ManyEyes-like platform. Fusion Tables goes above and beyond by adding geospatial tools and additional features for embedding interactive displays into other webspaces. A fun and collaborative session for those who are a bit fretful in the face of daunting data. Folks who grin transforming the most messy methodological murk into eye candy are welcome as well.
Omeka, Under the Hood with Patrick Murray-John
This is for people who want to look at Omeka’s code. We’ll look at the basic structures of Omeka themes and plugins, and how to navigate around the codebase to find what you need to hack (you know you need to hack!). Plenty of time will be there for Q&A and maybe even guided hacking!
Lexos for Computational Text Analysis with Scott Kleinman and Michael Drout
Lexos is an integrated workflow of tools to facilitate computational text analysis in an easy-to-use web-based platform. It provides the ability to “scrub” texts (remove punctuation, lemmatize, consolidate characters, remove stopwords, etc), cut or segment texts, perform analytic functions such as word counting and cluster analysis. Users can download datas as .csv files or produce visualizations such as dendrograms (for cluster analysis), bubble visualizations, and word clouds. (More functionality is being added on an ongoing basis.) We will demonstrate the functions and use of Lexos, and workshop participants will have the opportunity to get hands-on experience either with our sample text collections or with their own.
Introduction to MediaKron with Timothy Lindgren
This session will be a demonstration of the digital humanities tool MediaKron and a discussion around best practices for maintaining and sharing DH applications.
MediaKron is an online authoring and collaboration tool that was developed at Boston College to support digital humanities practice. This session will include a demonstration of what BC faculty and our partners at BU have been doing with the tool in the last year, and a preview of the next major phase of development that is currently in process. We would welcome input from fellow DH practitioners as we exploring ways to enhance the capabilities of the tool and find a sustainable model for sharing it with other universities.