Weekly Roundup: January 17

digital detroit

  • I’m fascinated by the 60 Years of Urban Change project (image of Detroit above) from the Institute for Quality Communities at the University of Oklahoma – a simple yet powerful demonstration of urban transformation.

Digital History & AHA 2015

Far from being in New York for this year’s AHA conference, I was visiting family in Texas. Nonetheless, two things were fairly clear from roughly 1800 miles away: digital history projects were getting some attention, and conference attendees were, thankfully, tweeting conference away.

As a side note to the rest of this post, I want to thank everyone who tweeted from AHA and from every conference. Not only is it a great tool for those attending conferences, but it is a great resource for the rest of us who are  unable for one reason or another to attend a given conference. In fact, I probably could not write this post if it were not for the AHA attendees who tweeted panels, projects, papers, thoughts, questions, and answers.

To begin, let’s just look at the panels that were exclusively (based on the online program) on digital history:

And needless to say, there were digital projects and methods presented on panels that were not exclusively on digital history. But we can’t stop there those who presented at the Digital Projects Lightning Round. You can see a complete list of the projects with short descriptions here – with the added bonus that the projects are linked to their respected websites.

In addition to the AHA’s list of participants, check out Anelise H. Shrout’s list on of Digital Projects at the AHA on her blog, especially since she includes projects from the associated THATCamp as well.

Finally, you can attend, as it were, the Getting Started in Digital History Workshop via Jason M. Kelly’s blog.

Coming soon: posts on mapping and teaching from AHA and other sources!

Weekly Roundup: December 20

  • “History and astronomy are a lot alike. When people claim history couldn’t possibly be scientific, because how can you do science without direct experimentation, astronomy should be used as an immediate counterexample.”

From Digital History, Saturn’s Rings, and the Battle of Trafalgar, from scottbot.net

  • “Over the years, the digital revolution has changed how oral historians conceptualize projects, how they deal with ethical issues, how they process their materials, how they think about sound and video, and how materials are made accessible. All of this has placed oral history squarely in the middle of the conversation about digital humanities.”

Last, but not least (because I’m excited to get my hands on a copy) is Oral History and Digital Humanites: Voice, Access, and Engagement, edited by Douglas A. Boyd and Mary A. Larson, from Palgrave Macmillan,

 oral history and digital humanities

Digital Tools in the Classroom


  • http://timeline.knightlab.com/

    A colleague included an assignment using Timeline JS in her urban history class this past semester and said it was a great success. Basically, Timeline creates web-based timeline presentations into which you can easily embed links, YouTube clips, images, and so on. It’s intuitive, and the main page includes a number of examples created by Time, Le Monde, and other news outlets.


  • http://voyant-tools.org/

    A text-analysis tool into which you can cut and paste text, or provide a website URL. Voyant will provide word counts, word frequency, contextual information, and visualization tools (word clouds, graphs, etc.) that you can download or share online. I’ve heard that you can enter, say, five Jane Austen novels or the collected works of Thoreau, and while it goes slowly, it will still work with that amount of text. One suggested use I’ve heard for a history class is analyzing the language in the United States’ Declaration of Independence and the France’s Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen.

Weekly roundup: December 13

  • The University of Lincoln Repository has made Martin Paul Eve’s 2014 book, Open Access and the Humanities: Contexts, Controversies and the Future (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge) available as a PDF: “If you work in a university, it is likely that you have heard the term “open access” in the past couple of years. You may also have heard either that it is the utopian answer to all the problems of research dissemination or perhaps that it marks the beginning of an apocalyptic new era of pay-to-say publishing. In this book, Dr. Martin Paul Eve sets out the histories, contexts and controversies for open access, specifically in the humanities. Broaching practical elements alongside economic histories, open licensing, monographs and funder policies, this book is a must-read for both those new to open access or scholarly communications and those with an already keen interest in the latest developments for the humanities.”

Weekly roundup: December 6

  • It’s not by any means new, having been online since 2008, but I spent a bit of time exploring the collection from the Civil Rights Digital Library the other day.