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12 posts tagged with "digital humanities"

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4 min read

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I鈥檝e always found that context changes everything when learning something new, especially when it comes to understanding why that something matters. The first example I can think of is how, for all the general chemistry courses I鈥檝e taken, the concepts never really clicked, nor did I see why I had to learn them. Four of these courses later, I wasn鈥檛 very excited to take biochemistry, but when I did, I couldn鈥檛 believe how much of a difference it made to have a real context: the human body, where chemical reactions happen for a reason. Suddenly, the abstract became pretty important鈥擨 could see how it all fit together, and in turn, my understanding of general chem probably increased threefold. Rest assured, this blog post is not going to be about chemistry. Rather, it鈥檚 about how the same phenomenon occurred this summer, when working on the Orlando Project changed the way I think about data...

6 min read

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As an English student, I was always told to keep my writing concise. Doing so was often easy because I could assume that the person reading my work would be an English scholar, so their expectations of my writing and the knowledge they brought to it would sit within a very specific range. In this way, I trained myself to default to an academic tone and level of complexity and to produce writing that was comparative and analytical.

This summer, however, as a member of the LINCS documentation team, I worked on an entirely different kind of writing: user guides and instruction manuals for the many software tools developed or employed by the project. To begin writing documentation, I first had to relearn how to write...

9 min read

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Over the past two years I鈥檝e had chances to work on many aspects of the Orlando Project, but the work that I鈥檝e consistently found the most engaging has been researching and writing author profiles. Orlando鈥檚 profiles are collaboratively authored scholarly histories, which are structured by a custom XML tagset, and which allow researchers to explore the intersections between women鈥檚 lives and their creative production. During my first summer as Digital Humanities (DH) Research Assistant, I began work on the profile on Lili Elbe; in the past year, I started writing a profile on Gurpreet Kaur Bhatti. As I put the finishing touches on these profiles, I鈥檝e noticed that both women鈥檚 life stories highlight the overlap between the personal and the political, and between individual identity and the limits imposed on creative work...

6 min read

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The Digital Humanities (DH) was not something I had a lot of experience with before starting as a LINCS undergraduate research assistant. My work with LINCS pertains to the Early Modern London project, working alongside the Map of Early Modern London (MoEML) team. Part of my job is what LINCS refers to as reconciliation, or what MoEML refers to as disambiguation...

8 min read

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I joined the LINCS Project as an undergraduate research assistant, mainly to work on the Orlando Project. This position gave me my first real experience with Digital Humanities (DH). Before starting the job I could barely have come up with even a vague definition of DH (despite my best efforts and quite a bit of Googling). When I finally did start to get a sense of the nature of DH鈥攁 field that brings together humanities research and new technologies, birthing new possibilities and adding depth to research鈥攖here were elements of it that felt very familiar and in line with the sort of work I had experience with as an undergraduate student majoring in English...

7 min read

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When I began working with ontologies at the LINCS project this summer, my colleagues and I quickly found ourselves asking exasperating questions like 鈥淗ow do you explain the visual concepts present in an artwork to a database?鈥 Even more broad (and maybe ultimately unanswerable) questions like 鈥渨hat is a thing?鈥 also began to arise.

Soon I was assigned to music data...

6 min read

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History has always been something I鈥檝e been passionate about, and as an undergraduate student approaching graduation, I鈥檝e become more eager to find ways to preserve primary sources. From my experience, having access to primary sources makes the researching process a lot easier, and these sources would not exist if there weren鈥檛 proper measures to preserve them.

If you鈥檝e ever taken a history class, you probably know about the distinction between primary and secondary sources, and how primary sources are integral to the reliability of any history paper or assignment. Among primary sources in history, one type that goes largely unnoticed and can actually be hard to define is oral history...

8 min read

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In the summer of 2020, I was hired as a research assistant with the University of Guelph鈥檚 Bachinski/Chu Print Study Collection. Initially, my job entailed the care and maintenance of the objects in the collection with a few other tasks as assigned. Of course, the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic meant that I spent the entire summer not working with the objects themselves, but rather doing deep research from home, using whatever online sources I could find. This proved to be challenging because while the collection boasts objects from a variety of dates and creators, it is largely made up of the works of mid-to-late twentieth-century Canadian printmakers who have a limited online presence...

4 min read

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To avoid the COVID-19 outbreak, I moved back home from Guelph to the town of Bowmanville, a community with a population of around 40,000 people. My family sold our home of twenty years just before the pandemic, buying a quaint little house in Minden, Ontario, a town with only 4,000 residents. I consider myself lucky for moving back with my family when the outbreak began to worsen, even if I have gone from high-speed internet on the University of Guelph鈥檚 campus to fighting for bandwidth with the neighbours. Even if I also need to check for bears when leaving the house...