UCLDH recently hosted a fantastic talk by Victoria Van Hyning, Junior Research Fellow at Pembroke College, and a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow. Entitled ‘Humanities Crowdsourcing on the Zooniverse Platform‘, Victoria took us on an in-depth tour of the many crowdsourcing projects delivered by Zooniverse, which started with Galaxy Zoo, ten years ago. Zooniverse has since then grown rapidly, now reaching out to an amazing 1.5 million volunteers with over 50 bespoke projects, and a free DIY project builder option too. We discussed what inspires volunteers to take part (answer: penguins), how crowdsourcing gives access to content not normally available and quality control. Victoria has very kindly agreed to share her talk with all:
Archive for the 'Events' Category
The Digital Classicist London 2017 seminar programme is now confirmed. Looking at the titles and abstracts, you will see that these are all Digital Humanities topics with many from international speakers and their relevance is not limited to the study of the ancient world. The full programme with abstracts is online on the DC website and listed below. The programme poster is available for download. No registration is needed.
Digital Classicist London 2017 Institute of Classical Studies
Fridays at 16:30
Room 234*, Senate House south block, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
(*except June 16 & 23, room G34)
Seminars will be screencast on the Digital Classicist London YouTube channel, for the benefit of those who are not able to make it in person.
Jun 2 Sarah Middle (Open University), ‘Linked Data and Ancient World Research: studying past projects from a user perspective’.
Jun 9 Donald Sturgeon (Harvard University), ‘Crowdsourcing a digital library of pre-modern Chinese’.
Jun 16* Valeria Vitale et al. (Institute of Classical Studies), ‘Recogito 2: linked data without the pointy brackets’.
Jun 23* Dimitar Iliev et al. (University of Sofia “St. Kliment Ohridski”), ‘Historical GIS of South-Eastern Europe’.
Jun 30 Lucia Vannini (Institute of Classical Studies), ‘The role of Digital Humanities in Papyrology: Practices and user needs in papyrological research’. Paula Granados García (Open University), ‘Cultural Contact in Early Roman Spain through Linked Open Data resources’.
Jul 7 Elisa Nury (King’s College London), ‘Collation Visualization: Helping Users to Explore Collated Manuscripts’.
Jul 14 Sarah Ketchley (University of Washington), ‘Re-Imagining Nineteenth Century Nile Travel and Excavation for a Digital Age: The Emma B. Andrews Diary Project’.
Jul 21 Dorothea Reule & Pietro Liuzzo (University of Hamburg), ‘Issues in the development of digital projects based on user requirements. The case of Beta maṣāḥǝft’.
Jul 28 Rada Varga (Babeș-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca), ‘Romans 1by1: Transferring information from ancient people to modern users’.
Full programme and the abstracts are online at:
Digital Classicist London seminar is organized by Gabriel Bodard, Simona Stoyanova and Valeria Vitale (ICS) and Simon Mahony and Eleanor Robson (UCL).
I was very pleased to be invited by the British Council to an event following on from the one I attended in Guadalajara in November 2015.This time it was to Mexico City as part of the British Council Education Dialogues series; this one day event was held at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, (UNAM ) and titled, ‘Skills for Research: identifying and developing best practice in development for doctoral students’.
This was also to promote the publication of the Skills For Research document put together by the British Council and Oxford Brooks University. I gave two presentations, one in each session: ‘Perspectives on doctoral student development: sharing experiences from UCL’ and ‘Research communities in the UK, best practices and challenges’.
This trip to Mexico City also gave a welcome opportunity to meet up with DIS alumna and honorary lecturer Isabel Galina Russell for a tour of UNAM and the National Library where she works as a researcher.
Mexican hospitality is always warm and generous and my visit was finished off with a trip around Mexico City and its famous monuments and Castle. As UNAM will be hosting the Digital Humanities Conference DH2018, El Colegio de México and the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México in alliance with the Red de Humanidades Digitales (RedHD), my orientation is now done.
Niels Brügger, the Professor in Internet Studies and Digital Humanities at Aarhus University, Denmark, will deliver this year’s UCLDH Susan Hockey Lecture, titled Where Does the Born- and Reborn-Digital Material Take the Digital Humanities?, on 18 May here at UCL. The lecture will be streamed live for anyone who is unable to attend.
For the visual identity for the event, we decided to remix the cover of a recent book co-edited by the speaker with Ralph Schroeder and published by UCL Press, The Web as History (2017). The stylised web interface, modified for the lecture with perhaps a slight hint of parody, now appears on posters and postcards, and will be displayed as a scene-setting device on the lecture hall screen. On Friday last week, testing the design on the big screen did not work too well, but then it turned out that the whole university network had just gone down, reportedly due to a defective cooling pipe at the main data centre. It’ll be up at the event, no doubt.
The promotional postcards show the same design in a range of alternate colours, and they are currently available from UCLDH: pick up yours at the UCLDIS Departmental Office! The remaining stock will be given away at the lecture.
UCLDH Acting Director, Professor Tim Weyrich, will be the papers chair at Graphics and Cultural Heritage (GCH), an international workshop in Graz, Austria in September 2017. The workshop invites works from both the heritage and engineering sectors:
It aims to foster an international dialogue between ICT experts and CH scientists to advance the understanding of critical requirements for processing, managing, and delivering cultural information to a broad audience.
Papers are due for submission by Friday 5th May 2017.
We’re very busy here at UCLDH, delivering papers and promoting our wonderfully diverse portfolio of research
Martin Zaltz Austwick, our Associate Director and Senior Lecturer in Advanced Spatial Analysis and Visualization, has been reporting on the Survey of London: Whitechapel project at the annual meeting of the American Association of Geographers in Boston, at a seminar for Geospatial Innovations in the Digital Humanities in Lancaster, and at a workshop on Visualizations and other digital possibilities at Birkbeck, London.
Andreas Vlachidis and Antonis Bikakis will be presenting their paper on “Semantic Representation and Enrichment of Cultural Heritage Information for Fostering Reinterpretation and Reflection on the European History” at the ITN-DCH Final Conference on Digital Heritage, on 23-25 May 2017.
Pete Williams will be giving a paper at the IJAS International Conference for Academic Disciplines in Venice, on 20- 23 June 2017.
Last week I had the great pleasure to host our most recent UCLDH Seminar. Our guest speaker was Claudia Mendias, Manager of the Library Digital Services team at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), who addressed a full room of DHers and Librarians from across London and beyond. Entitled ‘Managing library collections with friends, favours and a spoonful of sugar’, Claudia took us on an enlightening journey of the amazing digital content SOAS holds, and the library systems and research tools which support scholarship. From the advantages and responsibilities of open source platforms, to the systems and tools used to manage the growing digital resources within the collections, you too can enjoy the talk.
Many thanks to Claudia for agreeing to share her slides.
I was back in Shanghai again at the close of 2016 to follow up my earlier guest lecture at the Shanghai Institute of Design with a week long workshop. They have a Master’s level programme on Digital Publishing in the Department of Digital Publishing and Exhibition Design but with little Faculty expertise on the web or Internet. After discussion with the Institute’s President and the Programme Convenor we decided on the title, ‘Getting over the Great Wall’, where I would cover the history and development of the Internet, cultural influences on design, publishing online, accessibility and usability design, and information design (it is the Institute of Design). This would be finished off with student presentations of their projects: to design a digital product (for the web or mobile device) that in some way brought together aspects of cultural difference. The cultural differences could be within China itself as none of the students had traveled outside China. The first task was to ban Flash and Dreamweaver and explain why this was the case!
This workshop, of course, also afforded the opportunity to showcase UCL.
Interestingly, I’m the only one not wearing a coat here and that only happened on the first day. Not only is there no internet connection or wifi in the teaching rooms (something we take for granted) but there is no heating either – only fans (look carefully at the photos below) to keep cool in the summer; apparently south of the Yellow River building regulations permit buildings with no heating.
A workstation and projector is set up in each room but my outstanding TA had to improvise as the remote control was missing (sounds familiar!). Much of my teaching material had been kindly translated by current UCLDH students but I still needed an interpreter/translator. Everything was presented in English and Chinese as they are all learning English too.
They felt sorry for me when the temperature dropped further and moved my class to the executive lecture room which has heating. The heater, however, only pointed at the lecture station and it was not possible to move it to warm the students who still needed their coats and scarves. Interestingly, no one sat in the front row (clearly a Chinese tradition too).
As well as lectures, we had a series of group tutorials where we discussed the student projects while wearing many layers of clothing. As a Design Institute, they have very talented artists among the students. The images shown here were ideas for new style masks for the Peking Opera to encourage a younger audience. Interesting and considering how central it is to Chinese culture, only two projects featured food; others were concerned with opera, architecture, local dialects and one with traditional Chinese designs being used on sneakers.
On the final day of the workshop, the students presented their work. Without exception, it was all visually stunning (it is the foremost Institute of Design with high academic standards) and very impressive as they only had a short time to decide on and design their projects. Overall, what they managed with only a couple of days for preparation was really outstanding.
By the end of the week, the students were relaxed and comfortable, no longer shy. Those that spoke some English took pride in talking to me and forgave my extremely limited Mandarin.
I wrapped things up with a roundup and general remarks on their work as well as some thoughts on the value of education, cultural exchange and what we can learn from each other.
We had to schedule another half-hour at the end of the workshop for the mandatory photo session which starts with several group ones and finishes with individual and group ‘selfies’! These get shared across the Chinese social media platforms, particularly WeChat which is ubiquitous there.
I need to add a few words about what I gained from this experience. Once again I enjoyed the warmth and hospitality of the Institute and particularly of the President, Professor Wu, who had invited me and who insisted on cooking (superbly and with great pride) almost every evening of my stay. But it goes further, I needed to research the history and legislation of the Internet in China, how it operates under the government’s control, legislation about Copyright and Intellectual Property and how these fit it in with the wider world. This was all new to me and will be fed into my own teaching about cultural and global differences. Above all, I learned more from the students about their culture, about their hopes and aspirations, about our similarities as well as our differences. The students were attentive and enthusiastic and I very much look forward to future visits.
The Digital Classicist London seminar series
Institute of Classical Studies
Senate House, Malet Street, London WC1E 7HU
Fridays at 16:30 in room 234
- Jun 3: Gregory Crane (Leipzig & Tufts), ‘Philological Education and Citizenship in the 21st Century’
- Jun 10: Matteo Romanello (Lausanne & DAI), ‘Of People, Places and References: Extracting information from Classics publications’
- Jun 17: Eleanor Robson (University College London), ‘From the ground to the cloud: digital edition of freshly excavated cuneiform tablets on Oracc’
- Jun 24: Stuart Dunn (King’s College London), ‘Reading text with GIS: Different digital lenses for Ancient World Geography’
- Jul 1: Valeria Vitale (King’s College London), ‘The use and abuse of 3D visualisation in the study of the Ancient World’
- Jul 8: Chiara Palladino (Leipzig & Bari), ‘Annotating geospatial patterns in ancient texts: problems and strategies’
- Jul 15: Daniel Pett (British Museum) & George Oates (Museum in a Box), ‘3D in Museums, Museums in 3D’
- Jul 22: Stelios Chronopoulos (Freiburg), ‘New Life into Old Courses? Using Digital Tools in Reading and Prose Composition Classes’
- Jul 29: Silke Vanbeselaere (KU Leuven), ‘Exploring ancient sources with data visualisation’
Each seminar will offer an overview of the subject suitable for postgraduate students or interested colleagues in Archaeology, Classics, Digital Humanities and related fields, along with suggested reading, practical exercise and discussion topics. No advance preparation is required, but you will get the most out of these seminars if you check out the short bibliographies suggested on the programme website.
As part of my recent visit to Shanghai, I was honoured to be the guest of the President of the China Academy of Art, Shanghai Institute of Design. The China Academy of Art (CAA) is the premier Art Academy in China and the Shanghai campus is the foremost Design Institute. Aparently the CAA is also the first art university and first graduate school in China.
During my stay I met with academics, discussed cultural differences in teaching and learning, assisted in an English language teaching session and met students showcasing their impressive work on UI design and App design in the Department of Digital Publishing and Exhibition Design.
I was also able to highlight some UCLDH research and students’ work in my guest lecture: ‘Designing a Digital Publishing Product’.
What was most impressive was the lecture poster; I was expecting A4 but, after all, this is indeed China’s premier design institute. The image was a quick draw caricture of me and the President by one of his students.
The Shanghai Zhangjiang Campus is a small one and the main parts of the university are situated at two locations in nearby Hangzhou, both with very distinctive and award winning architecture. The original campus at Nanshan overlooks the famous West Lake and the Xiangshan Central Campus (the largest site) on the outskirts of Hangzhou has become a tourist attraction in its own right and features the Crafts (Folk Art) Museum (which was unfortunately closed on the day I visited but that provides a good excuse for a follow up visit and next time to stay on that campus).