Episode 05 – Tragedy and Technology

We take a break from our normal format to spend the entirety of this episode thinking about the role of technology—its great power to forge social bonds and enable a new kind of memorialization, as well as its unfortunate ability to underscore the separation of those who remain outside social circles—in the terrible tragedy at Virginia Tech. We discuss the April 16 Archive website and Omeka, the software that runs it, as well as issues related to social networking sites, online gaming, and text messaging.

Running time: 29:28.

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Episode 04 – Welcome to the Social

Can social networking sites like Facebook play a productive role in the humanities? In this episode Dan plays the old fogey, while Tom and Mills talk about how to use these sites in an advantageous way. We also report on recent meetings on the digital humanities and digital museums, and discuss Google’s My Maps and Creative Common’s Learn initiative. And Mills and Dan plot an intervention to get Tom off of Twitter.

Also discussed were iGTD, Scenemaker, and the new digital humanities PBWiki.

Featuring: Dan Cohen, Mills Kelly, Tom Scheinfeldt.

Running time: 47:57.

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[Editor's note: This podcast was recorded before the terrible tragedy at Virginia Tech--thus our normal, jovial tone and failure to mention that horrible day. Our hearts go out to the entire Virginia Tech community, some of whom are now or have been our colleagues at the Center for History and New Media.]

Episode 03 – CI: Cyberinfrastructure

Our third podcast begins with some discussion of April Fools’ pranks, including a great one about Google acquiring the OCLC, and how blogs and the internet can foster hoaxes. This week’s feature takes a look at the hot topic of cyberinfrastructure. We also take a look at Turnitin, and the larger issue of plagiarism. Links for the week include Librivox, Swivel, and the Center’s own research tool Zotero.

Featuring: Dan Cohen, Mills Kelly, Tom Scheinfeldt

Running time: 55:16

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Episode 02 – The Old and the YouTube

In our second podcast, we revisit the debate over Wikipedia, including hearing from Mills about how Cambodians are using it (and whether you can find a WiFi signal in the jungle of Cambodia). Our feature story explores whether and how YouTube is useful in the classroom. Links for this week include a podcast on Byzantine rulers, the Documentation Center of Cambodia, and a tool for making timelines. And we make a solemn pledge not to discuss Vista for a long time.

Featuring: Dan Cohen, Mills Kelly, Tom Scheinfeldt

Running time: 43:52

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Episode 01 – Wikipedia: Friend or Foe?

In our inaugural podcast our feature story covers the controversy over whether Wikipedia is a useful or problematic resource for students. In the news roundup, we wonder if the launch of Windows Vista has any significance, ponder the rise of Google Docs as an alternative to Word, and cover recent stories about Blackboard‘s patents and their social bookmarking site, Scholar.com. And at the end of the podcast, we share links to the best wiki software and sites on digital maps and books.

Featuring: Dan Cohen, Mills Kelly, Tom Scheinfeldt

Running time: 40:25

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The Data of Death – A Visualization

What were the greatest causes of death in the 20th century, our “worst century”?

War? Disease? Natural disasters?

We gathered and examined mortality data from  around the world – from disease to murder to mudslides – then calculated and visualised what killed the most people.

The result is a 6m x 2m visualisation art-piece for the Wellcome Collection’s free London exhibition, “Death – A Self Portrait”. (open daily until the 24th Feb 2013).

The show explores the iconography and cultural imagery of Death, exhibiting totems, death masks and other memento mori from around the word.

The experience culminates – as all things really should these days – with a mega, wall-sized dataviz:

520_wellcome_death_graphic__2
We’ll share the full image and data with you after the exhibition closes.

Tweet Snapshot May 2, 2012 – May 8, 2012

Tweet Snapshot May 2, 2012 – May 8, 2012

ARCHIVE: Electronic Journals and Scholarly Communication: A Citation and Reference Study

The journal is fundamental to formal scholarly communication. This research reports highlights and preliminary findings from an empirical study of scholarly electronic journals. The purpose of the research is to assess the impact of electronic journals (ejournals) on scholarly communication, by measuring the extent to which they are being cited in the literature, both print and electronic. The intent is to provide a snapshot of the impact e-journals were having on scholarly communication at a given point in time, roughly the end of 1995. This study provides one measure of that impact, specifically on the formal, as opposed to informal, communication process. The study also examines the forms in which scholars cite e-journals, the accuracy and completeness of citations to e-journals, and practical difficulties faced by scholars and researchers who wish to retrieve e-journals through the networks.

ARCHIVE: Globalizing Politics and Religion in the Muslim World

In a recent report from Iraq, the government newspaper al-Jamhuriyya denounced the Internet as an "American means to enter every house in the world" and "the end of civilizations, cultures, interests, and ethics" (Associated Press, 17 Feb 1997). The New York Times take on this story was conventionally to balance it with the counter-example of "Iraqi exiles [who] are using the Internet to preserve the culture and interests they miss, the Iraq of old that they loved" ("Iraqi Exiles Reach for Home on Web Site," by Lisa Napoli. The New York Times, Cyber Times. 20 Feb 1997 — access is free, but you have to register). This familiar journalistic device of setting points of view into opposition parallels and echoes terms in which the Internet as a social, political, economic and, more broadly, cultural phenomenon is increasingly cast that, like the journalist construction, places issues ahead of analysis.