Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Remembering with the September 11 Digital Archive

Wednesday, September 11th, 2013

During this day of remembrance, we urge you to browse through some of the materials collected by the September 11th Digital Archive, a collaborative effort between RRCNHM and the American Social History Project at the City University of New York to preserve and present the history of September 11, 2001 and its aftermath. 911home Officially launched in 2002, the Archive is among the earliest online collecting projects that championed the crowdsourcing of materials from anyone effected by September 11 and interested in sharing their stories, photographs, digital art, audio recordings, documents, or videos.

The site’s blog is highlighting special collections within the digital archive, groups like the Madison Area Peace Coalition that organized soon after September 11 and collaborated with other groups with similar objectives. These source materials offer researchers an opportunity to trace the organization and growth of one post-911 political movement.

With over 150,000 digital items, the Archive is large and has become increasingly challenging to manage. To help preserve this valuable collection of unique user-generated content and specialized collections, the project team is working with a Saving America’s Treasures grant to stabilize the current infrastructure and move all of the collections to the Omeka platform. Digital Archivist Jim Safely, is spearheading those efforts and is making progress by carefully and slowly transferring and testing the migration of every item in the project to ensure that it will be preserved and more accessible for years to come.

Stay tuned to the September 11 Digital Archive blog for additional collection highlights and updates on the migration process.

Digital History Fellows At RRCHNM

Friday, September 6th, 2013

Monday Meeting 8_26_13

The first Monday all-staff meeting of the year at RRCHNM was devoted to an orientation for the fourteen Graduate Research Assistants (GRAs) who will be working at the Center in 2013-14. GRAs are a key part of the Center’s staff, working in a range of capacities on projects in all three divisions – Education, Public Projects, and Research — and in some cases on multiple projects in different divisions (watch for future posts describing exactly what they are doing).

The second cohort of Digital History Fellows are part of this group; you can find them and the earlier cohort here. Supported by the Provost, this program admits three graduate students each year, who each receive two years of funding at $20,000 p.a., in addition to three years of funding from the History Department, and undertake a practicum course for credit at RRCHNM each semester for two years.

The Fellows program is as an extension of the central role of digital history in the PhD program at GMU. Set up as ‘a PhD with a difference,’ it requires all students to take two core courses, Clio Wired: An Introduction to History and New Media Credits, and Creating History in New Media, which provide exposure to the ways that digital tools and approaches are reshaping historical study, and, for those interested, a pathway into developing a digital history project. (My predecessor, Dan Cohen, described the development of these courses in AHA Perspectives in 2009). RRCHNM’s role in the Digital History Fellows program reflects its commitment to helping develop future generations of digital history scholars by providing experience working in a digital history center, on a variety of projects, and the opportunity to reflect on that work and develop a digital portfolio.

Syllabi for the practicums can be found on the Fellows blog, where you can also read posts by last year’s cohort, and the first posts by our new Fellows. Both groups will also be posting to the RRCHNM blog several times this year, as well as each tweeting one day at the Center.

A final cohort of DH Fellows will be admitted in Fall 2014, but with the grant from the Provost coming to an end in 2015, they will receive only a single year of additional funding and undertake just a two-semester practicum. Students interested in applying to the GMU History PhD program and being part of that cohort of DH Fellows, should consult the information on the department website.  Applications close January 15.

Stephen Robertson

RRCHNM Welcomes Lisa Rhody

Monday, August 26th, 2013

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media are happy to welcome Lisa Rhody to our ranks as a Research Assistant Professor. Lisa comes to us having completed a doctorate in English at the University of Maryland at the end of 2012. Her dissertation made use of computational analysis to explore the ekphrastic work of twentieth-century female poets to challenge widely held critical assumptions about the genre.

At RRCHNM, Rhody will be engaged on several different projects. First, in the Public Projects Division, she continues the work she began on a part time basis several months ago, guiding the programming for the Institute of Museum and Library Service’s annual WebWise meeting. This conference brings together cutting edge digital work from the nation’s libraries, archives, museums, and science centers. Second, in conjunction with the year-long planning that goes into making WebWise a success, Rhody is also contributing to a number of institutional planning and digital strategy projects. Together this work places her at the heart of the Center’s efforts to encourage innovative digital cultural heritage work. Third, Rhody will serve as the co-editor of the Journal of Digital Humanities, the flagship publication of the PressForward project. This work will bring Rhody’s insights to the Research Division and will capitalize on her years of experience with digital editing projects. Finally, Rhody will join a host of other faculty and staff in the ongoing efforts to share and support our digital tools. In sum, Rhody will be at the forefront of the Center’s efforts to interface with digital humanities scholars and the larger cultural heritage community.

Welcome, Lisa!

Lisa Rhody blogs at http://www.lisarhody.com

One Week | One Tool Team Launches Serendip-o-matic

Friday, August 2nd, 2013

After five days and nights of intense collaboration, the One Week | One Tool digital humanities team has unveiled its web application: Serendip-o-matic <http://serendipomatic.org>. Unlike conventional search tools, this “serendipity engine” takes in any text, such as an article, song lyrics, or a bibliography. It then extracts key terms, delivering similar results from the vast online collections of the Digital Public Library of America, Europeana, and Flickr Commons. Because Serendip-o-matic asks sources to speak for themselves, users can step back and discover connections they never knew existed. The team worked to re-create that moment when a friend recommends an amazing book, or a librarian suggests a new source. It’s not search, it’s serendipity.
serendip-o-matic

Serendip-o-matic works for many different users. Students looking for inspiration can use one source as a springboard to a variety of others. Scholars can pump in their bibliographies to help enliven their current research or to get ideas for a new project. Bloggers can find open access images to illustrate their posts. Librarians and museum professionals can discover a wide range of items from other institutions and build bridges that make their collections more accessible. In addition, millions of users of RRCHNM’s Zotero can easily run their personal libraries through Serendip-o-matic.

Serendip-o-matic is easy to use and freely available to the public. Software developers may expand and improve the open-source code, available on GitHub. The One Week | One Tool team has also prepared ways for additional archives, libraries, and museums to make their collections available to Serendip-o-matic.

A team of twelve dynamic scholars, librarians, and students conceived and built Serendip-o-matic during the One Week | One Tool Institute for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities and hosted by the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. Twelve strangers worked toward a common goal and stepped into unfamiliar roles. “The intense process isn’t just about rapid prototyping — it’s about building rapid trust,” reflected Mia Ridge, the lead of the design/development team. The group members learned new skills that they will take home and share with their colleagues around the world.

To learn more about Serendip-o-matic, visit, <http://serendiptomatic.org>. For more information about the process and the team, see <http://www.oneweekonetool.org/>, or follow #owot on Twitter.

Another Week | Another Tool Begins

Wednesday, July 31st, 2013

This week, RRCHNM is once again hosting the One Week | One Tool Institute for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities. The big question for this week is can a dozen scholars, students, and librarians build a digital humanities tool in one week? And if so, what will they learn in the process? Participants were selected in a competitive process from an international pool of over thirty applicants. While the tool remains under wraps until Friday, August 2nd, the team is sharing details about their collaborative work process.

To decide what to build, the team engaged in an open brainstorming process and nominated software application ideas to meet the needs of humanities researchers and educators. They then invited public feedback to inform their decision-making. Nearly one hundred people posted comments and voted for their favorite ideas. (Although the poll has closed, see results at http://oneweekonetool.ideascale.com). “I was surprised by the number of engaged commentators actively watching what we build,” explains Meghan Frazer, a digital resources curator from Ohio State University whom the group selected to be their project co-manager. Tom Scheinfeldt, the RRCHNM director-at-large who organized OWOT, describes it as “a generative event: it’s live, public, and involves the creativity of people both inside and outside the room” through the power of social media.

The group divided themselves into smaller work teams to focus on design, development, and outreach. Mia Ridge, the OWOT lead developer and a doctoral candidate at the U.K.’s Open University, led the participants in sketching out the software architecture. “Sketching out an idea,” she observes, “is a great way to make sure everyone has a more concrete picture of what the group is talking about, and for me, it’s also a quick test of the technical viability of the idea.” While the outreach team collaboratively wrote a vision for the tool, members of the design and development team identified a common software language for this highly agile development project. “Getting 12 strangers to remember each others’ names—let alone blend skills across teams to make something entirely new—means we hardly have time to eat, let alone sleep,” remarks Brian Croxall, another OWOT project co-manager and a digital strategist and lecturer at Emory University.

As the team scrambles to finish their code and outreach preparations for the Friday August 2nd launch, follow their progress via the Twitter hashtag #owot.

NEH Funds RRCHNM’s “Doing Digital History” Summer Institute

Monday, July 29th, 2013

The National Endowment for the Humanities, Office of Digital Humanities awarded the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media one of three grants in their Institute for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities program. With this generous support, the Public Projects division will organize and host, “Doing Digital History: An Institute for Mid-Career American Historians” during the summer of 2014.

“Doing Digital History” begins to fill a much-needed gap for established historians who need instruction and a professional learning community to engage with new media methods and tools. We will seek applications from historians who have had very limited or no training in using digital methods and tools, or in computing, and who lack a supportive digital community at their home institutions.

NEH IADTH grants support a wide range of training programs for scholars and advanced graduate students to broaden and extend their knowledge of digital humanities. Through these programs, NEH seeks to increase the number of humanities scholars using digital technology in their research and to broadly disseminate knowledge about advanced technology tools and methodologies relevant to the humanities.

Planning for “Doing Digital History” will commence this fall, and a call for applications will be announced in early 2014. Watch the RRCHNM blog, @chnm Twitter account, and major H-Net listservs for the call for applications.

In the meantime, don’t forget to follow along with the progress of this week’s One Week | One Tool IADTH on twittter (#owot).

Teachinghistory.org Wins 2013 AASLH Award of Merit

Monday, July 22nd, 2013

Teachinghistory.org is honored to receive an Award of Merit from the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH).

AASLHThe AASLH Leadership in History Award, now in its 68th year, is the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history.

Teachinghistory.org is a free online resource for K-12 teachers that has been called “a ‘non-negotiable’ — a tool so valuable no history teacher should try teaching without it” (History Tech Blog). Originally funded by a 2007 U.S. Department of Education contract, the website welcomes over 1.7 million visitors annually from all 50 states and more than 150 countries. While the majority of users are K-12 teachers, the site is also a favorite of librarians, social studies methods instructors, homeschoolers, and public historians.

Teachinghistory.org

Presentation of the awards will be made during the 2013 AASLH Annual Meeting in Birmingham, Alabama, on September 20.

The AASLH awards program was initiated in 1945 to establish and encourage standards of excellence in the collection, preservation, and interpretation of state and
local history throughout the United States. The AASLH Leadership in History Awards not only honor significant achievement in the field of state and local history, but also bring public recognition of the opportunities for small and large organizations, institutions, and programs to make contributions in this arena.

Post-Doc Opportunity with PressForward

Monday, July 1st, 2013

The PressForward project at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM) now invites applications for a one-year position (with the possibility of renewal) at the rank of Research Assistant Professor. The successful candidate will work with the project directors to manage the publication of Digital Humanities Now and the Journal of Digital Humanities, as well as to perform project outreach and to experiment with new forms of open-access digital publishing.

A Ph.D. in history or a closely related field is required. The ideal candidate will also possess some or all of the following qualities:

  • Experience in digital humanities, digital libraries, or digital publishing;
  • Strong technical background in new technology and new media, especially web publishing;
  • Familiarity with scholarly communication or publication;
  • Experience teaching digital tools and leading workshops;
  • Project management, administrative and/or organizational experience; and
  • Experience with fostering and sustaining scholarly communities.

Applications must be submitted via the George Mason University employment site (position number F8860z) by July 12, and the successful candidate is expected to begin work by September 1, 2013. Please direct all questions regarding the position to *protected email*.

RRCHNM Announces Stephen Robertson As Its New Director

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media and the Department of History and Art History at George Mason University is delighted to announce that Stephen Robertson will become the new director of the center. Robertson joins RRCHNM and Mason from the History Department at the University of Sydney, where he has been since 2000.

Prior to the University of Sydney, Robertson completed his PhD at Rutgers University and was a post-doctoral fellow at the American Bar Foundation in Chicago (1997-98). He also taught for a semester at Massey University in New Zealand. Stephen has won a number of teaching awards, including a Carrick Australian Award for University Teaching Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning in 2006 and a Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Excellence in Teaching Award in 2008. At Sydney, he also served as Associate Dean for Undergraduate Matters, and coordinator of the American Studies Program.

Robertson is well known in digital history for his work on Digital Harlem, which he created with his collaborators in the Black Metropolis project. Digital Harlem won the American Historical Association’s Roy Rosenzweig Prize for Innovation in Digital History and the ABC-CLIO Online History Award of the American Library Association in 2010. Robertson’s personal history with George Mason University and Roy Rosenzweig go further back: from 1998-99, he was the JNG Finley Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of History and Art History at Mason.

“It is wonderful to be able to pass the baton to Stephen, who shares with the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media a profound interest in the democratization of history through digital media and technology, and whose scholarship and digital work aligns so well with that vision,” said Dan Cohen, the outgoing director of RRCHNM. Department Chair Brian Platt added, “Stephen brings an impressive set of strengths to this position. He is perfectly suited to work with the staff at the center to push it in new directions while remaining true to its founding principles and goals.”

“My introduction to digital history came during my fellowship at George Mason and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to return and help the Center continue to pursue the vision, so powerfully elaborated by Roy and Dan, of working with educators, libraries and museums, and scholars to develop new ways to preserve and present history online, to reach broad audiences, and to encourage popular participation in efforts to understand the past,” Robertson said.

Stephen Robertson will join the center and the department in July.

Wikimédia France Research Award 2013

Wednesday, May 8th, 2013

The first winner of the Wikimedia France Research Award is…

Can history be open source ? Wikipedia and the future of the past by Roy Rosenzweig, published in The Journal of American History in 2006.

This choice was made from thirty scientific publications on Wikimedia projects and free knowledge, directly submitted by the Wikimedia community. Among these publications, a jury of researchers working on these topics selected 5 finalists. Each Wikimedian, along with the jury members, was encouraged to give their opinion and vote among these five finalists to determine the most relevant.

Jury members and wikimedians for this publication described Roy’s article as  a “very stimulating read” and Roy as ” a pioneer in digital history, incorporating new digital media and technology with history to explore new possibilities to reach a larger and diverse public audience.”, with significant impact in the field of digital history, almost 160 citations in other scientific publications, according to Google Scholar.

You can view the full publication here : http://chnm.gmu.edu/essays-on-history-new-media/essays/?essayid=42
and the dedicated website : http://researchaward.wikimedia.fr/en

Wikimédia France has decided to award the price of € 2,500 to the Center for History and New Media, founded in 1994 by Roy Rosenzweig.

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media is honored to receive the award on behalf of Roy Rosenzweig.

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Since 1994, the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University has used digital media and computer technology to democratize history—to incorporate multiple voices, reach diverse audiences, and encourage popular participation in presenting and preserving the past. We sponsor more than two dozen digital history projects and offer free tools and resources for historians. Learn More

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Teachinghistory.org

Teachinghistory.org is the central online location for accessing high-quality resources in K-12 U.S. history education. Explore the highlighted content on our homepage or visit individual sections for additional materials.