Another Successful WebWise Conference

Once again this year, RRCHNM collaborated with the Institute of Museum and Library Services to plan and produce the agency’s signature WebWise conference, http://imlswebwise.org/, held March 6-8, 2013 in Baltimore, Maryland. Due to the Center’s experience with unconference formats, RRCHNM’s WebWise team— Sheila Brennan, Sharon Leon, Lisa Rhody, and Tom Scheinfeldt— was asked to reorient WebWise toward a more participatory format, one that allowed conference participants more opportunities to ask questions, to engage with potential collaborators, to learn new skills, and to develop more fully early-stage project ideas.

To meet the challenge, WebWise2013 modeled in its format the conference’s theme: “Putting the Learner at the Center” by engaging conference participants at every planning stage. The WebWise 2013 committee eliminated traditional plenary sessions in favor of more workshops; expanded upon the exchange of new ideas through project demonstrations; and facilitated working groups where participants could develop new collaborations and initiatives, and revise existing ones. To bring the conference theme full circle, RRCHNM recruited keynote speaker Audrey Watters, who asked the crowd: “Whose learning is it anyway?”

The more hands-on format of WebWise 2013 is most evident in the number of opportunities this year’s participants had to learn a new skill, to (more…)

Director Call for Applications Now Open

The official job ad for our new director is now up on our university’s HR site. Please encourage great people to apply!

George Mason University invites applications for the Director of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media.

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM) is approaching its 20th anniversary as a leading digital humanities institution that seeks to democratize access to history, educate using digital media and technology, and transform research methods for 21st century.

Responsibilities
The Director’s responsibilities include: providing an overall vision of innovation for RRCHNM; articulating this vision to multiple audiences; raising substantial project funds and for RRCHNM’s endowment; handling administrative duties related to budgeting and personnel; and launching major new initiatives. The Director will work closely with RRCHNM senior staff in three divisions: Education, Public Projects, and Research.

Qualifications
Candidates should have a strong record of digital innovation, managerial experience, and grant-getting. It is expected that this hire will be made at the senior-level (i.e., full or advanced associate). This position will start in the fall of 2013.

George Mason University is a public research university located approximately 14 miles from Washington, D.C., with over 30,000 students. Global education and research are a fundamental (more…)

Dan Cohen Selected as Executive Director of the Digital Public Library of America

For over twelve years, with the last five as director, Dan Cohen has offered the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM) the benefit of his vision, strong leadership, and dedication. Now Dan will be departing to bring his energy and creativity to the Digital Public Library of America. Congratulations, Dan!

George Mason University’s Department of History and Art History and RRCHNM are preparing to launch a comprehensive search to fill Dan’s position, and we will post the job ad here shortly.

As always, the work of RRCHNM continues under the guidance of its senior directors and drawing on the rich experience of the staff who have sustained its innovation for nearly twenty years. We look forward to advancing our mission to use technology to preserve and present history digitally, transform scholarship across the humanities, and improve historical education and understanding.

There are many exciting ventures to come, and we are eager to share them with the digital humanities communities, as well as to continue our collaborations with Dan even if it’s across institutions!

dan-12

http://dp.la/2013/03/05/dan-cohen-named-founding-executive-director-of-the-digital-public-library-of-america/

 

Online U.S. History Course: Hidden in Plain Sight (Sp 2013)

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University is pleased to announce Hidden in Plain Sight, an online U.S. history course created for teachers with funding from the Virginia Department of Education. This Spring 2013 course may be taken for recertification points or for graduate credit.

http://edchnm.gmu.edu/hidden

http://edchnm.gmu.edu/hidden

45 Recertification Points
Participants work through eight modules. In each module, requirements include writing a hypothesis, exploring historical context, completing a quiz, and reflecting on classroom applications. The cost is $40. Register by January 16, 2013.

3 Graduate Credits
For graduate credit, teachers participate in a related course with eight modules. In each module, requirements include writing a hypothesis, exploring historical context, reading scholarly articles, completing a quiz, and reflecting on classroom applications. Participants will design and produce a lesson on the hidden history of a historical object as the final project. The cost is $800 for Virginia residents ($875 out-of-state). Pre-register by January 16, 2013.

Visit the course website for more information.

THATCamp Website Redesign-Live Q & A

We are coming to the end of our public beta period for the redesigned thatcamp.org, and to celebrate, we’re going to host a live question and answer session on Twitter. On Friday, December 7th at 10am Eastern, we’ll take half an hour to answer your questions about the process and product of our redesign. If you’re interested in either THATCamp or website redesign in general, keep an eye on the #thatcamp hashtag and/or the @thatcamp Twitter account at 10am Eastern on 12/7 to participate.

All the members of the team will be available to talk about the project:

  • Tom Scheinfeldt, project lead, @foundhistory on Twitter
  • Amanda French, project manager, @amandafrench on Twitter
  • Boone Gorges, web developer, @boone on Twitter
  • Tammie Lister, web designer, @karmatosed on Twitter
  • Rebecca Onion, content writer, @rebeccaonion on Twitter
  • Ammon Shepherd, systems administrator, @mossiso on Twitter

In case you hadn’t seen, some of the new features of thatcamp.org include the following:

  • A network-wide Activity page that shows what people are doing on THATCamp sites around the world
  • A network-wide People page where you can search for people who’ve been to a THATCamp
  • User forums where THATCampers and THATCamp organizers can ask and answer questions of one another
  • Lots of new social features, including friending, favoriting, and messaging — log (more…)

Participad: A New WordPress Plugin

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media is proud to announce the release of Participad, a WordPress plugin for real-time collaborative editing. Participad was developed for THATCamp (The Humanities and Technology Camp) to help participants take notes on unconference sessions, but we anticipate that it will be broadly useful for anyone who wants to co-author a blog post. If one historian in Canada and another in Australia are watching a U.S. presidential debate, for example, they can use Participad to live-blog their reactions.

Participad runs on Etherpad Lite and is open source software released under the GNU General Public License. Participad was built by Boone Gorges, the lead developer for CUNY Academic Commons and Anthologize. You can try the demo and download Participad at participad.org.

 

For more information, write Amanda French at info@thatcamp.org.

Second Year of Mason’s Digital History Doctoral Research Award

A reminder to potential doctoral students in history that George Mason University and the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media have Digital History Research Awards for students entering the History and Art History doctoral program. Students receiving these awards will get five years of fully funded studies, as follows: $20,000 research stipends in years 1 and 2; research assistantships at RRCHNM in years 3, 4, and 5. Awards include fulltime tuition waivers and student health insurance. For more information, contact Professor Cynthia A. Kierner (Director of the Ph.D. Program) at ckierner@gmu.edu, or yours truly at dcohen@gmu.edu. The deadline for applications is January 15, 2013.

Donor Wall Display

Donors now have their name in lights in the new display at the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media.

Remembering the Hurricanes of 2005

As weather forecasters show Tropical Storm Issac heading directly towards the Louisiana coast on August 29, we are all reminded of another storm that came ashore on the Gulf Coast on the same day in 2005. Hurricane Katrina was a Category 5 storm that wiped out towns in Louisiana and Mississippi; caused the levee system in New Orleans to fail bringing about massive flooding that destroyed large parts of the city; forced thousands of residents to evacuate; and brought cultural, economic, and political changes to the region. During the 2005 hurricane season, three Category 5 storms entered the Gulf of Mexico, with Katrina and Rita causing the most damage leaving a path of destruction and broken lives from the Florida Panhandle to Southeast Texas.

We knew we were witnessing something significant and we wanted to document and collect, preserve, and present the stories and digital record of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. In partnership with the University of New Orleans, RRCHNM built the Hurricane Digital Memory Bank in late 2005.

Following a model for online collecting established by the September 11 Digital Archive, the Hurricane Digital Memory Bank sought to help historians and archivists to preserve the record of these storms by collecting (more…)

Introducing Scripto: a Tool for Community Transcription

The Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media (RRCHNM) at George Mason University is pleased to announce the release of its newest open source tool, Scripto, which opens up the possibilities of community transcription for digital humanities projects in universities, libraries, archives, and museums. With easy-to-implement extensions for the popular open source content management system, including Omeka, WordPress, and Drupal, Scripto allows administrators for any project with collection materials requiring a transcription can now enlist a community of enthusiasts to participate in this aspect of cultural heritage work.

Scripto is an open-source tool that permits registered users to view digital files and transcribe them with an easy-to-use toolbar, rendering that text searchable. The tool includes a versioning history and editorial controls to make public contributions more manageable, and supports the transcription of a wide range of file types (both images and documents). Comprehensive User’s Guide that offers advice on project planning, software installation and setup, transcription editing and oversight, and community outreach, is available on the Scripto website. Additionally, web developers are free to contribute to the project by extending the code, and by participating in a developers’ discussion group .

Building on the models of other crowdsourcing projects like Wikipedia (more…)