2009 Roy Rosenzweig Forum – Social Networking and the Semantic Web

On Wednesday, May 13th at 7:00 p.m., the Rosenzweig Forum on Technology and the Humanities and the Washington Semantic Web Group will host the a forum on Social Networking and the Semantic web in the George Mason University Johnson Center Cinema. The forum will host four speakers, Mills Davis, Andy Roth, Mike Petit, and Dan Cohen, who will share their projects and lead a group discussion at the end of the evening. Mills Davis of Project10X will showcase new developments in social networking and semantic technologies within government and private industry. Andy Roth, Chief Quality Officer at AdaptiveBlue, will discuss Glue, a browser add-on that allows you to find new things based on what your friends like. Mike Petit will present Amplify, an open platform that mimics human understanding of content and offers a broad range of unique, and previously unavailable, data to SemWeb practitioners. Finally, Dan Cohen of the Center for History and New Media will discuss new social and collaborative features for Zotero, the  free, easy-to-use Firefox extension which helps collect, manage, cite and share your research sources.

More information, including speaker bios, is available at the Washington Semantic Web Meet-up  forum website.

Liberty, Equality, Fraternity Receives MERLOT Award for Online Learning Excellence

At the 2009 MERLOT International Conference this coming August, MERLOT will present Jack Censer, Dean of the George Mason University College of Humanities and Social Sciences, with the MERLOT Classics Award for Exemplary Online Learning Resource for the CHNM website, Liberty, Equality, Fraternity: Exploring the French Revolution.

The MERLOT Awards program recognizes and promotes outstanding online resources designed to enhance teaching and learning and to honor the authors and developers of these resources for their contributions to the academic community.

MERLOT (Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching) is a leading edge, user-centered, searchable collection of peer reviewed and selected higher education, online learning materials, catalogued by registered members and a set of faculty development support services. MERLOT’s vision is to be a premiere online community where faculty, staff, and students from around the world share their learning materials and pedagogy. MERLOT’s strategic goal is to improve the effectiveness of teaching and learning by increasing the quantity and quality of peer reviewed online learning materials that can be easily incorporated into faculty-designed courses.

Liberty, Equality, Fraternity: Exploring the French Revolution is an accessible introduction to the French Revolution, presenting an broad archive of some of the most important documentary evidence from the (more…)

The American Historical Association Announces the Roy Rosenzweig Fellowship for Innovation in Digital History

In 2009, George Mason University and the American Historical Association will offer the first Roy Rosenzweig Fellowship for Innovation in Digital History. This award was developed by friends and colleagues of Roy Rosenzweig (1950–2007), Mark and Barbara Fried Professor of History and New Media at George Mason University, to honor his life and work as a pioneer in the field of digital history.

This nonresidential fellowship will be awarded annually to honor and support work on an innovative and freely available new media project, and in particular for work that reflects thoughtful, critical, and rigorous engagement with technology and the practice of history. The fellowship will be conferred on a project that is either in a late stage of development or which has been launched in the past year but is still in need of further improvements. The fellow(s) will be expected to apply awarded funds toward the advancement of the project goals during the fellowship year.

In a 1-2 page narrative, entries should provide a method of access to the project (e.g., web site address, software download), indicate the institutions and individuals involved with the project, and describe the project’s goals, functionality, intended audience, and significance. A short budget statement on (more…)

Mikhail Gorbachev Visits George Mason

The Center for History and New Media is pleased to announce the keynote speaker for George Mason University’s “1989: Looking Back, Looking Forward” conference will be Former Soviet President and Nobel Laureate Mikhail Gorbachev.  President Gorbachev will present the keynote address at the conference on March 24, and will additionally participate in a round table discussion the following day, with Lee Hamilton and William Webster.  For more information on the conference, including tickets to the event, breakout sessions, and associated film festival, see:  http://gorbachev.gmu.edu/.  The conference will offer a critical perspective on how the lessons of the end of the Cold War should be applied to the challenges of international cooperation.
You can examine vivid historical documents related to President Mikhail Gorbachev’s role in the epochal events of the fall of communism in Eastern Europe, and the end of the Cold War, by accessing the Center for History and New Media’s project titled, Making the History of 1989, at:  http://chnm.gmu.edu/1989/.

THATCamp 2009 Now Accepting Applications

Back by popular demand, THATCamp (The Humanities and Technology Camp) will return to CHNM on June 27-28, 2009. Timed to follow the Digital Humanities 2009 conference being hosted by our colleagues at the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities, the second annual THATCamp will strive to recreate the collegial atmosphere and innovative spirit of last spring’s event. At the same time, we hope to build on the strengths of THATCamp 2008 and make THATCamp 2009 even better. Responding to the tremendous outpouring of interest we received in the first THATCamp, we will expand the number of campers this time from 70 to 100. We will streamline the application process to allow pre-conference discussions to begin earlier and flow more freely. And we will open up our “unconference” format even further, encouraging even more spontaneous discussion and organic scheduling.

Online applications are available at http://thatcamp.org/.

CHNM Receives Third James Harvey Robinson Prize from AHA

On January 3, 2008, the Center for History and New Media and the History Education Group at Stanford University were awarded the American Historical Association’s James Harvey Robinson Prize for Historical Thinking Matters <historicalthinkingmatters.org>.  The biennial prize is awarded for the teaching aid that had made the most outstanding contribution to the teaching and learning of history in any field for public or educational purposes.  Historical Thinking Matters is designed to teach students how to “think historically” by critically reading primary sources and participating in authentic inquiries about key topics in U.S. history.  Sharon Leon, Director of Public Projects at CHNM, was joined by Sam Wineburg and Daisy Martin from the History Education Group to accept the award from AHA President Gabrielle M. Spiegel at the General Meeting in New York City.  This is third CHNM project to receive the Robinson Prize.

CHNM wins $50,000 Mellon Award for Technology Collaboration

CHNM has received a $50,000 Mellon Award for Technology Collaboration (MATC) for Omeka, a software project that greatly simplifies the online publication of collections and exhibits. The award was given at the Coalition for Networked Information meeting Dec. 8 in Washington, D.C.

MATC awards recognize not-for-profit organizations that are making substantial contributions of their own resources toward the development of open source software and the fostering of collaborative communities to sustain open source development.

Omeka is a free and open source web publishing platform for scholars, librarians, archivists, museum professionals, educators and cultural enthusiasts. Its “five-minute setup” makes launching an online exhibition as easy as launching a blog. Omeka is designed with non-IT specialists in mind, allowing users to focus on content and interpretation rather than programming. It brings Web 2.0 technologies and approaches to academic and cultural web sites to foster user interaction and participation. It makes top-shelf design easy with a simple and flexible templating system. Its robust open-source developer and user communities underwrite Omeka’s stability and sustainability.

“Until now, scholars and cultural heritage professionals looking to publish collections-based research and online exhibitions required either extensive technical skills or considerable funding for outside vendors,” said Tom Scheinfeldt, project co-lead and managing director (more…)

Children and Youth in History Site Launches

The Center for History and New Media at George Mason University, together with the University of Missouri–Kansas City, is pleased to announce the launch of a new website focusing on notions of childhood and the experiences of children and youth throughout history and around the world.

The site, Children and Youth in History (http://chnm.gmu.edu/cyh), offers history instructors and students access to hundreds of primary sources and a variety of resources for teachers at both the high school and college level.

As with all CHNM projects, the resources contained in Children and Youth in History are and will remain free and open access.

Funding for Children and Youth in History was made possible by a generous grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

George Mason’s Center for History & New Media, Emory University Libraries Announce Zotero Partnership

Partnership with Emory University Libraries Further Solidifies Zotero’s Role as a Platform for Digital Research and Innovation

The Center for History and New Media (CHNM) at George Mason University
and the Emory University Libraries are pleased to announce a
cooperative partnership on Zotero (www.zotero.org), the free,
open-source bibliographic manager. A team of librarians, information
technologists and faculty members led by Connie Moon Sehat, Emory
Libraries’ new director of digital scholarship initiatives, will
extend research capabilities of the software in collaboration with
Zotero’s main development team. Sehat is a former co-director of
Zotero and CHNM.

For Dan Cohen, who is associate professor of history at George Mason
University and director of CHNM, a relationship with Emory exemplifies
the powerful opportunities for institutional cooperation offered by
digital media. “The Center for History and New Media and the Zotero
Project are lucky to now have the resources and experience of Emory on
their side,” says Cohen, “and the continued insight and direction of
Connie Sehat. We look forward to what will undoubtedly be a
tremendously productive collaboration.” Cohen oversees Zotero with
Sean Takats, assistant professor of history at George Mason and CHNM’s
acting director of research projects.

This relationship marks a significant step forward for the future of
the Zotero project. “Partnering on the development of open source
software with CHNM, an established center of excellence (more…)

CHNM Releases Omeka 0.10b

The Center for History and New Media, in partnership with the Minnesota Historical Society, is pleased to announce a major new release of its Omeka web publishing platform, version 0.10b. From the Swahili word meaning “to display” or “to lay out for discussion,” Omeka is a next generation web publishing platform for collections-based research of all kinds, one that bridges the scholarly, library, and museum worlds through a set of commonly recognized standards. In doing so Omeka puts serious web publishing within reach of all scholars and cultural heritage professionals. Omeka is free and open-source, easy to use, standards based, and extensible. It is designed with non-IT specialists in mind, allowing users to focus on content and interpretation rather than programming. Its unqualified Dublin Core metadata structure and adherence to web standards allows anyone to design fully accessible online exhibitions efficiently. Omeka’s modular architecture and rich API empower people with a range of programming skills to participate in its open source community and expand its capabilities by adding specialized metadata element sets and plugins. Plugins bring Web 2.0 technologies and approaches to academic and cultural websites that foster user participation.

CHNM is also re-launching the project website, http://omeka.org, with a new look. (more…)