Workshop: Hacking and mash-ups for beginners at MCN2011

I ran a three and a half hour pre-conference workshop (abstract below) at MCN2011 on Hacking and mash-ups for beginners at MCN2011slides below, and I'm happy to share the exercises on request.

Have you ever wanted to be able to express your ideas for digital collections more clearly, or thought that a hack day sounds like fun but need a way to get started with basic web scripting? In this hands-on workshop you will learn how to use online tools to create interesting visualisations to explore a cultural dataset and create your own simple 'mash-up'.

The workshop will be a fun, supportive environment where you will learn by playing with small snippets of code. No scripting knowledge is assumed.

Panel, paper: Current issues in Digital Humanities

On October I was on a panel on the Digital Humanities at the Open University – my talk notes are blogged at Notes on current issues in Digital Humanities.

I co-authored a paper titled ‘Colloquium: Digital Technologies: Help or Hindrance for the Humanities?’ (with Elton Barker, Chris Bissell, Lorna Hardwick, Allan Jones and John Wolffe), published in the ‘Digital Futures Special Issue Arts and Humanities in HE’ edition of Arts and Humanities in Higher Education.

2007: an overview

An incomplete, retrospective list of work, talks and more in 2007…

I started to teach on a new Digital Humanities course in the Spring/Summer Term 2007 at Birkbeck. 'Introduction to Digital Humanities' was a new postgraduate course at Birkbeck College which combined aspects of media studies, humanities computing and literary studies to foster an appreciation of the core methods and practical, political/philosophical and pedagogical issues in digital humanities.

I devised and taught classes on:

  • Introduction to Databases, February 27, 2007
  • Creating Digital Resources, May 1, 2007
  • New Working Models, May 15, 2007
  • Creating Digital Resources II: database design for the digital humanities, May 29, 2007

I also gave a class on 'Computer assisted interpretation; integration of finds and site sequence' for the Birkbeck MA Archaeology Module "Archaeological Post-Excavation and Publication".

I gave a paper: Buzzword or benefit: The possibilities of Web 2.0 for the cultural heritage sector at the CAA (Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology) UK Chapter Meeting, January 24 – 26, 2007, Tudor Merchants Hall, Southampton

I gave what was possibly my first paper at an MCG conference, Sharing authorship and authority: user generated content and the cultural heritage sector (so web 2.0!) at Web Adept: UK Museums and the Web 2007, Leicester, June 22, 2007.

I started a blog for the Museum of London (so 2007) – 'first post', 'What does a database programmer do in a museum?'. A hilarious attempt to make my bio relatable: 'My job title is 'Database Developer', which means I am a specialised kind of computer programmer. I spend a lot of time working with the big databases that people like curators, collections managers, archaeologists and archivists use to record, analyse and publish their data. I talk to them to understand their requirements, then update or create applications to help them. I also help with geek stuff for the websites'. The blog didn't last, as so many didn't, but I still think 'About my museum job' posts were a great way to make museums more inclusive by showing all the different types of careers you could have in a museum.

I published a report: Nick Holder, Mia Ridge and Nathalie Cohen, The Tony Dyson Archive Project: Report of a pilot study investigating the creation of a digital archive of medieval property transactions along the City waterfront, Museum of London Archaeology Service. The linked file is a PDF version of the report, without mapping and plan diagrams.

A white man stands in an archaeological excavation with a canvas shelter overhead
Ian Hodder doing a tour of Catalhoyuk

I also contributed to the Çatalhöyük Archive Report 2007; an excerpt of my main bits is at https://doi.org/10.17613/3n8z-9z11. Blog posts on/from Çatalhöyük include: