Saturday, 20 August 2016

Digital Latin Library

Digital Latin Library - project and website

"The Digital Latin Library (DLL) is a joint project of the Society for Classical Studies, the Medieval Academy of America, and the Renaissance Society of America. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation's Scholarly Communications Program funds the project, and the University of Oklahoma hosts it.

We use the word "library" to describe our project because that word's many meanings apply to what we're building: a library of texts and resources, a place where individuals and groups can study and collaborate on projects, a series of volumes published according to a uniform standard, and resources for digital applications."

Timeline (


In January, the OU DLL team submitted a proposal to the AWMF for a two-year implementation grant to build and implement the Digital Latin Library (DLL).

By the middle of 2017, we will deliver a collection of resources collectively known as the Digital Latin Library (
  • a specialized, standards-based library catalog of Latin texts and related resources, including authority files for authors, works, and manuscripts
  • a digital archive of scholarly materials related to critical editions
  • three pilot critical editions for the LDLT
  • a desktop application for advanced visualization and analysis of Latin texts
  • web-based applications for reading, annotating, creating, and sharing texts and commentaries
  • documentation for the continued maintenance of these resources after the funding period has ended.

Thursday, 28 January 2016

A Year of Digital Adventure: building our digital estate

For Wales, 2016 is the Year of Adventure. In this fledgling digital world of ours though, every year is full of digital adventures, where new technologies, services, apps, ideas and people come to the fore.

The prologue to the digital adventure is about the idea that there will be a time after technological development to having an impact, to change the world; a time when Nanotechnology Meets Local History, a time when a global brand can be created through social media, and a time where technology is easy to choose, use, deploy and benefit from.

Some of these things are here and now. Some of these things take more time and more effort than most of us would like. Deciding what commercial technology to use in an ever changing market, and for ever changing users, is very hard. With open source, free, software, the time and resources required to deploy can still be a challenge - and even making a simple choice, which particular piece of software to use, can be a minefield.

Our digital estate is a key aspect of everything that will come next. An organisation or an individual's digital estate is their digital world and it is no less important than physical buildings and architecture or, in a personal sense, the fashions we choose to wear.

The digital estate can and does apply to cultures and countries - and what a fantastic challenge and opportunity it is to build on, and maybe beyond, Andrew Green's and the National Library of Wales' Theatre of Memory and create a truly Digital Wales.

Recently, two fantastic events at Swansea University brought some of this home. Last week the CHERISH-DE launch talked about how the project will develop innovative approaches to digital economy themes relating to humans, society and industry. The range of academics, from Swansea, Newcastle, Bath and others, and the commercial partners including local and global names, was broad and uplifting.

An Adventure in Big Data
Today, at the Swansea University School of Management, Tourism professionals, data scientists and others met to discuss An Adventure in Big Data. This event covered areas such as big data, smarter cities, tourism, and what can happen when viral marketing turns political, turns around, and bites you. With visitors from Spain, Flanders, Denmark, the US and more, this was one of those meetings that had a distinct digital buzz about it. If Swansea University's School of Management can make discussions like this happen across the public and private sectors, then it might just hit on a winning formula.

As a number of the talks at both these events highlighted - the digital world is already here, ignore it at your peril.

Thursday, 8 October 2015

National Poetry Day 2015

But what strange art, what magic can dispose
The troubled mind to change its native woes?
Or lead us willing from ourselves, to see
Others more wretched, more undone than we?
This BOOKS can do;--nor this alone; they give
New views to life, and teach us how to live;
They soothe the grieved, the stubborn they 

Fools they admonish, and confirm the wise:
Their aid they yield to all: they never shun
The man of sorrow, nor the wretch undone:
Unlike the hard, the selfish, and the proud,
They fly not sullen from the suppliant crowd;
Nor tell to various people various things,
But show to subjects what they show to kings.

Monday, 8 June 2015

The making of a digital language?

To be a digital, online language we might expect that various support tools are required, foundations if you like.
Languages need computer support, digital tools and from these a range of advances become possible. Without these tools and foundations then might languages struggle in an online world?
This is only a starting point, but we might well ask:
  • what is a digital language; and 
  • what might be necessary or sufficient to support a digital language?

Saturday, 6 June 2015

The Winograd Schema Challenge

An alternative to the Turing Test, an annual challenge with its first submission in October 2015.

See Nuance's website for more information.

Wednesday, 3 June 2015

Digital Exhaustion

I was just reading an informative piece, as always, by the 1709 blog which summarises the state around digital exhaustion. Not the tiredness of computers, but the way in which digital artefacts can be resold or passed on:

Whether EU law allows digital exhaustion arguably remains however an unresolved issue, with diverging interpretations being provided at the level of national courts. Yet, despite the legal and economic relevance of allowing markets for second-hand digital works, current EU copyright reform plans seem regrettably not to include any consideration of issues facing general digital exhaustion, or its lack thereof.

Which led me onto wondering whether Wales, Welsh Government &c. have any opinion on these matters?

The always interesting 1709 blog can be found here:

Sunday, 10 May 2015

DevDH: Development for the Digital Humanities

"No matter how digital humanities is defined, the development of research agendas encompasses the planning, organizing, motivating, and use of finite resources to achieve a greater understanding of the humanities and the human condition. provides the intellectual and strategic scaffolding to aid researchers in successfully completing their research endeavors. Responding to the increasing number of first-time digital humanists who are initiating projects, as well as the growing mandate from Universities and Colleges to undertake digital humanities-based research and teaching, DevDH introduces a series of resources to aid those who might be seeking assistance. is the brainchild of Simon Appleford and Jennifer Guiliano, who collectively have over a decade working in digital humanities project development, management, and grant writing. DevDH (or develop DH) was built to respond to the growing demand for digital humanities training in that area but also as an online repository of training materials, lectures, exemplars, and links that offer best practices to beginner, intermediate, and advanced digital humanists. As a visitor to the site, you’ll have access to a number of presentations, guides, and examples that we’ve created or selected for their contribution to digital humanities as a discipline."

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Digital Scholarship and Digital Studies: The State of the Discipline by Matthew Kirschenbaum, Sarah Werner

Book History

While popular imagination has “the digital” opposed to “the book,” the two are now inextricably linked. This review essay looks at the range of digital tools available for conducting book history; the importance of software studies, platform studies, critical code studies, and media archaeology for book historians; and the intertwined connections between print and digital in the production and dissemination of today’s books. The authors argue for understanding the necessities of understanding the myriad relationships between page and screen, and the abiding materiality of the digital form. 

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Stats: Wales data sources

Welsh Overview:
  • 3.1 million people (mid 2011).
  • The main urban areas are Cardiff (346,100), Swansea (239,000) and Newport (145,700).
  • About 1 in 20 of the UK population live in Wales.
  • The total land surface of Wales comprises nearly 2.1 million hectares, of which some 80 per cent is devoted to agriculture.
  • Life expectancy from birth in Wales is 78.2 years for males and 82.2 years for females (2010-12).5
  • Just over 52 per cent of local authority municipal waste was prepared for reuse, recycling or composting in 2012-13.8
  • 1,656 maintained schools, and approx 465,000 pupils. More than 500 schools teach through the medium of Welsh.
  • There were nearly 129,000 enrolments at higher education institutions in Wales in 2012/13.
  • In 2013 there were 9.5 million sheep and lambs about one quarter of the UK total.
  • There were around 35,200 babies born in 2012.
  • Around one fifth of the population of Wales say they can speak Welsh.
  • There were 9.6 million domestic UK tourist trips to Wales in 2012.

Need data on Wales?

Wales Government:
Data Unit Wales:
Stats Wales:
Census 2011:

Saturday, 27 December 2014

A digital lib-bib-cell-hus

National Library of Wales [photo by Dylan Moore]



Which will stand the test of time?

  • Library (English) from librarium (Latin) - a chest for books.
  • Llyfrgell (Welsh) - from Latin a cell for books.
  • Bibliotheka - from Ancient Greek to Latin. Biblio- (from Byblos a port in today's Lebanon from where papyrus was imported to Greece) and -theke ( from Greek tithemi - to place or put).

We lost, in Middle English, bochus (from Old English) - a house for books.

In these digital days, do we need a place to store books, or a place to 'put' them. Printing a character on wood or paper seems quite similar to storing or 'printing' our digital data on magnetic or optical media - but we don't think of it like that very often and we can't see it without machines to translate back into our own languages. Our digital vaults (computer machine rooms) are more like the libraries of old - sealed, protected places where only the authorized may wander.

What about a digitheke - or is that the world-wide-web as we know it? The loss of the bibliothecary seems a shame, but lives on in the twittersphere - of course (@bibliothecary)

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

The Demise of Welsh History?

Huw Bowen's suggestions for sustainable Welsh History:

There are many things that we could do, but here are two suggestions.
First, there should be an annual festival of Welsh history.  We seem to have festivals of virtually everything in Wales, but for some reason not Welsh history.  This is a major omission from the cultural calendar, and it is one that History Research Wales is well placed to rectify.
Second, there should be a properly funded Welsh Institute of Historical Research to serve the needs of communities, local councils, national institutions, and government.  It should be the ‘go-to’ place for advice on the history that informs the development of every single form of activity that takes place.  Such an institute would not only represent a ‘world first’ but also demonstrate that Wales is fully in touch with its past and properly understands its place in the broader scheme of things.

Living Labs

The European Network of Living Labs (ENoLL) is the international federation of benchmarked Living Labs in Europe and worldwide. Founded in November 2006 under the auspices of the Finnish European Presidency, the network has grown in ‘waves’ up to this day. To this date, 8 Waves have been launched, resulting in 370 accepted Living Labs. The ENoLL international non-profit association, as the legal representative entity of the network, is headquartered in Brussels, at the heart of Europe.
What is a Living Lab?
A Living Lab is a real-life test and experimentation environment where users and producers co-create innovations. Living Labs have been characterised by the European Commission as Public-Private-People Partnerships (PPPP) for user-driven open innovation. A Living Lab employs four main activities: 
  1. Co-Creation: co-design by users and producers 
  2. Exploration: discovering emerging usages, behaviours and market opportunities 
  3. Experimentation: implementing live scenarios within communities of users 
  4. Evaluation: assessment of concepts, products and services according to socio-ergonomic, socio-cognitive and socio-economic criteria.

Future Everything Festival (link)

FutureEverything is an award-winning innovation lab for digital culture and annual festival, established in Manchester in 1995. For almost 20 years FutureEverything has been exploring the meeting point of technology, society and culture which lies at the heart of the digital debate. Through a community network and regular events it makes connections between thinkers, developers, coders, artists, designers, urbanists and policy makers – inspiring them to experiment and to collaborate in new ways.
The FutureEverything festival brings people together to discover, share and experience new ideas for the future. Pioneering the practice of city-wide ‘festival as laboratory’ it combines a large scale cultural event – encompassing art, music and discussion – with new technology, novel research methods and playful social experiments. It has been named by The Guardian as one of the top ten ideas festivals in the world.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Gwaith Dafydd ap Gwilym

Dafydd ap Gwilym website:

The editors of the works of Dafydd ap Gwilym included on the site are visualised using Cytoscape. The layout is manually tweaked after being laid out by Cytoscape's algorithms. Raw data can be found here

Friday, 3 October 2014

Turning an Eye to Crime

Turing an eye to crime: South Wales Police crime data.

Cytoscape layout of crime data
Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v1.0. UK Crime data

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

CODAH: Centre on Digital Arts and Humanities

Swansea University's Centre on Digital Arts and Humanities was founded in summer 2014.

CODAH aims to deepen links and share knowledge between staff and students in Arts and Humanities and Computing (and other disciplines), in terms of research, teaching, public impact, resourcing and strategy.

Dr Tom Cheesman (Dept of Languages) and Dr Robert S Laramee (Computer Science) are joint directors.

Saturday, 5 July 2014

A World of Welsh Copper: Cu@Swansea

Hafod and Morfa Copperworks from White Rock Image Credit
If anyone has not become aware of the work of the Welsh Copper project then a trawl through some of the information available from it may be in order. Cu@Swansea has gathered huge momentum over the last few years, building on the innovative regeneration work begun in the 80's, and aiming now to create a heritage hub and industry, with space for people to enjoy and share.  "It's really copper that lies at the heart of Wales' development as an industrial nation" says Professor Huw Bowen at Swansea University, and it is this project that is bringing the global world of Welsh Copper back to life.

The project website, among many other interesting things, includes a bibliography, powered by Zotero, for copper related research material, and it is this use of Zotero to provide open access, online bibliographies that is a nice example of simple digital technologies that can enhance projects.

Keep up with the news and follow the project @copperhistories 

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Network Visualization: word association & Cytoscape

Having used gephi, for some time, I've been wanting to look at alternative network engines, as people keen coming up with interesting data sets that sometimes seem to cause me a problem in Gephi for one reason or another. Finally with a 7 hour train journey behind me I took a look at one of the options I had previously shortlisted. This is Cytoscape, and a graph of some word association data that I previously gathered. It is imported into Cytoscape as a .csv file and with very little tweaking draws graphs such as this. Click on the image for a larger version.
Cytoscape layout of chained word association data: (c) Steve Williams, Swansea University [cc-by]

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Digital Festival Italy

IHR Seminar, Senate House: Sir Deian Hopkin, Digitising the First World War


Next seminar – Tuesday 3 June 2014 – Digitising the First World War: opportunities and challenges
Posted on 13 May 2014 by Jane Winters

The IHR Seminar in Digital History would like to welcome you to its first seminar of the 2014 summer term.

Speaker: Professor Sir Deian Hopkin (President of the National Library of Wales)

Title: Digitising the First World War: Opportunities and Challenges

Date: 3 June, 2014

Time: 5:15 PM (BST=GMT+1)

Venue: Athlone Room, 102, Senate House, South Block, First floor, or live online atHistorySpot

Abstract: One of the most important legacies of the commemoration of the First World War will be an extensive range of new digital archives. The Imperial War Museum is leading a partnership of many hundreds of organisations, many of whom are involved in capturing records, visual artefacts, memoirs and much else. The National Archives now offers a wide variety of resources, from war diaries and nurses’ records to interviews with prisoners of war and records of military service appeal tribunals and has launched a crowd-sourcing site to identify data contained within war diaries. The National Library of Wales hosts the People’s Collection, also a crowd-sourcing platform, which enables individuals and organisations to upload diaries, letters, photographs and other artefacts, and a dedicated website provides searchable access to Welsh newspapers during the war, part of a much larger collection of Welsh Newspapers Online. And there is much else, on the same lines, taking place in libraries, record offices and among informal groups across the country.

In his acclaimed book, Capital in the Twenty-First Century, Thomas Piketty pays a particular debt to improvements in the technology of research, most specifically computers, which enabled him to process data on a huge scale and offer a new synthesis; indeed he claims his work to be as much about history as economics. Twenty years ago, there was a rush of enthusiasm for the use of computing technology by historians. Since then, despite huge technical advances and a communications revolution, there is a sense that most historians have remained aloof from these new developments. Some of the tools available in the 1980s and 1990s have not evolved and there is much less written nowadays about techniques and methodology; indeed there appear to be little provision for historians to develop the particular skills needed to exploit rich digital archives, especially structured data.

While the new resources appear to offer exciting prospects, are we any nearer being able to exploit them? This presentation will discuss the opportunities which are now available but the challenges that still remain.

Speaker: Professor Sir Deian Hopkin spent 43 years in higher education, retiring as Vice Chancellor of London South Bank University in 2009. He was a co-founder of the Association of History and Computing and active in the CTI, the History Data Archive and other initiatives in the 1980s and 1990s. He is currently President of the National Library of Wales, a trustee of the IHR Development Trust and Chair of the Wales Programme Committee for the First World War Centenary.

Seminars are streamed live online at HistorySpot. To keep in touch, follow us on Twitter (@IHRDigHist) or at the hashtag #dhist.

Open Humanities Awards: closing date 30th May 2014

"We are excited to announce the second round of the Open Humanities Awards, running from 30 April until 30 May 2014. There are €20,000 worth of prizes on offer in two dedicated tracks:

Open track: for projects that either use open content, open data or open source tools to further humanities teaching and research

DM2E track: for projects that build upon the research, tools and data of the DM2E project

Whether you’re interested in patterns of allusion in Aristotle, networks of correspondence in the Jewish Enlightenment or digitising public domain editions of Dante, we’d love to hear about the kinds of open projects that could support your interest!- See more at:"

Software, Digital Art, Data Curation & Archives! The 2014 NDSA Innovation Award Winners

Winner at the Delta County Fair, Colorado, Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Color Photographs,
Winner at the Delta County Fair, Colorado, 1940 Oct. Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Color Photographs,
The National Digital Stewardship Alliance Innovation Working Group is excited to announce the winners of the 2014 NDSA Innovation Awards. Each year the Innovation Working Group solicits nominations for  projects, individuals, and organizations doing innovative and substantive work in digital preservation. This is the third year we have handed out these awards and previous blog posts list the 2012 recipients and the2013 recipients.
From more than thirty nominations, the awards committee selected the following four winners. The winners illustrate the diversity of the digital preservation community, including students, educators, and practitioners and representatives from library, archives and museum communities. Please join us in congratulating them for their hard work.
Institution: National Software Reference Library, National Institute for Standards and Technology: Recognized for their substantial leadership in building a national collection of software, developing and sharing workflows and approaches for software preservation, and for modeling approaches to corpus analysis of born digital collections. You can learn more about the NSRL in this interview.
Project: XFR STN, The New Museum. “XFR STN” (Transfer Station) acts as “an open-door artist-centered media archiving project.” The project is recognized in particular for how it stands as a model for community-driven digital preservation activity, utilized existing platforms like the Internet Archive for long term preservation, and worked directly with artist and media creators to preserve their work.
Individual: Trevor MuñozAssistant Dean for Digital Humanities Research at the University of Maryland Libraries and an Associate Director of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities.  Recognized for his work developing and teaching best practices in data curation in the digital humanities and for his work advocating for digital preservation as a core function of librarianship, archival work, and scholarship.
Future Steward: Emily Reynolds, National Digital Stewardship Resident, The World Bank. Recognized for the quality of her work in a range of internships and student positions with ICPSR, University of Michigan Libraries, the Library of Congress, Brooklyn Historical Society, Storycorps, and, in particular, her recent work on the World Bank’s eArchivesproject.
The 2014 NDSA Innovation Awards will be presented at the upcoming Digital Preservation 2014, which will be held July 22-24 in Washington DC. More information on the conference will be available soon.

Leonardo Symposium

Arts, Humanities, and Complex Networks
— 5th Leonardo satellite symposium at NetSci2014

on Tuesday, June 3, 2014.

For the fifth time, it is our pleasure to bring together pioneer work in the overlap of arts, humanities, network research, data science, and information design. The 2014 symposium will follow our established recipe, leveraging interaction between those areas by means of keynotes, a number of contributions, and a high-profile panel discussion. 

In our call, we are looking for a diversity of research contributions revolving around networks in culture, networks in art, networks in the humanities, art about networks, and research in network visualization. Focussing on these five pillars that have crystallized out of our previous meetings, the 2014 symposium again strives to make further impact in the arts, humanities, and natural sciences.

Running parallel to the NetSci2014 conference, the symposium provides a unique opportunity to mingle with leading researchers in complex network science, potentially sparking fruitful collaborations.
Program Schedule: ^

9:00 Roger Malina
Opening Remarks

9:10 Maximilian Schich

9:30 Keynote Lada Adamic

10:30 Coffee break
11:00 Anamaria Berea
The Network Of the 'Byzantium after Byzantium' Fresco Style in the UNESCO Monasteries of Moldova

11:30 Giorgio Caviglia, Nicole Coleman and Dan Edelstein
Idiographic Network Visualizations: Bringing the Construction and the Manipulation of Network Graphs Up Front

12:00 Claire Kovacs
Mapping Paris: Social and Artistic Networks, 1855-1889

12:30 Jaimie Murdock, Robert Light, Katy Borner and Colin Allen
Using Visualizations to Deconstruct 'The Two Cultures'

13:00 Lunch
14:00 Arram Bae, Doheum Park, Yong-Yeol Ahn and Juyong Park
Network Landscape of Western Classical Music

14:30 Kim Albrecht, Marian Dörk and Boris Müller
Culturegraphy, Visualizing Cultural Network Dynamics

15:00 Dmitry Zinoviev
The Pain of Complexity

15:30 Heidi Boisvert
Echoing Narcissus: Bio-Adaptive Game-Based Networked Performance

16:00 Coffee break
16:30 Panel discussion
17:30 End