The day after the Day of DH: some reflections

April 9, 2013 in Uncategorized

I meant to write up some kind of concluding post last night, but I ended up testing some things for Danielle around 10:30 last night then fell asleep, so that didn’t happen.

I have two major take-aways from the Day of DH and they are as follows:
1. live-blogging my day showed me that I do a lot more in a day than I thought I did.
2. A lot of people in digital humanities are doing a lot of the same things I am: reading, writing, testing.

I particularly enjoyed reading the Day of DH blogs of friends, colleagues, and people whom I only know through twitter. It was funny to see that Scott Weingart and I find our sources in much the same way. I wonder if we ever would have found that out otherwise – and I’m curious just how much Google has changed how people research. I really enjoyed seeing how other people work, where, and what they do on an average day – meetings, writing, reading.┬áIt was a nice reminder that even though we all do Digital Things, it’s not really so different from what our “analog” colleagues do.

Jen Guiliano said a lot of things that desperately needed to be said about doing digital humanities (“someone will ask if you can just take the time to help them figure out how to” & you will be expected to know how). I’m currently one of three digital humanities people in my department, and the only graduate student in my faculty that is doing so (as far as I know). Sometimes I wonder if departments with full-fledged DH groups get these kinds of queries, and it’s refreshing to see that they do, despite all the frustrations that come with them.

I worry that Digital Humanities is quickly becoming an echo chamber online, especially on twitter. Josh Honn highlights a number of anxieties we share about this movement. But this makes a nice relic of what we do when we do what we do – and a handy link to send to friends within and outwith the academy who ask “so what do you DO ALL DAY?”

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