Archive for the ‘Publications’ Category

Fitzpatrick on CommentPress

Monday, October 15th, 2007

from Kathleen Fitzpatrick, “CommentPress: New (Social) Structures for New (Networked) Texts,” Journal of Electronic Publishing, Fall 2007:

… CommentPress demonstrates the fruitfulness of reimagining the technologies of electronic publishing in service to the social interconnections of authors and readers. The success of the electronic publishing ventures of the future will likely hinge on the liveliness of the conversations and interactions that they can produce, and the further new writing that those interactions can inspire. CommentPress grows out of an understanding that the chief problem involved in creating the future of the book is not simply placing the words on the screen, but structuring their delivery in an engaging manner; the issue of engagement, moreover, is not simply about locating the text within the technological network, but also, and primarily, about locating it within the social network. These are the problems that developers must focus on in seeking the electronic form that can not just rival but outdo the codex, as a form that invites the reader in, that acknowledges that the reader wants to respond, and that understands all publication as part of an ongoing series of public conversations, conducted in multiple time registers, across multiple texts. Making those conversations as accessible and inviting as possible should be the goal in imagining the textual communications circuit of the future.


Monday, October 1st, 2007

from the CHE:

Latin Lovers Flock to Vicipaedia It’s taken only a few years for Wikipedia to become one of the world’s most translated documents: Sections of the site now appear in about 250 languages, including regional dialects like Quechua, Xhosa, Nauruan, and Kalaallisut. The translation projects, fledgling though they may be, serve real communities across the world. But what to make of Vicipaedia, a bustling site whose contributors have translated more than 15,000 Wikipedia entries into Latin? The Wall Street Journal offers an entertaining profile of Vicipaedia’s editors, who are remarkably devoted to a project that is “a slightly odd thing to do in this century,” as one translator admits. Most readers and contributors use Vicipaedia to test their language skills, not to conduct real research. So the site’s content is, well, eclectic: Entries about Roman history and mythology rub up against those on beer pong and Paris Hilton. There’s plenty of debate about neologisms — editors can’t seem to agree on the proper Latin word for “computer” — but Latin experts told The Journal that the quality of the translations is surprisingly good. –Brock Read

Mr. Rocchio’s coda: “Latin has a tradition of 2,700 years … and we don’t want that to end. Latin isn’t dead, it just smells funny.”

… and Why We Should Worry

Monday, October 1st, 2007

Siva Vaidhyanathan has posted on his blog, the Googlization of Everything, an interview he did with a Charlottesville newspaper. The interview reveals some of his concerns about Google. An example:

More than 20 big university libraries have signed contracts with Google, in which they’re allowing Google’s people to scan large collections of their materials… This concerns me because while the universities think they’re getting this great service for free, it’s Google that’s getting the gift. Google is getting hundreds of years of riches that the state of Michigan and California have funded. Google’s getting all this content for free and gets to control access to it, gets to control the manner of presentation, gets to control the formats and gets to control the terms of use. I think that’s a bad deal for these libraries.

Open Access publication, anyone?

Saturday, September 29th, 2007

The second footnote to a review of Wolfgang Bernard and Christiane Reitz (edd.), Werner Krenkel: Naturalia non turpia. Sex and Gender in Ancient Greece and Rome / Schriften zur antiken Kultur- und Sexualwissenschaft. Spudasmata 113. Hildesheim, Zürich, New York: Olms, 2006 by Bernard Kytzler caught my attention:

Werner Krenkel, born 1926, has recently published, for financial reasons (!) in an electronic version (!), his monumental work on Varro, a disc not on the market but available ‘for friends and colleagues’ from Heinrich- Schliemann Institut, University of Rostock: Marcus Terentius Varro, Saturae Menippeae, lateinisch/deutsch, mit Anmerkungen (Rostock 2001). It offers, after a long and detailed introduction, the full text and translation of the 591 fragments surviving from Varro’s 150 satires, plus a profound commentary on each of them. The work is rounded out by an extensive index and a rich bibliography. Krenkel’s collection ‘Naturalia’ discussed here contains a specimen of this electronic publication: Nr. 23, pp. 495-537.

UI for Google book search improves

Wednesday, September 26th, 2007

Inside Google Book Search offers an update of “New ways to dig into Book Search.”

Academic publishers prepare for dirty war against Open Access

Saturday, September 22nd, 2007

According to an article published in this week’s New Scientist (full article requires sub):

An unexpected package arrived on my desk earlier this year. The sender did not give a name, and the return address was false. Inside were copies of emails between senior staff at major scientific publishing houses. They were discussing a surprising topic: plans to hire Eric Dezenhall, a public relations guru who has organised attacks on environmental groups, represented an Enron chief, and authored the book Nail ‘Em! […]

Leaked emails and controversial characters like Dezenhall are not normally associated with the staid world of academic journals, but the big publishers are getting a little spooked. Over the past decade, researchers have started to demand that scientific results be set free. […] This is not a message that all publishers want to hear.

This is, I suppose, not terribly surprising to hear when there is money to be made and lost; those benefiting from the status quo will always fight against any revolution or paradigm shift, but this doesn’t mean that change should or can be stopped. Some academic publishing houses have apparently already protested at the dirty arguments that the AAP are circulating in the name of their membership. In the end, as this article argues, I don’t see how this campaign can actually stop Open Access publishing from becoming huge–but it can, of course, affect US executive decisions.

If you don’t have access to the full New Scientist article, see the following NS blog post, which has links to some of the leaked material as well as other references.

Sounds familiar!

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2007

from Scott Jaschik, Publishing and Values, Inside Higher Ed, August 22, 2007:

A number of outside observers believe that the tensions visible in anthropology this week are challenging other disciplines, too. “At the most fundamental level, we’ve got a lot of these scholarly societies facing a set of frankly difficult decisions,” said Clifford A. Lynch, executive director of the Coalition for Networked Information, a collection of scholarly, computing and library groups. “They’ve got missions that often speak very broadly to disseminating and advancing knowledge in their discipline. They’ve got a membership that in some disciplines is increasingly convinced that the way to do that is more openness in publication and more innovation in publication, but these societies have got sort of addicted to these revenue streams from their publication programs over the last few decades, and are trying to figure out if they want to make the transition to a new model and — if so — how do they navigate the transition.”

(hat tip – Peter Suber)

The Metrics of Social Scholarship

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2007

from Laura Cohen’s Library 2.0: An Academic’s Perspective:

I thoroughly enjoyed Michael Jensen’s piece, The New Metrics of Scholarly Authority, published in The Chronicle on June 15. This is one of the best articles I’ve read about metrics that can be applied to social scholarship.

Jensen, Director of Web Communications at the National Academies, anticipates a future in which several activities of scholarship, many of which utilize the tools of Web 2.0, will define the future of scholarly authority. He calls this “Authority 3.0.” He comes up with seventeen possible metrics. It’s a great read.

AWMC/Pleiades bibliographic records

Friday, August 3rd, 2007

Staff and affiliates of the Ancient World Mapping Center and its Pleiades Project have released draft set of bibliographic records. The information in it was compiled initially from citation handlists and other unpublished working papers of the Classical Atlas Project (1988-2000). It was subsequently verified, updated and expanded with reference to an actual copy of the work cited, or (failing that and where possible) to at least 3 different online library catalog systems or other bibliographic reference sources. Moreover, some available information from publishers’ and authors’ websites has also been consulted.
Detail pages include embedded COinS bibliographic data, so it should be possible to capture the bibliographic data presented using Zotero, and also automatically generated links to Google Scholar.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License.

Archaeological Computing: available for review

Wednesday, August 1st, 2007

I’ve just spotted that this book is still available for review from BMCR after a month since it was listed as available. Surely there must be someone here who would like to get a copy and could review it?

*Eiteljorg, Harrison, II, and W. Fredrick Limp, Archaeological Computing. Bryn Mawr: Center for the Study of Architecture, 2007. Pp. 244.

CommentPress 1.0 released

Wednesday, July 25th, 2007

CommentPress is a free theme for the WordPress blogging engine that allows readers to comment paragraph by paragraph in the margins of a text. Annotate, gloss, workshop, debate: with CommentPress you can do all of these things on a finer-grained level, turning a document into a conversation. It can be applied to a fixed document (paper/essay/book etc.) or to a running blog. CommentPress was developed by the Institute for the Future of the Book “to enable social interaction around long-form texts.” Some of the possibilities:

  • scholarly contexts: working papers, conferences, annotation projects, journals, collaborative glosses
  • educational: virtual classroom discussion around readings, study groups
  • journalism/public advocacy/networked democracy: social assessment and public dissection of government or corporate documents, cutting through opaque language and spin
  • creative writing: workshopping story drafts, collaborative storytelling
  • recreational: social reading, book clubs

Update: University Publishing In A Digital Age now set up for social annotation.

Chiron pool at Flickr

Wednesday, June 27th, 2007

Alun Salt notes

Recently the 5000th photo was uploaded to the Chiron pool at Flickr. That’s over 5000 photos connected to antiquity which you can pick up and use in presentations or blogs for free. It’s due in no small part to the submissions by Ovando and MHarrsch, but there’s 130 other members. It’s a simple interface and an excellent example of what you can do with Flickr.

You can see the latest additions to Chiron in the photobar at the top of the page and you can visit the website of the people who had such a good idea at Chironweb.

100+ million word corpus of American English (1920s-2000s)

Monday, June 25th, 2007

Saw this on Humanist. Anything out there and also freely available for UK English?

A new 100+ million word corpus of American English (1920s-2000s) is now freely available at:

The corpus is based on more than 275,000 articles in TIME magazine from 1923 to 2006, and it contains articles on a wide range of topics – domestic and international, sports, financial, cultural, entertainment, personal interest, etc.

The architecture and interface is similar to the one that we have created for our version of the British National Corpus (see, and it allows users to:

— Find the frequency of particular words, phrases, substrings (prefixes, suffixes, roots) in each decade from the 1920s-2000s. Users can also limit the results by frequency in any set of years or decades. They can also see charts that show the totals for all matching strings in each decade (1920s-2000s), as well as each year within a given decade.

— Study changes in syntax since the 1920s. The corpus has been tagged for part of speech with CLAWS (the same tagger used for the BNC), and users can easily carry out searches like the following (from among endless possibilities): changes in the overall frequency of “going + to + V”, or “end up V-ing”, or preposition stranding (e.g. “[VV*] with .”), or phrasal verbs (1920s-1940s vs 1980s-2000s).

— Look at changes in collocates to investigate semantic shifts during the past 80 years. Users can find collocates up to 10 words to left or right of node word, and sort and limit by frequency in any set of years or decades.

— As mentioned, the interface is designed to easily permit comparisons between different sets of decades or years. For example, with one simple query users could find words ending in -dom that are much more frequent 1920s-40s than 1980s-1990s, nouns occurring with “hard” in 1940s-50s but not in the 1960s, adjectives that are more common 2003-06 than 2000-02, or phrasal verbs whose usage increases markedly after the 1950s, etc.

— Users can easily create customized lists (semantically-related words, specialized part of speech category, morphologically-related words, etc), and then use these lists directly as part of the query syntax.


For more information, please contact Mark Davies (, or visit:

for information and links to related corpora, including the upcoming BYU American National Corpus [BANC] (350+ million words, 1990-2007+).

—– Mark Davies
Professor of (Corpus) Linguistics
Brigham Young University

Promise and challenge: augmenting places with sources

Tuesday, June 19th, 2007

Bill Turkel has some very interesting things to say about “the widespread digitization of historical sources” and — near and dear to my heart — “augmenting places with sources”:

The last paragraph in “Seeing There” resonated especially, given what we’re trying to do with Pleiades:

The widespread digitization of historical sources raises the question of what kinds of top-level views we can have into the past. Obviously it’s possible to visit an archive in real life or in Second Life, and easy to imagine locating the archive in Google Earth. It is also possible to geocode sources, link each to the places to which it relates or refers. Some of this will be done manually and accurately, some automatically with a lower degree of accuracy. Augmenting places with sources, however, raises new questions about selectivity. Without some way of filtering or making sense of these place-based records, what we’ll end up with at best will be an overview, and not topsight.

There’s an ecosystem of digital scholarship building. And I’m not talking about SOAP, RDF or OGC. I’m talking about generic function and effect …  Is your digital publication epigraphic? Papyrological? Literary? Archaeological? Numismatic? Encyclopedic? A lumbering giant library book hoover? Your/my data is our/your metadata (if we/you eschew walls and fences). When we all cite each other and remix each other’s data in ways that software agents can exploit, what new visualizations/abstractions/interpretations will arise to empower the next generation of scholarly inquiry? Stay tuned (and plug in)!

Rome Reborn 1.0

Monday, June 11th, 2007

from the Chronicle for Higher Education:

Ancient Rome Restored — Virtually

A group of Virginians and Californians has rebuilt ancient Rome. And today they received the grateful thanks of the modern city’s mayor. The rebuilding marked by this ceremony has been digital. Researchers from the University of Virginia and the University of California at Los Angeles led an international team of archaeologists, architects, and computer scientists in assembling a huge recreation of the city. Rome Reborn 1.0 shows Rome circa 320 AD as it appeared within the 13 miles of Aurelian Walls that encircled it. In the 3D model, users can navigate through and around all the buildings and streets, including the Roman Senate House, the Colosseum, and th e Temple of Venus and Rome. And of course, since the city is virtual, it can be updated as new scientific discoveries are made about the real remains. –Josh Fischman

The RR website repays browsing. The still image of the interior of the Curia Julia is unusually attractive to my eyes, for a digital reconstruction. Of greater interest is what’s said under “Future of the Project,” namely that “The leaders of the project agree that they should shift their emphasis from creating digital models of specific monuments to vetting and publishing the models of other scholars.” I hope that process gets underway.

Update: Troels Myrup Kristensen has his doubts:

Notice the absence of signs of life – no people, no animals, no junk, no noises, no smells, no decay. The scene is utterly stripped of all the clutter that is what really fascinates us about the past. The burning question is whether this kind of (expensive and technology-heavy) representation really gives us fundamentally new insights into the past? From what I’ve seen so far of this project, I’m not convinced that this is the case.

Robot Scans Ancient Manuscript in 3-D

Tuesday, June 5th, 2007

Amy Hackney Blackwell has a new piece in Wired on the just-concluded month-long effort to digitize Venetus A at the Biblioteca Marciana in Venice.  (There’s a nice gallery of images too.)
I was fortunate to be part of this CHS-sponsored team for one week. Ultimately, we managed to acquire 3-D data as well as very high resolution images for three different annotated manuscripts of the Iliad. All of this material will be made available on-line on an Open Access basis.

OA in Classics…

Monday, June 4th, 2007

Josiah Ober, Walter Scheidel, Brent D. Shaw and Donna Sanclemente, “Toward Open Access in Ancient Studies: The Princeton-Stanford Working Papers in Classics” in Hesperia, Volume: 76, Issue: 1. Cover date: Jan-Mar 2007

New work on Johannes Tinctoris

Wednesday, May 9th, 2007

Ronald Woodley, Professor of Music in the Department of Research at the Birmingham Conservatoire, University of Central England, has substantially upgraded his site here at the Stoa on Johannes Tinctoris, prominent music theorist of the Renaissance. The project includes a Biographical Outline, a Work List, a Bibliography, original Latin treatises by Tinctoris, a selection of scholarly articles, and numerous sound files and graphical aids.

Image [&] Narrative issue on The Digital Archive

Wednesday, May 9th, 2007

The April 2007 issue of the online journal Image [&] Narrative is devoted to ‘The Digital Archive’. The table of Contents includes:


Friday, April 27th, 2007

An interesting new project at Heidelberg:

Propylaeum-DOK, der Volltextserver der Virtuellen Fachbibliothek Altertumswissenschaft, Propylaeum wird von der Universitätsbibliothek Heidelberg bereitgestellt. Die Publikationsplattform bietet Wissenschaftlerinnen und Wissenschaftlern weltweit die Möglichkeit, ihre Veröffentlichungen aus allen Fachbereichen der Altertumswissenschaften kostenlos und in elektronischer Form nach den Grundsätzen des Open Access im WWW verfügbar zu machen. Die Arbeiten werden mit standardisierten Adressen (URN) und Metadaten (OAIPMH) dauerhaft zitierfähig archiviert. Sie sind damit in verschiedenen Bibliothekskatalogen und Suchmaschinen weltweit recherchierbar.”

Pulitzer Prizes need updated categories

Tuesday, April 17th, 2007

Winners of the 2007 Pulitzer Prizes in various categories were announced yesterday.  Unfortunately, there isn’t yet a prize for a blogger.  If there had been, I can’t imagine a more deserving recipient than K.C. Johnson, for bravely staring down the Durham legal establishment, the frighteningly large swath of crazed and mendacious faculty at Duke, and a big chunk of the MSM as well, with his labor of love, the remarkable Durham-in-Wonderland blog.

First issue of Digital Humanities Quarterly

Wednesday, April 11th, 2007

The first issue of this new open-access, peer-reviewed scholarly journal is now out. Have a look.

The following text is copied from the Digital Classicist mailing list:

We are very pleased to announce the first issue of Digital Humanities Quarterly at DHQ is an open-access, peer-reviewed scholarly journal covering all aspects of digital media in the humanities, published online by the Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations.

DHQ Volume 1, Issue 1 (Spring 2007)

Interpretative Quests in Theory and Pedagogy Jeff Howard, University of Texas, Austin

Webs of Significance: The Abraham Lincoln Historical Digitization Project, New Technology, and the Democratization of History Drew VandeCreek, Northern Illinois University

Encoding for Endangered Tibetan Texts Linda E. Patrik, Union College

Reading Potential: The Oulipo and the Meaning of Algorithms
Mark Wolff, Hartwick College

Tenure, Promotion and Digital Publication
Joseph Raben, Queens College, City University of New York

Philosophy and Digital Humanities: A review of Willard McCarty, Humanities Computing (London and NY: Palgrave, 2005) Johanna Drucker, University of Virginia

This first issue brings together a fascinating range of perspectives, and we expect this breadth to be even more visible as future issues accumulate. We look forward to showcasing the wide variety of materials that are being submitted, both from traditional digital humanities domains and from important related areas such as new media studies, digital libraries, and digital art. New pieces will be added in a preview section as soon as they are ready for publication, and a quarterly announcement will notify readers when each new issue is complete. Please bookmark the site for now; an RSS feed will be coming soon. During the course of the next year we will also be adding more features such as commenting, searching, and a variety of ways of interacting with the content.

DHQ is a community experiment in journal publication: developed and published in XML on an open-source platform, under a Creative Commons license. The journal publishes a wide range of peer-reviewed materials, including scholarly articles, editorials, opinion pieces, and reviews. We encourage submissions that exploit the expressive potential of the digital medium. Information about submissions, reviewing, and the journal’s mission are available at the DHQ web site at

We would like to take this opportunity to thank our funders: the Alliance of Digital Humanities Organizations (ADHO, and the Association for Computers and the Humanities (ACH,

Warm thanks and acknowledgements are also very much in order to the team that has been involved in developing the journal:

John A. Walsh, Technical Editor, Indiana University
Matthew Kirschenbaum, Articles Editor, University of Maryland
Adriaan van der Weel, Articles Editor, University of Leiden
Stéfan Sinclair, Blogs Editor, McMaster University
Geoffrey Rockwell, Associate Interactive Media Editor, McMaster University
Joseph Raben, Editor for Issues in Humanities Computing, Queens College, City University of New York
Richard Giordano, Reviews Editor, Birkbeck College, University of London
Elisabeth Burr, Internationalization Editor, University of Leipzig
John Unsworth, Utility Infielder, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Melanie Kohnen, Managing Editor, Brown University
Michelle Dalmau, Design, Usability & Technical Support, Indiana University
Amit Kumar, Technical Support, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign
Erik Resly, Graphic Design, Brown University

We look forward to many more issues and to your comments, suggestions, and contributions.

Julia Flanders, Editor in Chief, Brown University Wendell Piez, General Editor, Mulberry Technologies, Inc. Melissa Terras, General Editor and Associate Interactive Media Editor, University College London

Your data is the next big battle

Wednesday, March 28th, 2007

The trendspotters are saying (rhetorically) “Open Source is dead” and “Open data matters more than Open Source.” What’s clearly meant is: “open data formats matter more …”

Open access — over which critical battles important to readers of this blog continue to rage — is completely overlooked.

Citizendium debuts

Tuesday, March 27th, 2007

from the CHE:

Citizendium Starts With a Little Knowledge

Citizendium, the peer-reviewed “progressive fork” of Wikipedia (The Chronicle, October 18, 2006), has opened for business. The site unveiled its public face on Sunday and as of this afternoon boasts more than 1,100 articles — a far cry from the more than 1.6 million entries in Wikipedia’s English version, but a decent start.

So far the new encyclopedia has a fairly random smattering of material: articles on topics relevant to scholars, like Jacques Derrida and the First Punic War, mingle with puzzling entries on the Bruneian dollar and Don MacLean (the basketball player, not the songwriter responsible for “Vincent.”) And while some pieces — like an essay on autism — seem to be well fleshed out, others — like a write-up on dachshunds — are mere placeholders for more-thorough articles.

None of this is meant as criticism. In fact, it’s fascinating to watch an encyclopedia start from the ground up. It will be worth watching to see whether the encyclopedia’s embrace of soft hierarchy — unlike Wikipedia, Citizendium requires contributors to identify themselves, and it lets a panel of scholars make final decisions on edits — slows its growth. –Brock Read

The entry on the Greek alphabet looks substantial as well.

MIT Faculty and Libraries Refuse DRM

Wednesday, March 21st, 2007

Seen in Slashdot, MIT LIbraries:

The MIT Libraries have canceled access to the Society of Automotive Engineers’ web-based database of technical papers, rejecting the SAE’s requirement that MIT accept the imposition of Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology.

SAE’s DRM technology severely limits use of SAE papers and imposes unnecessary burdens on readers. With this technology, users must download a DRM plugin, Adobe’s “FileOpen,” in order to read SAE papers. This plugin limits use to on-screen viewing and making a single printed copy, and does not work on Linux or Unix platforms.

MIT faculty respond

“It’s a step backwards,” says Professor Wai Cheng, SAE fellow and Professor of Mechanical Engineering at MIT, who feels strongly enough about the implications of DRM that he has asked to be added to the agenda of the upcoming SAE Publication Board meeting in April, when he will address this topic.

It will be interesting to see how publishers respond as this sort of user-revolt escalates.