Digital Humanities Summer Institute

Digital Humanities Summer Institute

University of Victoria – June 8-12, 2009

Plenary Session

SEASR in Action: Data Analytics for Humanities Scholars

Morning Session – Day 1

Participants: Loretta, Boris, Allison, Jen, Jessica, Kathy, Justin, Greg, Brett, Roman, Devon, Mary, Quinn, Lauren,

SOA – service-oriented architecture

RDF – resource description framework

Dunning Loglikelihood – comparing different works.

Entity extraction using OpenNLP; dates viewed on Simile Timeline; location viewed on Google Maps.

Dendogram visualization – for clustering of texts

NEMA – SEASR workflow for audio analysis



DISCUS – text summarization, visual maps of concepts

UIMA – IBM software for taking unstructured data and turning it into structured data. Visualization to track emotion across a document. see

SEASR / Meandre Infrastructure –

  • components
  • flows
  • locations

Meandre Workbench visual programming tool

Meandre’s ZigZag scripting language (if you like that sort of thing)

Zotero (plugin for Firefox) – manages the collection

Fedora –

SEASR Community Hub –

Afternoon Session – Day 1

Text Analytics

Steps: text pre-processing, feature generation, feature selection, text / data analytics, analyzing results.

Text characteristics – text must be converted to numerical values for most algorithms. Noisy data (spelling msitakes, abbrevs., ACRNYMS). Not well structured text: email/chat/micro+blogs; transcribed speech; dependency (order of words); ambiguity (multiple meanings).

Text pre-processing – syntactic analysis; semantic analysis

Feature Selection – reduce dimensionality; irrelevant features (not all features help).

Syntactic analysis –

Semantic analysis –

Information extraction: entities (98% accuracy); attributes (80%), facts (60 – 70%), events (50 – 60%)

Hands-on work with meandre

Robert Blake Plenary – “Teaching with Technology”

Technology syndrome – is the fault technical (server is down), or pedagogical?

Multiple entry points for using technology – web pages, cds/dvds, etc.; social networks (cmc/cscw, tele/video-conferencing)

Emphasize how you use technology, not what you use

Create a student-centred classroom (e.g., wikis and blogs reinforce autonomy

Support interactivity, agency and students as co-producers (see Sloan Foundation report, 2004)

Extend the curriculum beyond the space and time of teh classroom

Technology is not a self-determining agent – only social forces working together can create a curriculum

Tools of the Trade:

Day 2


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