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Taking Over a Class Mid-Semester

Rhino on the River

This week, because a colleague is leaving*, I’ll be taking on her role in two classes. In both instances I’ll become the instructor of record, although one of the classes is team-taught, so I won’t be fully “taking over.” I’ve done this before, as once in graduate school I taught the final two months or so of a seminar.

It’s a thing that happens more often than one might think, due to the vicissitudes of life, and so I thought I’d gather a few thoughts on how to make the transition work smooth…

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Weekend Reading: Friday the 13th Edition

Friday the 13th

Hey, we made it through another week! Here are five links and a video:

  • Eddie Smith takes the history of mathematical typography to some really fascinating places: I think it’s critically important for those of us that write math to have at least a basic awareness of the history of mathematical typesetting. For me, knowing this history has had several practical benefits. It’s made me more grateful for the writing tools I have today—tools that I can use to simplify and improve the present…
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Collaborative Annotations You May Want to Join

woman and 2 kids read on couch

I am always on the lookout for collaborative hypothes.is annotations – articles or sites out there that others have put out calls to annotate. I do this for three reasons:

  1. I can use them as examples in workshops I give to faculty about annotation, and I noticed my colleague use them in individual consultations with faculty to showcase the tool;
  2. I like to use them in my class so my students get to see the global potential of collaborative annotation; and
  3. For my own professional development – I …
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On Digital Humanities in the Undergraduate Classroom

photo of a circuit board

Readers who are digital humanities-curious–or who are just looking for a decently comprehensive overview of some approaches to digital pedagogy, especially but not necessarily exclusively, in the humanities classroom, might want to bookmark issue 11.3 (out in preview now) of Digital Humanities Quarterly, which is devoted to “Imagining the DH Undergraduate.”

In their “Introduction,”, Emily Christina Murphy and Shannon R Smith note the three themes that connect the essays: student agency, (digita…

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Some Quick Guidelines for Better Typography

Arkonaplatz type

When I was in college, I could never finish Wuthering Heights. I knew that Emily Brontë was supposed to be (is!) a great writer, and I liked her sisters’ novels well enough, but could not make my way through this book. It was pretty annoying. Then, at some point, I was at a friend’s place for the weekend, and they had a different edition of Wuthering Heights than the tight, crowded discount paperback I’d been failing to read well. The clouds lifted, I was absorbed, and felt better about the un…

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Chalk One Up for Augmented Reality

Chalk

Thus far, I have not seen any augmented reality apps that have struck me as super-useful. Sky Guide AR is pretty cool, but unfortunately I don’t get a lot of quality time with the night sky. Obviously it’s early days yet, and I expect there will be plenty of amazingly useful apps in the near future. (Wait–if realtime translation “counts” as AR, then I guess that’s definitely pretty useful.)

The first app to catch my eye in an “I will use this every week” sort of way is Vuforia’s Chalk. Chalk s…

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How to Make Short-Form Videos as Tutorials, and Why You Might Want To

Miffy Lamp at night
If Cindy Craig were an on-trend technology company, she would describe her work as “microlearning.” Mercifully, because she’s a librarian, she talks instead about making short-form video (<15 seconds) as a happy medium between the unwatched screencast and tutorials with static screenshots.

Craig has a splendid new essay up in In the Library with the Lead Pipe, called “Modular Short Form Video for Library Instruction”; …

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Seasonal Cycles

Drone footage of Wellesley
Typically when people talk about the rhythms of academic life, they mean the cycles of the academic calendar. Ordering books, getting a syllabus ready, midterms, graduation–these events all provide opportunities for taking stock and for constantly restarting.

Against that rhythm, seasonal change can seem like something to be overcome: It’s dark out by 4pm, so how am I going to exercise? Flu season!? If it’s 15 degrees out, why are the students in shorts and flip-flops? Too hot to have class in…

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New Open Publishing Platform “Janeway”

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Seriously, if the name alone of this new platform doesn’t make you want to at least check it out, we can’t be friends.

From our friends at Birkbeck’s Centre for Technology and Publishing, who brought us the Open Library of Humanities, comes Janeway, a new platform for publishing open-access journals. It’s an open-source platform, and its goal is to be easy-to-use and sustainable, as well as flexible.

According to Andy Byers, Lead Developer on the projects, “my experience with some of the existi…

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Using Digital Archives to Teach Data Set Creation and Visualization Design

screenshot of Visual Haggard home page

Kate Holterhoff @KateHolterhoff is a Marion L. Brittain Postdoctoral Fellow at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Her research areas include nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century British literature, visual culture, digital humanities, and the history of science. She directs and edits the literary and art historical resource VisualHaggard.org, which has recently become a federated archive with with NINES, the Networked Infrastructure for Nineteenth-Century Electronic Scholarship.

Useful as d…