I have spent a couple of days in the Santa Cruz mountains, Palo Alto and at Stanford, and have had a series of good meetings with great people like Bruce Damer and Galen Brandt (see photo below, I got an update on the Evogrid project among other things), Fred Turner, Jeffrey Herr, Henry Lowood (who updated me on the Preserving Virtual Worlds project) and Nicole Coleman (who told me about the Republic of Letters project). And of course I have had the pleasure to meet with some of the people involved in the Wallenberg Global Learning Network.
Yesterday I did a talk at Wallenberg Hall on the intersection between the humanities and information technology – and the digital humanities. Quite a bit to cover in 50 minutes, but it was really fun to do, and a very good and diverse turnout of people.
I tried to give my sense of the ‘field’, different modes of engagement and the contemporary moment. A very personal take, of course, but loosely based on my article series on the digital humanities. I also talked about HUMlab, our model and spent quite a bit of time considering the importance of space and design of space.
I also mentioned that we (HUMlab) will advertise international postdoctoral fellowships soon. Information will be posted here soon.
Questions raised afterwards (in the Q&A and the following discussion) included the scope of the digital humanities and HUMlab, working with the humanities, uptake on working with young people and film/game projects, outreach and interdisciplinary practice. Gabriel Aduato raised a good point concerning HUMlab as a collaborative space – the culture of lab like HUMlab. I think I tend to focus the structural model, energy, activities and space design as means of facilitating meetings and making things happen, but there is also a sense of lab culture, which is quite important. I would like to think that HUMlab encourages interaction and collaboration, and that there is a basic ‘niceness’ to the environment. In any case, this is something I should think more about.