Today I did a talk at University of Southern California on implementing the digital humanities and HUMlab as a case implementation. I tried to frame the talk in relation to the current state of the emerging field of digital humanities and I also used some material from the articles on digital humanities I am working on – in particular I discussed humanities computing as a paradigm. I quite enjoyed doing this and there was a good discussion. I also got a much better sense of what is going on at USC. The talk was hosted by the Institute of Multimedia Literacy and the College of Letters, Arts and Sciences.
In the afternoon I visited UCLA and had a great time. I reconnected with two excellent people: Zoe Borovsky and Todd Presner. Both important people for the development of the digital humanities at UCLA. Zoe is a key facilitator and Todd combines his digital humanities interest with solid work within his discipline. He published two books in 2007: Mobile Modernity: Germans, Jews, Trains (Columbia Press) and Muscular Judaism: The Jewish Body and the Politics of Regeneration (Routledge Curzon). There is a great deal going at UCLA in the humanities and information technology – and there is quite some potential for scaling up I think. We talked about models for ‘digital humanities’, UCLA:s profile, possible future collaboration and more. I was also reminded about that I need to develop my notion of practioner in my work on digital humanities.
I also quite enjoyed visiting the UCLA Technology Sandbox lab. A nice and creative space. It was also great to see the Visualization Portal, and I got to talk to Pieter who does not only run a smooth operation, but is also very nice. We talked about display technology, multiplex display setups for the humanities and more.