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Historical Games and Simulations

  • On Wednesday we are going to imagine a historical game based upon presidential elections. Come to class with one idea for how the historical content of your group project might be represented in this game.

Blogging and Group Work

  • If you’re behind on your group project — and you should know who you are —  use this time to make up lost ground.
  • We will carve out at least half of Wednesday’s class for technical questions around the production of your final project. Post any questions that you know you would like us to answer to the course blog by 8 am.
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Reading:

Jeremiah McCall, “Historical Simulations as Problem Spaces: Criticism and Classroom Use,” Journal of Digital Humanities, Vol. 1, No. 2 (Spring 2012).

  • When you come to class, be ready to discuss what Jeremiah McCall’s argument is.
  • Do you play video games that have historical content?
  • If you were to design a historical game, what might it look like?

Group Blog Post(s)

1. By midnight Saturday, we need to see each group’s working bibliography. We’ve previously called this an inventory of artifacts, but now want a more formal and thorough presentation of your sources. This will be necessary for your final project anyway, so this gives you an opportunity to get started on it now.

2. By midnight Sunday, your group must post to the blog a description of how your final project is fulfilling the distribution requirements. Remember, your projects must combine spatial history, data mining and analysis, textual analysis, and visual and aural artifacts.

  • Be as precise as you can in your description. If you are creating a map, say how it is helping articulate or visualize your argument. If you are using maps created by others, say why you’re doing so and what it adds to your argument. What is the data that you’re using in your mining, analysis, or visualization? Etc.
  • We will respond to these posts Monday morning. Be sure to read our responses prior to class on Monday.
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Social Media and History

Reading:

Blog Post by Wednesday 8 am:

  • Each group is responsible for posting its argument to the blog, and description of the evidence that will support this argument.
    • The group must then use the comments area of that post to discuss the various pieces of evidence you’ve found.
    • See this as an ongoing process that will extend through the end of the week and to which the professors will chime in, but it absolutely must be started by 8 am Wednesday, and all members of the group must be involved. This will factor into the grade for your final project.
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By 11:59 pm on Wednesday, November 21 

Post your audio production (hosted on Soundcloud) to the course blog. Write an updated statement of at least 300 words about how this approach to storytelling might be used to make an historical argument. Be as precise and specific as you can, but also be imaginative about the directions you can go. Refer back to the comments we’ve left on your posts for class Monday, and to the discussion we had  in class.

By 11:59 pm on Friday, November 23

Leave a substantive comment on the post of one of your classmates. This comment should ask a question or in some other way build upon the work of the original poster.

By 5:50 pm on Monday, November 26 

The evolving possibilities of public history.

Read:

Each group should be prepared to:
  • Share with the class your updated inventory of assets and primary sources.
  • Articulate, even in draft form, what your historical argument is.

We are three weeks away from when your final project is due. If we do not feel that you are making sufficient progress, we will require a more formal post prior to Wednesday’s class.

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Reading, due by class time on Monday:

Nov 19: The goals of public history

Audio Assignment

You will choose and do an assignment from the DS106 Audio Assignment Bank. This project can be related or unrelated to your group project.

Here is a guide to producing audio.

By 8:00 am on Monday, November 19, write a post that includes the following:

  1. Which audio assignment will you be doing.
  2. What hardware and software will you be using.
  3. A statement about how this approach to storytelling might be used to make an historical argument.

By 5:50 pm on Wednesday, November 21, post your audio production (hosted on Soundcloud) to the course blog along with an updated statement about how this approach to storytelling might be used to make an historical argument.  

 

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Watch:

Ira Glass on Storytelling, in four parts on YouTube:

Pt 1: 

Pt 2:

Pt 3: 

Pt 4:

 

Group Work, post due by 8:00am on Wednesday: 

Together as a group you should create a detailed site map that outlines the organization of the assets you presented in class for the last assignment.  Remember that your project needs to cover the following areas: spatial history, data mining and analysis, textual analysis, and visual and aural culture.  All four of these areas should be represented in your site map.

You may design and publish your site map outside of our class blog, but write a post with the map embedded (preferable) or linked to.

Your post should include the following:

  • A statement of the historical question you’re examining in a single sentence
  • A visual representation of how your final product will be organized for readers/viewers (this is the site map) — be as specific as you can about how users will navigate through the various forms of material you will present
  • Reference to tools that will be employed to analyze data before it gets presented on your site
  • Reference to tools that will be employed to display information on your site
  • An up-to-date inventory of primary sources
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Reading, due by class time on Monday:

Bill Nichols, “The Voice of Documentary,” in Alan Rosenthal, ed., New Challenges for Documentary

Group Work, post due by 8:00am on Monday: 

Together as a group you should create a detailed site map that outlines the organization of the assets you presented in class for the last assignment.  Remember that your project needs to cover the following areas: spatial history, data mining and analysis, textual analysis, and visual and aural culture.  All four of these areas should be represented in your site map.

You may design and publish your site map outside of our class blog, but write a post with the map embedded (preferable) or linked to.

Your post should include the following:

  • A statement of your historical question in a single sentence
  • A visual representation of how your final product will be organized for readers/viewers (this is the site map) — be as specific as you can about how users will navigate through the various forms of material you will present
  • Reference to tools that will be employed to analyze data before it gets presented on your site
  • Reference to tools that will be employed to display information on your site
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Reading:

Group Work:

  • Your group should be prepared to present a preliminary “inventory of assets” for your project; a list of sources (or potential sources that you will locate) that will propel your argument. Be sure that these sources represent our distribution areas of spatial history, data mining and analysis, textual analysis, and visual and aural culture.
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Hi all: we’re looking forward to getting back to class tomorrow, and will be using this week to both explore the role of visual culture in the doing of digital history and to accelerate work on your projects. Please come to class prepared to discuss Joshua Brown, “History and the Web, From the Illustrated Newspaper to Cyberspace: Visual Technologies and Interaction in the Nineteenth and Twenty-First Centuries,” and Errol Morris, “Photography as a Weapon.”

On Wednesday we’ll be discussing Philip J. Ethington’s “Los Angeles and the Problem of Urban Historical Knowledge: A Multimedia Essay to Accompany the December Issue of The American Historical Review” and talking in detail about the tools and processes you’ll use to build out your projects.
Please be in touch with us as soon as possible if you are concerned about making it to class.
Best wishes,
Luke and Tom
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Reading: 

Group:

  • Your group should be prepared to present a “research strategy” to the class on Monday.
    • This strategy should include the following:
      • a statement of the historical question you seek to answer
      • a review of how your group divides labor
      • an overview of the data, archives, and other primary sources that you plan to use at the this stage
        • be sure that spatial history, data mining and analysis, textual analysis, and visual and aural culture are represented in this overview.
        • be sure you have a sense of the chronological scope of the data. Ask yourself if the data will be broad enough to address your question, but also manageable within our timeframe for producing these projects.
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Reading

Blog Post

  • Post to blog by 8am on Wednesday 10/24 a link to an example of a powerful graphical representation of data. Say what data is being represented, and why you think it’s done in a powerful way.
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Blog Work:

By 8 am Monday morning, create a map using Google My Maps or, if you’re ambitious, Google Fusion Tables. You should set aside at least two hours for doing this project.

Remember: no matter which tool you choose, you need data to plot on your map. Data includes photos or videos that you either create or compile from the web (make sure you cite your source), or restaurant reviews that you write yourself. Data also includes datasets like census statistics. You can use any data that you want, including public data you can find via this search and which can easily be integrated with a map using Google Fusion Tables.

Your map can be related to your group’s project, but it doesn’t have to be. You might do a map of voting locations in your borough. Or of votes by age in the election of 1960. Or restaurants in your neighborhood. Or of landmarks you pass on your commute to school. Or of international coffee production. Or of population numbers by county in New York State.

The goal of this project is to choose data, and then to visualize it on a map.

As you create your map, think about how the data you’re plotting might become part of a larger argument. Think about how the spatialization of data deepens your understanding of the data itself.

To use Google My Maps, log in to Google and go to http://maps.google.com.

Then, click on “My Places,” then click “Create Map.”

After doing so, you’ll see an interactive tutorial that will walk you through the process of creating a map.

Here’s a tutorial on using an earlier version of Google My Maps (the first few steps are different, but after that they’re similar)”

And, here’s a tutorial on building maps with Google Fusion Tables:

After you’ve created the map, embed it on our blog along with a 2-3 paragraph discussion of the potential value of mapping for your group’s project.  Here are instructions for embedding:

From Google Maps:
-Create map
-In Google Maps, click share icon (next to print icon in upper-left hand corner).  Copy the embed code (e.g., <iframe width …>).
-On our Blogs@Baruch WordPress site, start a new post.
-Choose “HTML” view in upper-right hand corner of post editor (tab next to “Visual”)
-Past embed code in post editor
-Preview or Publish post and you will see your map embedded

From Fusion Tables:
-Create Fusion Table
-Select Visualize/Map from the top menu
-Click “Get embeddable link” in upper-right hand corner of map (e.g., “<iframe width …>”)
-On our Blogs@Baruch WordPress site, start a new post.
-Choose “HTML” view in upper-right hand corner of post editor (tab next to “Visual”)
-Past embed code in post editor
-Preview or Publish post and you will see your map embedded

Reading: 

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By Wednesday, Oct. 15, at 5:50pm:

  • Also:
    • Review the comments we left on your group’s post sharing the secondary sources you’ve identified  (we will comment by noon on Tuesday). Someone from each group must respond to our feedback by class time on Wednesday.
    • Establish a strategy within your group for digesting the secondary sources you’ve located. This should be the beginning of your background reading, which should NOT be limited to what you’ve selected here. Be prepared to present this strategy to the class on Wednesday.
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By Monday, Oct. 15, at 8:00am:

  • Complete Reading:
    • Richard White, “What is Spatial History?” Spatial History Lab: Working paper; Submitted February 1, 2010.
    • Explore Hypercities.com. Come with a question about historical maps for our guest speaker.
  • Blog Post(s):
    • Each member of your group
      • In 200-300 words answer the following questions: How could your group use text mining to answer the historical question(s) you’ve proposed thus far?
    • One member of the group:
      • post 3-5 secondary sources your group will be reading to provide background information.
      • For secondary sources, you might look at JSTOR, search the library catalog, or consult a librarian. Comment on this post if you have any questions that you think we can help you with.
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By Monday, Oct. 8, at 8:00am:

  • One person from each group should make a post on behalf of the entire group.  For the list of members in the groups, see this post.
  • The post should include:
    • A name for your group
    • 2-3 historical questions you are considering answering in your project
    • A brief description of the expected scope of your project
    • A list of challenges and potential problems that you are having now, or anticipate will arise as you work on the project
    • Optional: discuss technologies, formats, and work-flow that you may employ
  • You are free to establish your own collaborative process. We highly recommend Google Docs

By Wednesday, October 10, at 8:00am:

Leave one comment on each of three different posts (other than your own group).  In each comment, raise at least one question about the proposed plan.  You are encouraged to say something positive, but remember to also challenge their thinking (remember, history is contested).

By Wednesday, October 10, at 5:50pm:

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By October 3, class time: 

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Due Friday 9/28 by Midnight
  • Select a single primary source document from your previous post (it cannot be a newspaper article). Remember: you’re looking for a document that can tell us something about the role of cultural conflict in the 1968 presidential election.
  • Embed the document in a new post, either as an image file or as partial quote, with a link to the original source in the database. Read the following closely.
  • Answer the following questions as briefly as possible:
    • Who created the artifact?
    • When was the artifact created?
    • Where was it created?
    • Why was the document created?
    • Why is the document a primary source?
    • How trustworthy is the source?
    • What other questions might you ask of the source in order to better understand what it reveals about the events of 1968?
  • Then, write (at the end of that post) between 250-500 words that answer the following questions:
    • If you were going to be constructing an argument about the relationship between the cultural conflict embodied by the artifact you’re presenting and the 1968 election, what other artifacts would you look for? How might you go about finding them? What other background reading would you need to do? What other questions would you ask?

Due Monday 10/1 by 8am

  • Comment on at least two classmates’ posts. Have they successfully completed the assignment? Are you persuaded that they are on a viable path to making a historical argument?

Due Monday 10/1 by 5:50pm

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Over the next two classes, you will be researching and constructing arguments about the role of “cultural conflict” in the 1968 presidential election.

By September 24th, 8:00am:

Find three primary sources that are each from a different database.  Post your sources to the blog — make sure no classmate has posted that sources already, if they have, find another! — with a brief description that includes:
a) what database you found the sources in;
b) who created it, when it was created, and where it was created (consult Sam Wineburg’s “Thinking Like a Historian” for the type of “meta” questions you should ask of a document); and
c) a brief statement on how each artifact speaks to the role of “cultural conflict” in the 1968 election. Your response should not merely be about a conflict, but about its relationship to that specific election.

If you are confused about what constitutes a primary source, see this primer from the Yale University libraries. If you’re still confused, ask us.

Do your best to upload a copy of the artifact to the blog, which can accept pdfs, or screenshots of documents. At the very least, link to the artifact. Again… if you’re stuck, ask us.

The Newman Library provides access to a range of databases. Click here to view them.

The databases you should search within are:

  • American Periodicals
  • AP Images
  • Art Museum Image Gallery
  • BlackThought and Culture
  • Cinema Image Gallery
  • Economist Historical Archive
  • Eighteenth Century Collections Online
  • Financial Times Historical Archive
  • In the First Person
  • JSTOR
  • New York Times (1951-2008)
  • Savings and Loan Crisis Digital Archives
  • Wall Street Journal (1889-1994)
  • Women and Social Movements

Next week, you will each craft a historical argument using the primary sources has collected. We will spend time talking about this on Monday.

In addition to the above assignment, complete the reading: Kate Theimer, “Archives in Context and as Context,” Journal of Digital Humanities, Vol. 1, No. 2 (Spring 2012).

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By September 17th, 9pm

Explore http://ds106.us/.  Write a post of less than 500 words exploring the approach members of the ds106 community take to questions of intellectual property, fair use, and network ethics. How does this community understand the “Commons”?

As part of this assignment, you are encouraged to ask a question on Twitter of some central members of the ds106 community:

  • Ask @jimgroom questions you have about the philosophy behind ds106.
  • Ask @cogdog questions about community-forming and modes of interaction.
  • Ask @mburtis questions about the assignment bank and building the architecture of ds106.
  • Ask @mbransons questions about the (re)use of media in the course.

To ask them on Twitter, just include their twitter handle (for example, @jimgroom) in your tweet. And be sure to tag your question with the #baruchdh hashtag!

By September 19th, 8am 

Leave a comment on at least two posts by your classmates.

By September 19th, 5:50pm

Complete reading:

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Read (and follow the links within these pieces):

Watch:

If you’ve not begun to explore the tools we reviewed in class on Monday, DO SO!

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