Paper Session 4: Libraries, Museums, and the Digital Humanities



Friday, September 19, 2014 -
1:45pm to 3:00pm


About This Session

Paper Session 4: Digital Libraries and the Humanities

Sean P Anderson, Adam C Northam

Digital Popcorn: Making Media Better

The Popcorn.js framework works within HTML 5 and offers tools to enhance audio and video files embedded within webpages. We will discuss our initial efforts, trials, and tribulations in joining Popcorn.js with our media files; the workflow process for media file selection, preparation, and coding; and the benefits of using Popcorn.js with digital collections. We will demonstrate how we created enhanced media content within our website. Attendees will gain a basic understanding of Popcorn.js as well as potential ideas for integrating it into their websites.

Francesca Giannetti

Digital Libraries of Sound: An Impact Assessment

Academic and cultural heritage institutions in the U.S. have made measurable strides in the development of digital libraries of sound recordings oriented towards research and access, despite the lack of a true public domain for sound recordings under federal copyright law. Initiatives like the Library of Congress’s National Jukebox and the Audio Archive of the Internet Archive have enabled American institutions to begin the work of catching up to their counterparts in Canada, the European Union, and elsewhere, where copyright terms for sound recordings are of a shorter duration and governed by a single legislative body. Several American academic institutions are providing access to unique, unpublished recordings as well as orphaned commercial works either via institutional repositories or collection-specific platforms. However the impact these digital sound collections have on teaching and scholarship is largely unknown. What kinds of research do these collections enable that was not as easily accomplished before? This paper advances an impact assessment for U.S. digital sound collections using a traditional citation analysis methodology coupled with data mining of the social web. Citation counts from several indexes and databases, including Google Scholar, JSTOR, Music Index, and RILM, will be taken into consideration alongside alternative measures of impact such as downloads and tweets. A qualitative analysis will be performed to assess the types of use and user these collections currently attract. It is hoped that this research will yield insights into the uses of sound collections, as well as shed light on future directions for discovery of sound.

Sara Outhier

Are You Close Enough? Libraries and Embedded Digital Humanities

Are You Close Enough?: SMU Libraries as Learning Spaces juxtaposed a digitally enhanced physical exhibition with a virtual meta-exhibition that explored ways in which Southern Methodist University Libraries collections and spaces are being leveraged to deepen and broaden the educational experience at SMU.  The meta-exhibition examined the creation of the Post Chiaroscuro: Prints in Color after the Renaissance exhibition at the Hamon Arts Library.

The meta-exhibition utilized a variety of technology to enhance the visitor experience.  A screen at the event displayed a sequence of images and video that captured the installation of the exhibition and the work of the students in preparing their contributions to the exhibition content. A mobile-optimized website hosted digital versions of the matrices and impressions in the physical exhibition augmented by original textual and multimedia content, allowing visitors to share in the classroom experience as students learned about printing techniques and created informational captions for the art objects.

The potential impact of this project at academic institutions is multifaceted. By showcasing a more singular use of libraries--as interactive classrooms--the meta-exhibition is a template for partnering with other departments in unique and collaborative ways.  It also demonstrates methods for incorporating digital exhibitions into more traditional library uses, and how libraries can facilitate the integration of digital humanities in classrooms across campus. These methods enhance our ability to show what a library is all about: bringing people together to learn from the available resources, to help each other grow in their understanding and to create new information.

Lynn Rushton

Balancing Access and Artifacts: Museums in a Digital Age

Though still one of the few remaining institutions in which the general public has 'trust,' museums today struggle with issues of access and engagement. Digital projects and online exhibitions meet the first need, making art available to those with access to the internet. But at the same time, digital projects can undercut museums’ need to have visitors--foot-traffic that justifies funding, whether municipal, federal or private. This ubiquitous access via the internet also stands at odds with what museum curators and informed visitors experience with the physicality of things, the real objects and, in Walter Benjamin's terms, their 'aura.' Museums then are pulled in two directions, wanting to reach the greatest number of people, while also wanting to draw their patrons into the museum. This presentation overviews some of the ways in which museums have addressed this apparent conflict, through education or programming.  In particular, I'll overview what the Grapevine Museums have done on with a limited technology budget, particularly with free or inexpensive apps.


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Spencer D. C. Keralis

Dr. Spencer D. C. Keralis is Founder and Executive Director of Digital Frontiers. His writing has appeared in Book HistoryAmerican Periodicals, and the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) report The Problem of Data.

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Sara Outhier

Sara Outhier is the Music Librarian for Digital and Audio Services at the University of North Texas. She is responsible for overseeing digital and audio projects for the Music Library. Digital project responsibilities include identifying potential projects and project planning and design.

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Francesca Giannetti

Francesca Giannetti is the digital humanities librarian at Rutgers-New Brunswick. Her research interests include digital libraries, libretto studies, romance languages, and data visualizations.

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Lynn Rushton

Lynn Noelle Rushton is the museum curator for the City of Grapevine, curating the exhibitions at the Grapevine museums and museum galleries throughout the city. Drawing on her background in art history, art-making and art restoration, she creates programming for large public spaces and house museums.

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Michelle Hahn

Michelle Hahn is the Music Catalog Librarian at Southern Methodist University where she directs music and audiovisual metadata, cataloging, and data control efforts for the Central University Libraries. Michelle serves as liaison to the Hamon Arts Library, providing technical services support for staff and collections in all areas of the arts.

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