Community Help

Hi Everyone,

Today I will be talking about my community of practice during my time at the DSSF this summer 2019. As I know community is a very important, inherent part of Digital Humanities and DH without a community cannot survive. For me community is also important, especially because my project that I am working on is directed to the community of Gettysburg College and I want to connect with the community and strengthen the bonds of the community.

During the time of doing my project I was trying to engage with my community of practice, where I gained a lot knowledge and help me to develop my project and be closer to my goal. My main biggest help was R.C. Miessler, who was the assigned librarian for my project during DSSF. I was coming to R.C. all the times when I needed help and I got help every time. I was asking for help in technical support and how to start my project, R.C. showed me various possibilities of Augmented Reality platforms. Also, he supported in providing different devices so that I could develop my application on both iOS and Android and not be worried about lacking any resources. Moreover, he helped in getting a direction on my research of the history of Gettysburg College and R.C. pointed me to Special Collections, which was a perfect place for me to get plentiful resource for my project.

I met people in Special Collections and College Archives who were always willing to help me in my research. About the historical facts of Gettysburg College, Ron Couchman, the Special Collections Assistant, was the person who provided me with his knowledge of our College and he pointed me the historical works where I could find all the information about the College buildings. I was asking him any questions about the College and he could answer all my questions. It is very valuable for me to be able to talk with an alumni of our College, who was also a student as I am right now, and be able to look into his student life and now carry his past to the presence. I also got a very big help from College Archivist Amy Lucadamo who provided me information about the College buildings and also showed me to images of the buildings and pointed me to the resources where I could use them.

Also, during PCLA Digital Scholarship Student Symposium at Lafayette College I got also many helpful hints for my project that pointed me to a better solutions for my project. I was learning about other projects of so many students and I tried to learn what I could get from those projects and I also tried to provide them any help, but they almost finished their projects at that time. Also, the exchange with Bucknell University DSSFR was also fruitful in pointing me in a better direction and I once again tried to help them in their final step of their project.

For the technical support, I have got a big help from the Director of Education Technology, Eric Remy, who provided me computers with different operating systems, so that I would be able to develop my project on both iOS and Android. Furthermore, I also came to my computer science professor, Clifton Presser, who also provided me some helpful clues to start with AR.

I feel that in community of DH I am be the one always asking for help, but as I have worked on my project this summer, I am able and willing to provide help to DH community about the research of Gettysburg College history and also provide some technical support in starting with Augmented Reality development.

As being in a DSSF team, my cohorts have given me a lot of support and are always with me (we live in the same apartment) and I appreciate their help.

Thank You Everyone for Everything!

Have a good weekend,



Sound Engineering

In “Sound Engineering: Toward a Theory of Multimodal Soundness,” author Jody Shipka argues for the “purposeful choosing, experimentation, and communicative flexibility” of all mediums. This week’s reflection asks us to consider: “In what ways does your project leverage the affordances of the digital tools you selected—in what ways is your project soundly engineered?”

Purely on the basis of being a Digital Scholarship project, all the summer fellows have chosen atypical mediums for displaying their information in contrast to the normal scholarly paper. In terms of my own project, I have deliberately chosen mediums that move viewers through my information chronologically. This decision resulted in my choice of the platform Scalar. With Scalar, it is (relatively) easy to define a path for viewers to follow with a singular click. It is also easy to link different pages of information with similar backgrounds, either with a tag or physical link which I have done throughout the project. This decision was important in order to demonstrate how I argue that the college’s engagement with the community has evolved over time.

In addition to this, my project is primarily defined by words and images. I made the decision to include many images in order to more strongly connect viewers to projects of the past along with more superficial aesthetics. For example, I have chosen to use the carousel widget in order to display the many images I have gathered in a compact space, in chronological order. This moves viewers through time, from the beginning to the end of a particular service partnership. Videos created by the Center for Public Service over time have also been linked. The purpose of this is to include more engaging mediums as available.

TimelineJS is an additional example of a digital tool selected in order to “soundly engineer” my project. Firstly, it provides an overview of all of the service projects that will be discussed in depth throughout my site. Additionally, it provides links to explore that in-depth information as a viewer prefers. It also provides the option of continuing to move chronologically through all the projects, carrying on my time-oriented theme throughout the project.

Overall, my project is “soundly engineered” to be more engaging and reach a wider audience than a traditional academic paper. Strong visuals and ease of use were carefully considered to achieve this overarching goal. As a result, I focused on one primary digital tool (timelineJS) with a more time-consuming platform (Scalar). It is important to note as Shipka does that my project is soundly engineered “for now.” Inevitably factors will change over time. Nevertheless, I believe that careful planning from the early stages of DSSF has helped me achieve soundness “for now.”

Reflection 6- Erik Carneal

My project, with much of the digital humanities as a whole, uses digital tools to present my argument in a nice flow. This is focusing on the practical side of my website that makes sure each page and function serves an important role on the website. My project specifically used the digital tools TimelineJs and Voyant Tools. I choose both of these tools because they offered me a way to complete my argument and make my site as a whole seem more sound. Firstly, Timeline Js provided a visual way to show the progression of the articles and how close to Election Day they were published. This helps the reader better understand the nature of these articles and puts a timeline into the readers head that shows how close to election day they got. My other digital tool, Voyant Tools, is a program that allowed me to run a number of text analysis tests that provided me with useful and interactive visuals. These visuals present useful date, but also do so in a way that keeps the viewer interested because of the interactivity and general pleasing aesthetic. Overall, Voyant Tools contributed to the soundness of my site by having that useful interactive element which better presents the argument on a digital platform. In the article Sound Engineering: Toward a theory of multi model soundness by Jody Shkipa, she says in regard to what makes a project sound, “The specific conditions in, under, or with which the final product will be experienced by its audience—this involves determining or otherwise structuring the delivery, reception and/or circulation of their work”. It’s important to have this mindset when in completing the project. The way the audience is able to receive the information and easily navigate the site are very important when it comes to determining the soundness. I believe both my TimelineJs and Voyant Tools visuals betters the viewer’s ability to flow through not only my website by to flow through my argument.

I had originally had the ideas of also implementing a visual interactive map, but once I had the demo embedded it became clear the it disrupted the flow of my project. This trial and error is important to keeping the site’s soundness. If I had kept the map, it would have been visually pleasing but it would have confused the viewer and steered them away from the actual argument. An important tactic that I have noticed seems to work is to read through and navigate through your site as if you’d never seen it before. Coming in with a blank slate allows you to see where the site’s argument becomes weak and what elements of the site disrupt the soundness. It is also very useful to do this with a friend or a colleague that has never carefully navigated the site before. Soundness is an important factor for all websites, not just those in the Digital Humanities, and will always be an important part of the website making process.


Sound Engineering

Visual novels themselves combine a number of different digital tools to tell a story. They share a narrative through the use of not only text, but also audio, visuals, and gameplay. Creating a website has given a visual and interactive aspect to my research that embodies what a visual novel is, using different digital tools and forms of media to tell a story that could have been told in the form of plain text for a very different experience.

With a website I can present an abundance of screenshots and other images that allow for a more effective presentation than an essay would have been. In addition to images, instead of just describing different types of gameplay I’m able to link and embed videos that show exactly what I’m talking about. My project also includes a timeline going through the past of visual novels, and I believe that an interactive timeline of images and videos is much more interesting than just writing a list of dates and events.

In terms of structural soundness, I’ve organized my topics into a who/what/when/where/why/how format that I’m currently working to make a bit more sensible. I really like my format but it’s not particularly straightforward when it comes to what each word is representing within my project without actually exploring the entire menu. I’m hoping to find a way to fix this without completely compromising the design of how I’ve organized everything thus far.

While my project does not contain an abundant amount of literal sound and is currently structurally questionable, I still think the digital tools and media that I have combined present information in a more suitable fashion than an essay would have. Since the realm of visual novels is continuously developing, the content of my project is subject to change over time and luckily a website can easily reflect that. As the topic I’m discussing emphasizes the visual and interactive experience so much, it only makes sense that my project would do the same.

Soundly Engineered

A good example of how Constructing the Past is soundly engineered can be seen by looking at the menu bar. I wanted it to be pretty minimal when I first made it with only three items on it. But after some feedback and discussion I realized it would work better to add a little bit more to it. The first three items on the menu bar were, About/Welcome (I have yet to settle on a final name for it), Buildings, and Photo Gallery. The About menu contains the information about the project and the History of the College. But History of the College could also work as it’s own menu bar since it is not necessarily a sub-category of any of the information. Another menu bar that I am thinking of adding is one about the conclusions of the project and the connections between the other buildings. I have yet to come up with an encompassing name for it yet but would add this to my menu bar to stand alone with no subcategories. This would bring it up to five items to select from in the menu bar.

The most important item in the menu bar is the Buildings item. It lists the three buildings I am looking at and the subcategories that they have, Timelines, History, and Looking At (Which is not the final name). I decided to put them all under one tab because that means that potentially more buildings could be added to the analysis of the campus community. If they were all up in the menu then it makes it seem like those are the only buildings to look at when using buildings to analyze the campus. Those are just the ones I chose. By having them under a building tab it shows the potential to add more since many other buildings on campus would work and could potentially be added. This is soundly designed it was an active choice to represent how the information is organized.

This project is also soundly engineered because before starting this project I looked into what resources or documents existed.  I had already talked with the McPhersons, went to the Adams County Historical Society to look at information on the Breidenbaugh family, and talking to people at facilities to determine what information they had on the buildings and to see the Brua Architectural plans that they had. This project was guided by the information that I had already gathered. I could have found other buildings to focus on, and in my research I found many other buildings that would reflect the changes that were made and their reflection on the campus community. But I chose the three that I did because I was interested in them and had the information. I thought through all the planning of this project before starting it and checked that the information that I would need to complete it would be possible to get. This helps insure it is soundly engineered because potential directions of the project have been explored. I am also ensuring that it is soundly designed by giving my process for deciding things here, like the students did in Sound Engineering: Toward a Theory of Multimodal Soundness in Jody Shipka’s article.

Unite Past

Hi Everyone,


Today I will try to answer our main question:

In what ways does your project leverage the affordances of the digital tools you selected—in what ways is your project soundly engineered?

As you know the digital tool that I have selected is the 3D multi platform engine, called Unity, where I am able to build content for the Augmented Reality project and export it to the mobile phones. In addition to Unity, I am also using a software that enhances Augmented Reality usage, which I will be talking later, called Wikitude SDK for Unity.

In my project, I want to use Augmented Reality to make a mobile application to show the history of Gettysburg College Campus, and show how the campus has changed over time, especially during 1890s to 1920s. Because I want to engage my audience with the history, I want to use a lot of interactivity with the user and Unity is allowing me to do it.

First of all, in Unity I can make interactive buttons for the user and make user decide what they want to see and Unity has a very big collection of User Interface (UI) Design options, which I can use. For example, I am able to not only put text to talk about the historical facts of the campus to the application, but I can also put many images to show how the campus was looking in the past and the user can compare it with the campus in the present, with which the user can interact.

Secondly, Unity allows me to connect the user with past (history of the college), present (the current college campus), and future (the modern technology that is still evolving.) In Unity, I can present the history but also I can engage people through using mobile phones that they are using in their daily life, so it will be an approach toward present people to interest them with history with a modern digital tool. Also, because I want my project to reach as many people on campus as possible, Unity allows me to enlarge my audience by having a multi platform development, which means that I can create my project in Unity and then build my application and export it to both Android and iOS phones, which is what a majority of people on our campus are using. So now I do not have to create two separate projects for Android and iOS, but I can only make one and then can easily build applications for both platforms without any changes.

My project also demands the application to be able to recognize buildings of the campus in the real world with the camera of the phone, so I am using the Wikitude software that has a function of 3D object recognition and scene recognition that helps me to recognize the objects in the real life. Because of the scene recognition, the new function of Wikitude, I am able to recognize the buildings on our campus and then combining with Unity, I am able to let the user interact with the history through using the modern technology.

Have a good weekend,



Project Rough Draft

Here is a link to my rough draft. I still need to add more content. I reached a setback in research yesterday that caused me to have trouble working on Indonesia and the Philippines more. I plan to work on content for a bit longer.



Transforming DH -Emma Poff

Looking over the three claims made by the authors of this article, I think my project appropriately follows the guidelines to fit the TransformDH hashtag. When I was first thinking of ideas for my Digital Humanities project, my only goal was to share information the general public did not usually see. I wanted to answer the overwhelming question of why does my DH matter. Thinking about populism and how it has affected our country made me question how it has affected other countries. By researching countries rarely discussed or reported about, I thought that I could give a voice to the voiceless, whether that be suspected criminals losing rights of citizenship or ethnic and religious minorities having to flee their homes amidst persecution.

Transform DH focuses on activism and making knowledge available to everyone. This hashtag believes all digital tools should be used to advocate for political or social change.  My project follows these beliefs by offering perspectives from minorities and people who have been disadvantaged. By sharing their stories, I hope to give them a platform. In addition to this, I also have a tab on my main menu that directs my users to a page that focuses in on getting involved. This page will include news resources that report and share reliable information about my topic as well as descriptions of organizations that advocate and aid those suffering from human rights violations. By trying to spread knowledge and offering my users the chance to get involved in activism, I believe I am following the criteria to transform DH into something more focused on change.

From Week 1 to Week 5, I think my views on what is considered DH has definitely changed. Before, I considered very few things DH. Websites and digital tools were DH, but hashtag activism definitely was not. I was super wary to even consider social media platforms as reliable tools for DH. After reading many articles and attending lunch discussions these views I previously had are very different. I think DH is much looser than I originally thought. While I am still trying to decide how to draw the line to what is Dh and what is not, I think as of right now, anything that reports knowledge or information on a platform openly accessible should be considered DH if it also offers chances for collaboration. I know my views may change in the next three weeks but I hope I am coming closer to understanding DH for what it is entire.

Reflection 5- Erik Carneal

As my project has been coming along, the concepts of the digital humanities has become more clear and understandable to me. To me, the digital humanities are the presentation of information and data in a way that is visual and accessible to all. When relating this definition to my project, I can say that through the use of the digital tools that I use I have been able to present my research in a visual way. With these digital tools, I have allowed for my project to transform the presentation articles and how they are broken down. The possibilities for the digital humanities to be transformative are endless. The openness and diverse ways of presentation are what allow for new and innovative visuals to be created and used for the presentation of information. What makes these specific projects digital humanities or not is still up for debate, but my thoughts on the question has remained the same. Digital humanities and scholarship is any project that has useful and factual information that is presented in some sort of digital way. By this definition, the idea that the digital humanities is transformative only becomes greater. 

I have even taught myself new information through this project. This is information related to the understanding of both the digital humanities and my project itself. By learning digital tools like TimelineJs and StorymapJs, the information I have gathered becomes much easier to understand and breakdown. I believe that in my project and many others, the most transformatie aspect is the transformation of written information to visual information. An example within my project are text analysis visuals. These visuals are all articles broken down and analyzed in a visual way that is pleasing the viewer’s eye and easier to learn and understand. My visuals make a complicated form of the digital humanities, like text analysis, into an interactive and fun way to learn about the details of writing. Another example within my article is my interactive timeline. This timeline takes articles and presents them in chronological order in a way that is interactive with the user. The user can scroll and see the headlines and thumbnails of the articles as they use the timeline. These two examples are how my project can be transformative. My project may inspire other scholars to use visual elements to make the presentation of information easier and more of an interactive thing. 

The DSSF program as a whole is transformative itself. The program allows for this information that students gather to be presented in transformative ways. Programs like this are just now becoming popular, and the general theme of it has spread to other schools in different areas across the U.S. Programs like these are changing what we perceive as learning, which was usually either through visuals or text. With the digital humanities, we can learn through both put together in one project. As the digital humanities continues to grow, I believe that it wIll only become more and more transformative and more inspirational for scholars alike.


“Reflections on a Movement”

In “Reflections on a Movement,” authors Moya Bailey, Anne Cong-Huyen, Alexis Lothian, and Amanda Phillips discuss the #transformDH movement which places social, economic, and institutional contexts of DH at the forefront of the conversation. The article’s focus on social justice echoes our prior discussions and readings which have examined the unrealized opportunities within DH to move humanities studies away from the “ivory tower” into a more inclusive space in regards to race, sex, and economic background. This inclusivity has particularly failed queer individuals and women of color.

With this article in mind, this week’s reflection asked us to consider the following: How can your project be transformative? How can this program transform to change the needs of digital scholars? We discussed during the first day our ideas of what is and isn’t digital humanities/scholarship. How have your own thoughts on this changed?

Considering these questions for my own project, I think that the accessibility of my project meets one of the transformative components of DH. The public medium of scalar means that anyone who wants to see my research is able to without cost. I additionally think that my doing the research is a transformative component in itself. The opportunity for a female, undergraduate student to complete humanities research for the use of others is quite significant when put into the context that much of non-digital humanities research is often monopolized by an elite set of white, men in the academic world. Finally, my project is meant to be community-based, using diverse voices and experiences to explain the evolution of community engagement.

In terms of transforming this program to the needs of digital scholars, from my experience this summer, I would say the program is not meeting the diverse call of #transformDH. I realize that this is not an easy fix as this problem is not unique to the program, but rather is a larger problem with lack of diversity in liberal arts universities. It is notable that this program creates a platform for anyone to create a DH project. Making the program more attractive to a larger audience may be the issue. I additionally think #transformDH calls for greater engagement with the larger DH community. I also realize, however, that the program is limited by time constraints. Additionally, meeting other DH scholars at Lafayette was a great step towards this goal.

Overall, I would say my view of what is digital humanities has greatly broadened in my time with the program. Reading articles, attending the conference, as well as learning from my DH peers, I have seen such a wide range of DH projects that, although have very different purposes, all embody the values of DH. I have additionally become significantly more hesitant to call a project I am unaffiliated with “not DH.” I have found that the beauty of DH lies within the diversity of projects that it can produce.