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Humanist Archives: Jan. 15, 2020, 6:32 a.m. Humanist 33.550 - what happens in digital research?

                  Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 33, No. 550.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                   Hosted by King's Digital Lab
                Submit to: humanist@dhhumanist.org

        Date: 2020-01-14 14:35:44+00:00
        From: Willard McCarty 
        Subject: what happens in digital research?

Many years ago, my colleagues, Russ Wooldridge (French, Toronto), 
Bill Winder (French, British Columbia) and I founded on online 
publication series, Computing in the Humanities Working Papers 
(CHWP, http://projects.chass.utoronto.ca/chwp/).
Wooldridge described it thus:

> ... a vehicle for an intermediary stage at which questions of
> computer methodology in relation to the corpus at hand are of
> interest to the scholar before the computer disappears into the
> background.

We were concerned about the serious loss of detailed, valuable
information about how research with computing is in fact done. Many 
years later I realised through scholarly work on the history of 
experimental science, esp that of the 'cognitive-historical' school 
of Nancy Nersessian, David Gooding, Ryan Tweeny et al, just what 
could be done with such information. In the gap between the founding 
of CHWP and my current work, with little more than conviction to go 
on, I started requiring students to write what I called the 
"essay-report". I attach my description here for your interest.

Has anyone else done anything like this?

My recollections have been triggered by the online publication of a
valuable new series, fruits of a European Research Council grant: An
Anthology of Narrative Science, ed. Mat Paskins and Mary S. Morgan,
downloadable from
The editors describe it as follows:

> In the following pages you will find a collection of eight scientific
> narratives from the last four centuries. They include discussions
> of the arduous crafts of making steel and constructing carriages; an
> account of mental illness which combines the perspectives of the
> patient and his doctors in a style modelled on Chaucer’s Canterbury
> Tales; an economist speculating how wealth would be distributed in
> a newly settled country; and attempts to envisage the branching
> pathways of chemical synthesis. The variety of subject matters is
> matched by a range of form in these narratives, even to the extent of
> narratives being reported in diagram- matic form rather than textual.
> Each narrative is accompanied by a commentary which aims to bring
> out its salient features and provide some brief contextual
> information. These commentaries also provide annotations to
> unfamiliar terms.

A second volume is in the works. In the announcement on the Mersenne
list, Morgan invites contributions:

> We are now preparing a second anthology, and invite contributions
> from scholars of the human, natural and social sciences, and of any
> period.  Please do get in touch with Mat Paskins
> (m.paskins@lse.ac.uk) or Andrew Hopkins (a.e.hopkins@lse.ac.uk) or
> Mary S. Morgan (m.morgan@lse.ac.uk) if you would like to propose a
> contribution, or send us the primary text or reference directly.
> Primary texts should be maximum 1500 words.

Here is an opportunity.


Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/),
Professor emeritus, Department of Digital Humanities, King's College
London; Editor, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews
(www.tandfonline.com/loi/yisr20) and Humanist (www.dhhumanist.org)

2007. McCarty, How to write an essay-report.pdf: https://dhhumanist.org/att/85879/att00/ 

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Editor: Willard McCarty (King's College London, U.K.; Western Sydney University, Australia)
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