Archive for the 'Digital History' Category

Article Assignment

I found the articles that I chose to read quite interesting and made me really think about digital history and how it not only affects students, but teachers.

       In her article, Doing History in the Digital Age, Barbara Weinstien discusses her journey through teaching in parallel to technology and how it has evolved. In the beginning, she scowled upon technology and felt that pictures and powerpoints took away from the professionalism of a decent history lecture. Yet, eventually she began to incorporate such visuals inot her lectures with the positive influences that the digital world had on her. When it comes to lectures, I do not mind either or. Sometimes proffessors can use powerpoint way too much and then I lose focus and what is important. And sometimes there can be a professor that is so dull that I just need the pictures. There are sBarabara came to love email as well as google scholar. She discussed how wonderful it was to have primary sources at the click of a mouse. However, I also understood an issue that she noticed. Even though the interent is able to open our communication and our options- the interent can negativly focus us also. Ms. Weinstein became an editor for a magazine and discussed editing online. She also discussed the issues of newpapers and magazines being online. Readers begin to scope and just read one specific article, instead of having the hard copy in hand and skimming all articles and features. This is something I even find myself doing. In my thea435 class, we are asked to read the New York Times and Washington Post style and arts sections and bring topics for discussion. When reading the actual hardcopy, I am able to scope the newspaper and get a better grip on all the articles. However, online I find myself being extermely scoped and focused and scoped on one article- which can at times hinder class discussion. I was impressed that I was able to synthesize this article to some classes other than digital history.

Experimental History in the Class Room by Martha Hodes was also really interesting and unique. Reminding me of Dr. McClurken and our class- she was willing to take risks and experiment with assignements and discussions. In the article she discussed her class that was focused on experimental history (reading and writing it). She said the intergration of film, pictures, and important websites were extremely helpful for her course. The students were also required to write a research paper that could be written experimentally. She wrote that one of her students wrote a screenplay on Margaret Fuller. It is fascinating how history can be so creative and the class seemed awesome!

The blog site, The Age of Lincoln, is really interesting and quite unique. It is a blog site devoted to giving credit to sources that helped the creation of the book. The site gives brief info on the actual book, author, and publisher, but is devoted mainly to notes and sources. I have never seen a site like this before. The notes and sources section navigates by chapter. The author then goes through each source and note and discusses what was helpful and informative woth each source. It is an extremely dedicated and thoughful way to give credit to sources and other authors.

Published in:articles, Digital History, exploring the technology, interent |on April 7th, 2008 |Comments Off on Article Assignment

WIKI Pages

So I have looked at a few wikipedia pages that regard historical figures. I feel like history has a lot to do with major events etc…but I love studying the people more. So the first site I looked at was a Queen Victoria Wikipedia page. I was really interested to take a look at the dicussion page! In the pop culture section, an editor pointed out that everything seems to trivial and there is not a lot of biograpghical info on Queen Victoria. I thought that was an excellent point. There are so many sources out there on Queen Victoria (believe me I have lots!) and it was nice for someone to mention that! There were also mega debates over her name. Whether she should be called monarch, queen, Alexandra Victoria. These seem to be really insignificant when scanning the discussions, but when I think about it- these details are crucial! We have to think carefully about every word we are to publish on a website…maybe something to think about. The history tab was also something important to take a look at. The most recent was a proposal to change her name….that debate has been taking so long that there are no new changes since Feb. 3
I also took a look at the Battle of Bull Run. In the discussion tabs there was also a dispute of names and nicknames of the battle and proposals of new names. There was also a section of clarification for the purpose of the battle and questions over the strategic moves of the battle. When looking at the history section of the wiki page- there is a lot of DRAMA! Someone cussed an editor out and then the wiki page reffered it back to the previous so the profanity was taken  out… Um it is just a battle! 🙂
A final history page I looked at was the wiki page of James Monroe. In the discussion section there was a variation of pros and cons. Some said there were not enough citations and people were confused of where sources came from. This is an extremely important factor that both the offical JMP website and our own website needs to take into consideration. I really want our group to keep a running list of sources just so it is not so overwhelming at the end. Others were picky over little words like secretary of state. This is another example of how specific the web content needs to be. The history page reviewed different proposals for change. The last update was Feb 8.

I think it is extremely important to look at the discussion pages and I have never thought to look at them before. People are constantly updating and challenging over the content of the wiki pages. Also, the continuous editing and updating is quite interesting. I think that looking at the pages make me realize that content is really really important. I do not want anyone challening the info we put on our sites…so we need to be mindful of that!

Published in:Digital History, exploring the technology, interent, wiki |on February 18th, 2008 |2 Comments »

A Fear of Blogging and A Fear of this Project

Hello all,

how long has it been…like 3 weeks!? Well to be honest, blogging has been on my mind for a while. I am actually quite nervous what to write and what to write about. So I am just going to start writing about the project.

This project has made me do a double take. First of all, we went from 1 to 2 websites…I do not think that is a huge deal. But that is more work to do and more sources of technology to figure out. Why did I even choose this project as my first pick!? Well, I liked the idea of James Monroe because I have studied him in the past- also I love looking at historic documents. I really got into that in my 299 class. I am actually doing the same for European Diplomatic history this semester. My research essay is taking a look at Queen Victoria and the peaceful diplomacy she attempted to keep between countries with the marriage of different monarchies. It is a great research essay. This project however, is giving me nightmares!

Our group at the moment is really taking to use google docs. Everything we do to communicate with eachother is through google docs and email. I wish we could just actually meet more. I feel like we get so much more done when we are in class for fifteen minutes than we do when we are trying to do it over the internet and when we are seperate. I am not blaming anyone- I am just saying it would be more time efficient in my opinion. As a double major in theatre and history- it is fair to say I am a lot more in the theatre realm than the history one. I play such a large part in the theatre department. I am the marketing and communications assitant for the department, currently in main stage show, and taking an intense 400 level course where we are to create a digital story after our 2 week trip to New York during spring break. Yes, I would love to be a curator of a museum and be surrounded by thousands of archives and artifacts- but this is not my passion. I find it hard to juggle both history and theatre…If I am not in Monroe…My head is in theatre. (Except when I am doing history homework).

This project is stressing me out. I think about it a lot…but I feel helpless in what I can bring to the table. I am great with digital media(my brother and I always made movies and did the youtube and windows media player thing)…but uploading documents and creating a structure for a website is making me nervous. The JMP group seems to be talking about everything but we are not starting yet. It is making me nervous. I really want to go on Omeka and start creating one of the websites..but because this is a group project it is taking time to get the websites on their feet. I do not want everyone to think that our group project is a disaster…but I have had a lot of these nerves and feelings for a long time and that is why I did not want to blog. Yea, i want to discuss the tools and the research…but I needed to get this off my chest.

Published in:Digital History, problems |on February 17th, 2008 |3 Comments »

I forgot to click publish….

O well, I started and finished my blog for this weekend’s assignment– but I did not publish it….here is the blog from this weekend!

I really liked the website we were sent to. I especially thought that  UberNote was a cool source that is on the internet. It is an internet browser where you can manage your notes and get your notes from anywhere. This is good when you are unable to access your own computer but are able to get your notes from anywhere.

I think UberNotes could be really useful for our James Monroe project. It would be a way for all of us to gather our notes on the web and communicate. This seems to me quite similar to google docs…but just a little more specified.

Published in:Digital History, exploring the technology |on February 5th, 2008 |Comments Off on I forgot to click publish….

Exploring the Tools

So since I have been able to retrieve my login details for Omeka, things have been running quite smoothly. I am doing well with delicious. I actually have to post for two classes so it is cool to see all the tags and such. I am enjoying google docs. Other than delicious I can see that this is a really good tool for our group.

Continuing to look and review websites is something I am finding extremely interesting. Usually, I just look at a website for the content. But since our class discussion, I have began to look at the navigations of a page. Do I want that for our page–or would Mr. Preston like it for his page, or is this really useful? I am starting to look at pages for the easier structure, not just the content. It is kind of annoying because I probably will not look at a website the same ever—but hey it’s all part of learning.

We met with Mr. Preston last class–I am going to make that a whole different post 🙂

Published in:Digital History, exploring the technology |on January 28th, 2008 |1 Comment »

What is Omeka? O my ka!!!

Ok, so we need to upload stuff to omega. I am cool with that. I mean that is not too hard right? I feel like I am computer savvy enough. But when exploring it a little in class – it looks really technical…like wordpress times 1000! Ok, maybe that was a slight exageration! So, I decided to post something a few hours ago—and then when I went to the page I had forgotten my password. This is quite expected because I have used so many. I am in an intense theatre course where I have to create a digital story so there are so many passwords to create. Well I forgot, and tried to retrieve it through email….but it did not work. I am so frustrated. I really wanted to upload and explore some more. Well, I guess I will figure it out tomorrow in class.

Published in:Digital History, problems |on January 23rd, 2008 |1 Comment »

Why I Chose Digital History…

Hello all. My name is Talya and I am a junior at the University of Mary Washington. I am a double major in History and Theatre. I chose to be a double major because I do have a passion for the performing arts, but ever since I was young I have always been interested in the past and the study of particular eras- specifically the Colonial and Revolutionary eras in the United States.

So, why did I choose this class? Well, to be honest I really wanted to get into the witches seminar. Yet the more I pondered on what I want to do when I leave this institution, I knew that I had to give myself a chance and take this course. Right now, I am headed down the path of Law School. And the more I look at the syllabi of classes of law schools online, I realize that nearly most of the classes use computers constantly. I know how to use a computer, but I know I need some skills when it comes to tools, documentation of cases or letters online, and the overall knowledge of how to build a website and make the internet and easier tool for me to use when it comes to assignments.

I am pretty pleased that I got my first choice when it came to the projects within the course. I am a part of the James Monroe Letters project. First of all, I am rather daunted that I am going to be part of creating a website- but with everyone’s guidance, I am sure that will come out successfully.

I definitely appreciate the way that Dr. McClurken is approaching the course. He knows that this is a challenge for most of us- particularly me. To be honest, I am very nervous. I mean let’s be honest here- I am going to create a website that is going to be part of this university FOREVER! (well that’s if it is good). I am sure it will be good. But it is very daunting. Just learning about the tools to help the daunting project are daunting. However, I plan to do as Dr. McClurken asked. I shall trust him, and in turn will come in open minded and ready to be creative. I think I am safe to say that I am creative- and hopefully that side of me will be able to channel through when it comes to the major project.

That is all for now- will be reporting quite soon.

Published in:Digital History |on January 17th, 2008 |3 Comments »