Monthly Archives: January 2011

Digital Classicist Call For Papers

My, how time flies! Already the Digital Classicist Summer Seminar Series is about to celebrate its fifth birthday — and just look how it’s grown!

Don’t miss your chance to celebrate the colloquium’s meteoric rise from young punk upstart to pillar of the digital scene: answer the Call For Papers below!

Digital Classicist Seminars (London, 2011)

(Please circulate widely–we welcome
proposals from students as well as established researchers.)

Call for Presentations

The Digital Classicist will once more be running a series of seminars in
Summer 2011, on the subject of research into the ancient world that has
an innovative digital component. Themes could include, but are by no
means limited to, visualization, information and data linking, digital
textual and linguistic studies, and geographic information and network
analysis; so long as the content is likely to be of interest both to
classicists/ancient historians/archaeologists and information
scientists/digital humanists, and would be considered serious research
in at least one of those fields.

The seminars run on Friday afternoons (16:30 – 19:00) from June to
mid-August in Senate House, London, and are hosted by the Institute of
Classical Studies (University of London). In previous years collected
papers from the DC WiP seminars have been published in an online special
issue of Digital Medievalist, a printed volume from Ashgate Press, a
BICS supplement (in production), and the last three years have been
released as audio podcasts. We have had expressions of interest in
further print volumes from more than one publisher.

We have a budget to assist with travel to London (usually from within
the UK, but we have occasionally been able to assist international
presenters to attend, so please enquire).

Please send a 300-500 word abstract to by April
15th, 2011. We shall announce the full program at the end of April.

(Coörganised by Will Wootton, Charlotte Tupman, Matteo Romanello, Simon
Mahony, Timothy Hill, Alejandro Giacometti, Juan Garcés, Stuart Dunn &
Gabriel Bodard.)

Event-handling bug in IE7/8 with Raphaël

Recently I’ve been using the Raphael Javascript library for creating complex browser-based visualisations. Mostly it’s been a positive experience – but the development cycle conforms to the standard pattern of getting everything looking pretty in the standards-compliant browsers, and then setting aside a couple of days to get the thing working in the IE family of browsers.

Generally speaking, Raphael does an amazing job of porting nice, clean, standards-compliant SVG over to IE 6/7/8’s horrendous native RVML format support. But ironing the kinks out of my viz application did manage to flush out one IE bug that Raphael doesn’t handle: IE does not register events bound to SVG paths when their opacity is set to zero. Rects, circles, and yes, even ellipses, will trigger events when transparent. But paths won’t.

Fortunately the fix is simple: assigning the path an opacity of 0.01 allows it to trigger and has no visible manifestation on-screen.

It’s an ugly hack. And it’s not necessary for IE9, which does offer SVG support. But for the moment it does the job.

Reintegrating the Human(ities): Reflections on Cultural Heritage and the Semantic Web at the British Museum

I spent most of yesterday attending a workday on Cultural Heritage and the Semantic Web at the British Museum. Unfortunately I had to miss the final two papers and the closing panel, so I’m not in a position to offer an overall summary. But certain themes and common notes kept arising in each of the six talks I did manage to catch — and these are worth commenting on in themselves, because they mark, to my mind, a new (and, I think, messier and more interesting) direction for the Semantic Web than that most frequently outlined in the past.

Continue reading Reintegrating the Human(ities): Reflections on Cultural Heritage and the Semantic Web at the British Museum

Magnetic-Storage-Media Natives

A colleague recently forwarded me a light-entertainment link to a blog post and associated video clip showing what happens when a bunch of young children are confronted with old and obsolete technologies (VideoDiscs, 8-track players, an enormous HP rollerball, etc.) and asked to guess what they are.

The footage itself is endearing, funny, and very, very sweet. But what I found most interesting, once my initial don’t-kids-just-say-the-darndest-things reaction had faded, was the apparent mismatch between what is actually shown in the clip, and the editorial slant taken toward what is shown in the clip.

Continue reading Magnetic-Storage-Media Natives