Please review the workshops that are scheduled for THATCamp Pittsburgh, and reply at the bottom of the page with your choices of those you would like to attend. Please let us know your first choice as well as an alternate choice workshop. First come, first served! Your final assignments for the workshops will be emailed to you one week prior to the opening of THATCamp Pittsburgh.

Saturday, October 5th Workshop Schedule and Descriptions

11:15am – 12:15pm: 

Classroom Salon, Social Textbooks Presented by Dr. Ananda Gunawardena and David Kaufer

In 2008, Professors Ananda Gunawardena a Computer Scientist, and David Kaufer, a humanist, from CMU teamed up to build a social annotation platform called Classroom Salon. In this workshop, we will show how Classroom Salon can be used to support classroom discussion in content-based courses and peer support in writing classrooms.

Social Media Workshop Presented by Rachael Wilkinson

Social media has become an integrated part of our digital world – but what does it really mean? Why would you use it? And furthermore, how do you know if you’re successful at it? This workshop will look at the basics of Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest, and then take a closer look at the built-in analytics for each media. As this is an unconference, the workshop will be tailored to the skill level of the participants.

Rachael Wilkinson is a social media maven that works with Pittsburgh area nonprofits to help them implement better social and emerging media strategies both in programmatic and marketing efforts. She recently graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a Master’s of Arts Management and can be reached at literally any time of day through Twitter with her handle, @rewilkin.

2:00pm – 3:00pm:

Personal Digital Archiving Workshop Presented by Matthew Strauss

Many of us have learned about our family history by flipping through photograph albums, watching home movies, and reading old letters and scrapbooks. Even when stored in less-than-ideal conditions, such as a basement or a garage, this material can often withstand years of neglect and survive more or less intact.  When your loved ones become curious about your life in 2013, they will undoubtedly want to look at digital material – email, images from digital cameras, blogs, and even Facebook posts.  But will there be anything to look at?

Though easy to make and share, the digital material we are creating every day are not as durable as their analog counterparts. Hard drives crash, software becomes obsolete, and social media sites go out of business.  This workshop will discuss practical tips and tools for preserving your important digital files.

This workshop will be presented by Matthew Strauss, Chief Archivist of the Senator John Heinz History Center, who works to ensure the long-term preservation and accessibility of the museum’s analog and digital archival collections.

Network Analysis Presented by Tom Lombardi and Elaine Parsons

Network theory explains complex systems by modeling them as graphs with nodes connected by edges.  Digital humanists recently have begun to adopt network theory to analyze, interpret and visualize their research.  Franco Moretti, for instance, analyzes the interaction of characters in Hamlet as a network with a compelling visualization of Hamlet as a man caught between the intrigues of Court and the needs of a developing State.  This workshop will explain the basic concepts underpinning such research.  We’ll give examples from a variety of disciplines that will help you think about how networking techniques might be appropriate for your research.

Elaine Frantz Parsons is an associate professor of history at Duquesne University. She received her PhD from Johns Hopkins University in 1999. She has been applying network analysis to her work for several years.She is currently finishing a manuscript about the reconstruction-era Ku-Klux Klan, “Constructing the Ku-klux: The Rural Southerner, the National Press, and their Creation of the Reconstruction-Era Klan.” Chapters of this book have appeared as articles in the Journal of American History and the Journal of Southern History.  Her work has been supported by the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation, an NEH summer institute, and various smaller grants. Her next project will explore the rise of the professional detective in the mid-nineteenth century U.S.

Dr. Thomas Lombardi is an Assistant Professor of Computing and Information Studies at Washington & Jefferson College where he teaches Networking, Data Mining, Digital Humanities, Databases, and Programming to undergraduates.  Tom studies networks and multidisciplinary computing focusing on the role networks can play in the understanding of the arts and humanities.  His most recent work analyzes the early images of Saint Francis as a network of saints capturing the complex iconographic traditions of thirteenth- and fourteenth-century art in Italy.

3:15pm – 4:15pm:

Omeka presented by Sierra Green

From Abe Lincoln to the Grateful Dead, countless research topics have been interpreted and exhibited through the use of Omeka. A product of George Mason University’s Center for History and New Media, Omeka is a free, user-friendly web-publishing platform designed with the humanities in mind.

Since its founding in 2008, Omeka has proven itself to be a unique instrument in the increasingly digital toolboxes of researchers, librarians, archivists and museum professionals alike. By combining Web 2.0 technologies with the vision of academic websites and content management systems, Omeka is a unique portal through which to stimulate user interaction and engagement in the Digital Age.

In addition to providing an introduction and overview of Omeka, this workshop will also serve as a testbed for those participants interested in exploring Omeka’s utilities.

Sierra Green is an archivist at the Thomas & Katherine Detre Library & Archives of the Senator John Heinz History Center. In her capacity as archivist, Sierra is engaged in archival processing in addition to her work in public programming.  In the course of her academic training and professional work, Sierra has fostered a deep passion for archival outreach and public awareness.

Sunday, October 6th Workshop Schedule and Descriptions

9:30am  – 10:30am:

Mapping Out Success: How to Take a Great Idea to Completion Presented by Dr. Brett Crawford

We are all filled with moments of great inspiration and brilliance.  However, few of these moments ever make it to maturity because of one missed step:  planning. Great ideas die tragic, young deaths without a good plan to get them to the next iteration much less completion.  This workshop will give you a simple mapping tool to get you on the road to success. If you have the capacity to organize your life enough to get yourself registered and engaged in this conference, you have the skills to get your great idea out of your brain and into the world.

Presented by Dr. Brett Ashley Crawford, Carnegie Mellon University, Assistant Teaching Professor in the Master of Arts Management Program and Executive Director of the Arts Management and Technology Laboratory

What is XML and How Can We Use It? A Hands On Workshop using the oXygen XML Editor – Presented by Elisa Beshero – Bondar and Greg Bondar – Part One

Learn some basics about why and how people code documents in XML (eXtensible Markup Language), and gain experience with a versatile, multi-purpose XML editor, oXygen. Participants will code a short document (like a menu, or a catalog list, or a letter, or a poem) by marking information about its structure and its content for data storage and retrieval. (You may bring your own sample document to encode if you like, or work with one or two provided by the organizers.)

We’ll explore how a single XML document can be written to serve multiple purposes, to contain information you tag and mark which can be extracted in many different ways. Writing transformation programs for XML in XSLT (eXtensible Style Sheet Language)  is the key to data extraction, and depending on the interest and  background of workshop participants, we may either show some different transformations or provide some very basic hands-on experience with writing them. Depending on participant interest, we may also introduce TEI (Text Encoding Intiative), an international community standard for writing XML to archive historical and literary documents.

Workshop organizers Elisa Beshero-Bondar and Gregory Bondar are working together at the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg on two TEI projects: Digital Archives and Pacific Cultures and the Digital Mitford project.

Workshop participants should download and install oXygen editing software, and use the 30-day free trial license available here:

10:45 – 11:45:

What is XML and How Can We Use It? A Hands On Workshop using the oXygen XML Editor – Presented by Elisa Beshero – Bondar and Greg Bondar – Part Two

This workshop is a continuation of the previous session, as the learning objectives and attendee participation are more in-depth than a one hour session will allow.

Getting Started with WordPress and Pressbooks – Presented by Lauren Panton

This beginners session will start with a hands-on overview of WordPress , web software for creating websites and blogs. Following will be a hands-on demonstration of an open-source plugin for WordPress called Pressbooks, which transforms content into polished publications for multiple readers: PDF for print, web-book for online reading, Mobi for Kindle, ePUB for iBooks and Nook. A short discussion of classroom implications will conclude the session.

Lauren Panton heads the Instructional Technology division at Chatham University.

6 Responses to Workshops

  1. Karl Qualls says:

    First choices: Mapping out Success, Personal Digital Archiving, Omeka, Salon, xml
    Alternates: social media, WordPress

  2. Saturday
    Social Media Workshop
    Network Analysis

    Both XML Workshops

    Alternates: WordPress, Digital Archiving

  3. David says:

    Network analysis. No alternate.

  4. Saturday: Classroom Salon, Network Analysis, Omeka

    Sunday: Mapping Out Success, WordPress

  5. Saturday: Network Analysis

    Sunday: Mapping out Success

  6. First Choice: Sunday: Mapping out Success
    Alternate: Sunday: What is XML and how can we use it (part 1)

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