Digital Humanities at Berkeley is pleased to announce grant awards inthe areas of Collaborative Research and New Courses. Digital humanities consulting is available to all researchers, regardless of their funding status. This project is supported by the Andrew W. Mellon grant: Capacity Building and Integration in the Digital Humanities.  View all Digital Humanities at Berkeley funded projects and courses.

Funded Grants: Collaborative Research Grants – Faculty, Curators, and Librarians

Rita Lucarelli (Near Eastern Studies), The Book of the Dead in 3D: Mapping Texts and Images on Ancient Egyptian Objects

Lucarelli, in collaboration with the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology and the Archaeological Research Facility, will utilize photogrammetric techniques to create visualizations of material objects (coffins, in particular) presenting Book of the Dead texts. This new platform for in-depth study of Book of the Dead texts will display 3D objects together with translations and other metadata, such as transcriptions of the hieroglyphic text, bibliography, textual variants and other occurrences, museological data, and provenance.

Elizabeth Honig (History of Art), Open Catalogue Raisonné Platform

Honig will continue collaboration with Visual Resources Center staff, Jason Hosford and Lynn Cunningham, to develop the open source, Drupal-based Open Catalogue Raisonné Platform. Drawing on survey feedback 40 scholars from the Catalogue Raisonné Scholars Association and a series of in-depth interviews, the project will contribute to a larger discussion about data structures and protocols in provenance information.

J. Theodore Peña (Classics), Harris Matrix Visualization Tool

Peña will work with Nico Tripcevich, Laboratory Director of the UC Berkeley Archaeological Research Facility (ARF) to develop an open source tool for presenting Harris Matrix diagrams (a way of visualizing the temporal succession of archaeological contexts within a site) as a d3.js visualization connected to data stored in a Drupal database. Initial development work will use data from the Palatine East Pottery Project (PEPP), a study of Roman pottery recovered in the American Academy in Rome’s Palatine East excavations in downtown Rome.

Funded Grants: Collaborative Research - Students

Scott Rubin, Juan Hernandez, Myra Melford (Music), Human-Machine Interactive Composition Using Machine Learning

Rubin, Hernandez, and Melford will work with the Center for New Music and Audio Technologies (CNMAT) to develop a software program that works with gesture-based music improvisation to automatically co-author music in real time using machine learning. This interactive system will learn to cope in an improvisational setting using a machine learning process to learn from previous performance data. After a training period, the system will be able to process and respond in real time to live audio signals from the musicians.

Michael Zellmann-Rohrer (Classics, Medieval Studies), A Digital Corpus of Texts for the Study of Magical Ritual

Zellmann-Rohrer will develop a Drupal database of 2000 primary source texts (mostly unpublished manuscript material) associated with magical ritual and the continuity and transmission of these practices from antiquity through medieval Europe and into the modern period. Zellmann-Rohrer will collaborate with Bancroft Library staff Todd Hickey, curator at the Center for Tebtunis Papyri, and Mary Elings, Head of Digital Collections.

Funded Grants: New Courses

Niek Veldhuis, Near Eastern Studies: Digital Ancient Near East

In this undergraduate course, students will interact with a rich variety of online resources for the study of the Ancient Near East and develop necessary skills in questioning and evaluating such resources. Students will reflect on the authors of the sites, the sites themselves, their organization, accessibility, maintenance, and validity.

Cathryn Carson & Nicholas Adams, History: Text Analysis for Digital Humanists and Social Scientists

In this upper-division course students will develop the capacity to pose and answer interesting research questions relating to corpora of text data. They will learn the theory and intuition behind a range of text analysis methods including dictionary methods, supervised machine learning, TF-IDF, clustering, (structural) topic modeling, grammar-parsing, words to vectors, and crowd-based content analysis. Through a series of lectures, small group projects, and tutorials in R and python, students will learn how to load, pre- process, analyze, and interpret text data using all of these methods. All work will be completed using free and open source software – R and Python. All course materials, including students’ code and projects will be stored openly (and anonymously) on a course GitHub repository (in the interest of future learning and the advancement of open, reproducible research).

Elizabeth Alice Honig, History of Art / English: Digital Texts, Digital Images

This undergraduate class will explore how the shift toward working with digitized materials, and the use of digital tools of investigation, have impacted the very way we read texts and look at images. It will enable students to look critically at existing DH projects as projects, and it will also give them the ability to do basic research using open-source tools, and to feel confident in navigating and contributing to crowd-sourced projects. While the focus will be on visual arts (pictures, architecture, urban design) and English-language historical texts (documents, literature, non-literary texts), the course should be broadly useful for students in many humanities disciplines.

Alexandra Saum-Pascual, Spanish and Portuguese / New Media: Electronic Literature: A Critical Writing & Making Course

This upper division undergraduate course will combine humanities literary analysis with basic programming skills, DH tools and methods. Students will learn how to write and talk about electronic literature (e.g. hypertext novels, kinetic poetry, automatic generators, social media fictions). Not only will students be able to critique and analyze electronic art and literature learning the specific terminology and theoretical frameworks, but also they will gain the skills to build their own digital art pieces in a collaborative workshop setting. Students’ final projects will be displayed at No Legacy || Literatura Electrónica, an electronic literature exhibit in Doe Library’s Brown Gallery from March to August 2016.

Michael Dumas & Arturo Cortéz, Education: (Re)presenting Humanity at the Margins: Curating and Visualizing Cultural Memory in the Digital Humanities

This course explores the ways that humanity at the margins has been (re)presented in ethnography from the period of early liberation movements (the 50s-70s) to digital preservation and curation practices in contemporary times. This course seeks to leverage the insights gleaned from previously implemented critical digital humanities projects that catalog cultural memory by: (1) exploring how these past projects have used digital humanities tools to privilege previously ignored cultural practices and processes and (2) examining the collaborative nature of trans-disciplinary projects to foster connections with new audiences to facilitate the (re)presentation and curation of communities at the margins.