CLUB | Cardboard and Code

 

Physical computing is a creative framework for understanding our relation with the digital world. In practical terms, this mostly means re-discovering objects and practices that we take for granted by making things, usually some form of electronic bricolage of cardboard and code.

Learning through making…

With the support of Prof Graeme Earl, I organised our department’s first ever physical computing club, which ran for 5x3hr sessions between December 2019 and March 2019. The sessions were open to all, and were organised as semi-structured informal gatherings loosely based on the Raspberry Pi curriculum.

Computing enthusiasts!

The objective of the club was to learn how to fast-prototype an interactive connected object. And to do this, we learned:

  • What is and how to setup a Raspberry Pi
  • How to control the Pi using Python
  • How to connect basic circuitry using a breadboard
  • How put this together into an object using cardboard and tape
  • How to connect our object to twitter

More than a coding club, our approach was to get students interested in programming by showing them how it underpins our relation with objects and spaces of the physical world. There was programming involved, but the main goal was to learn by making, and to show in this way the the relation between intangible code and embodied experience.

This is what we made:

[icon color=”Accent-Color” size=”small” icon_size=”” image=”fa-microchip”] The initial step was to learn to control the GPIO pins of the Pi. A special thanks to Alex Hadwen-Bennett for supplying us with his excellent design of a card-board circuit controller.

Raspberry Pi

[icon color=”Accent-Color” size=”small” icon_size=”” image=”fa-film”] Once we knew how to make the Pi communicate with the world, we used a cardboard box enclosure and learned how to program its camera to make time-lapse videos like the one at the top of this post.

Basic carboard enclosure

 

Making a time-lapse video

 

[icon color=”Accent-Color” size=”small” icon_size=”” image=”fa-twitter”] Finally, we moved our circuitry to a breadboard, and put everything together to create the prototype for a tweetcam:

Tweetcam setup

The tweetcam box has a camera, a buzzer, a LED, and a button. When it’s on and the button is pressed, there is a beep and the LED lights up, a picture is taken and immediately tweeted to the test account Y0g_50th0th.

 

Click this image for demo video!

This box does nothing that a modern smartphone cannot do. But in creating it ourselves, we are confronted with questions of design and interaction: why do we expect the sound feedback of the buzzer to assume the picture was indeed taken? What if the button was programmed to only tweet one out of every five times it is pressed? Or randomly? how could show this using the LED? And how these different types of interaction affect our idea of privacy?

It works!

Changing only a few lines in our programme we can quickly iterate over these options and test how people react to our tweetcam. And we also learn some coding along the way.

The club itself was a prototype of sorts, we wanted to explore the ideas of learning by making and of teaching design & programming simultaneously. On a more academic note, we also wanted to advance the idea of what Philip Agre called a critical technical practice as a mode of research in our department. This is where you come in, we want to know:

  • Are these ideas relevant or useful to your research? can one of the concepts or arguments you work with be expressed as an electronic bricolage of cardboard and code?
  • Is our tweetcam useful as a demonstration for any of the modules you teach?
  • Can you or your students think of betters uses for the Raspberry Pi?
Until next year!

If you have any thoughts about this let me or Graeme know. And in the meantime, if you want to see the tweetcam in action email me or come to S3.39

Thanks to the Department of Digital Humanities for sponsoring the gear for the club (it is of course available for anyone else to use), to the Arts & Humanities Research Institute for letting us inaugurate their new project space (and to Laura Douglas for helping us book the space), and of course, to the students who participated in the club I hope I see you again next year!

EVENT | ‘Indisciplinary’ Approaches to Digital Play

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The symposium will explore what is means to undertake interdisciplinary or ‘indisciplinary’ research into digital play. More than this, it aims to showcase the range of research into digital play already underway at King’s and foster cross-departmental collaboration by bringing together staff and PhD students from departments such as the Digital Humanities, English, Culture, Media & Creative Industries, War Studies and Psychology. It will also build connections with two other institutions that have strong international reputations in the area of game studies, the IT University of Copenhagen and Abertay University. There will also be an international mix of participants.

We will adopt an experimental methodology, departing from the standard conference format of presented papers. The symposium will be structured around a series of ‘provocations’ steered by a list of selected participants (many from King’s, ITU, and Abertay), which will be tailored to elicit debate and catalyse collaborations. The provocations will consist of a few contentious claims that summarise the debate in an area of enquiry relevant to digital play, and which may be responded to from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. The participants in each ‘provocation’ will give very short position pieces of up to five minutes in response to the provocation, with the rest of the time being used in discussion with other selected participants and with attendees. Through this format, we aim to encourage focused explorations into areas of interest that reveal fundamental commonalities and differences between the various approaches of the selected participants and the attendees.

The symposium will feature two keynote speakers. Espen Aarseth is the Head of Research at the Center for Computer Games Research at the IT University of Copenhagen. He is also director for the Games Program there, and has visited the Department of Digital Humanities at King’s in 2018 to understand potential for collaborations. The second keynote, William Huber, is President of the Digital Games Research Association (2016-present), and Head of the Centre for Excellence in Game Education at Abertay University.

 

Programme

9:15-9:45 Registration

9:45-10:00 Welcome

10:00-10:45 Keynote 1: William Huber: title tbc

11:00-12:00 Contemporary forms and rhetorics of play following digitisation

12:00-13:00 Lunch

13:00-14:00 Habit and practice in digital play

14:00-14:30 Break 1

14:30-15:30 Gameplay and life writing/biography

15:30-16:00 Break 2

16:00-17:00 Ecologies of play and computer games

17:00-17:45 Keynote 2: Espen Aarseth: Post-game studies – towards a philology of the ephemeral

17:45-18:00 Closing statements

 

The organising committee consists of: Feng Zhu (Digital Humanities), Rob Gallagher (English), Conor McKeown (Digital Humanities), Stephanie Janes (Culture, Media & Creative Industries), Mercedes Bunz (Digital Humanities), and Jonathan Gray (Digital Humanities).

If you would like to register your attendance, please contact Feng Zhu (feng.zhu@kcl.ac.uk) or Rob Gallagher (robert.gallagher@kcl.ac.uk). Please note that there are only an extremely limited number of places remaining.

This symposium is funded by both the King’s Arts and Humanities Conference Support Fund and the Department of Digital Humanities Impact Fund.

Image: Conor McKeown

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Date and time

Fri, 21 June 2019
9:45 – 18:00 BST

Location

King’s College London
Strand
Edmund Safra Lecture Theatre
London WC2R 2LS

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Project | Distant Reading across Languages (DRaL)

Supported by the Department of Digital Humanities (DDH) at King’s College London, Distant Reading across Languages (DRaL) is a collaborative project between DDH and KDL with a interdisciplinary team, including experts from research software engineering, UI/UX design, computational linguistics, and literary studies. The objective of the project is to experiment with the methods of distant reading and Digital Humanities approaches to explore translatorial responses to formal word repetitions.

King’s lead researcher: Dr Gabriele Salciute Civiliene

Associated organization: King’s Digital Lab (KDL)

The project has evolved from the PhD thesis of project’s PI Gabriele Salciute Civiliene centred on the critical interrogation of reductive epistemologies and practices of translation theories dependent on text quantification and computation. The project vision challenges the widely accepted view that translators, taught and thought to be avoiding repetition out of aesthetic boredom, routinely implement this principle in their practice. Underpinning the project is the important premise that human decisions are more complex and fuzzier than that, grounded as they are in the real and imaginary topographies of our encounters with texts. In reality, a translator’s choices are forged at the confluence of multiple factors from within and outside the text, such as word frequencies, content, and distance between repetitions, as well as contextual pressures and personal anxieties. DRaL aims to demonstrate this complexity via data modelling, computational processing and visualization.

The project works towards an exploratory model for collecting, processing, and visualising data from across languages. It explores practices of cross-linguistic textual processing that supports distant, deep, and close reading. DRaL set out with three translations of William Faulkner’s The Sound and the Fury (1929) into Lithuanian, Russian, and Polish, all produced under challenging ideological circumstances, to discover the imprints of Soviet censorship, social commentary, cultural asymmetries, genetic interdependencies among translations, and the like. More data from alternative translations and other languages such as French and Spanish will be gradually added. Our long-term goals are to expand the current database by including more languages and to automate more extensively the workflow from collecting to analyzing data. The approach is to align Faulkner’s repetitions as strings of non-contiguous items with the corresponding choices that translators made to pull out data on how repetitions were omitted or replaced with lexical variation. Our exploratory visualization is focused on representing this data as spatio-temporal patterns of human response.

EVENT | Monopolies of Intelligence: Questioning the Political Economy of AI 29.05.19

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A panel discussion with Mercedes Bunz, Nick Srnicek, and Leif Weatherby in collaboration with the Digital Theory Lab, New York University (NYU).

Artificial Intelligence systems are being applied to many areas of human life. While AI is heavily debated – hyped as our future saviour, pilloried for their biases – the political economy of AI is rarely discussed. Together with the Digital Theory Lab (NYU), the Department of Digital Humanities (KCL) warmly invites all interested guests to this panel discussion, which will be framed by short position papers. We are also proud to announce that Professor McCarty (Emeritus Professor of Humanities Computing, KCL) will be a guest of honour at the reception following the event. Please join us.

In the Clouds – Nick Srnicek (Digital Humanities, KCL)

We live in an age dominated by tech giants. Yet for all the attention paid to them, discussions of artificial intelligence have focused on ethical issues around bias and political issues around surveillance. The properly political economic questions have been left aside, or reduced to a simple ‘robots taking our jobs’ narrative. This talk will aim to uncover the political economy of artificial intelligence, with a particular focus on how the technological conditions of AI either facilitate or delineate possibilities for the greater concentration of capital and power.

Data as Capital – Leif Weatherby (German, NYU and KCL’s Willard McCarty Fellow)

A recent report from MIT announces the arrival of a new metaphysical player in the game of business: data capital. This form of wealth represents a shift in the relationship between capital and society. Data capital has now driven the market capitalization of the largest platform companies above the “unicorn” value of 1 trillion USD, creating something like intelligent monopolies. But capital as data has to be interpreted to be useful, an operation most often carried out by algorithms called “neural nets.” The data is exascale, beyond any human imagination – yet parsed, categorized, interpreted. I propose to call this activity at the heart of modern enterprise “artificial semiotics” in order to analyse how data has altered the structure of capital in the present.

On Distributed Intelligence – Mercedes Bunz (Digital Humanities, KCL)

Recent advances of AI have resulted in a fundamental shift in programming. However, the conditions of algorithmic production as well as the interfaces to use those programs and new capabilities have largely stayed the same. AI applications are currently mostly black box systems in which systems trained on data are making decisions for users and not with users. By analysing examples of image recognition regarding medical images, this talk will show that this constellation is dangerous and difficult. Automated decision-making in the medical sector transfers medical knowledge and agency from our medical institutions to technology companies without the necessary checks and balances. At the same time, machine learning has great potential to assist with medical decision making. In her talk, Mercedes will discuss two aspects of machine learning –data sets and interfaces – as entry points that could be used to make machine intelligence more accessible, collaborative, and distributed – against monopolies of intelligence.

Biographies

Mercedes Bunz is Senior Lecturer in Digital Society at the Department of Digital Humanities, King’s College London. Her research explores how digital technology transforms knowledge and with it power; a question she explores currently specifically regarding medical knowledge with a Wellcome Trust Seed grant. Recent publications: The Internet of Things (Polity 2017) co-published with Professor Graham Meikle, and the small Open Access publication Communication with Finn Brunton (University of Minnesota Press 2019), on how contemporary communication puts us humans not only in conversation with one another but also with our machinery.

Nick Srnicek is Lecturer in Digital Economy at King’s College London. He is the author of Platform Capitalism (Polity, 2016) and Inventing the Future (Verso, 2015 with Alex Williams). With Helen Hester, he is currently writing After Work (Verso, 2020).

Leif Weatherby is Associate Professor of German at NYU, co-founder of the Digital Theory Lab, and Willard McCarty fellow of the Department of Digital Humanities at King’s College London. His research focuses on philosophies of technology – especially the digital – Romanticism and Idealism, and political economy. His book, Transplanting the Metaphysical Organ: German Romanticism between Leibniz and Marx, tracks an early techno-philosophy in the doctrine he calls “Romantic organology.” His ongoing work on the relationship between cybernetics and German Idealism has been supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Alexander von Humboldt association. His writing has appeared in venues like SubStance, Grey Room, and the Los Angeles Review of Books.

[Image: Tatiana Plakhova]

 

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Date and time

Thu, 29 May 2019
16:30 – 18:00 BST

Location

King’s College London
Strand – Bush House South Wing
Room: BH(S)4.04
London WC2R 1ES

 

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EVENT | How Language Became Data: Speech Recognition and Computational Knowledge 22.05.19

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How did automatic speech recognition lay the ground for contemporary computational knowledge practices Join us for a public talk with Xiaochang Li (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin).  
 
How Language Became Data: Speech Recognition and Computational Knowledge – Xiaochang Li (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin)  
 
Beginning in the 1970s, a team of researchers at IBM began to reorient the field of automatic speech recognition from the scientific study of human perception and language towards a startling new mandate: to find “the natural way for the machine to do it.” In what is recognizable today as a data-driven, “black box” approach to language processing, IBM’s Continuous Speech Recognition group set out to meticulously uncouple computational modelling from the demands of explanation and interpretability. Automatic speech recognition was refashioned as a problem of large-scale data acquisition, storage, and classification, one that was distinct from—if not antithetical to—human perception, expertise, and understanding. These efforts were pivotal in bringing language under the purview of data processing, and in doing so helped draw a narrow form of data-driven computational modelling across diverse domains and into the sphere of everyday life, spurring the development of algorithmic techniques that now appear in applications for everything from machine translation to protein sequencing. The history of automatic speech recognition invites a glimpse into how making language into data made data into an imperative, and thus shaped the conceptual and technical groundwork for what is now one of our most wide-reaching modes of computational knowledge.  
 
Bio: Xiaochang Li is currently a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Epistemes of Modern Acoustics research group at the Max Planck Institute for the History of Science in Berlin. This coming fall, she will be joining the faculty at Stanford University as Assistant Professor in the department of Communication. Her current book project examines the history of predictive text and how the problem of making language computationally tractable was laid into the foundations of data- driven computational culture. It traces developments in automatic speech recognition and natural language processing through the twentieth century, highlighting their influence on the cultural, technical, and institutional practices that gave rise to so-called “big data” and machine learning as privileged and pervasive forms of knowledge work.  
 
This event is part of an ongoing seminar series on “critical inquiry with and about the digital” hosted by the Department of Digital Humanities, King’s College London. If you tweet about the event you can use the #kingsdhhashtag or mention @kingsdh. If you’d like to get notifications of future events you can sign up to this mailing list.
 

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Date and time

Wed, 22 May 2019
16:30 – 18:00 BST

Location

BH(S)4.04, Bush House Lecture Theatre 2
Bush House, South Wing, King’s College London
30 Aldwych
London
WC2B 4BG

 

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EVENT | Simondon and the Concept of Information: A One Day Interdisciplinary Symposium 13.05.19

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This event explores the concept of information in the work of the post-war French philosopher Gilbert Simondon (1924-1989). Today, Simondon is best remembered for his holistic account of technological objects and their perceptual-cognitive role in the evolution of human beings and social systems. However, his project also aimed at providing a unified foundation for the human sciences – one that would be compatible with, but not reducible to, the natural sciences. To achieve this, he developed an ontological perspective foregrounding notions of information and individuation adapted from the then-emerging fields of cybernetics and information theory, as well as psychology, biology, and quantum physics, while also building on more traditional philosophical approaches such as phenomenology. The symposium will examine these intellectual sources and contexts, and discuss the wider legacy of Simondon’s concept of information for contemporary thinking across the humanities.
The event is sponsored by the Faculty of Arts & Humanities, the Department of French, and the Centre for Digital Culture at King’s College London.
 
For more information or if you would like to attend, please contact: giovanni.menegalle@kcl.ac.uk  

 

Programme

10:00-10:30 – WELCOME

10:30-12:30 – SESSION 1 (Chair: Mercedes Bunz, KCL, Digital Humanities)

Andrea Bardin, Oxford Brookes, Social Sciences, ‘Simondon on Macy: Cybernetics, Metastability and the ‘Quality’ of Information’

Pablo Rodriguez, Buenos Aires, Social Sciences /CONICET, ‘Information Theory and Living Individuation: Simondon’s Take on Molecular Biology’

Mark Coté, KCL, Digital Humanities, ‘Seeing Possible States? Does Simondon’s Critique of Information Theory Apply to Reinforcement Learning?’

12:30-13:30 – LUNCH  

13:30-15:30 – SESSION 2 (Chair: Patrick ffrench, KCL, French)

Cecile Malaspina, CNRS Lab SPHERE / Paris 7, ‘Pure Information’

Ashley Woodward, Dundee, Philosophy, ‘Information and Signification’

Giovanni Menegalle, KCL, French, ‘Information or Sense? Simondon in the Shadow of French Philosophy’

Gus Hewlett, Kingston, CRMEP, ‘Physical Information in L’Individuation: If not Singularity, then What?’

15:30-16:00 – BREAK

16:00-18:00 – SESSION 3 (Chair: Cecile Malaspina, CNRS Lab SPHERE / Paris 7)

Simon Mills, De Montfort, Media, ‘Information, Mediation, Causality’

Madeleine Chalmers, Oxford, French, ‘Chance Encounter: When Simondon’s Information Meets the Surrealist Object’

Ludovic Duhem, ESAD, Philosophy, ‘After Language: Image as Information in the New Reticulation of the World’

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Date and time

Mon, 13 May 2019
10:00 – 18:00 BST

Location

King’s College London
River Room
Strand Campus
London
WC2R 2LS

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EVENT | “Good Data” – London book launch + workshop 09.05.19

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Join us for the London launch of the open access Good Data book (Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures, 2019) with editors and authors associated with the book, hosted at the Department for Digital Humanities, King’s College London.
 
In recent years, there has been an exponential increase in the collection and automated analysis of information by government and private actors. In response to the totalizing datafication of society, there has been a significant critique regarding ‘bad data’ practices. The book ‘Good Data’, that will be launched at this event, proposes a move from critique to imagining and articulating a more optimistic vision of the datafied future.
 
With the datafication of society and the introduction of new technologies such as artificial intelligence and automation, issues of data ethics and data justice are only to increase in importance. The book ‘Good Data’, edited by Angela Daly, S. Kate Devitt and Monique Mann, examines and proposes ‘good data’ practices, values and principles from an interdisciplinary, international perspective. From ideas of data sovereignty and justice, to manifestos for change and calls for activism, this edited collection opens a multifaceted conversation on the kinds of futures we want to see. The book presents concrete steps on how we can start realizing good data in practice, and move towards a fair and just digital economy and society.
 
The book can be found here for free download (in various formats): http://networkcultures.org/blog/publication/tod-29-good-data/
 
The Institute of Network Cultures has published a series of blogposts from Good Data authors summarising their Good Data interventions, which can be found here: http://networkcultures.org/blog/
 
A provisional schedule is as follows:
  • Welcome – Jonathan Gray
  • Introduction to the Good Data Project & Overview of the Book: Angela Daly & Kayleigh Murphy
  • Presentations (moderated by Angela):
    • Sefa Ozalp
    • Chiara Poletti/Daniel Gray
    • Colin Porlezza
    • Jonathan Gray
  • Q&A/panel discussion
  • Informal discussion
 

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Date and time

Thu, 9 May 2019
16:00 – 18:00 BST

Location

Safra Lecture Theatre, King’s Building
Strand Campus, King’s College London
London
WC2R 2LS

 

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EVENT | Language and Space in Public Imagination | Willard McCarty Fellowship Lecture Series 11.06.19

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This event introduces two 2018-19 Willard McCarty’s Fellowship holders Antonina Puchkovskaia ((Associate Professor, ITMO University, Saint-Petersburg, Russia) and Anguelina Popova (Director, Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technologies, American University of Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan). Their lectures will explore the intersections of language, tradition, and space in the historical and cultural contexts. Chaired by Stuart Dunn, the event will also feature two short talks on the intersecting ideas.

This event is free to attend, please register your interest on Eventbrite:


Prof WILLARD MCCARTY (Professor of Humanities Computing Emeritus, King’s College London)

Computing  | Humanities: What’s the Relationship? (10 min)

 

STUART DUNN (Senior Lecturer in Digital Humanities & Deputy Head of the Department of Digital Humanities, KCL)

Territoriality in cyberspace: dealing with contested geographies in the age of Google Maps (20 min)

This talk will offer a brief overview of how conflict and competing claims on physical land are represented in the digital world. Drawing on examples from Cyprus and Greece, it will ask the question of how “the digital” is driving us to reconsider the idea of what a border is. How are digital “borders” formed, defined and policed?

 

GABRIELE SALCIUTE CIVILIENE (Lecturer in Digital Humanities Education)

Thinking and Modelling Spatio-Temporality across Languages (20 min)

Language helps us talk about mental representations of time and space. The metaphors of spatializing time and temporalizing space differ, revealing how we reason across cultures. Language use and text making, on the other hand, are situated in and enmeshed with our being in and experience of time and space whose intimacy, specificity, and multiplicity are hidden underneath the conventionalized surface of texts. In this talk, I will consider how the computing of translations by repetemes (i.e. strings of repetitions) opens up, among other things, a possibility for modelling spatio-temporal patterns that instantiate Gadamer’s being-in-the-world-through-being-in-language.


ANTONINA PUCHKOVSKAIA (Associate Professor, ITMO University, Saint-Petersburg, Russia)

Inaugural Lecture on Visualizing St Petersburg Based on Russian Corpus Analysis (45 min)

What is/are Digital Humanities? How to rise a research question challenging enough for both Humanities and Computer Science fields? What are the challenges of doing DH at the predominantly STEM-based University? This lecture will revolve around interdisciplinary research in progress situated at the intersection of history, librarian studies, cultural studies, and information technologies. The aim of this research is to create an open-source-software-based web application by using historical and cultural heritage data on the key landmarks of St. Petersburg. Our deliverables are an educational database and web/mobile applications into which users will be able to tap by means of retrospective visualization and an interactive city map that would track nearby objects via user’s geolocation. To that end, we are analyzing both sources and records. In our case, sources are manuscripts that range from a single paragraph to a multi-volume book. Records are source fragments that can range from a single record to hundreds of sections, pages, or paragraphs in a book. Our database schema links people, occasions, and dates based on primary sources. Finally, all objects are being mapped onto an interactive city map of St. Petersburg, the interface of which will facilitate easy navigation and allow filtering by different categories such as restaurants, music salons, and apartments.

 

ANGUELINA POPOVA (Director, Center for Teaching, Learning, and Technologies, American University of Central Asia, Kyrgyzstan)

Tracking the Nomads: How Digital Humanities Can Assist the Preservation and Deeper Understanding of an Ancient and Living Oral Tradition (35 min)

This talk will revolve around three major threads as follows:

  • The nomadic culture of the Kyrgyz and why we find it interesting to study;
  • The Manas epos and the studies of the epos;
  • The contribution of the American University of Central Asia, in particular of James Plumtree, and the AKYN project, to a fresh look at the Manas epos.

I will introduce the digital aspect in working with this vast oral tradition. While the epos constitutes a significant part of the cultural heritage of the Kyrgyz, and has been used as a nation- building block after the collapse of the Soviet Union (including being part of a higher education state exam), the tradition has been considered as a fixed one. This significantly mutilates the oral tradition as a rich and evolving one. We are working on studying and demonstrating how the tradition has evolved over time, and our project has been significantly facilitated by the digital humanities tools. The talk will present the venues which have been used, and those that can be used, to map historical events, migrations, and languages within and beyond the Manas epos and other oral traditions of the region.

Q&A session

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Date and time

Tues, 11 June 2019
16:00 – 18:00 BST

Location

King’s College London
30 Aldwych
Bush House Room(SE) 2.10
South-East Wing
London WC2B 4BG

 

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EVENT | Hacking the museum? Collections makerspaces in London cultural institutions 08.05.19

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How are experimental spaces institutionalised within cultural organisations? Where do spaces for making and hacking come from? Join us for a public talk with Kat Braybrooke (University of Sussex). Hacking the museum? Collections makerspaces in London cultural institutions – Kat Braybrooke (University of Sussex) What kinds of spaces are produced when the radical practices of once-rebellious digital subcultures, like those of hackers and makers, are institutionalised? This talk examines the recent phenomenon of ‘collections makerspaces’, or public sites in cultural institutions that offer free suites of creative tools aimed at inspiring new interactions with artefacts and collections through hands-on making practices. We will begin by locating these sites within a wider history of sociotechnical transformation amongst museums and shared machine shops (from hackspaces to media labs) in Britain since the 1970s, a negotiation that has become increasingly dominated by institutional and corporate collaborations. We will then explore findings from a year-long ethnography of three different kinds of collections makerspaces at Tate, British Museum and Wellcome Collection in London, taking a look at how the ‘space’ of each site is continually produced by its social relations and imaginaries. In conclusion, it will be argued that the collections makerspace is emerging (but at the same time, also dissolving) as a key locus of critical institutional inquiry, where the hegemonic traditions of museums in Britain can be examined, contested and possibly even transformed.

 

Bio: Kat Braybrooke (@codekat) is a sociotechnical researcher and critical maker whose work explores the politics of creative digital practices, institutions and communities. She is currently completing her doctoral thesis with the University of Sussex Humanities Lab, and received a MSc Digital Anthropology from University College London in 2013 for an ethnography of gender and identity concerns amongst 30 young hackers in Europe. Before her current research, Kat spent a decade working with cause-based organisations like Mozilla, the Open Knowledge Foundation and the Simon Fraser University Centre for Dialogue to help digital consumers become producers through implementations of open technologies, and she serves on the editorial board of the Journal of Peer Production.
 
This event is part of an ongoing seminar series on “critical inquiry with and about the digital” hosted by the Department of Digital Humanities, King’s College London. If you tweet about the event you can use the #kingsdhhashtag or mention @kingsdh. If you’d like to get notifications of future events you can sign up to this mailing list.
 
 

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Date and time

Wed 8th May 2019 16:30-18:00 BST

Location

S-2.18, Strand Building
Strand Campus, King’s College London
London
WC2R 2LS

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Project | Reframing Art: Opening up Art Dealers’ Archives to Multi-Disciplinary Research

“Reframing Art: Opening up Art Dealers’ Archives to Multi-Disciplinary Research” is centred on a collaboration between the Department of Digital Humanities and King’s Digital Lab at King’s College London and the National Gallery, London, funded by the Cultural Institute at King’s.

King’s lead researcher: Stuart Dunn

Associated organisations: National Gallery, London, the Getty Foundation, King’s Digital Lab

The focus of this research is the relationship between the circulation of works of art and their archival information, and how scholars can explore and enhance those relationships by investigating the archives as multivariate networks of information. The team is led by Stuart Dunn, Senior Lecturer in Digital Humanities, with support from King’s PhD candidate Valentina Vavassori and in association with Alan Crookham and Barbara Pezzini from the National Gallery.

This multi-disciplinary research project has been chosen to participate in the two-year Network Analysis + Digital Art History Workshop, funded by the Getty Foundation through its Digital Art History initiative.

For more information about the workshop and the Reframing Art project, visit the Network Analysis + Digital Art History website