Oct 18 2011

DH in a LAM world

I consider myself brand new to digital humanities. Perhaps over the course of THATCamp I will find I know more than I realized. In the meantime, though, I am most interested in a session (discussion/brainstorming) about digital humanities techniques that can be adopted in a non-university environment. I work at a historical society. We are a combination library, archives, and museum with a tight budget. Among our current goals is increasing visitation. I have colleagues who think we should just digitize “everything in our collections.” Simply put, that isn’t going to happen. However, what sort of DH techniques could we (or any other LAM) implement, on a shoestring budget, that will attract a variety of visitors (different ages, research goals, etc)? Budgets aside, is there a DH technique you feel every LAM should be using, but few of us are? Are there any differences between what you look for when doing your own research versus when you send students to do research? These are just a few of the questions that immediately come to mind.

About the author


My current title, when translated from the Greek, means that I am a music librarian in the morning and a lone arranger in the Hartford History Center in the afternoon. Always interested to hear what others are working on and to discuss ways my co-workers and I might be able to move the HHC forward with regard to digital humanities.

Permanent link to this article: http://newengland2011.thatcamp.org/10/18/dh-in-a-lam-world/


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  1. Ben Brophy

    Hi Jennifer. Great topic. I used to follow D-Space becasue it seemed to have great potential. Its been 4-5 years since I checked it out closely, but it did seem a little too daunting for a small organization to use without hiring a developer to run it. That may have changed, but I’m also curious if there are other lightweight solutions to the problem.

    You might also enjoy our timeline session if it happens. One of the things I want to talk about is the feasibility of including original documents from archives in our timelines as a source for student work.

  2. Courtney

    You get my vote for this discussion – what are the “minimum requirements” for our archival materials to be used by digital humanities scholars, vs what are the “pie in the sky” dreams?

  3. Sara Martin

    Hi Jennifer! Coming from a similar background as you and with an institution that claims similar goals, I’d also be interested in what people more experienced digital humanities research can offer about research (secondary or experiential) into successful media products and audience attention spans (do people really watch 18-minute youtube videos?).

  4. elizabethcornell

    Collaboration is a big word in the digital humanities. Are there other museums, libraries, and / or historical societies with similar needs, collections, goals and interests you could team up with? Pooling resources and using open resources is one way to proceed.

    I, for one, do not watch 18-minute YouTube videos!

  5. Jennifer

    Thanks all!

  6. Nicola

    I love the topic of this session. I also work for a small historic house museum with an extremely limited budget. I’ve been planning DH projects for us that will utilize open-source (free) technologies, but there are still no guarantees that these digital initiatives will get more visitors through the door.

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