A simple demo using Unreal Engine

Thanks to the people who have been working on Unreal Engine, we got the cross model and created a very basic scene using  the 3rd person template in Unreal. Users can rotate the scene by keyboard and mouse inputs, which would change the angle and the distance from which the users are looking at, in order to see other sides […]

English 4400n/5500n: Digital Humanities (Fall 2015)

About the course

English 4400n: Digital Humanities is a senior seminar on the digital revolution and the effect it is having on the way we communicate, research, and teach. Most of the course will be concerned with the mechanisms and effects of what we might describe as the second Internet revolution—the growth of cloud-based, often socially-network-oriented, services, applications, and repositories that are radically changing economic, social, and research culture and practices.

By the end of the course, students should have

  • A grounded historical knowledge of the history of personal and networked computing as it applies to the humanities.
  • Hands on experience with basic technological practices in the field
  • Extensive experience reviewing existing Digital Humanities projects
  • An understanding of what the Digital Humanities is and where it may and may not be helpful in the pursuit of their other research interests.
  • Read the rest of this entry »

English 3450a: Old English (Spring 2015)

Note: This is a draft syllabus and is subject to revision before the last day of the add/drop period.


Fixing QJackCtl

A really brief note on how to fix a problem with qjackctl not starting jackd. If you don’t understand this, then it isn’t relevant for you.

The problem: QJackCtl can’t start the JACK server

Was having trouble with QJackctl (a daemon for running Jack, connection software required for media production software within Ubuntu):

1) D-BUS: JACK server could not be started. Read the rest of this entry »


Dual booting Windows 10 and Ubuntu 15.04

Some quick notes, from memory, about how I successfully setup Windows 10 and Ubuntu 15.04 to dual boot. The starting point was a new Windows 8.1 computer which I then updated to Windows 10.

Warning about this post

Before you do anything at all, realise that following the instructions here could completely destroy your computer’s software: you might end up bricking it (i.e. changing it so that nothing starts); you might end up wiping out your data, the original operation system, or something else. I don’t mind that kind of thing happening to me and I’ve never not been able to fix things back. But I also have support you may not: e. Read the rest of this entry »


Meshlab is a fantastic tool!

After talking to both sides working on Unreal and 3DHOP, we found out that they were not using the same model. We wanted to see if convert a model from .obj (the file format used in Unreal) to .ply (the file format used in  3DHOP) would be easy to do. With a lot of methods […]

The Visionary Cross Project announces a free beta test of its viewer for the Ruthwell Cross

You can access the test viewer at the following URL: http://vcg.isti.cnr.it/cross/ About the test We are using this test to gain initial feedback on usability and use cases for the viewer including corrections, advice for further development, and discussion of potential uses. As a result we are particularly interested in: Suggestions for improvement and additional […]

Basic knowledge of referencing system in 3D environment

Hello everyone! My name is Yan Fan. I have joined the Visionary Cross Project to work as Mitacs Global Link Fellow, under the supervision of Daniel O’Donnell. I have been reading about 3DHOP and Unreal for sometime now. I am working on mapping a point from Unreal to 3DHOP or vice-versa. The first thing we need to […]

If there’s such a thing as “computing for humanists” is there also such a thing as “humanities for computer scientists?” On implementing interdisciplinarity in the Digital Humanities

This is a just a brief initial thought piece on a question I’ve been asking colleagues about, from whom I’ve not heard the answer I want.

The Digital Humanities is an interdisciplinary field that involves the intersection of computation and the humanities. That means, amongst other things, that neither computation nor humanities is primary to the discipline but both must be present in some way or another. In this way, the Digital Humanities is different from, say, the “History of Science” (History is primary) or “Cognitive approaches to cultural understanding” (Cognitive science is primary).

In actual practice, for most of its life as DH and in its earlier form, Humanities Computing, DH has been mostly the domain of humanists. The people have been located in Humanities departments and the projects have in many ways been developments from and extensions of humanities research. So while Digital Humanities, in terms of content, is more “digit Read the rest of this entry »


Eating your cake and having it to: Solving the comment troll problem

An article in today’s Globe and Mail by Denise Balkissoon discusses the problem of comment trolls on popular news sites.

“Play this game: go find any article on [the National Post website] about a woman. Read the comments,” argued illustrator and journalist Steve Murray (whom I find pretty smart, and very funny). For him, eradicating comments entirely is the only way for publications to show zero tolerance. “Why would any woman want to subject themselves to that?”

Allow me to speak for all women everywhere when I say: We don’t. I consider a thick skin a prerequisite for any career in the public eye, which includes most journalism. That doesn’t mean that the racist, sexist, nonsensical garbage often lobbed my way by hateful cowards is easy to deal with, or fair. Read the rest of this entry »


How to grade quizzes anonymously in Moodle

For years I’ve wanted to grade quizzes anonymously, but I could never figure out how to do so. Finally I have, within the Uleth setup.


Could we design comparative metrics that would favour the humanities?

A quick, and still partially undigested, posting on metrics that might favour the humanities over the sciences in “open” competitions. I’m working this out in response to a discussion I had recently with a senior administrator who argued that the University’s tendency to channel resources disproportionately to the Natural Sciences was simply the result of their comparative excellence as measured in “open” competitions.


First thing we do, let’s kill all the authors. On subverting an outmoded tradition (Force2015 talk)

This is a rough approximation (with some esprit d’escalier_ ) of my speaking script from my talk at the “Credit where Credit is Due”: session at Force2015, January 13, 2015. We were asked to be controversial, so I tried to oblige._


Prayer as a management tool

On my way home now from a fascinating and fun two day visit with Kay Walters to Brigham Young University. I’m going to write more in a little about some of the great ideas I saw there having to do with research and the Digital Humanities. But I also want to comment on something more systemic that I saw there.

BYU, for those who don’t know, is a Mormon University (in Southern Alberta, which also has a lot of Mormons, we tend to prefer saying LDS over “Mormon”; in Utah, “Mormon” was by far the preferred term, as far as I could see). It is a church-owned, private university with a religious as well as an academic mission (this is, of course, not unusual: Western Universities largely began in the same way, except as Catholic universities, and there are still many universities around the world that have strong ties to various religions).

The connection to the church is visible every where on campus. There is a strong dress and conduct code and one oc Read the rest of this entry »


The Ruthwell Cross Runes like you’ve never seen them before

Some screenshots from the highest resolution scans of the cross, showing the runes and the Archer panel…
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