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Review: Toward Virtual Community Knowledge Evolution

image of a network using ludo pieces

Note: In looking for articles to read, to understand better the mechanics and possibilities of digital technologies that can improve communities both online and offline, I came across this paper, ‘Toward Virtual Community Knowledge Evolution’. Published in 2002, and with the extraordinary rate at which digital technologies change, it seems outdated. However I see it as a classic. The beginning of the road towards collaborative technological advances, and the real value of digital technologies. It was a vision for the future, for digital technology to facilitate knowledge, which meant devising new systems, that would engage and enable users in digital literacies associated within their virtual community. A lot of these features we now take for granted, such as hyperlinks, but in studying the classics, we can realise the excitement as these new systems were developed by people, for people.


          Toward Virtual Community Knowledge Evolution is a study carried out by a nine academics, Michael Bieber, Douglas Englebart, Richard Furuta, Starr Roxanne Hiltz, John Noll, Jennifer Preece, Edward A. Stohr, Murray Turoff and Bartel Van De Walle, who lecture in a range of universities, all working and excelling in their areas of computer science and information systems. In this paper, they propose the building of a ‘multimedia document repository’ or digital library, which has unique innovate supports which validates knowledge evolution. A series of tools and technologies based around the concept of community knowledge that can be build-on collectively, to constantly improve the workings of the system. This system, or Collaborative Knowledge Evolution Support System (CKESS), would provide a workflow that can be developed and upgraded through its users; the members who make up the virtual community.

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Review: The Untapped Potential of Low-Cost Photogrammetry in Community-Based Archaeology

2 images about the Inuit community Canada

          The Untapped Potential of Low-Cost Photogrammetry in Community-Based Archaeology: A Case Study from Banks Island, Arctic Canada, is a paper that was printed in the Journal of Community Archaeology & Heritage, in April 2016. Written by Colleen Haukaas and Lisa M. Hodgetts, this research paper is a case study from an archaeological project they undertook in Banks Island, Canada. It bears a striking resemblance to the Ogham in 3D project, in that it is a community orientated archaeological project, using photogrammetry and structure from motion techniques, and similar software for translating the data into 3D models.

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Questions Concerning Heidegger

Image of 2 vintage brain maps on heads

I have spent the last few weeks, mentally stuck. Unable to move on, forward, backward, or any direction. Why? Heidegger.

Martin Heidegger, was a German philosopher and a seminal thinker. According to the Internet Encyclopaedia of Philosophy, he is “widely acknowledged to be one of the most original and important philosophers of the 20th century.“1 His philosophy, in particular, his post-war writings reminds me of J. R. R. Tolkein, whose seminal fantasy works The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings. Tolkein too, lamented the decline of the rural peasant, and the overpowering, dominating aspects of technology on the human soul and the landscape.

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Critique: New York Public Library

graphic with text of new york public library digital collection

The New York Public Library has just released a Mecca for graphic designers, artists, researchers, designers, digital artists, fabric printers, scrapbookers, students, visual browsers and many, many, more.. The no holds barred online publication of over 180,000 digitized public domain images, that include manuscripts, maps, photographs, sheet music, lithographs, postcards, etc.

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Review: Database, Data Stream and Timeline: forms of social media

image of a light digital stream

[Source: Digital Wallpaper www.7themes.com]

Reading Data-stream, Database, Timeline: the forms of social media by Lev Manovich, it struck me how little I know about the organisation and methodology of social media interfaces. We have become so accustomed to either not having to think about it, or a style of certain social networks, that the digital mechanics of what goes on behind the screen are invisible. Formulating critical descriptions, assessing cultural implications and re-adjusting according to the constant changes in technology,  is what Lee Manovich, Director of the Software Studies Initiative is analysing.

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How do we read? From Svennson to Hayles

image of a girl reading a book and a hand holding a kindle

[Source: flickr.com and pexels.com]

Reading Patrik Svennson’s ‘Envisioning the Digital Humanities’,¹ I found his article slow to read and heavy, but exciting in the end. His thoughts on collaboration, interdisciplinary work, the uniqueness of the situation that Humanities now finds itself in, with evolving digital technology. His discussion on the academic side, of its recognition by universities, the current graduate system, and also funding initiatives, seem to be the major fence, digital humanities must climb.

What I found most interesting is the uncertainty of Digital Humanities. Is it human or technologically pushed? In the future, will it be sponsored by philanthropy or by corporate businesses? Can it expand, to

“a well-designed and conceptually grounded space, whether mainly physical, digital or necessarily mixed, can help bring people together, instantiate technology, be clearly invitational, support collaborative and processional work practices, and allow ongoing, cross-sectional, and profound dialogue”?

Following on from this we were asked to think about how we ourselves read now, has anything changed because of technology?

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Review: Evaluation of Online Sources

Metzger, Flanagin, Lara Zwarun. College student Web use, perceptions of information credibility, and verification behavior. Journal: Computers & Education, Volume 41 Issue 3, November 2003, Oxford, UK. Pages 271 – 290

I love the irony of reviewing Metzger and researching the evaluation of online sources, online.

I think the fear of students either lazily using the first piece of information they come across, or even just misinterpreting a piece of information that turns out to be useless or not validated is actually an old one. College students can be divided into 3 groups, as I see it, those who thrive, those who survive and those who drop-out. In the old days, pre-Google, students (who didn’t drop out) went into their library and they either quoted the first book they came across (the survivors), or they did their research (the thrivers).

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Review: A Note on the Current State of Humanities Scholarship

Thoughts on Jerome McGann’s “A Note on the Current State of Humanities Scholarship”*

I found his article positive on the whole, exciting even. His thoughts on collaboration, interdisciplinary work, the uniqueness of the situation that Humanities now finds itself in. His discussion on the academic side, of its recognition by universities, the current graduate system, and also funding initiatives, seem to be the major fence digital humanities must climb.

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Blogging as Reflective Practice

image of kitten looking at its reflection in the mirror

In one of our modules ‘Communities of Practice in Digital Scholarship‘, we were asked to read an article “Web Logs and Online Discussions as Tools to Promote Reflective Practice”. by Pedro Hernández Ramos. (Bear with me, I’ll learn how to do proper citations on WordPress, but for now here’s the info: The Journal of Interactive Online Learning,Vol 3, N0 1, Summer 2004, www.ncolr.org ISSN: 1541-4914).

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