Play with Your Data Session: A Workshop on “R” for Humanists

Many digital humanists are discovering the power and flexibility of “R.” DMDH is fortunate to have Leigh Fisher, a graduate student in BioStatistics, lead this workshop and help to field questions. We've also recently begun an informal survey circulating on Twitter in an effort to gather information about how humanists are using R, and as a way to investigate the many ways in which it is implemented in course instruction or taught through workshops like ours.

Because R does have a steep learning curve, our workshop is intended to be only an introduction to R's basic functionality and interdisciplinary applications. A link to the slides can be found at the bottom of this post. In addition to these slides, you'll find a short, yet immensely useful, list of resources for further instruction and inquiry, with the most strongly recommended being Coursera's 4-week course on R taught by two professors from John Hopkins's Department of Biostatistics, which is a part of their data science certificate program.

Useful links:


Rintro (1)

Workshop 2 Slides Available

Here are the slides for tomorrow's workshop:

Slides for Workshop 1 (10/18/14)

The slides from our first autumn workshop (10/18) are now available:

We would like to thank our attendees, who brought great energy to a Saturday morning workshop! Your questions and comments were wonderful, and I invite you to post the links we discussed in the comments for posterity.

This workshop functions as an overview of the digital humanities, including various attempts to define it, an introduction to our DH values, and various methods of analyzing established DH projects before inventing one on the fly as a group.

2014-2015 Workshops and Events

We are excited to begin yet another year of Demystifying Digital Humanities workshops! In addition to the workshops, we will continue to offer quarterly “Play with Your Data” development and feedback sessions, DH office hours bi-monthly, as well as a new quarterly event–DH Happy Hour! This new event is orientated around our primary objective which is to help facilitate collaboration by exposing the fantastic resources and training opportunities available on campus, and to make more visible the variety of digital projects in which both faculty and graduate students are engaged. Below is a detailed list of the dates and times of the autumn quarter events.

Autumn 2014 Workshops:

Saturday, October 18th: “What is Digital Humanities and Why Does It Matter?” 9:30AM-12:30PM CMU 202 (registration is still open) http://tinyurl.com/DMDHau14

Saturday, October 25th: “Managing and Professionalizing Your Online Presence and Identity” 9:30AM-12:30PM, CMU 202 (registration is still open) http://tinyurl.com/DMDHau14


Autumn 2014 “Play with Your Data” Session:

Wednesday, October 29th, 11:30-1:00PM, Location TBA


Autumn DH Office Hours (Location OUG):

Friday, October 24th 3:30-5:00PM

Friday, November 7th, 3:30-5:00PM

Friday, November 21st, 3:30-5:00PM

Friday, December 5th, 3:30-5:00PM


DH Happy Hour:

Thursday, October 16th 5:30-7:30 CMU 202








Introducing UW’s first DH Office Hours!

Interested in Digital Humanities, but not sure where to start? Having trouble identifying the right technology for your research project? Interested in getting more involved with the UW DH community? Come to office hours!

Members of Demystifying Digital Humanities, UW-IT, and UW Libraries are offering informal office hours for Digital Humanities Researchers this quarter. We offer individual consulting services to help Digital Humanities researchers plan, execute and explore potential solutions for emergent research projects. Digital Humanities Office Hours will be held Thursday afternoons, 3:00-5:00 pm in OUGL 230 April 24thMay 8thMay 22nd, and June 12th.

Here are just a few of the questions that you might ask, and that we would be happy to talk through with you.

  • I think I want a ____________ (database, timeline, exhibit for displaying images, etc.); what platforms should I look at?
  • I want to __________; what kind of technical skills do I need?
  • How do I learn TEI/MySQL/Omeka/Python/ArcGIS?
  • Where do I find resources and/or funding that will help me _______?
  • How do I prepare my data for that platform?
  • How do I digitize [material?]
  • How do I install [platform]?
  • Can you help me clean up this text so that I can use it with [platform?]

These office hours are a pilot project — we hope to learn more about the type of support that people doing DH at UW need. The more people who come, the more we can learn, and the more likely it is that we'll be able to continue to offer office hours in the future. So: don't wait! Come to office hours this quarter!

Spring 2014: Workshop #2: Available Tools: Free, Cheap, and Premium

Spring workshop registration now open!

Registration is now open for our the spring Demystifying Digital Humanities workshops, which focus on project ideation and development. If you're thinking about developing a digital humanities project, or even just want to learn more about the tools that you might use, then these workshops will help you explore your options.

You can register through the Catalyst survey here:


Our spring workshops focus on project development — you can see the details below. Please note, due to the Easter weekend holiday, these workshops will be held one week apart, on April 5th and 12th.

April 5th, 9:30a.m.-1:00p.m.: Big Project; Small Project: Steps in Ideation and Development: This workshop takes you step by step through the work of developing a project, and growing it, and learning how to present what you're doing while you work: at conferences, workshops, and in scholarship/grant applications. We'll also talk about project management software, and the decision making process for learning new skills, and finding collaborators.

April 12th, 9:30-a.m.-1:00p.m.: Available Tools: Free, Cheap, and Premium: This workshop is all about finding the tools out there that you can use to get started. We'll talk about what the UW makes available (more software than you may have realized!), and the features you need to look for and be aware of when you choose to use a particular tool.