dSHARP Gerrymandering Series: Teaching the Cultural Ramifications of Gerrymandering through John Oliver, Video Games, and Political Cartoons

What choices go into making a gerrymandered map?
Do you think you could make better choices and a better map?
Do you want to learn how?

If you are interested in discussing gerrymandering and its effects, as well as learning new technical skills (ex. finding data or network analysis), join us for the Libraries dSHARP Gerrymandering Series!

The process of gerrymandering, manipulating voting district boundaries to establish a political advantage for a particular party or group, often leads to rippling cultural effects on the communities in which the redistricting efforts are meant to exploit. Using a Last Week Tonight with John Oliver segment focusing on gerrymandering, a redistricting video game, and political cartoons, I will describe a pedagogy for engaging an audience on the cultural impacts of gerrymandering, teaching how these redistricting processes may be aimed at disadvantaging only a certain population, but ultimately affect all of us.

Lecture attendees may wish to bring a laptop to play along with the redistricting video game, but bringing a laptop is not required.

Date: Tuesday, November 12, 2019
Time: 12:00pm – 1:00pm
Location: Sorrells Library, Den
Campus: Sorrells Library

Please use this link [https://cmu.libcal.com/event/5975410]and go to the bottom to register for the workshop.

Please consider joining us to discuss gerrymandering and its effects, as well as learning new technical skills (ex. finding data or network analysis), at all the events in the Libraries dSHARP Gerrymandering Series!

 Whether you’re a map geek or are just interested in picking up technical skills, these workshops and events will be a great opportunities for you to grow your skills, learn, and make a difference.

Gerrymandering Series Event with Draw the Lines PA

October 22, 2019
3:00 – 6:00 p.m.
Sorrells Library, The Den

What choices go into making a gerrymandered map?
Do you think you could make better choices and a better map?
Do you want to learn how?

dSHARP is excited to bring Rachel Colker fromDraw the Lines PA, to discuss gerrymandering, its effects, as well as show us how to build our own district maps!

Whether you’re a map geek or have never worked with mapping software before, this will be a great opportunity for you to grow your skills, learn, and make a difference.

Rachel Colker is the Western PA Coordinator at Draw the Lines PA, a statewide civic education and engagement initiative for Pennsylvanians to draw election maps. Its goal is to help Pennsylvanians of all ages learn about and connect with the issue of political redistricting and gerrymandering.

You are encouraged, but not required to register for the event.

CMU’s Department of English Spring Book Salon 2019

Join Us Tuesday, April 30: 12pm – 1:30pm
Rachel Mellon Walton Room, Posner Hall (Ground Floor)

The Invention of Whiteness: Exploring David Brown’s ENGLISH AND EMPIRE and the Intersection of Race, Visual Data and Stigmatized Language

Featuring: Richard Purcell (CMU English); Alex Reinhart (CMU Statistics & Data Science); Amanda Godley (Pitt School of Education); and David Brown (CMU English)

Lunch provided.
RSVP preferred but not required. Join our Spring Book Salon 2019 for a multi-faceted set of presentations around David Brown’s ENGLISH AND EMPIRE (nominated for the MLA Prize for a First Book).

Each speaker will address a different aspect of the work, including race, data analysis, and how stigmatized dialects are taught in American classrooms. We hope to see you there.

RSVP preferred but not required.

For more information contact: ajanuzzi@andrew.cmu.edu

Seeking Contractor for Front-end UI Development

We’re looking to contract a Front-End UI Developer to help complete the prototype for a Digital Humanities project.

Contracting Front-end UI Developer (3-4 months)

Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA

3-4 month front-end job, beginning April 22, 2019 (remote work considered, Pittsburgh preferred)

Front-end developer with UX design experience sought to build a custom theme/user interface for a digital humanities project. The project requires an interface to display custom HTML5 elements with ReactJS. This person will work closely with the back-end developers to implement an existing design mock-up and will need some creativity to translate designs to be responsive to a variety of devices and screen sizes. The interface is envisioned to be targeted for tablet-first delivery. Total contract for up to $5,000 USD.

The theme must be finished no later than 4 months after the contract begins. Development will require some discussions for iterative adjustments. We will require virtual or face-to-face meetings every two weeks with the team to provide feedback and testing of the stable interface; otherwise the schedule is flexible.

Required:
-Strong knowledge of HTML5 and CSS3
-Strong knowledge of responsive design.
-Experience with templating paradigms, React JSX is preferred.
-Experience with UX design.

Preferred:
– Experience working with XML-based projects.

Submit a brief cover letter, resume, and links to some of your work to Rikk Mulligan (rikk@cmu.edu) and Scott Weingart (scottbot@cmu.edu). Not accepting new applications after 04/15/2019.

Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. We do not discriminate on race, religion, gender, etc., and particularly welcome members of underrepresented communities.

Digital Tools Workshop: R for Textual Analysis & Data Visualization

Introduction to R for Textual Analysis & Data Visualization

Workshop 1 – Thurs., 3/21, 4pm – Hunt Library Studio B
Workshop 2 – Thurs., 4/4, 4pm – Hunt Library Studio B
Workshop 3 – April TBD

Held by David Brown (CMU English) and Matthew Lincoln (CMU Libraries), this is a series of three workshops for those interested in learning some basics of R (the popular programming language and coding environment), specifically for analyzing textual data and producing data visualizations.

The workshops are geared toward those with little or no R coding experience,
but all are welcome!

Register for any and/or all three coding workshops here: https://form.jotform.com/90716430178154

Contact is David Brown: dwb2@andrew.cmu.edu

Community Processing Day 2019

Please consider attending Community Processing Day, a series of digital arts workshops, panels, artist lectures, and lightning talks that are taking place at both Pitt and CMU on January 25-26. You may already be familiar with Processing, a programming language/software that was developed by artists who are devoted to making coding accessible. While working with my fellow organizers Lindsey French, Golan Levin, and Tom Hughes, I’ve learned how committed the Processing community is to making these events inclusive, with lots of opportunities for beginners.
 
As a part of this 2-day event, I am planning a curiosity discussion, “Curiosity + Unfamiliar Spaces” on Friday January 25, 6-8pm, at the STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at CMU. We will explore how people create with and contend with seemingly inaccessible languages, vocabularies, scripts, social spaces, and wild spaces. As always, we welcome audience questions throughout the discussion. Please Register here, under the CMU heading. Learn more about the previous curiosity discussions here.
 
Our panelists for Curiosity + Unfamiliar Spaces will be:
 
Nina Barbuto is the founder and director of Assemble, a community space offering daily educational STEAM programs to youth throughout Pittsburgh, and a platform for experiential learning, open creative processes, and building confidence through making. On her own, Nina works in a variety of media and often explores the idea of recycling noise into a system or elevating the vernacular to the spectacular.
 
Marijke Hecht is currently a PhD student in the University of Pittsburgh’s Learning Science and Policy program. Her research looks at how the urban environment can best be used as a platform for civic engagement through science, art, and other disciplines. Before graduate school, Marijke led community based environmental education and stewardship programs in Pittsburgh’s parks.
 
Darrell S. Kinsel is a creative entrepreneur, cultural agitator, and community organizer. D.S. is the co-founder of BOOM Concepts, a creative hub dedicated to the advancement of black and brown artists representing marginalized communities. BOOM Concepts focuses on youth, community artists, and neighborhood partners to identify contemporary expressions of social justice through drama, dance, music, visual art, and technology.
 
Kyle McDonald is an artist working with code. He is a contributor to open source arts-engineering toolkits like openFrameworks, and builds tools that allow artists to use new algorithms in creative ways. He creatively subverts networked communication and computation, explores glitch and systemic bias, and extends these concepts to reversal of everything from identity to relationships.
Kate Joranson
Head, Henry Clay Frick Fine Arts Library
University Library Sysytem
University of Pittsburgh

Visiting Speaker: Rachel McBride Lindsey

#ArchCityReligion
Local Religion and Digital Humanities in Classrooms and Beyond

November 12, 2018
4:30 PM – 6:00 PM
501 Cathedral of Learning
Rachel McBride Lindsey
Saint Louis University

What does the Study of religion look like, sound like, feel like, even small, and taste like…

when we shift public attention from shared beliefs (be they theological, moral, or civic) to shared spaces? How do the tools and insights of digital humanities inform the ways we encounter, study, and analyze local religion? What are the points of intersection between
“digital religion” and social justice?

ArchCityReligion and Lived Religion in the Digital Age are two projects, one teaching centered and the other research focused, that anchor these questions and begin to offer responses in the local contexts of St. Louis.

Rachel McBride Lindsey is assistant professor of American Religion at Saint Louis University and co-director of Lived Religion in the Digital Age, a Public Understanding of Religion project supported by the Henry Luce Foundation.

Her book, A Communion of Shadows: Religion and Photography in Nineteenth-Century America (2017), is published by the University of North Carolina Press.

Spatial Storytelling Series Kick-off

Spatial Storytelling Series Kick-off November 1 at 5:00 pm
This event will bring together spatial thinkers from CMU and beyond, who will speak to their work around creating and communicating spatial narratives. Our speakers were asked to engage critically with how they use spatial data or communicate stories through their use of or representations of space. 
 
Speakers include:
 
Spatial Storytelling Series Kick Off
  • November 1, 2018
  • 5 – 8 p.m.
  • Cohon University Center, Connan Room
 
The event will be held from 5 – 7 p.m. and will be followed by a reception with light refreshments.
 
More information about the Spatial Storytelling Series:
 
The Spatial Storytelling Series is a series of events and workshops on spatial storytelling. These events support broader interaction between members of the CMU community who engage in any aspect of spatial storytelling. We hope to promote critical engagement with spatial data and concepts and learn how we can best support research and student learning by supporting the creation of spatial narratives. 
 
Spatial inquiry and analysis is of growing interest in multiple disciplines. At CMU, courses in geographic information systems (GIS) are taught in the Heinz and Dietrich Colleges and a course on Spatial History has been offered through the History Department. In addition to instruction, researchers in every College of CMU, from the College of Engineering to the Tepper School of Business, are leveraging spatial tools and techniques in their research. Although the application of many of these tools and techniques differ between disciplines, spatial storytelling crosses over disciplinary boundaries. Students and scholars in the humanities, social sciences, and sciences can all utilize spatial narratives to tell stories and provide context to their research. To foster the use of spatial narratives across campus, the proposed series of events – open to everyone – will promote the use of digital storytelling methods and methodologies across disciplines.
 
The planned series of events will end in a competition and expo that will showcase student work in these cross disciplinary applications of digital storytelling. Our events focus on storytelling and aim to support students through the entire process from identifying a research problem, data collection, learning specific tools, and finally crafting a narrative.
 
To learn more about the series, visit:http://library.cmu.edu/gis/events

Mapping your story with story maps

 October 30th at 10:00 am –register here
Join geographer and Esri education manager Joseph Kerski for a lively, hands-on session where you will combine multimedia (audio, video, narrative, photographs) with interactive web-based maps and tools to create story maps.  These maps (https://storymaps.arcgis.com) can be used in teaching and research at any scale from local to global, and cover a multitude of themes and issues such as population change, economics, business locations, water quality, energy, natural hazards, current events, biodiversity loss, land use, and many more.   These maps can be shared, accessed on any device, embedded in presentations or web pages, and combined with other multimedia. 

Visiting Speaker: Brent Seales on The Digital Restoration Initiative

Dr. Brent Seales will be visiting CMU on Wednesday, September 26, to give a talk on The Digital Restoration Initiative: Reading the Invisible Library.

Dr. Seales will give his talk in the Danforth Conference Room of the Cohon Center at CMU from 4 – 5 pm.

Progress over the past decade in the digitization and analysis of text found in cultural objects (inscriptions, manuscripts, scrolls) has led to new methods for reading the “invisible library”.  This talk explains the development of non-invasive methods, showing results from restoration projects on Homeric manuscripts, Herculaneum material, and Dead Sea scrolls.  Premised on “virtual unwrapping” as an engine for discovery, the presentation culminates in a new approach – Reference-Amplified Computed Tomography (RACT) – where machine learning becomes a crucial part of the imaging pipeline. You will leave this talk considering that RACT may indeed be the pathway for rescuing still-readable text from some of the most stubbornly damaged materials, like the enigmatic Herculaneum scrolls.

W. Brent Seales is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Computer Science and Director of the Center for Visualization and Virtual Environments at the University of Kentucky. Seales’ research centers on computer vision and visualization applied to challenges in the restoration of antiquities, surgical technology, and data visualization. In the 2012-13 he was a Google Visiting Scientist in Paris, where he continued work on the “virtual unwrapping” of the Herculaneum scrolls. In 2015, Seales and his research team identified the oldest known Hebrew copy of the book of Leviticus (other than the Dead Sea Scrolls), carbon dated to the third century C.E. The reading of the text from within the damaged scroll has been hailed as one of the most significant discoveries in biblical archaeology of the past decade.