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24 MARCH 2014

The Digital Methods Initiative

Call for Participation – Digital Methods Summer School 2014, On Geolocation: Remote Event Analysis (Mapping Conflicts, Disasters, Elections and other Events with Online and Social Media Data), 23 June – 4 July 2014

"The Digital Methods Initiative is a contribution to doing research into the 'natively digital'. Consider, for example, the hyperlink, the thread and the tag. Each may 'remediate' older media forms (reference, telephone chain, book index), and genealogical histories remain useful (Bolter/Grusin, 1999; Elsaesser, 2005; Kittler, 1995). At the same time new media environments – and the software–makers – have implemented these concepts, algorithmically, in ways that may resist familiar thinking as well as methods (Manovich, 2005; Fuller, 2007). In other words, the effort is not simply to import well–known methods – be they from humanities, social science or computing. Rather, the focus is on how methods may change, however slightly or wholesale, owing to the technical specificities of new media.

The initiative is twofold. First, we wish to interrogate what scholars have called 'virtual methods,' ascertaining the extent to which the new methods can stake claim to taking into account the differences that new media make (Hine, 2005). Second, we desire to create a platform to display the tools and methods to perform research that, also, can take advantage of 'web epistemology'. The web may have distinctive ways of recommending information (Rogers, 2004; Sunstein, 2006). Which digital methods innovate with and also critically display the recommender culture that is at the heart of new media information environments?

Amsterdam–based new media scholars have been developing methods, techniques and tools since 1999, starting with the Net Locator and, later, the Issue Crawler, which focuses on hyperlink analysis (, 1999, 2001). Since then a set of allied tools and independent modules have been made to extend the research into the blogosphere, online newssphere, discussion lists and forums, folksonomies as well as search engine behavior. These tools include scripts to scrape web, blog, news, image and social bookmarking search engines, as well as simple analytical machines that output data sets as well as graphical visualizations.

The analyses may lead to device critiques – exercises in deconstructing the political and epistemological consequences of algorithms. They may lead to critical inquiries into debates about the value and reputation of information."





academic researchalgorithm • Almila Akdag Salah • Amsterdam • analytical machines • Anat Ben-David • Anne Helmond • Bernhard Rieder • blogosphereCarl Rogers • Carolin Gerlitz • Cass Sunsteinchart • chart data • Christine Hine • critical enquirydatadata analysisdata scraping • data sets • data visualisation • device critiques • digital methods • Digital Methods Initiative • Digital Methods Summer School • discussion forum • discussion lists • epistemological consequences • Erik Borra • Esther Weltevrede • folksonomiesFriedrich Kittler • • graphical visualisationshyperlink • hyperlink analysis • index • information environments • information validity • Issue Crawler • Jay David Bolter • Koen Martens • Lev Manovich • Liliana Bounegru • Lonneke van der Velden • Marc Tuters • Marieke van Dijk • Matthew Fuller • Michael Stevenson • Nadia Dresscher-Lambertus • Natalia Sanchez Querubin • natively digital • Net Locator • new medianew methods • older media forms • online newssphere • politicalrecommender culturereferenceremediationRichard Grusin • Richard Rogers • Sabine Niederer • scrapesearch engine • Simeona Petkova • social bookmarking • software-makers • summer schooltag • technical specificities • telephone network • Thomas Elsaesser • thread • virtual methods • web epistemology


Linda Carroli
01 OCTOBER 2012

The Student Room: student discussion forum about Higher Education

"The Student Room is owned by a small but perfectly formed Brighton based company called Acumen PI, but soon to morph into The Student Room Group.

We're all passionate about The Student Room and our sister sites, and love working on them. Generally we see our role as facilitators, steering our sites forward in exciting ways, but we're under no illusions that it's the community of members that make The Student Room special and unique in the vast world of social media."

(Acumen Professional Intelligence, UK)



academic help • Acumen PI • Acumen Professional Intelligence • advice for studentsBrightoncareerscoursesdiscussion forumeveryday student life • fashion and beauty • find information • gap year • health and relationships • help and advicehigher education • internet forum • league tables • member community • networked publicsonline communityonline discussion • personal statement • school students • sixth form college • student advice • student circumstancesstudent experiencestudent storiesstudent viewsstudentsstudying • The Student Room • The Student Room Group • TSR • UKUK educationUK universityundergraduate studentsuniversity admissions • university applications • university courses • university students • university towns


Simon Perkins
04 DECEMBER 2010

e-learning 1.0: LMSs, VLEs, e-portfolios

"the dominant learning technology employed today is a type of system that organizes and delivers online courses – the learning management system (LMS). This piece of [e–learning 1.0] software has become almost ubiquitous in the learning environment; companies such as WebCT, Blackboard, and Desire2Learn have installed products at thousands of universities and colleges and are used by tens of thousands of instructors and students. The learning management system takes learning content and organizes it in a standard way, as a course divided into modules and lessons, supported with quizzes, tests and discussions, and in many systems today, integrated into the college or university's student information system."

(Stephen Downes, 17 October 2005)

Downes, S. (17 October 2005). "E–learning 2.0." eLearn Magazine, an Association for Computing Machinery, Inc. publication.


2005 • ACM eLearn Magazine • Assessment 2.0blackboardCanadacollege • Computer-Based Learning • content • corporate training • Desire2Learndiscussion forumdistance educationdistance learninge-learning • e-learning 1.0 • e-learning 2.0e-portfolioeducationeducation technologyinformation system • instructor • knowledge management • learning content • learning environmentLearning Management Systemlearning technology • lessons • LMSmodulesNational Research Council of Canadaonline coursesonline educationonline learning • performance support • quizsoftwareStephen Downesstudenttechnologytesttrainingtransmission model of communicationuniversityVLEWebCT


Simon Perkins

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