Life in the Digital Woods: Walden, A Fluid Text Updated

[See our update post on the Digital Thoreau blog too!]

A Recap: What is Walden: A Fluid Text?

Screen Shot 2014-12-04 at 12.50.31 AMOur Fluid Text edition of Walden gathers eight years and seven versions of the American masterpiece using the Versioning Machine tool and Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) mark-up. Want the modern edit of the masterpiece?– we also have the 1971 Princeton University Press edition, reproduced with permission. Readers can see the definitive version foremost (with or without our notes, easily toggled off for a clean read), and then view the older workings of the novel. Easily presented side-by-side, readers can wade time’s river in order to view the evolution of Walden as Thoreau honed it over the years. We’ve encoded the textual changes down to the word based on the scholarship of Ron Clapper. A simple click on the text will highlight the cross-edition variations; all the grunt work has been done for the fascinated student of Thoreau, and now further opportunities for scholarship are available with this publicly available text. Coders, too, can step behind-the-screen to see our TEI mark-up and XSLT. The Fluid Text edition of Walden takes the confident and singular challenge Thoreau gave us long ago even further through the field of digital humanities, and studies of encoding and authorial evolution:

It is not all books that are as dull as their readers . .  .

The Upgrade

With the release of the newly updated Walden: A Fluid Text comes plenty of detail, and quite a few major features. SUNY Geneseo’s Fluid Text team has worked primarily to clean up and edit the text, and to work on a new face for the project. Various bugs and textual errors reported by ours users have been amended, and we used this data to forecast how we wanted to improve the webpage for this update, and this is what we’ve done.

Our Walden: A Fluid Text Data Dictionary has been updated, so now TEI experts and novices alike can view the substratum of encoding mark-up–  the usage of TEI elements and attributes, as well as definitions and further usage tips. On a similar note for coders and the curious, our XSLT source code is now available [ziptar.gz].

Support for Thoreau’s journal notes (added by Dr. Paul Schacht’s “Literature and Literary Study in a Digital Age” course students) are now available in our work as Notes studded throughout the text. These journal notes were the earliest conceptions of many famous thoughts and passages found in Walden, jotted down by Thoreau years in advance. If you want to take a look at the student work and how this was done through scholarship and various coding methods for this semester-long undertaking, head over here.

In our polishing, we’ve also overhauled the graphical qualities of Walden: A Fluid Text. Stylistic textual rendering has been tweaked, and the distinctive tables in Economy, the inaugural and often mathematical chapter, are reformatted for easier understanding. Currently, individual columns in the versioning machine layout can now scroll independently of each other as well, so that reader’s can compare different sections of Walden at once.

What’s Next

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 11.47.34 AMOur Fluid Text, as the name suggests, is always changing, and we have many more features in mind. In keeping with the possibilities of digital tools, and TEI in particular, we have a planned revamp of the website interface to gild our look with a simplicity inspired by Walden itself. Dr. Paul Schacht plans on involving students in this project through further work in his Digital Studies course. A new users manual is planned to accompany the new look. Special attention will also be paid to accessibility on tablet screens, for scholars who want to read Thoreau in the library and woods alike.

No wonder that Alexander carried the Illiad with him on his expeditions in a precious casket. A written word is the choicest of relics . . . 

 

Cancelled: Celebrating Geneseo Authors Event

EventCancelled
The Celebrating Geneseo Authors event that was to take place at 4:00 today has been postponed due to inclement weather.
Stay tuned for information on the new date and time.

Pillows/Matresses Raise Awareness of Sexual Assault on Campus

CarryThatWeightTogetherYou may see pillows and/or mattresses carried around campus tomorrow [Wednesday, October 29, 2014]. Students, faculty and staff on college campuses across the country are taking collective action to support survivors of sexual and domestic violence on college campuses by carrying a pillow or mattress.

This national day of action is inspired by the activism and art of Emma Sulkowicz at Columbia University and led by Columbia student activists. Emma carries a mattress with her as part of a performance art piece to protest the dismissal of her rape report by campus officials at Columbia University.

The day of action aims to raise awareness about the prevalence of sexual and domestic violence, advocate for better campus policies, and challenge rape culture. To find out more and share photos of the efforts of students on our campus visit the Carry That Weight website.

Milne’s updates its Ask A Librarian page

Libanswers News Slider1Milne Library’s Ask A Librarian webpage just got a facelift! The new page is better integrated with our chat and library subject guides. Added functionality on this page allows users to search through Frequently Asked Questions, submit a question of their own or contact a reference librarian via phone, text, email, chat, or by scheduling a one-on-one consultation.

Be sure to update your bookmarks to libanswers.geneseo.edu.

Leading the Way for Better Library Instruction

Three instructors, five team leaders, 37 participants, 5 regional locations in New York, and 963 miles travelled; this, the winning equation for a summertime road trip of the third Library Instruction Leadership Academy (LILAC).

NYSDr. Brian Morgan of the Ella Shear Cline School of Education joined librarians Michelle Costello and Kim Davies Hoffman, along with many other co-Principal Investigators on the IITG planning team, to design a LILAC like none before. After offering two local instances of the academy (2010 & 2013), meant to train librarians new to instructional roles in foundational pedagogical methods, LILAC 3 aims to widen the audience throughout New York State. The first stage included five full-day workshops (over a two-week period) in various regions of the state, in an attempt to reach as many participants as possible – Potsdam, Saratoga Springs, Highland, Rochester, and Ithaca. Dr. Morgan provided a thorough grounding in pedagogical theory and Michelle and Kim followed with demonstrations of that theory into the practice of library instruction. Students were immersed in the theory as they contemplated their professional content through hands-on and collaborative activities

Giving LILAC participants a three-week break to resume their typical fall semester routine, online modules for the academy picked up on Monday, September 15, beginning with a focus on librarian interactions with students and collaborations with faculty and community members. Three more two-week modules will be spread out until mid-November and participants will culminate their learning with multiple final projects (a progressively developed lesson plan, a usable digital asset that can be used to supplement a class lesson or used to promote library services, and an action plan for a project personalized to each participant’s library).

LILAC 3 is not only meant to educate its participants, but its developers too. Module presenters are experimenting with new technologies to translate the typical LILAC content into asynchronous learning. The regional leaders have been immersed in the LILAC experience since the time of IITG proposal writing, so that they might sustain in future years such professional development opportunities in their local regions.

Imagine This! Creative Space for SOE Students

The Imaginarium is a place of creativity. It is an open area that contains materials, ideas, and tools that can be used to enhance learning. School of Education students can use the space to meet for projects, use the material to create bulletin boards, complete assessment pieces, and use a variety of resources, models, and manipulates available in TERC to enhance lessons.

imaginarium-collageTeachers can send students to the Imaginarium as a resource of ideas for lesson plans, projects, and unit plans.

The area is also open to the community. We would love to encourage members to explore the fiction and nonfiction novels available for variety of grade levels. In addition, there are many games and resources available for students to practice skills.

Office hours are available on Tuesday and Thursday evening from 6-8pm. Please stop by and meet with the Imaginarium curator for help with your projects.

George Bernard Shaw once said, “Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine, and at last you create what you will.” So visit the Imaginarium and allow your imagination to flow.

Integrative Teaching: The Classroom Meets Real Life

Rose-Marie Chierici speaks to patients at mobile clinic in HaitiOn Friday, April 25, 2014, the College will celebrate Dr. Rose-Marie Chierici, a dynamic Professor and Department Chair who has brought her field work in Haiti (Haiti Outreach-Pwoje Espwa, H.O.P.E.) to the Geneseo classroom. Dr. Chierici began her career at SUNY Geneseo in 1994, and was promoted (belatedly, in this librarian’s opinion) to Full Professor in August 2013. We now say goodbye to this inspirational teacher, researcher, and applied anthropologist . . . but not before she teaches one more course in Fall 2014.

Dr. Chierici first worked with Librarian Kim Davies-Hoffman in 2002 which sparked a long journey of efforts to infuse scholarly research skills into her students’ coursework. Between the two instructors, they experimented with many combinations of and approaches to teaching – from a one-time classroom visit from the librarian to a more collaborative and semester-long schedule of mini librarian visits, to the latest and most successful mixing of anthropological and development theory, practical on-the-ground skills, and research and technology training.

It is this last model of collaborative teaching that will keep Dr. Chierici on campus, in the classroom, for one more semester.

Opening ppt slide of a student-run presentation, 3Ts ConferenceIn March 2014, several students from Dr. Chierici’s course, ANTH 307: Third World Development, joined Kim Davies-Hoffman in a 3Ts Conference presentation that spotlighted the high-impact class experience that transformed typical college students into NGO development workers, if only for a semester. With a unique classroom structure, students learned anthropological and development theory on Tuesdays and became members of a simulated nongovernmental organization on Thursdays. The first few Thursdays were spent in class with Davies-Hoffman learning different research strategies and technological tools, but after that, two student-ran NGOs (M.A.R.K., Mothers Advocating for Reproductive Knowledge and The Epula Project) created their own destiny. With two team leaders guiding their respective NGO, students were responsible for researching and making crucial decisions for their project.

– In what region of the world would they focus their work?
– On what issue(s) would they focus their work?
– How would they discover enough detailed information to truly “know” the region and its people?
– What programs would they put into place to address their chosen development issue?

The culminating fruits of the NGOs’ labor was a 75-minute presentation to classmates, as well as respected professors and administrators on campus, supported by a project website that detailed all their research, ideas, and reflections. A follow-up conference presentation was icing on the cake as students had the opportunity to share their transformational learning experience with professionals (teachers, instructional designers, librarians, etc.) around New York State. A potential idea of pairing up with students at the Naples Central School District on similar NGO projects was discussed following the Geneseo students’ presentation.

Jordan Laux graduated in December 2013Since Fall 2013, many students of ANTH 307 have expressed their continued enthusiasm for the NGO experience, stating that it was the best class they have taken at SUNY Geneseo. As many of those students look to graduating in May and contemplate future career plans, development work has become a much more real possibility.  Jordan Laux (pictured on the far right), a member of and webmaster for M.A.R.K.,  graduated in December 2013 and has reported back on the immediate connections she has made from her lessons learned in Third World Development and her current daily work in Syracuse, NY.  Take a listen to what ANTH 307 and her experience working with Dr. Rose-Marie Chierici and Kim Davies-Hoffman has meant to Jordan.

 

Latest Open SUNY Textbook Features Interactive Elements

by Cyril Oberlander

OpenSUNYTextbook-InfoLit-blogWhat makes a good researcher? When navigating today’s complex information ecosystem, researchers in any setting must have a variety of tools at their disposal, as well as the knowledge and focus to use them in an efficient and productive manner.

The authors of The Information Literacy User’s Guide have provided an essential roadmap for becoming a successful and self-aware researcher. This textbook introduces students to critical concepts of information literacy using relevant techniques and materials designed for maneuvering through an information-saturated and technology-rich world. Specifically, it utilizes two essential concepts: The Seven Pillars Model, developed by the Society of College, National, and University Libraries in the United Kingdom, as well as, the concept of information literacy as a “metaliteracy,” a model developed by Trudi Jacobson of SUNY University at Albany, and Thomas Mackey of SUNY Empire State College.

The Information Literacy User’s Guide examines information literacy as it relates to the liberal arts as well as the hard sciences. This textbook is designed for undergraduate level courses with a research component and information literacy courses, or for independent learning. The individual chapters can also be incorporated into one-shot sessions or flipped classrooms. Intelligently engaging, with relevant examples of real-life research pitfalls, case studies, and scenarios, this textbook offers many hands-on exercises and interactive quizzes to aid the progress of the audience from researching novices to capable information locators, creators, and sharers.
Available free online at: opensuny.org

About Open SUNY Textbooks

Open SUNY Textbooks is a ground-breaking open access textbook publishing initiative established by State University of New York libraries and supported by SUNY Innovative Instruction Technology Grants. This highly innovative initiative publishes high-quality, cost-effective course resources by engaging faculty as authors and peer-reviewers, and libraries as an integral part of the publishing infrastructure.

Launched in 2012, this pioneering initiative provides an opportunity for higher education to be more involved in publishing high-quality affordable textbooks. The first pilot will produce 15 published titles in 2013-2014, with 15 more titles to be published in a second pilot for 2014-2015. Participating libraries in the first pilot include SUNY Geneseo, College at Brockport, College of Environmental Science and Forestry, SUNY Fredonia, Upstate Medical University, and University at Buffalo, with support from other SUNY libraries and SUNY Press.

Lastly, with much appreciation to the authors and editors for making this textbook possible, we would also like to thank Chris Rudecoff (SUNY Morrisville), Allison Brown, Leah Root, and other members of the SUNY Geneseo Publishing Team, participating SUNY libraries, SUNY IITG grant funding, and SUNY Press for helping to make this publication a reality. Publishing open textbooks is as much about providing access to educational resources and lowering the cost of education, as it is about empowering teaching and learning, authors and readers.

For more information and to access these open textbooks, please see http://opensuny.org.

Transforming Teaching and Learning with Digital Resources

We are happy to announce a new resource available to SUNY Geneseo School of Education (SOE) students and faculty – PBS LearningMedia.  The link to the site is included in this blog and can also be found on the Education Lesson Planning library guide.

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PBS LearningMedia
PBS LearningMedia provides direct access to thousands of classroom-ready, curriculum-targeted digital resources. Resources are aligned to Common Core and national standards and include videos and interactives, as well as audio, documents, and in-depth lesson plans. The site contains free as well as *subscription-based content.

A sample from their new collection – Engaging Math Resources for Grades 5-8 – contains over 400 digital resources aligned with grades 5-8 Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and focused on critical middle school math concepts. Collection includes videos, interactives, animations, and infographics and addresses topics such as; Operations and Algebraic Thinking, Number & Operations—Fractions, The Number System, Number & Operations in Base Ten.

*You must have a SOE email address to access the subscription-based content.
Openclipart.org. (2013). Android. Retrieved from http://pixabay.com/en/android-bot-robot-television-happy-161184/

Workshop Series to help students with GREAT Day Projects

GREATday-blogParticipating in GREAT Day is a significant honor, but it can also be an intimidating experience.  A lot of work goes into papers, posters, and presentations, and students want their work to stand out in a good way.  But what is one supposed to do if he or she doesn’t know how to design a good poster or write a proper abstract?

The Center for Academic Excellence has the answer!

For the very first time, the C.A.E. is working with staff and faculty across campus to bring you a series of workshops designed for first-timers and GREAT Day veterans alike.  We already have five workshops scheduled and ready to go, and we’re working on adding a few more to the mix in the coming weeks.

So if you really want your GREAT Day project to stand out for all the right reasons, take a look at what we’re offering and start signing up!  Spaces are limited, so don’t delay!

Design Principles – February 25th, 5:15pm to 6:15pm, CU 319

Graphic design is hard.  This workshop keys in on three fundamental elements of design (spacing, color, and text) to help you draft a memorable and effective GREAT Day poster.  Taught by Kristen Fuest. Sign-Up:  http://goo.gl/AkFqV2 (limit of 24)

Abstract Writing – March 3rd, 3:30pm to 5:00pm, Milne 105

Unsure of how to write a proper abstract for your GREAT Day project?  This 90 minute workshop will help you through the process.  After some brief instruction, you will have the opportunity to write your GREAT Day abstract with guided help from some of SUNY Geneseo’s best writing tutors.  Taught by Gillian Paku and Writing Learning Center tutors. Sign-Up:  http://goo.gl/eUly1z (limit of 24)

Creating a Poster Using InDesign – March 4th, 4:30pm to 5:30pm, Milne 104

InDesign is a versatile design program you can find on pretty much every public computer on campus.  However, many SUNY Geneseo students are unfamiliar with it.  Come learn the ropes in this one-hour workshop and turn that amazing GREAT Day poster idea into a reality.  Taught by Steve Dresbach. Sign-Up:  http://goo.gl/pCpt13 (limit of 40)

Creating a Poster Using PowerPoint – March 4th, 5:45pm to 6:45pm, Milne 104

It’s not just for presentations!  When it comes to creating GREAT Day posters, PowerPoint is a friendly and familiar alternative for students who don’t necessarily want to learn a brand new program.  Taught by Steve Dresbach. Sign-Up:  http://goo.gl/QlChlH (limit of 40)

Creating a PowerPoint Presentation – April 1st, 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Milne 104

Just about all of us have used PowerPoint before, but despite your relative familiarity with the program, there’s probably a lot of really neat features you never knew about.  Learn how to make your GREAT Day presentation stand out with this sixty minute workshop.  Taught by Steve Dresbach. Sign-Up:  http://goo.gl/jYVXSG (limit of 40)

For more information on future workshops, visit www.geneseo.edu/library/cae-workshops