I have updated my trip report on Digital Humanities 2007 with some general thoughts:
- There were more graduate students and young scholars attending and giving papers, which is a good thing.
- A number of sessions and papers dealt with issues around large scale computing – what to do with large collections of evidence. The sessions that Mark Olsen chaired (and presented in) on text mining with Philomine, for example were looking at thousands of documents. Bethany’s paper on NINES dealt with issues around the management and collation of heterogeneous materials. In short we are shifting from issues around the representation of single works or single author corpora to issues around the study of large collections.
- There were a number of sessions around visualization and representation. Visualization and interface design seem to be an accepted part of the discipline now.
It is hard to say when one only attended particular sessions whether this conference represents a general turn to large scale analysis and representation, but that was my impression. Our conferences used to mostly project reports, now we are seeing more mature papers that use a project to introduce larger issues.