Year in Review

Phew This year has been challenging, to say the least. At the same time, a virtual lab should be well positioned to handle the challenges of working remotely, right? Nevertheless, many of our projects moved to the back burner, while our undergraduate members dealt with the transition to fully online education and taking care of themselves and their families. Other things that had been in the process of becoming for some time finally saw the light of day.

Minecraft and SimRomanCity

First Experiences and Experiments As someone who is very interested on alternative pedagogies I was very excited to start on the SimRomanCity project. However, I am new to coding, so I find that I am focusing on the adaptability of videogames and the ease of use rather than the actual coding. Video games and digital learning has changed and evolved. There are programs that allow for a certain freedom where an average student who may not want to code, but still enjoys alternative learning styles, can participate without needing to know complicated coding.

George Garth Graham Undergraduate Digital History Research Fellows Named

Dr. Graham is pleased to announce that the GRF has been awarded to two outstanding History students, Chantal Brousseau and Elise Anderson. Chantal is a second year student with a minor in Computer Science. In previous course work, Chantal has designed online exhibitions concerning the Hudson’s Bay Company and the textile trade, and has done research into the history of women’s dress in 19th century London. Elise is a fourth year student also with a minor in Computer Science.

Inaugural X-Lab Fellows Named

Dr. Graham is pleased to announce that the Inaugural X-Lab Fellowships have been awarded to two outstanding History students, Vanessa Finney and Lauren Rollit. Vanessa is a fourth year history student with a minor in archaeology, interested in the perceptions of the body throughout history and application of technological advancements as teaching tools for history. She hopes to use this fellowship to gain skills and knowledge in online and digital media that will aid with future research into digital pedagogy.

Getting Started with the SimRomanCity Project

This year, the Graham Undergraduate Digital History Research Fellowship was advertised in conjuction with what Dr. Graham is calling ‘the SimRomanCity Project’. Graham has experimented on and off over the years with the power of modding existing games to play up particular aspects of the past; when he came across a port of SimCity to js/html5 he decided it was time to give it another go! This year’s fellows are going to at least start with this, but in keeping with the philosophy behind the Fellowship, they’ll be free to take it whereever they like!


Modding the Past

Computational Creativity and Archaeological Data

Exploring the creative reuse of legacy archaeological data to generate new insights. A subproject of the SSHRC-funded Computational Research in the Ancient Near East Project.

Epoiesen: A Journal for Creative Engagement in History and Archaeology

ἐποίησεν (epoiesen)- made - is a journal for exploring creative engagement with the past, especially through digital means. It publishes primarily what might be thought of as ‘paradata’ or artist’s statements that accompany playful and unfamiliar forms of singing the past into existence.


The smallest historical units - a subproject of Matt Milner's Nanohistory project, exploring museum collecting histories

Getting Started

An Idea It occurred to me that there are many student and faculty digital history projects going on around the History Department, but we do not actually speak to one another formally about this work. There are haphazard meetings in hallways and corridors going to and from class, but no real place where people could talk about their work, share resources, hints, tips, kvetch or otherwise collaborate. I thought then I might try to create a virtual space for that to happen; this is the result.