ViewFinder Magazine

Editors' Note: The Digital Humanities
by Gil Toffell & Ali Ward, Learning on Screen

Welcome to ViewFinder Issue 122: The Digital Humanities

This issue we are exploring the digital humanities. An area of massive expansion in recent decades, the integration of computational technology in humanities research and teaching has progressed from early experiments in information management using mainframe computers, to a proliferation of creative applications of digital hardware and software oriented to the creation, representation and interrogation of knowledge across humanities disciplines. We’ve been privileged to be able to gather together contributions from key individuals currently working in the field and highlights from the issue include Professor Justin Smith’s piece Transforming Middlemarch – What digital technologies can reveal about the creative process of literary adaptation; A.R.E Taylor and Emanuela Vai explore the carbon footprint of the digital services that universities use - digital services that we often think of as virtual processes taking place in ethereal 'clouds'; Professor Jennifer Richards discusses the fascinating Animating Text Initiative at Newcastle University, and PhD student Cáit Murphy examines what Alexandre Astruc’s (1948) analogy of the filmmaker’s caméra-stylo, a foundational proposal for film as ‘art’, means in the smartphone and social media era.

Also in this issue we are celebrating Learning on Screen’s 75th anniversary. Originally known as the British Universities Film Council the organisation was brought into being by an interdisciplinary group of academics that were inspired by advances in technology and pedagogic philosophy to utilise moving images in their teaching. Marking the anniversary, our much admired outgoing CEO Virginia Haworth-Galt reflects on Learning on Screen's rich 75 year history, celebrating our achievements since that fateful Valentine's Day in 1948. Also, we are pleased to share an article by Sarah Rutterford from the Independent Cinema Office, discussing their latest project- ‘Right of Way’, which is an 80 min mix of historical archive film and new artists commissions, designed to stimulate discussion and reflection on who has a right to the great outdoors and who is excluded from it.

It has been a pleasure to bring together so many interesting articles and such a timely topic.

Enjoy issue 122!