This week’s readings, particularly “The History of Humanities Computing,” made me wonder how DH is different from cultural anthropology, social psychology, or sociology. Those fields also examine the humanities by using experimental and observational methods taken from the sciences. Is the difference just a matter of self-identification?
Stephen Ramsay might have provided a possible answer in “Humane Computation,” where he writes that DH can bring “humanistic discourse” to these topics. He seems to want digital research projects to be considered new cultural objects that are open to the same critical analysis as any others. Wittgenstein Tractatus.
Ramsay also made me think about how Google has trained many people to trust algorithms almost blindly. The computer scientist Jaron Lanier has written about the problem of how many people simply accept the first few entries that Google gives them, instead of exploring further (perhaps more interesting) pages of search returns. Maybe DH can help bring that deeper data to light.
And finally: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PQ4o1N4ksyQ