EUscreenXL on the Future of Archives at NECS 2015

Author: Eleonora Maria Mazzoli

 
The 2015 NECS Conference took place this year in Łódź, Poland on 18th-20th June. Every year NECS, the European Network for Cinema and Media Studies gathers a significant number of scholars, researchers, media professionals and archivists from all over the world. The theme of the conference was “Archive of/for the Future” and certainly, it could not be more appropriate and relevant for EUscreenXL. Thus, a team of EUscreenXL representatives participated to the event presenting an entire panel session on “Perspectives on the Contextualization of Audiovisual Online Archives: Access and Publication Formats.” The ‘dream team Łódź’ was represented by Mariana Salgado from Aalto University, Berber Hagedoorn and Eleonora Maria Mazzoli from Utrecht University, and Dana Mustata from Rijksuniversiteit Groningen.
 
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EUscreenXL: Participant of the E-Space Hacking Culture Bootcamp

Author: Laura Osswald, Mariana Salgado and Willemien Sanders

 
Within the framework of Europeana Space a number of hackathons are organised to develop tools for using Europeana content. The Hacking Culture Bootcamp hackathon, held in Amsterdam between May 8 and May 10 this year, focused on creating multiscreen experiences with digitalized historical footage from Europeana. In the hackathon seven teams of participants from different backgrounds created new multiscreen digital tools to engage with cultural heritage. For EUscreenXL we participated with a team of six.
 
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From passive to active use of media : 2014 Media & Learning Conference in Brussels

Author: Eve-Marie Oesterlen
Media & Learning provides a platform to those responsible for creating, promoting and using media in the classroom, on and off campus as well as in training and lifelong learning centres.

 

Media-and-Learning-2014_official-logo_whiteHeadlined ‘From passive to active use of media in teaching and learning’, the aim 2014 conference – aptly hosted by the Flemish Ministry of Education in Brussels – was to promote the sharing of best-practice, exchange of know-how and hands-on amongst practitioners. With its clear call for action, it also gave policy-makers and decision-makers the opportunity to discuss how to develop digital and media literacy in the broader context of creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship and the value and impact of such skills in relation to the European work-force.
media-and-learning-2014_00055

The conference programme covered a wide variety of themes grouped around the topic of media education and literacy. 300 participants from 44 countries learned about the value of using video and new media in education and were able to dip into master classes on programming, data mining, creating media productions and educational games.

As a freely accessible multilingual media resource, the EUscreen project effectively complemented the manifold European projects engaged in media and ICT-supported learning introduced over the two days.
In the year that commemorates the centenary of the First World War, media-supported remembrance education represented a special conference highlight with showcases from Europeana, BBC , INA, the VIAA platform  and the IWU Institut Film und Bild.

 

All was wrapped up very glamourously with the MEDEA Awards ceremony, rewarding eight finalists for excellence in the production and pedagogical design of media-rich learning resources.

 

All in all a lot of food for media-related thought to take away and act on …

  

Conference notes III: To crowdsource a Faustian dilemma

Author: Erwin Verbruggen

 

EUscreenXL gathered in Rome last week for our conference on the users and usage of audiovisual archives: “From Audience to User: Engaging with Audiovisual Heritage Online”. In this series of blog posts we fill you in on what happened.

Tom and his archives

After lunch, the conference rode on with its first day packed with presentations.

15509289377_90603a2ec7_o The slides Deutsche Welle’s Kay Macquarrie showed, opened with a colourful animation about Tom the reporter. Tom is not a big fan of the complications of his work, it seems, and would like smart technologies to help him out. Luckily, the AXES project has spent some time figuring out his wishes and aims to provide for his every search and sorting need.

The search engine uses all sorts of automation and enrichment to decrease the searcher’s time effort. It assumes that researchers have wishes fully different to those of home users and media professionals who want to reuse content. The software will be made available under an open source license for those enthused and willing to try it out.

 

AXES with Tom – If Only You Knew What’s In Your Archive!

When television is not enough

The demo Lotte Belice Baltussen and Lyndon Nixon showed, was dedicated squarely at the home user – and smart web editors. The LinkedTV project has the noble assumption that television audiences are not willing to switch off their brains when watching, but are most willing to use their smart devices to make themselves smarter too. In order to assist editors in providing a wealth of contextual information, the project searches for for that sweet spot where automatically enriched and linked metadata can provide a world of new experiences.

In the Linked Culture demo the duo showed, the Dutch version of the Antiques Roadshow was enriched with images and explanations pulled in from Europeana. During the coffee break, we saw some conversing going on between the developers in the project and those involved in EUscreenXL, so keep posted to hear if this turns into pretty new uses of our linked data pilot.

 

LinkedTV demonstration of LinkedCulture

Crowdsource this

15670785666_7263f887e0_oMark Williams took to te stage again to this time root for his own project. The Media Ecology project, or MEP in short, is a fantastically ambitious and wide ranging project that brings together researchers, librarians, archivists and computer scientists and aims to harness the powers of two library and archive buzzwords: linked data and crowdsourcing. MEP provides access to the Library of Congress via Mediathread and allows a selected group of academics to update and improve on descriptions. The archives can then harvest back metadata generated through MEP project. The project’s access point provides enhanced search capacity for the LoC’s materials, enhances search capacity for other archives and helps the academic & scholarly community help in their workflow at the same time. An important aid in this process is the use of a controlled vocabulary, which in this project is baptised the Onomy. The project makes use of a wide range of open source tools, such as the Computational Cinematics Toolkit in Python and the related Tiltfactor, doing metadata games.

The big launch

15509336028_1db2bce465_oKamila Lewandowska, Sian Barber and Rutger Rozendal all work on the EUscreenXL project. The three of them have been the main drivers behind the EUscreen portal redesign, and therefor the honour was bestowed upon them to present its feats and design choices. The new portal is made adaptive so it can be seen on all sorts of devices, search is made more intuitive and all together it boasts an editorial approach, feeding users more content in more appealing ways. Also, some important steps in providing subtitles for selected clips have been provided. Meanwhile the strengths of the portal – rich, interchangeable metadata and descriptions – are still there and improvements will be taking place over the next few months, as well as new possibilities for contextualisation. We do suggest you go there straight after reading this post to find out all that’s new and shiny: http://www.euscreen.eu

The Q&A session focused on the benefits of crowdsourcing and lessons learned in this space, including how to convince archive personnel of the usefulness of involving non-professionals in describing archive content. The presentations led one commenter to describe his response as a Faustian dilemma, where he needed to choose between using one of the many fantastic tools available but unable to solve the growing gap between their development and their integration into teaching & digital/audiovisual literacy. As far as we could understand from the panel members, they all seemed to have good trust in their visions of smarter, connected, wired, searchable and automated collections – and the people we hope will be using them.

 

Drawing made at the conference by Montse Fortino.
Pictures taken at the conference by Maria Drabczyk/Quirijn Backx/Erwin Verbruggen

CALL FOR PAPERS: Sound and (Moving) Images in Focus

 

Call for Papers: Sound and (moving) images in focus
How to integrate audiovisual material in Digital Humanities research?
Workshop at DH2014, 8 July 2014, Lausanne, Switzerland

 

digital humanitiesIntroduction

The issue that will be addressed during this workshop is how to overcome the contrast between audiovisual material being a steadily increasing body of data and the fact that it is relatively poorly represented in the field of the Digital Humanities. When considering the available DH tools, projects and publications it is clear that sources such as television, film, photos and oral history recordings have not yet received the same level of attention from scholars as written sources. This can be considered as problematic in the light of the expected exponential growth in volume of audiovisual sources and of the abundance of information for researches contained in this type of data that is largely overlooked. One can envision how a single document could satisfy the needs of various disciplines if tools would be available to identify, retrieve and analyse the various dimensions of a video-recording such as language, emotions, speech acts, narrative plots and references to people, places and events. This richness not only holds the promise of multidisciplinary collaboration between e.g., computer sciences, social sciences and the humanities, but also makes audiovisual material a potentially valuable playground for the Digital Humanities.

Workshop Programme

The workshop aims to bring scholars and computer scientists together to discuss the following key questions in four subsequent sessions.

1.  Why are audiovisual data/archives scarcely used within the (Digital) Humanities?
2.  What are possible strategies to stimulate the use of audiovisual data/archives within the  Digital Humanities?
3.  Which examples of digital tools applied on audiovisual data/archives can serve as best practices?
4. What should be the priorities on the  agenda for the future uptake of audiovisual data/archives in the Digital Humanities?

The keynotes within the first two sessions will be delivered by Andreas Fickers, professor of contemporary and digital history at the University of Luxembourg, and Dr. Arjan van Hessen, specialist in speech technology and member of the Executive Board of CLARIN-NL. The first will talk about the use of audiovisual sources within humanities research, and the second will discuss the necessary technical and infrastructural provisions for the analysis of these sources. For the third session scholars are invited to submit papers and demos that illustrate the potential of applying DH approaches to audiovisual data with a focus on lessons learned. The final session is dedicated to the assessment and evaluation of the findings and aims at formulating a research agenda for the future. To disseminate the results of the workshop among a broader audience, the initiators intend to propose a special issue on this topic to a Digital Humanities journal.

Submission of Proposals

For the third session on applications of DH on audiovisual data, the workshop organisers invite papers and demos that deal with experienced challenges of integrating AV in DH.

Submissions should include the following:

  • General abstract (should not exceed 800 words)
  • Contact info and a short description of research interests of the authors.
  • The committee aims to select a balanced set of abstracts that cover the various media (film, television, photography, oral history, digital storytelling, recordings of sound and movement) and tools that are needed at the various stages of the research process (exploration, annotation, analysis, presentation, curation and preservation)

To submit a proposal, please send an abstract  (docx or pdf)  toavindhworkshop@gmail.com

Accepted abstracts will be published on the Erasmus Studio website.

 Important dates

  • Abstract submissions due: 16 May 2014 23:59 (CET)
  • Acceptance notification: 28 May
  • Workshop: 8 July 2014

Further information

Organizers

This workshop is initiated in the context of  the collaboration between  the Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision and the Erasmus Studio, an interfacultary  institute  at the Erasmus University Rotterdam, that promotes and initiates e-research across disciplinary boundaries, with an emphasis on multimedia archives.

  • Dr. Stef Scagliola (Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus Studio)
  • Dr. Martijn Kleppe (Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus Studio)
  • Max Kemman MSc (Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus Studio)
  • Dr. Roeland Ordelman (Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision, University of Twente)
  • Prof. Franciska de Jong (Erasmus University Rotterdam, Erasmus Studio, University of Twente)

 

Visions of Europe in the Eurovision Song Contest

The 59th Eurovision Song Contest will take place in Copenhagen, Denmark in May 2013. The Eurovision Song Contest is the oldest continuous television program in the world. Launched by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) in 1956 as one of many initiatives to develop live broadcasting technology in Europe and to contribute to peaceful interaction across the European continent the contest which has been broadcast annually ever since, has developed into the most-watched international festival of popular music.

With a TV audience of around 120 million people plus an increasing viewer base on the internet, the popularity of the contest rivals sporting events such as the UEFA Euro and the American Super bowl.

You can watch the final of the 22nd Eurovision Song Contest in London on EUscreen:

eurovision

Since its inception the Eurovision Song Contest have become a communicative and negotiated space triggering discussions of Europe, its boundaries and identities. Over the years national broadcasters, journalists, audiences, performers and even politicians have promoted their vision of Europe in relation to the Eurovision Song Contest. This Years Eurovision conference, which will take place in Copenhagen during Eurovision week 2014, will as its main theme focus on the multiple visions of Europe in the Eurovision Song Contest. Such visions can take many shapes, be they politically, economically, culturally, sexually and (mental)geographically charged. Visions of Europe link intrinsically to specific comprehensions of Europe in past and present. Visions are always partial, situated, embodied; they have material-discursive implications. Popular culture and performance cultures represented in the Eurovision Song Contest offer distinct opportunities for observing and displaying the contested nature of envisioning Europe.

Visions of Europe in the Eurovision Song Contest conference at Copenhagen University, Faculty of Humanities, will take place on the 5th-7th of May 2014. The organizers announce first call for papers on European visions in the Eurovision Song Contest – with emphasis on empirical, theoretical, analytical and/or methodological dimensions; Other papers presenting research about the Eurovision Song contest is however also welcome.

Please send an abstract of no more than 300 words to: ceklw@hum.au.dk by February 15th 2014

The conference is co-organized by the research program Modern Europe at Aarhus University and Centre for Modern European Studies (CEMES) at Copenhagen University.

 

 

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