Zephyr Frank, History

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Distant Reading + Text Mining: Cameron Blevins

Distant Reading + Text Mining

Cameron Blevins (PhD Candidate in History) gives an introduction to text mining techniques – with caveats about the challenges of distant reading. If visualizations are a “black box”, Blevins unpacks what goes into the creation of a visualization of textual data. He walks us through the process of a digital text mining project using examples from his own research on the spatial history of the American west using digitized 19th-century newspapers from North Texas.

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Cameron Blevins, History

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Call for Questions for Final Session

Students and workshop participants:

On March 13, a group of former guest presenters (TBA) will return to participate in a roundtable discussion about data visualization. In the comment section below, we invite you to propose questions that address issues related to ‘Visualizing Evidence’. Consider the comments a shared space where we can begin to create an outline for the roundtable discussion. We hope to collaboratively write about 4-6 questions that are widely applicable to the panel, not to just one speaker.

After learning about many different types of applications for exploring, analyzing, and presenting data, what questions do you have about the field of visualization – about its past, present, and future? What has sparked your curiosity? Here are a few suggestions for questions to help you brainstorm:

  • What kinds of technologies or practices will transform digital data visualization in the future?
  • What is the relationship of visualizations to other kinds of media/communication strategies used by scholars (and other professionals) to present research?
  • Why should students (grad and undergrad) commit learning one or more visualization methods? How do you recommend that they build this training into their academic and post-academic careers?


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Elijah Meeks, Digital Humanities Specialist

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Nicole Coleman, Humanities + Design, CESTA

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Interview: Patricia Carbajales, Geospatial Manager, Branner Earth Sciences Library, Stanford University

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