Teaching and Researching with Scalar

Teaching and Researching with Scalar
Wednesday, April 8, 2015 - 3:00pm to 4:15pm

This workshop will serve as an introduction to Scalar, a free, open-source authoring and publishing platform designed for scholars writing media-rich, long-form, born-digital scholarship. Developed by the Alliance for Networking Visual Culture at the University of Southern California, Scalar allows scholars to assemble media from multiple sources and juxtapose that media with their own writing in a variety of ways; to annotate video, audio, images, source code, and text using the platform's build-in media annotation tools; and to structure essay- and book-length works in ways that take advantage of the unique capabilities of digital writing, including nested, recursive, and non-linear formats. This workshop will cover basic features of the platform, including a review of existing Scalar books and a hands-on introduction to paths, tags, annotations, and importing media, and then move on to more advanced topics including the effective use of visualizations, annotating with media, and a primer on customizing appearances in Scalar.


Anne Cong-Huyen is the Digital Scholar and coordinator of the Digital Liberal Arts Center at Whittier College in Los Angeles. She holds a PhD in English from UC Santa Barbara and was previously a Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in transnational studies and Visiting Assistant Professor in Asian American Studies at UC Los Angeles. She is a co-founding collective member of #transformDH. She is currently on the Steering Committee of HASTAC, and serves on the Ethnic Studies Committee for FemTechNet. Her research examines the media of migration and labor in “global cities,” namely Dubai, Los Angeles and Ho Chi Minh City, with particular attention paid to the ways gender, race, class, and nationality affect how the temporary and the precarious are experienced.

Craig Dietrich is a Research Assistant Professor in the Media Arts + Practice division of USC’s School of Cinematic Arts, a Visitor to the Information Integration Group at USC’s Information Sciences Institute, and has also, for the past decade, been part of the editorial staff of the Vectors Journal of Culture and Technology in a Dynamic Vernacular. Armed with early exposure to online environments such as LamdaMOO and a 2008 Intermedia MFA from the University of Iowa, Dietrich works in both traditional and new media. Dietrich's offline production includes plywood recreations of airports and mall storefronts for the project USA Today. His online projects have harnessed database-driven interactive media, streaming video, and mobile devices such as for Tenants in Action (TIA), an app that facilitates slum-housing reports to LA city agencies. Recent collaborations include the Mukurtu Archive and Plateau People's Web Portal content manager based on Aboriginal cultural protocols; Walking Wall Street, a concept that has seen Dietrich and students walk the length of Wall Street in Los Angeles; and Scalar, a scholarly publishing platform created in partnership with academic presses and archives.

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