On 1 March 2018, we have released the code of the web application of the ‘School of Salamanca’ project’s digital edition (https://salamanca.school) as free and open source software (under the MIT license) on GitHub: https://github.com/digicademy/svsal, where the development process and the versioning of our web application takes place exclusively from this date onward. The publication of our web application’s code represents the first major code release of the project; other parts of our digital infrastructure and the research data will be published separately.
The web application, now having reached version 1.0, has been developed since 2014 and, more precisely, consists of an eXist-db application package. While this package can be downloaded and deployed in any eXist-db (version 3.6+) instance, it must be mentioned that, in order to function correctly, the web application draws upon the integration with further, external services: for example, an iiif-conformant image server (image and presentation APIs) allowing for the incorporation of facsimile images in the reading views of our works, or a SphinxSearch server providing lemmatized and cross-language search results for the texts. Notwithstanding these current caveats in portability of the application package, and although there still remains much to be achieved with regards to the functionality of our web application, the code underlying central features of the application (such as the endless-scrolling segmentation of texts in the reading view, the content negotiation-based URI-linking of texts and text segments, and others) is fully available now and can be utilized or serve as an example for similar projects, for instance. For a more extensive and detailed description of current features, caveats, and provisos of the application please refer to: https://github.com/digicademy/svsal.
The software is tagged with a DOI so that it can be cited: https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.1186521
Starting from experiences of the the philosophical and legal-historical project “The School of Salamanca. A digital collection of sources and a dictionary of its juridical-political language”, this article discusses an experimental approach to the Semantic Web. It lists both affirmative reasons and skeptical doubts related to this field in general and to its relevance for the project in particular. While for us the general question has not been settled yet, we have decided early on to discuss it in terms of a concrete implementation, and hence the article will also describe preliminary goals and their implementation along with practical and technical issues that we have had to deal with.
In the process, we have encountered a few difficult questions that — as far as we could determine — involve (arguably) systematic tensions between key technologies and traditional scholarly customs. The most important one concerns referencing and citation. In the following, I will describe a referencing scheme that we have implemented. It attempts to combine a canonical citation scheme, some technologies known primarily from semantic web contexts and a permalink system. Besides the details of our particular technical approach and the very abstract considerations about risks and benefits of the semantic web, I will point out some considerable advantages of our approach that are worthwhile pursuing independently of a full-blown semantic web offering.
Continue reading “What’s in a URI? Part I: The School of Salamanca, the Semantic Web and Scholarly Referencing”
Wir laden sehr herzlich ein zur Einreichung von Beiträgen zu einem Diskussionsforum der Zeitschrift RG RECHTSGESCHICHTE – LEGAL HISTORY mit dem Titel “Die geisteswissenschaftliche Perspektive: Welche Forschungsergebnisse lassen Digital Humanities erwarten?/With the Eyes of a Humanities Scholar: What Results Can We Expect from Digital Humanities?” Dieses Diskussionsforum wird durch das Projekt für die Zeitschrift RG RECHTSGESCHICHTE – LEGAL HISTORY organisiert.
Die Beiträge sollen dezidiert die geisteswissenschaftliche Perspektive einnehmen und die bereits gemachten Erfahrungen in der forschungspraktischen Arbeit mit dem Instrumentarium der DH thematisieren. Im Mittelpunkt steht die Interaktion zwischen geisteswissenschaftlichen Erkenntnisinteressen und digitalen Tools: Wie verändern digitale Möglichkeiten Forschungsinteresse und Methode? Continue reading “(Deutsch) CfP: Forum RG RECHTSGESCHICHTE – LEGAL HISTORY 24 (2016)”