Digital humanities and text re-use

The concept of text re-use in early Islamic historiography was first brought to my attention by François de Blois, whose courses were always so much more than just an introduction to a language such as Middle Persian. Recently, it has been Sarah Savant, who has drawn attention to text re-use and its application in the study of early Islamic literature. And now there is this very exciting Hackathon taking place in Göttingen in July 2015:

Digital Humanities Hackathon on Text Re-Use

‘Don’t leave your data problems at home!’

The Göttingen Centre for Digital Humanities will host a Hackathon targeted at students and researchers with a humanities background who wish to improve their computer skills by working with their own data-set. Rather than teaching everything there is to know about algorithms, the Hackathon will assist participants with their specific data-related problem, so that they can take away the knowledge needed to tackle the issue(s) at hand. The focus of this Hackathon is automatic text re-use detection and aims at engaging participants in intensive collaboration. Participants will be introduced to technologies representing the state of the art in the field and shown the potential of text re-use detection. Participants will also be able to equip themselves with the necessary knowledge to make sense of the output generated by algorithms detecting text re-use, and will gain an understanding of which algorithms best fit certain types of textual data. Finally, participants will be introduced to some text re-use visualisations.