, , , , , , , , ,

The Trier center for digital humanities  is situated in the university of Trier in Germany. It has been founded in 1998 and is now lead by Prof. Dr. Claudine Moulin. The aim of this center is to apply informatics technologies to the field of social and human sciences  and to develop and enforce the interdisciplinary research in this optic.

Their fields of work are:

    1. To digitalize  a complete text version (which means not in an image way)  without any errors and in a format that takes less space than image digitalizing of texts . In order to avoid errors, mainly on manuscript texts, they take a process that is called double keying which means that two teams work on the same and that afterwards they will compare both version to avoid any errors.
    2. To create a standardized way to mark texts with identifiers in XML and to integrate them in an automatic/semi-automatic way (depending for example on the size of the character or if it is bold or not and so on).
    3. To network things as for example correspondence between authors, or to network dictionaries (for example the one from the Grimm brothers with the one from Goethe)
    4. To develop softwares for publications by implementing graphical interfaces for on or offline medias, the automatization of the production process for online publications such as the german-russian wordbook for example. They want to develop these software as open-source softwares

Then, they also have a large amount of project that they are either leading or participating to , most of them involving history although mainly the german one but also some of them on a more “global” (well european) scale! Furthermore, all those projects are international collaboration with prestigious universities such as Cambridge University, Universität Bern, University of Birmingham, C.N.R.S. but also with a lot of libraries.

Those projects are for example to digitalize the works of a german writer, Arthur Schnitzler. In this case, not only his work would be digitalized but also fac-similés, critics, sketches …  Another project is to create some kind of network of correspondence between different german writers (in the way of social networking) in order to put all of them in relation.

As it is possible to see on their homepage, a lot of projects include the digitalization of the works on an author: they plan to do it with the works of Gotthelf, Grimm, Peters, … and for all those author again, it would not only be their works but also everything that gravitates around it as for the Schnitzler project !

Another important part of their research is to create some wordbook database. They have one about dialects where they will include some cartography and allow scientist to relate those dialects together. Another one is about the Ouigur language (found in turkish text dating from before the islamization of Turkey) and would help to decipher unknown texts.

Yet this not everything, they have also a project which is about creating a digital archive of texts from the Middle Ages. In the same point of view, they also want to create a portal regrouping all the bible publications in Latin until 1500 (thus also digitalizing it).

One of their most ambitious projects is perhaps to put the history of Europe online through publishing interactive maps, historical datas, scientific articles, movies, sounds, …

Next to all those history related projects, they have some others like creating a workspace for collaborative editing by providing a shared digital workspace with translation tools for text in a foreign language, analysis tools relating different texts, another one helping for the publication on internet or on paper …

As it is possible to see when going on their homepage, this center has a lot of projects going on and seems to be really active in the “historical part” of digital humanities by giving access to a wide public to the historical resources of our countries. On the side, this lab is also active in the “social life” of digital humanities as it’s head went to the DH 2012 in Hamburg and presented a keynote: “Dynamics and Diversity: Exploring European and Transnational Perspectives on Digital Humanities Research Infrastructures”.