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Tue, 03 Mar 2015 10:34:54 +0000

Much interest in Universal Acceptance at ICANN‘s recent meeting in Singapore. Universal Acceptance means getting all domain names to work, however long they are and whatever script they’re in. Traditionally most Top Level Domains have been ASCII three digit if generic names (e.g. .com) and two digit if country codes (e.g. .uk). Now more or […]


UCLDH5: The First Susan Hockey Lecture in Digital Humanities

Wed, 25 Feb 2015 10:11:13 +0000

The UCL Centre for Digital Humanities was founded in 2010, and to celebrate the achievements of the centre over the last five years we are launching a named lecture series, The Susan Hockey Lecture in Digital Humanities. We are especially pleased to announce that Professor Susan Hockey will be giving the inaugural lecture. Digital Humanities: Perspectives […]



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The UCL Centre for Digital Humanities contributes to and holds a variety of events.

Recurring events include the UCLDH Seminar series. Our events are primarily advertised right here on this page, which is syndicated in an RSS feed, but also on our DH Blog, on Twitter, and via our mailing list

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Illuminating the Herculaneum Papyri with New Digital Imaging Techniques

Start: Dec 3, 2014 5:30:00 PM

The advanced computational photographic method, Reflectance Transformation Imaging, is a powerful visualisation tool that is increasingly being applied to a range of archaeological materials. Documentary evidence, particularly damaged or other types of difficult-to-read texts, present rich areas for new insight and discovery. RTI is relatively unique among digital imaging technologies in providing ultra high resolution visualisations with virtual relighting and artificial enhancement capabilities. These tools can vastly improve legibility as well as support exploration of the entangled relationships between ancient writings and their material supports. Dissecting these relationships is particularly vital for reading and reconstructing one of the largest surviving ancient libraries in the world, namely the Herculaneum papyri. More than 2000 rolls, mostly written in Greek, were preserved through carbonisation when Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 CE. Over the past two centuries scholars have sought to unroll and read these fragile documents. Multispectral images taken more than a decade ago greatly improved their legibility but much remains to be revealed. In this lecture, Dr Kathryn Piquette will report on the outcomes of a recent Universität zu Köln pilot project involving the application of RTI to these blackened papyrus fragments. An innovation trialled during this work was the combination of RTI with infrared illumination. Dr Piquette will present key results and discuss their implications for improved readings and the associated task of scroll reconstruction. A key theoretical issue underpinning the discussion will be the contrasting notions of the digital image as a resource for interpreting past written meaning, and the more active concept of the digital image as constitutive of the interpretive process.
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