Brush off the Dust’s Best of the Web, 11/7 – 11/10/11

1. It Started Digital Wheels Turning

A mathematician may have conceived of the computer in the 1830s!  Scientists intend to build his conception and give it a run!  If you like the history of technology, this is a must-read!  Click on the heading above to read this NY Times article.

2. Giotto Devil: Found in the Detail of Renaissance Fresco

Giotto Devil

Art history fans should take a peek at this article from the International Business Times: mostly of photographs taken of the now-renovated frescoes by Giotto in the Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi.  After restoring the work–you may recall a recent earthquake damaged the basilica–a new figure emerged in the clouds of one of Assisi’s and Giotto’s most famous frescoes.  To see the image more clearly, click on title above the picture.

3. Birth of Edmond Halley

Portrait by Thomas Murray, c. 1687

On November 8, 1656, the man who discovered and predicted a comet that returned every 75 years was born.  Edmond Halley was part of a rich scientific community in Enlightened Europe.  Read about his other contributions and his times in this short article from History Today by clicking on the headline above.

4.  He found history, and N.H. wants it back

Here’s an interesting case!  At an estate sale in Minnesota, a man purchased the find of a lifetime: copper, pre-Revolutionary War currency plates from the colony of New Hampshire.  N.H. would, however, like to contest the claim of ownership.  It will be interesting to see where this goes!  In the meantime, read more by clicking the heading above.

5. I was a plagiarist

The author of this post, albeit at a Canadian university, writes about an experience of unintended plagiarism.  She raises some truly valid points.  Her actions did not include cutting and pasting reviews from the publisher’s site, copying a Wikipedia entry or paying someone to write her paper, rather she used an expression she thought was scholarly jargon, but actually unique to the author.  How should we respond to plagiarism and how well is it taught?  To read it click on the title above.

6. The Berlin Wall Came Down

In honor of that day here is some historical perspective:

7. History Heroes: Marc Bloch

Marc Bloch was a historian whose own history is as interesting as any of the compelling works he wrote.  His life was ended by the Nazis.  Read a story of true heroism (as opposed to all the recent scandals of enabling) by clicking on the link above from Smithsonian’s “Past Imperfect” blog.

8. Visualizations and Historical Arguments

Carte Figurative

Regarding the issue of writing history in the digital age, John Thiebault writes about visualizations in historical arguments.  He argues that the ability to turn statistics into visualizations, cartograms, that communicate historical evidence has greatly improved with computer technologies.  Read this important analysis of visual communication in argumentation.

9. DocsTeach: Veterans’ Day

From the National Archives’ DocsTeach Website you can search “veterans” and narrow further by era to look at documentary evidence of veterans.  Check it out and browse around by clicking the heading above.

1 Comment

Filed under Brush off the Dust Best of the Web, Historian's Journal

One response to “Brush off the Dust’s Best of the Web, 11/7 – 11/10/11

  1. Pingback: On those days when it is hard to write… | Brush off the dust! History now!

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