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GC Digital Initiatives and Mina Rees Library Workshops

For someone who has no experience with many of the technologies introduced in our coursework, it has already been tremendously helpful to attend some of the workshops available through this program. I began by attending the GC Digital Scholarship Lab Virtual Open House; which was an introduction to GC Digital Initiatives, the people, and their upcoming programs. If you were unable to join the open house, you can still find the information covered during the event here, and look for upcoming workshops directly on the Calendar page. 

I am particularly interested in any programs that can help with my research process, so I plan to attend several workshops offered by the Library. You can find upcoming Libray workshops on their Events page. We receive notifications for many of these workshops, but I find it useful to plan looking at the calendars. For the purposes of this blog post, I will write about the three workshops I have attended so far, and how they have helped with my coursework and academic goals. 

INTRODUCTION TO THE COMMAND LINE

The command line can be very intimidating to someone without programming experience. When I came across issues with the installation path (working on a Python project for my Methods of Text Analysis course) all possible solutions involved using the terminal, or command line. Because I was not confident enough I had to re-install Python, which was very time consuming. 

The reason I signed up for this workshop, was not just related to this specific class assignment. I think the command line is a great starting point for anyone looking to learning programming, and having more access and control over each task performed by the computer. The workshop topics included how to navigate the filesystem, manipulate the environment, execute useful commands, and communicate between programs.

INTRODUCTION TO ARCHIVAL RESEARCH

As someone who plans to pursue a PhD and archival work, I am especially interested in any workshop that can help with my research. Introduction to Archival Research was the first such Library workshop I attended. I found it most useful as an overview of how to approach archives, and to gain specific information about the layout of major digital archives. 

INTRO TO ZOTERO 

I set up a Zotero account at the beginning of the semester, but I had not looked closely at the program yet. During this workshop we followed along to collect, organize, and create citations. This program is a fantastic resource; not only because it eliminates the need for the most tedious work of creating citations, but also to organzie and share resources for larger projects. It was very helpful to go through it with a person available to ask questions to.