March 4 Conference + March 5 Hackathon

The Humanizing Data on the Prairies Conference and hackathon (March 4-5) will host plenary presentations by data and visualization experts from Leeds Beckett University, Carleton University and the University of Regina. This will be followed by a full day of team driven creative investigation of prairie-based datasets drawn from Library & Archives of Canada and Statistics Canada.

March 4 –Humanizing Data on the Prairies / a Digital Humanities Conference

Education 113, University of Regina, 3737 Wascana Parkway, Regina, SK S4S 0A2 CA

Free Event: Click here to register.

The Humanities Research Institute and Creative Technologies (Faculty of Media+Art+Performance) invite you to this 1-day conference that presents research and discussion on methods for humanizing data.  The conference will showcase how researchers in the digital humanities are applying an array of creative methods for engaging with data in intuitive and engaging ways.
Presenters will relay projects that communicate Prairie-based data within a global network infrastructure. During this day-long conversation we will unpick layers of locality, space and place through the lens of visualizing and interpreting data sets and look at how researchers are innovatively digging into patterns, mapping and teasing out stories from varied information sources, banks and collections.

9:00 – 9:30 – Welcome by Dr. Christian Riegel and Dr. Megan Smith : data visualization methodologies + theories +inspiration

9:30 – 10:30: virtual presentation : Ben Dalton, Principal Lecturer in the Faculty of Art, Environment & Technology at Leeds Beckett University, Leeds

10:30 — 10:45 Break

10:45 – 12:15 Paper Session I : Anne Gibbons, Dr. Julia Siemer, Dr. Jaime Williams, Dr. David Gerhard

12:15 – 1:15: Lunch

1:15 – 2:15 Paper Session II : Dr. Risa Horowitz, Dr. Christina Stojanova, Dr. Rebecca Caines

2:15 — 2:30 Break

2:30 – 3:30: talk/workshop: Digital History + Archaeology, by Dr. Shawn Graham, Carleton University

3:30 – 4:00 Roundtable Discussion with Dr. Megan Smith, Dr. Christian Riegel, Dr. Shawn Graham

5:30 – 7:00 Talking Fresh 14 Writing Festival Reception, hosted by the Saskatchewan Writers Guild (cash bar): RIC Atrium (first floor)

7:00 – 9:00 Readings by authors: Aislinn Hunter, Gerald Hill, Mieko Ouchi, Robert J. Sawyer, RIC 119

Register for this event here: EVENTBRITE

March 5 – Digital Humanities Hackathon


Call for participants:

If you are an artist, musician, programmer, writer, software engineer, data analyst or visualizer and you would like to take part in the event please RSVP with a 200 word description of your research interest. This will help us form teams. We will be accepting approximately 30 people into the hackathon.

The Humanizing Data on the Prairies Conference and hackathon (March 4-5) will host plenary presentations by data visualization experts from Carleton University and the University of Regina as well as demonstrate methods for understandng data in new an perhaps, more intuitive and engaging ways. Each team will work together to creatively investigate prairie-based datasets drawn from Library & Archives of Canada and Statistics Canada.

This event will take place in the Makers Media Lab, Faculty of Media, Art + Performance, 040 Ridell Centre. 9:00am-9:00pm.

Data sets here:

Conference Speakers

Ben Dalton has been investigating the theme of design for digital pseudonymity as a member of the Creative Exchange AHRC Knowledge Exchange Hub at the Royal College of Art, London. Ben is a Principal Lecturer in the Faculty of Art, Environment & Technology at Leeds Beckett University, Leeds, and an AHRC funded Digital Public Space doctoral researcher. Ben has recently shown work, given talks and run workshops on themes of identity design including 31c3 Hamburg, Digital Media Labs Barrow-in-Furness, ICA London, FACT Liverpool, FutureEverything Manchester, TodaysArt The Hague, Berghs Stockholm, Abandon Normal Devices Liverpool, WWW Rio de Janeiro, Sensuous Knowledge Bergen, and DIS Newcastle.

Ben has a background in ubiquitous computing and mobile sensor networks from the MIT Media Lab, and has conducted research in the Århus University Electron-Molecular Interaction group, University of Leeds Spintronics and Magnetic Nanostructures lab, and Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, London. Recently he has been a regular guest Professor at the Bergen National Academy of Art and Design, teaching workshops on interaction design and geolocated media. Ben was co-investigator on two EPSRC/ESRC/AHRC funded research projects in: visualising pedestrian usage patterns in interactive urban spaces; and wearable computing sensors for ubiquitous computing applications. He has worked on Hewlett-Packard funded development of a GPS music city archive app. He is also currently co-directing with Amber Frid-Jimenez a project titled Data is Political on art, design, and the politics of information, which has included an international symposium funded in part by VERDIKT (Research Council of Norway).”


Dr. Shawn Graham is an Associate Professor in the Department of History at Carleton University. He grew up in the Ottawa area, but a love of the places and spaces of history led him overseas to study archaeology and humanity’s deep past. He worked in the United Kingdom and Italy for several years as an archaeologist, haring about the Tiber Valley in search of dead villages and ruined estates. Subsequently, returning to Canada he taught at a rural high school and hustled for contract research on the heritage of the Ottawa area. During this time he continued to contribute to archaeology by working on new digital methods. This led to a post-doctoral position at the University of Manitoba, followed by a few years of teaching in the cutthroat world of for-profit online education. It turned out that much of what he was doing all this time was ‘digital humanities’, and so he was able to join the department of history at Carleton in 2010. He is the author with Ian Milligan and Scott Weingart of ‘Exploring Big Historical Data: The Historian’s Macroscope’, London: ICP, 2015. . He’s currently very interested in sonifying historical and archaeological data to better ‘hear’ the past.

Talking Fresh Writing Festival Biographies

Aislinn Hunter is an award-winning poet, novelist and creative writing instructor and the author of six books. Her most recent book – a novel called The World Before Us – won the 2015 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize and was a New York Times Editor’s Choice. She recently completed a PhD on material culture and resonance at the University of Edinburgh and is at work on her third collection of poetry. She lives in Vancouver, BC.

Gerald Hill has published six poetry collections — two of which won Saskatchewan Book Awards for Poetry. His latest collection, Hillsdale Book, came out with NeWest Press in April, 2015. Two sub-sets of that book were published in 2012: Hillsdale, a Map, produced with designer Jared Carlson, and Streetpieces, a chapbook produced by David Zieroth at The Alfred Gustav Press in Vancouver. Also in 2015, Hill published A Round for Fifty Years: A History of Regina’s Globe Theatre with Coteau Books. Widely published in literary magazines and online journals, active as both organizer of and participant in workshops and readings, conferences and courses, and winner of Second Prize in the 2011 CBC Literary Awards, Gerald Hill is newly retired from his career teaching English and Creative Writing at Luther College at the University of Regina. In the fall of 2015 he was Doris McCarthy Artist-in-Residence at Fool’s Paradise in Toronto.

Mieko Ouchi is an actor, writer, and director who works in both theatre and film/TV. Her plays The Red Priest (Eight Ways To Say Goodbye), The Blue Light, The Dada Play andNisei Blue and I Am For You have been produced across the country and in the U.S. and have been finalists for the 4 Play Series at The Old Vic in London, the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama, the Gwen Pharis Ringwood Award and the City of Edmonton Book Prize, winning the Carol Bolt Award and several Betty Awards. The plays have been translated into French, Japanese, Czech, and Russian and are published by Playwrights Canada Press. Mieko was the inaugural Faith Broome Playwright in Residence at the University of Oklahoma in 2009. Her documentary, narrative, and experimental films have played over 30 festivals and aired both in Canada and internationally. As an actor, she has performed at the Citadel Theatre, Workshop West Playwrights’ Theatre, Northern Light Theatre, Concrete Theatre, ATP, Lunchbox, Persephone, Prairie Theatre Exchange, the Globe, Tarragon, the Banff Centre and the National Arts Centre. Film /TV highlights include her film debut as the lead in Anne Wheeler’s The War Between Us, the The Orange Seed Myth and Other Lies Mothers Tell (1998 AMPIA nomination for Lead Performance) and playing Nori Sato on the first two seasons of the Global TV Series The Guard. Mieko is the co-founder and current Artistic Director of Concrete Theatre, a professional TYA company based in Edmonton. Projects in development include a new play for teens on Sexual Consent and Makepeace, which examines the first election in post-invasion Iraq in 2005, and which has received developmental support from the Citadel Theatre’s Playwrights Forum, the Banff Playwrights Colony and the Stratford Festival.

Robert J. Sawyer is one of only three people ever — and the only Canadian — to have won all three of the world’s top awards for best science-fiction novel of the year: the Hugo, the Nebula, and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award. According to the U.S. trade journalLocus, he has won more awards for his novels than any other author in the history of the science fiction and fantasy fields. His twenty-third novel, Quantum Night (Penguin Canada, March 2016), is set in part at the Canadian Light Source synchrotron in Saskatoon, where Sawyer was previously writer-in-residence. Website:​

Call for papers: The call is now closed.

The Humanities Research Institute and Creative Technologies (Faculty of Media, Art + Performance) invite proposals for 15-minute presentations relating to the visualization of information. Presentations may focus on any aspect of visualization that result from any disciplinary practice (e.g., GIS, media art, data set visualizations). 300-word maximum proposals should be sent by February 11, 2016 to humresch[at]uregina[dot]ca.