Uniting Scholarly Knowledge: The Past and Future of Textual Scholarship

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperScientificpeer-review

Abstract

This contribution discusses how digital text modeling can, potentially, fulfil the objective of past visionaries of textual scholarship: unite and disseminate scholarly knowledge. We present an open source text repository system, not coincidentally called Alexandria (huygensing.github.io/alexandria), that is based on a new data model called TAG (Text-as-Graph). Instead of giving the standard “me-and-my-project” talk, however, we discuss the system’s text- modeling potential by focusing on three principal features. First, the TAG data model allows for an idiomatic encoding of complex textual features and provides a way to formalize the meaning of markup. Secondly, Alexandria supports multiple perspectives on a source text. Finally, the system includes an editing and version-management tool that is platform-independent, giving the user the freedom to implement Alexandria in an editing environment of their choice. These features influence how we model, think about, process, and analyze text. Uniting all scholarly knowledge has thus become a concrete and even attainable goal for the 21st century.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 23 Sep 2019

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