Fred Gibbs has proposed a session on R for Humanists, and I’d like to propose a complementary session on scripting languages for humanists. Ruby and Python are popular among digital humanists for a variety of applications. These
- data munging
- data analysis
- natural language processing (with the Natural Language Toolkit)
- geocoding (I use ggmaps, but there are lots of options)
- web scraping
- solving particular programming problems of interest to humanists, such as dates
- general purpose programming
- web development
- system administration (e.g. Wayne Graham’s Capistrano recipes for Omeka)
We needn’t limit the session to Ruby and Python; in fact, I hope we talk more about R. Intro to programming sessions are ever popular; that’s not what I have in mind, but maybe that would be useful too.
This session could turn into a show and tell session where we share what we’re doing with these kinds of languages and get some new ideas. We might decide to solve some problem of general interest to the group. Or we might decide to work through the exercises in the Programming Historian (Python) or the Rubyist Historian (Ruby).