MESA launches!

  • Posted on: 9 July 2013
  • By: admin

The Initiative for Digital Humanities, Media, and Culture (IDHMC) and Advanced Research Consortium (ARC) at Texas A&M University are very excited to announce the launch of the Medieval Electronic Scholarly Alliance (MESA).

MESA, a federated community of scholars, projects, institutions, and organizations, is engaged in digital scholarship within the field of medieval studies. MESA seeks to provide a community for those engaged in digital medieval studies and to meet emerging needs of this community, including making recommendations on technological and scholarly standards to electronic scholarship, the aggregation of data, and the ability to discover and repurpose this data.

MESA can be found online at mesa-medieval.org, and like her sister sites, NINES and 18thConnect, users may use the Advanced Search and browse aggregated objects from 17 participating archives, or create an account, add tags, start a discussion or group, or begin an exhibit using the Collex exhibit builder technology.

The ARC and IDHMC teams are happy to see MESA come to fruition, as we hosted the first MESA planning meeting here at TAMU, and we've followed the success of MESA's funding requests closely. ARC welcomes her newest sister node to our research community, and congratulates them on their successful launch, with dozens of user accounts created since MESA went live yesterday.

The ARC office at TAMU will now be looking towards the future, focusing our efforts on sustainability and software development, as well as data hosting and aggregation, and we will be seeking a post-doctoral fellow (ad coming soon) and graduate research assistant to assist in these tasks. We will also be looking towards the launch of two new nodes, the Renaissance English Knowledgebase (REKn) and Modernist Networks (ModNets). More on REKn can be found here, and a launch date is soon to be announced. Modernist Networks has received an NEH Digital Humanities Start-Up Grant to support a workshop in the fall for "the development of a standardized metadata schema and vocabulary" for "digital projects in modernist studies."

Make sure to head over to MESA, and click "Create an Account" soon! Account creation is quick and painless, and then users can begin discovering, repurposing, and interacting with multiple medieval projects in a single research environment. Where else could I search for Austrian royalty, examine results from four different archives, and wind up researching digital objects related to the Order of the Golden Fleece? I wish you all similar successful and fun discoveries!