Math for Humanists

Patrick Juola and Stephen Ramsay announceed the publication of their new book, Six Septembers, though Zea Books, The University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s digital imprint. More than ten years in development, this book provides a broad conceptual introduction to the fundamentals of the mathematics that digital humanists are likely to encounter and to support high-level understanding of a variety of key mathematical ideas. The book is freely available under a Creative Commons CC-BY license, and can be downloaded from here.

File under: #iwasthinkingaboutwritingthisbook.


Click on any of the images to enlarge (and to scroll through all images).

A LaTeX Vita

Hmph. I sat down this morning to do something I have had on my task list for quite some time: to create a version of my vita in LaTeX that looked somewhat the way I would like it to look. The version I have maintained in a word processor for several years now has gotten more and more simple over the years, but it still has a few niceties that do not necessarily come with the basic LaTeX classes of documents nor is it as involved as some of the templates available scattered about the web. (When I am done I will, I hope, host the thing in its own repo for others interested in walking down this path.)

My goal was/is to create a document that is as dependent on as few additions to the basic LaTeX installation as possible and, at the same time, has as clean a set of documentation as I can possibly make it.

This is not as easy as one might like.

The current version uses only the geometry package with the preamble looking like this:

\documentclass[12pt, letter]{article}

At the very beginning of the document, I have contact information that I would prefer to look different from everything else, and, historically, I have simply centered it. While I could have, and did for a while during this task, set up an environment for this information, I decided that since it was a once-only occurrence, it was simpler simply to format it in place:

\openup -0.25em
\textbf{JOHN LAUDUN} \\
Department of English \\
... \\
\openup 0.25em

There’s a colophon at the end of the document that tells readers that I used LaTeX and, when I get it working, that I used open source fonts. (While it too is centered, I still didn’t think it was worth creating an environment for a second instance.)

My next steps will be to determine how to filter lines in the file so that I can create versions of the vita of the last 2, 3, or 5 years — which are the common requests for various endeavors. (This would be easier if it were all in XML: then I could use XQuery and XSLT to filter and format, but I’m going to stick with the LaTeX for now.)

Reverse Engineering ADD

The following are offered as actions to take to offset attention problems:

  • Externalize important information at key points of
  • Externalize time and time periods related to tasks
    and important deadlines
  • Break up lengthy tasks or ones spanning long
    periods of time into many small steps
  • Externalize sources of motivation
  • Externalize mental problem-solving
  • Replenish the SR Resource Pool (Willpower)