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INTRODUCTION: WHAT IS HISTORY AND COMPUTING? AN INTRODUCTION TO A PROBLEM

INTRODUCTION: WHAT IS HISTORY AND COMPUTING? AN INTRODUCTION TO A PROBLEM History and computing, the name of the journal which this essay introduces, is still perceived as a vague concept despite the efforts of a number of commentators. Its vagueness stems in part from a general disagreement about what it really is and in part from a semantic problem. What in English is called history and computing is not quite the same as what in German is described as EDV fur Historiker, which in turn is not quite the same as what in Dutch is called historische informatiekunde. It is also an amorphous concept because it covers multitude of different areas of historical endeavour, many of which have similar problems that can be solved using similar techniques. That historians studying different periods and different countries can face the same or similar methodological problems is not unknown, but the computer, in many cases has brought these historians together with a common language. Many historians who use computers to do history are not yet in this club. On the face of it, historical computing is an odd phrase to use, for at first glance, it looks as though it might be the study of computing in the past. (An interesting error; http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png International Journal of Humanities and Arts Computing Edinburgh University Press

INTRODUCTION: WHAT IS HISTORY AND COMPUTING? AN INTRODUCTION TO A PROBLEM

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
Copyright © Edinburgh University Press
ISSN
1753-8548
eISSN
1755-1706
DOI
10.3366/hac.1999.11.1-2.1
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

History and computing, the name of the journal which this essay introduces, is still perceived as a vague concept despite the efforts of a number of commentators. Its vagueness stems in part from a general disagreement about what it really is and in part from a semantic problem. What in English is called history and computing is not quite the same as what in German is described as EDV fur Historiker, which in turn is not quite the same as what in Dutch is called historische informatiekunde. It is also an amorphous concept because it covers multitude of different areas of historical endeavour, many of which have similar problems that can be solved using similar techniques. That historians studying different periods and different countries can face the same or similar methodological problems is not unknown, but the computer, in many cases has brought these historians together with a common language. Many historians who use computers to do history are not yet in this club. On the face of it, historical computing is an odd phrase to use, for at first glance, it looks as though it might be the study of computing in the past. (An interesting error;

Journal

International Journal of Humanities and Arts ComputingEdinburgh University Press

Published: Jan 1, 1999

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