Category Archives: History on the Internet

Hacking History 3.0: Writing History One Wikipedia Page At A Time

Jessica Knapp and Krista McCracken  For the past two years we have hosted a Canada Wide Wikipedia Edit-a-thon for Canadian history. This national event has encouraged folks from across Canada to join us in editing Canadian history content on Wikipedia. As of 21 August 2013, there were 113,554 articles on Wikipedia relating to Canada, a mere 1.92% of the articles… Read more »

Ten Keyboard Shortcuts Every Historian Should Know

By Sean Kheraj You’re sitting uncomfortably in the audience at a conference waiting for the presenter to begin. They’ve finally loaded up their PowerPoint file from an old USB flash drive and all that’s left is to set it into presentation mode. They click around aimlessly on the screen trying button after button to no avail. Inside your head you’re… Read more »

Using Infographics to Teach about Canadian History

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Krista McCracken As part of my work at the Shingwauk Residential Schools Centre (SRSC) I’ve recently been working with a group of colleagues to update some of our handouts, educational material, and brochures. As part of this work we’ve created promotional banners, postcards, brochures, and an infographic. The infographic we created (below) was designed to discuss the history of the… Read more »

What Are You Listening To? Talking History Podcasts

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Edward Dunsworth The other night, out to dinner with my aunt, uncle, and cousins, my wife Vanessa began comparing notes with my cousins on some of their favourite podcasts. “What’s that?” my uncle interjected. Assuming the appropriate tone for a nephew explaining something technological to his uncle, I began to respond. He quickly cut me off. “Oh, podcasts. Yeah, I’m… Read more »

The Ironies of the Wired Society: The Internet and Contemporary History

By Andrew Nurse The crisis consists precisely in the fact that the old is dying and the new cannot be born; in this interregnum a great variety of morbid symptoms appear. ~Antonio Gramsci Over the last generation, a series of “post” and “neo” ideologies prophesied fundamental change already evolving around us: a new era was being born. This has not really… Read more »

Immersed in the Past: Room-Scale Virtual Reality for Public History

Sean Kheraj Last year, I wrote about my early impressions of the possible uses of virtual reality technology for public history and history education. I also led a session in my fourth-year digital history class on virtual reality and its potential for generating a sense of historical presence, an ability to simulate the sensation of standing in past places. I… Read more »

Snapshots of Canada: The Living Archive of the Sisters of Service Photograph Collection

By Claire L. Halstead At first glance, these first three photos seem unrelated. The first shows a woman standing with newly-arrived immigrants at Pier 21 in Halifax in 1935. The second captures two women collecting water by chopping ice in Sinnett, rural Saskatchewan in 1942. The third, from Bonavista Bay, Newfoundland in 1979, shows a woman and two children in… Read more »

Rounding Up the Confederation Debates

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By Daniel Heidt In July 2016, when Canadians were beginning to think about Canada 150, I posted a brief article on ActiveHistory.ca about an emerging and largely crowdsourced project – The Confederation Debates – an initiative to digitize and popularize over 9,000 pages of Canada’s founding historical records. I am pleased to say that Canadians were eager to contribute to this important… Read more »

Is Google Home a History Calculator? Artificial Intelligence and the Fate of History

Sean Kheraj In their 2005 article in First Monday, Daniel J. Cohen and Roy Rosenzweig recount the story of a remarkably prescient colleague, Peter Stearns, who “proposed the idea of a history analog to the math calculator, a handheld device that would provide students with names and dates to use on exams—a Cliolator, he called it, a play on the… Read more »

The Value of History in the ‘Age of Fake News’

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Christo Aivalis During the 2016 American presidential election, but especially after the victory of Donald J. Trump, the term fake news became part of the public lexicon. The confluence of social media, digital campaigns, and the monetization of internet ‘clicks’ led to numerous instances of groups outright fabricating news stories, either to serve ideological objectives, or even just to generate… Read more »