DigiLab NK ČR

Introduction

„Library for the needs of the programming researchers and data scientists.“

DigiLab is a recently founded platform within the National Library of the Czech Republic focused on bringing digital humanities closer to the broader academic community. This research area is fast-growing, and most scholars either lack data, datasets, or proper infrastructural support for their enquiry. Consequently, digital humanities and computational analysis miss the opportunities that already broad libraries digital repositories could offer.

One of the main reasons for launching this project within the National Library of the Czech Republic is that this institution holds many publications that are gradually being digitised. Together with other libraries of the Czech Republic, the National Library participates in projects focused on building interfaces for the data mining of its digitised collections and customising them for the needs of the researchers. DigiLab would like to follow up on these projects to inspect the possibilities these interfaces could offer, expand user cases, or design new possible functions for these scientific infrastructures. Our initial explorative research focuses on authorship detection and intertextuality, putting into work tools of stylometry and various machine learning approaches. This effort aims to gather experience that can facilitate other researchers’ work.

With this, we strive to become a viable support platform where the academic community could profit from the National Library drive for innovations in digital repositories together with high quality manually curated bibliographic metadata. Our goal is to cooperate both with individual researchers and academic institutions. Because we believe that digital humanities are an indispensable part of the future academy, we would like to bring it closer to any interested scholars. Within DigiLab, we hope to create a stimulating environment where the digital humanities-oriented community can share ideas, seek advice or where students can enrich their theses. In addition, we are building an experimental computer server that academics could use to utilise computational power if they don’t have access to large computing infrastructures.

We kindly invite the interested research community to participate in an introductory workshop. This first DigiLab event will take place at the National Library in Prague in September 2022.