Hic Sunt Dracones…

It has been rather quiet at the Corpus Newtonicum front. Basically, I am writing my pants off, a dissertation in the making: Corpus Newtonicum: Reconstructing Isaac Newton’s working practices through his chronological studies. That does not sound very sexy and exciting, but boy it is. I have spent the past six months excavating Newton’s early forays…

It is elementary, Dr Watson

Recently, there have been a number of news items & publications all dealing in one way or the other with being a 21st century historian. In this blogpost I will discuss three of these, and try to reflect upon my own research and the bigger picture.

Summer thoughts…

Oxford, summer, unusually un-British weather. Currently setting up and drafting a chapter on Newton’s reading practices, with specific focus on his chronological readings. Turns out I find it extremely difficult to turn all the finds I collected over the past three years into a coherent narrative. Whatever happened to creativity?

Writing with Isaac in the 21st century

Two years ago, I attended a brilliant Digital Humanities conference in Sheffield, with several very impressive papers. I was allowed to present some of my research, received generous feedback, and subsequently responded to the call for papers for the conference proceedings. It took a while, but I just received word that the proceedings are out!…

Isaac Newton moves to Oxford

It has been nearly two months since my last blogpost, which is a) rather a long time, and b) quite unusual. Teaching duties, Newton Project business, my own research: yours truly has been busy. But I have some exciting news. Read on…

Newton in Atlantis

  Isaac Newton’s Chronology of Ancient Kingdom’s Amended contains an interesting passage about a mythological kingdom: Atlantis. On page 229 we read that Solon having travelled into Egypt, and conversed with the Priests of Sais about their antiquities, wrote a Poem of what he had learnt, but did not finish it; and this Poem fell into the hands of…

To the unknown scribe – Isaac Newton’s assistants

Over the past year and a half I have been blogging about many things Newtonian. Some of these are of a more general nature, involving Newton’s life and works, while others are more directly related to my main research project. That main project involves Newton as a reader of books, a taker of notes, and…

SIN meets LSA

A few weeks back I had the opportunity to spend time with some of the wonderful people at Indiana University. Together we worked on all things Newtonian, and in particular on a computational method called Latent Semantic Analysis (LSA). This is a technique that originates from the early 80s and has some of its roots…

It’s all Greek to me

Last week I had the opportunity to show some of the work the Newton Project is doing at the Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) conference at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois. I decided to go linguistic and focus on some of the intricacies of early modern hand and print. Here’s a short excerpt of part of…

Adventures in Huntingtonland, Pt. 3

It’s Sunday evening, 10 pm, and I am in Bloomington, Indiana. In the past week I have been staying and working with the marvellous Wally Hooper, a man of many qualities. He is an excellent scholar, an IT wizard, and most of all one of the most generous men I have ever met. I have…

Adventures in Huntingtonland, Pt. 2

It is a Friday afternoon, and California is experiencing another heat wave. It is not as hot as a few weeks ago, with temperatures well in the 100s/40s, but my daily bike routine, three miles uphill on Allen Avenue, is a continual challenge. It has been an exciting week.

Adventures in Huntingtonland, Pt. 1

I feel very privileged to be able to write this post. Here I am, sitting behind my desk on a quiet Saturday afternoon in Pasadena, California. The soaring heat of the past weeks has turned into a mellow breeze, and though the week to come promises interesting temperatures once more, it is all right. I…