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hText: Humanities Text Services

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

We're happy to announce that SUL's Humanities Digital Information Service (HDIS), part of the Digital Initiatives Group, is being renamed "Humanities Text Services" and rebranded as "hText" (in place of the customary, but often opaque, acronym).  To further clarify our particular suite of services, in many contexts we will also use a three-pronged subtitle: "Digital Humanities Consulting * Research * Resources."

We've made this change in order both to better reflect, and to refocus on, our traditional strengths, and to better represent those strengths to our constituents. 

Old-timers may recall that HDIS's previous name, from the late 1980s through 1998, was "Academic Text Service."  (That name was actually changed in order to give up its "ATS" acronym and to make way for our current Academic Technology Specialist program, launched at that time.)  The newly named hText Service is thus something of a return to our roots, but in an updated and more clearly-focused form.

hText will continue in all of its current responsibilities in Public Services and Collections, including stewardship of many important legacy digital library collections (some of which of course include non-textual components), and shepherding them into the SDR for long-term preservation.  hText has also greatly expanded its outreach and teaching activities, again focusing mainly on textual resources and services, broadly conceived.

Text-based scholarship continues to be an exceedingly important aspect of Digital Humanities practice, and hText (née HDIS) has always been, and remains, an important resource for such practitioners, both at Stanford and in the greater DH community.  With the outstanding growth of many other areas of the Digital Humanities in SUL over the past decade or so, it seems like the right time to position ourselves publicly as the center for humanities texts and text-related services: hText: Humanities Text Services.

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