Domains and Digital Identities Lab and Showcase

As the second day of TLISI 2016 kicked off, attendees filled the Herman Room for the Domains and Digital Identities Lab and Showcase to learn of the endless possibilities that come with an individualized online presence. Because of the recent partnership between the University and Reclaim Housing, part of the larger Domain of One’s Own efforts on campuses nationwide, Georgetown students and faculty may now create their own website hosted by the university. Yong Lee, Marie Selvanadin, and Bill Garr—all CNDLS employees—framed their presentation by asking their audience, “What does it mean to have digital presence? What does it mean to have a digital identity? And what does it mean to have a digital webspace?” Then, after a brief history of domains, they let three undergraduate students, fellows with the Red House, showcase the incredible work made possible through

The first to show off her domain was rising senior, Erika Bullock (COL’17). As an English major, she explained how with her domain, she was able to make something along the lines of “a visual annotated bibliography.” The best part of having her own domain, she explained, was her ability to personalize and make it her own. When a faculty member asked how having a domain shifted her scholarship, she explained that the backend research that she’d usually forego was now at the forefront of her projects. In her research projects, she asked herself, “How can I take something I really care about, and make it nice to look at while also doing what I want to communicate?” Explore more of her work as an English major along with her scholarship in video games here.

The workshop then transitioned to Nandini Mullaji (SFS’17). She opened her brief presentation by telling us of her interest in urban studies and the lack of opportunities at Georgetown for students interested in this field. Despite the lack of physical resources before her, Georgetown Domains offered Mullaji the opportunity to make a unique portfolio and personalize it to her intended job market. Ultimately, she enjoyed having the freedom to choose what exactly she wanted to publicize, and controlling what people could do on her site. Mullaji concluded by adding that Domains create a completely different experience that goes beyond just reading and writing a paper, which places Georgetown students at a “considerable advantage” when entering the job market.

The final student to show off his digital identity was Alex Luta. He designed his Domain as a combined effort with Carnegie Mellon University. By creating an interactive page of maps, he was able to present a number of different human rights violations around the globe. More about his project can be found here.

After each student presented their incredible scholarship and digital identity through their domains, Garr concluded that once you get students excited about their work, Georgetown Domains is an exciting launchpad for students of all disciplines. Faculty and staff then brainstormed what they would want their own students to display with Domains while Lee helped everyone create their own domain using step-by-step instructions. Attendees saw firsthand the limitlessness of the applications they can install on their domains, and the endless opportunities for far-reaching digital scholarship.