High Performance Computing in the Arts & Humanities

  Project   Details   Discipline Type of HPC
  Big See
Original Image:
SHARCNET & TAPoR have collaborated to explore the use of HPC in text analysis.

Geoffrey Rockwell
Weiguang Guan


  Text Analysis Visualization
  MONK   Abstract:
Growing out of the NORA Project, Monk is a collaborative effort through several North American universities, focused on expanding the possibilities of text analysis through visualization of text in a 3-dimensional space.

John Unsworth

  Text Analysis Visualization
  POS Tagging XML with xGrid
and the Stanford Log-linear
Part-Of-Speech Tagger
Posted by Matthew L. Jockers at Stanford University, this is a how-to webpage, describing the use of xGrid, to speed up the computing time of a part-of-speech tagging project. It gives four very practical examples of how HPC can be used to increase productivity in humanities research.

xGrid@Stanford website
Parnot's GridStuffer Tutorial
Stanford Log-linear Part-Of-Speech Tagger (the tagging software used in the above project)

  Text Analysis Grid
  ReACH   Abstract:
The ReACH (Researching e-Science Analysis of Census Holdings) Project, is based in the School of Library, Archive, and Information Studies at UCL (University College London). Objectives of the ReACH project include developing interdisciplinary expertise and discussing the application of e-Science technology to Humanities projects, with particular focus on historical census records.

Dr Melissa Terras

  History Grid, Mass Storage
  Language Visualization
and Multilayer Text Analysis
Original Image:

The Visualization Group at Cornell Theory Centre has developed a prototype tool that can study language/discourse phenomena in three-dimensional space. With this tool, the group is now developing new techniques for reading & interpreting the textual data.

Antonio Gonzalez-Walker


  English, Critical Theory, Text Analysis Visualization
  Gridcast   Abstract:
The Belfast e-Science Centre (BESC) and the BBC are finding solutions to storing and organizing vast archives of video content.


  Media & Communications Mass Storage, Parallel Processing
  Spirited Ruins
Original Image:
Boston University's HiPArt project uses HPC to generate this interactive 3-D space.


  Visual Art Visualization

Original Image:


Purdue researchers have developed TereDRE (Distributed Rendering Environment), which uses grid computing to reduce rendering time for 3D animation.

Laura Arns
David Braun
Carol Song


  Visual Art, 3D Animation
Visualization, Grid
  SIDGrid   Abstract:
Argonne National Laboratory, The University of Chicago, and The University of Illinois at Chicago have created The Social Informatics Data (SID) Grid which is designed to help researchers store, explore, analyze and annotate multimedia data using grid technology.

Michael Papka
Sarah Kenny

  Language, Cognition, and Social Behavior Grid & Mass Storage
  Cornell University:
The Web Lab
Cornell University and the Internet Archive have teamed up to build The Web Lab, which provides researchers with "a relational database with metadata about Web pages, and a data analysis cluster...with support for map/reduce programming."1


  Communication, Media Cluster
  The Library of Congress:
Digital Preservation
The Library of Congress leads a collaborative effort to collect and archive digital information for future generations, with particular focus on those materials available only in digital formats.

The National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program at the Library of Congress
101 Independence Ave, SE
Washington, DC 20540-1300
Voice: (202) 707-3300
Fax: (202) 707-0815

Email Form

  History, Communication, Media Mass Storage & Parallel processing
  USC Shoah Foundation Institute:
Video History Archive (VHA)

Original Image:
The USC Shoah Foundation Institute for Visual History and Education has archived a library of 52 000 video testimonies of Holocaust survivors and witnesses.


  History, Sociology, Cultural Anthropology Mass Storage

How can I learn more about HPC in the Humanities & SHARCNET facilities?



1 The Web Lab. "The Web Lab: A Joint Project of Cornell University and the Internet Archive." 7 [July 13, 2008] <>.