Category Archives: Announcement

“Visual Effects in Film – Art, Craft, and (Sometimes) Bad Movies”

On Friday, February 17th in Kresge Auditorium at 12:30- 1:30 pm, Dave Fogler, a Bowdoin alumnus of 1990, will be accompanied by the Industrial Light + Magic in 1997 as a miniature model maker on Starship Troopers. During his eight years in ILM’s traditional model shop, Dave contributed to eight motion pictures including Star Wars: Episodes I and IIGalaxy QuestArtificial Intelligence: AI, and Pearl Harbor. In 2005, Dave transitioned to digital modeling and texturing for Star Wars: Episode III and has gone on to supervise the work on all five Transformers films, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal SkullAvatarPacific Rim, and Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Currently, Fogler is the Associate Visual Effects Supervisor on Transformers: The Last Knight.

A Maine native, Fogler has a B.A. from Bowdoin College and a Masters of Fine Arts from The University of California at Berkeley.

Logistics: Friday, February 17th in Kresge Auditorium, Visual Arts Center at 12:30- 1:30 pm.

Installation: #CarbonFeed by John Park & Jon Bellona


Reception: Monday, April 13 from 7 – 8 PM in Daggett Lounge

Installation on view at the Hawthorne-Longfellow Library from April 13 – May 13

Photo by John Park
Photo by John Park

#CarbonFeed is a new media project that challenges the perception that the online world is disconnected from physical reality. Artists John Park and Jon Bellona reveal the environmental consequences of online activity by visualizing carbon emissions triggered by tweeting, sonifying Twitter feeds and correlating tweets with data visualization.

#CarbonFeed encourages the Bowdoin community to participate in the instillation by tweeting #carbonfeed and #bowdoin from April 13 – May 13. Your tweets will trigger the installation to emit 0.02g/C02e.

Learn more about #CarbonFeed, John Park, and Jon Bellona.


Project supported by Lectures and Concerts and through contributions from DCSI, Visual Arts, Music, Art History, Environmental Studies, Physics, and Government.

Announcing the Fall Hackathon!

Hackathon November 2014 e-mail

Hackathon November 2014 e-mail


Our fall Hackathon will be held Wednesday, November 12th, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. on the third floor of the VAC! All Bowdoinites are welcome!


A hackathon is a space for programmers and designers, from novices to experts, to collaborate intensively on software projects. Come start or work on a project, learn a new coding language, visualize data, or how to protect your online privacy! The digital humanities and social science course students will be working on their projects, and local citizen hackers from Code4Maine ( will be in attendance as well. Faculty and students alike are invited. No prior experience is necessary.

ICPSR Data Fair 2014: Powering Sustainable Data Access

Drop in the week of October 6-9, 2014 for one or several webinars offered by the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR). Topics include teaching with data, data management, data sharing, sensitive data, ICPSR datasets, and more. Stop by to view the one-hour webinar presentations of your choice! All webinars are being held in  H-L Library, Second Floor, Room 7.  For a full schedule and descriptions of the webinars, see ICPSR Data Fair 2014. 

Questions?  Contact Barbara Levergood.

Event: Matthew Booker’s Talk “Why Did Americans Stop Eating Locally?”

Why Did Americans Stop Eating Locally?Why Did Americans Stop Eating Locally?

  • 9/11/2014 | 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
  • Location: Sills Hall, Smith Auditorium
  • Event Type: Lecture

In his talk Matthew Booker will explore why urban Americans radically changed their diets in the twentieth century. Tracing the American diet from local oysters to long distance burgers, he will suggest ways we can learn from this history as we rethink today’s and tomorrow’s food.

Matthew Booker is an associate professor of History at North Carolina University, and a specialist in Environmental History and Western North American History.

For more information on this event, please see the website

Student Research from Data Driven Societies (Spring 2014)

In the spring of 2014, I (Jen Jack Gieseking) taught Data Driven Societies with Eric Gaze. A geographer and a mathematician, a social scientist and a natural scientist, working together with 35 students with very diverse backgrounds and interests sought to answer one question: what can data visualization reveal and obscure about the world’s increasing obsession with all things data?

Students selected a social justice hashtag of their choice that related to issues of identity, privacy, economics, politics, or the environment. Over a month, students scraped Twitter data on their hashtag. A hashtag is a term with a # in front of it that hyperlinks to all uses of the term that can range from #stopandfrisk and #smog to #gobears. As students read media and conducted research about the issue they had chosen to study, they also began to create graphs, maps, and network analyses from the Twitter data as well as a related dataset they had to find and bring to class. Students left the class with not only a basic understanding of software such as Excel, R, Social Explorer, CartoDB, and Gephi, but also a much more critical eye on the procurement, organization, and manipulation of data.

The outcomes were impressive and inspiring. Many of the students agreed to share their papers and/or presentations publicly, all of which are listed below or you can scroll through them at your leisure. Besides the work by students below, we share our course description as well. We hope you enjoy them as much as we did making them!

Links to student work:

Course description:

Big data and computational methods, such as changes in social media privacy laws and advances in mapping and network analysis, are changing financial markets, political campaigning, and higher education and becoming commonplace in our lives. Our daily existence is increasingly structured by code, from the algorithms that time our traffic lights to those that filter our search criteria and record our thoughts and ideas. In this course, we explore the possibilities, limitations, and implications of using digital and computational methods and analytics to study issues that affect our everyday lives from a social scientific approach. We pay special attention to the ways we collect, trust, analyze, portray, and use data, most especially the tools and meanings involved in data visualization and modeling.

This course tackles a number of cutting-edge issues and questions that confront society today: What sorts of questions can be asked and answered using digital and computational methods to rethink our relationships to data and what can data can show us about the world? How do we construct models to help us better understand social phenomena and associated data? What is data, and how do we know it’s reliable? How do these methods complement and sometimes challenge traditional methodologies in the social sciences? Students will leave the course with both substantive experience in digital and computational methods, Students will learn how to apply a critical lens for understanding and evaluating what computers can (and cannot) bring to the study of society.

Terms and Conditions May Apply: Screening and Discussion on November 13th

TACMA header.November 13, 2013 4:30 PM – 7:00 PM
Visual Arts Center, Kresge Auditorium

Panel discussion “Privacy and Security, Transparency and the Internet” following screening of “Terms and Conditions May Apply”

Have you ever read the Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policies connected to every website you visit, phone call you make, or app you use? Of course you haven’t. But those agreements allow corporations to do things with your personal information you could never even imagine. What are you really agreeing to when you click “I accept”?

Following the screening of “Terms and Conditions May Apply,” join Prof. Elias (Government) and Prof. Gieseking (Digital and Computational Studies) of Bowdoin, and USM Prof. Clearwater (law) previously of Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society for a discussion of the film and issues of privacy, security, transparency, and the Internet.