On the importance of humanist sensibilities in choices about digital tooling :
If simply handed off to technologists or left to functionaries or commercial interests, many basic requirements for humanist scholarship and pedagogy will be lost. … In a digital world, choices about what remains and what is eliminated, what is made accessible, how and in what form, are just as enduring and just as potentially enhancing or damaging.
How and towards which goal is software developed? How is it funded? Can the community inspect it, contribute to it? Who are the authors? To whom do they respond—commercial clients? paying users?
Human and social sciences mostly use commercial, proprieraty software purposely built for companies, not specifically for the requirements of research or pedagogy. In general, developing a feature is not a trivial task; the choices offered in given software are therefore not insignificant, and the software itself far from neutral.
Remaining loyal to the mission of the humanities, such is the challenge at task for the humanist communities navigating through market-centric environments, in a world which constantly questions the “usefulness” of their discipline.