Robin Camille Davis


I often lead and co-lead hands-on, tech-focused workshops, mainly for librarians in the NYC area. For these workshops, I provide pre-written code and small corpora when needed. I carefully set up a shared computer lab or virtual environment so participants can get hands-on practice immediately.

Interested in hosting me at your organization? Please get in touch.

Build Your Own Twitter Bot

Bots work behind the scenes of the web. They can tell us the weather forecast when we ask (Siri), they systematically fix broken links on Wikipedia, they summarize financial data (Forbes), and on Twitter, they can add a touch of whimsy to your timeline (among other outcomes). In this workshop, participants are introduced to the Python programming language with a “bot starter kit” provided by workshop leaders. Participants customize their bots and send generated tweets out into the world. Along the way, participants become familiar with Python through the tried-and-true “change stuff and see what happens” pedagogical method.

Mark Eaton and I co-lead this workshop. We gave this workshop at Code4Lib 2018 (pre-conference workshop) and will do so again at ALA Annual 2018 (LITA workshop). We first led this workshop on December 15, 2015, for the LACUNY Emerging Technologies Committee at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York, NY.

Workshop materials are posted on GitHub (updated materials for Code4Lib). This workshop was turned into a “Blueprints” article in the Journal of Interactive Pedagogy.

HTML + CSS for Library Web Services

This workshop covers the very basics of HTML and CSS in the context of common library web services. Participants get hands-on practice editing code to add custom styling to a blog post and LibGuide box. We discuss customizing the LibGuides and SerialsSolutions interfaces to match library websites. Participants are provided with easily editable bundles of code and step-by-step instructions.

I led this workshop at the Southeastern NY Library Resources Council on February 8, 2018. See slide deck. Workshop materials posted on GitHub.

I also co-led this workshop with Alevtina Verbovetskaya on October 29, 2013, for the LACUNY Emerging Technologies Committee (then co-chaired) at CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY. 2013 workshop materials are posted online.

Introduction to Text Analysis

This introductory workshop focused on text analysis, a fundamental skill in digital humanities work. In this workshop, participants learned how treating a novel (or any document) as a “bag of words” can yield interesting results. We toured several text analysis projects that use the bag of words approach. Participants explored Voyant Tools and Google Books n-grams, then experimented with sentiment analysis using ready-made Python code and a “goodie bag” of textual data, including every State of the Union address. No experience with code was needed at this workshop.

I led this workshop on November 16, 2016, for the LACUNY Emerging Technologies Committee at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York, NY. Slides are online. Some materials are posted on GitHub.