PressForward is a WordPress plugin created by Aram Zucker-Scharff, Boone Gorges, and Jeremy Boggs. The plugin functions by aggregating content using RSS/Atom feeds, collecting it via a bookmarklet, and importing it in the form of text, images, videos, and metadata. According to the project’s “About” page, “just about anything on the open web is fair game,” including journal articles, conference papers, white papers, reports, scholarly blogs, and digital projects. The project is available within the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media through the George Mason Archival Repository Service.
On the MARS PressForward project page you can view various pieces of the project, from screenshots of the “About” page and other landing pages to entire files of project documents. Below is an example of one of these screenshots.
Digital Humanities Now is one of two examples I’ll be showing you that utilizes PressForward to aggregate and provide content to the public. Below is an image of the main content categories available on DHN: job announcements, general announcements, resources, CFPs/conferences, funding/opportunities, and reports. DHN is a great example of how useful PressForward is for professionals–not only can one find up-to-date scholarship for a peek into the state of the field, but there are also lots of resources available to aid those seeking jobs and/or funding.
dh+lib employs the same general concept as DHN, but as you can see below, it’s organized a bit differently. The site posts events, conferences, job opportunities, field-specific pieces, and more, in addition to more blog-style posts by dh+lib editors. You can also view the site’s archive, organized by month, to retrieve older posts.
After taking a look at DHN and dh+lib’s websites, which both use PressForward to function, I was quite convinced of the project’s usefulness. I think its ability to aggregate content must save a decent chunk of time and energy on behalf of the folks running these sites, which in turn allows them to contribute to the field in other critical ways. Moreover, the ability to view scholarship, conference information, and job/funding opportunities in one place is immensely valuable to those of us who are relatively new to the professional world.