An iron law of DH software is that it is easier to use than to install. Philip Guo has memorably identifed the problem in a post titled “Helping my students overcome command-line bullshittery.” I’d like to talk about ways teachers, whether at the undergrad or the grad level, use to overcome this problem. How do we get students into the real work (necessary complexity) while avoiding as much as possible the unnecessary complexity of installing and configuring software? Or, in some cases is there pedagogical value in understanding how computers really work, such as by dealing with the Unix command line?
I can explain what I’m planning to do with my graduate class using RStudio Server this semester, and I hope that others have their own techniques.