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Scalar Webinars

The Ahmanson Lab at USC Libraries is offering a series of free Scalar webinars this summer.

Introduction to Scalar: July 7, 11am-1pm (PT) – CLOSED/FULL

This webinar will cover basic features of the platform; a review of select Scalar projects and use cases; and a hands-on introduction to media, annotations, paths, and tags.

Intermediate Scalar: August 4, 11am-1pm (PT) – CLOSED/FULL

This webinar will delve into more advanced topics including the effective use of structure, metadata, widgets, and layouts.

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Scalar Institute, Summer 2020

Opening Remarks by Tara McPherson, Scalar Summer Institute, June 2019

Join the Scalar team June 15-19 for a weeklong summer workshop at USC Libraries.

This five-day workshop is designed for librarians and others who wish to support the use of Scalar for born-digital scholarship and cutting-edge, collections-based digital pedagogy on their campus as well as those who wish to develop their own projects showcasing institutional collections. The workshop will provide attendees with comprehensive training in Scalar, including basic and intermediate sessions in the platform as well as training, not offered anywhere else, on Scalar’s new editorial and copy-editing feature-set. The workshop will also include advanced sessions on collections integration with Scalar; enhanced archiving of Scalar projects; use of Scalar’s API for experimental works; and setting up custom Scalar installations.

Attendees supporting Scalar at their institution will come away from this weeklong workshop with in-depth strategies and a set of robust resources for assisting faculty and students with the technical, structural, editorial, and design decisions vital to Scalar projects. Attendees who wish to use Scalar for their own project should come prepared with material, as they’ll be guided by the Scalar team, with collaborative whiteboarding sessions and one-on-one design meetings, in the development of their project while in residence at the workshop.

The Ahmanson Lab is located in the Libraries at the University of Southern California (USC). USC sits at the center of Los Angeles, a vibrant city with rich resources in arts and culture, including the Getty Museum and Huntington Library.

You can see the full details, costs, and a schedule for this workshop here.

To join us this summer, please complete the online application by April 21, 2020.

Have questions? Contact Curtis Fletcher at

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ANVC Scalar Servers Moving to Encrypted Connections


December 23 Update: Our transition to SSL is now complete.

Scalar users with projects hosted on ANVC servers will soon get the benefit of increased security, as we move to encrypted connections via SSL/HTTPS. This transition, part of an industry-wide shift which has already touched most of the sites you use every day, will occur on our Scalar servers on the morning (PST) of December 19. As a result, it’s important that Scalar users with projects on our servers audit their projects for non-HTTPS external media as soon as possible to prevent content from disappearing unexpectedly.

The good news is that most of your non-HTTPS links probably don’t need updating, because the most popular sites on the web already redirect those URLs to their HTTPS counterparts. You can test this by visiting one of your links that begins with http://, and then checking the address bar in your browser once the page comes up. If the address bar now says https://, then the redirect happened automatically and you don’t need to make any changes. If the URL still says http://, however, then you’ve found a link that your browser may prevent Scalar from accessing.

For example, if your media comes from these domains, no changes are needed:

In addition, most browsers will still display media files like images, audio, and video loaded from non-HTTPS sources. More complex media embeds and iframes, however, may be blocked.

So where do you look for non-HTTPS links in your Scalar projects?

Media. Most browsers today will still display media files like images, audio, and video loaded from non-HTTPS sources. This could change in the future, however, so it’s worth knowing where your media stands. Any media item in your project that doesn’t originate from one of the domains listed above should be checked.

Embeds and IFrames. Links to non-HTTPS sites from your project’s pages, paths, tags, annotations, and comments will still work. However, any non-HTTPS content embedded into a Scalar page via an iframe or other means will fail to load.

API-driven external projects. This is rare, but if you are loading Scalar content into a non-HTTPS external site via Scalar’s API, that content will stop loading once we make the transition. You’ll need to move your site to HTTPS hosting to continue accessing the API.

We realize this transition may be confusing, and we’re here to answer any questions you may have—please don’t hesitate to reach out to us. We’ll post additional updates as the switch nears.

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

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