Porter, the soon-to-be Curator of Digital Research Services at the Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, considers medievalists’ use of digital resources, opening with a brief history of digital medieval studies, from the 1970s, when “paper was the interface for electronically created texts,” documenting the shift toward electronic publishing in 1992, with “the first digital-oriented paper presented to the [International Congress on Medieval Studies] that describes an edition definitely intended to be published and delivered on a computer.”
In a survey of medievalists from 2011 that updates graduate research undertaken by Porter in 2002, she finds:
… not surprisingly, a shift from the use of print resources to the use of electronic resources, for the most part. This article focuses on the survey findings with regard to scholarly editions. I also present, in comparison, the findings with regard to journals and facsimiles. Although the survey respondents have a general interest in digital resources, and show a willingness to use them, there are complications surrounding electronic editions that still need to be addressed by the scholarly editing community.