Starting this September, Still Water Senior Researcher John Bell will be starting a full-time position with the Dartmouth Research Commons at Dartmouth College. Bell will be spearheading the development of an innovative institutional repository for this elite university as well as galvanizing digital collaborations with humanities faculty across campus. Fortunately for us, Bell will continue to teach digital collection and exhibition as a UMaine Assistant Professor of Digital Curation.
Bell has been the driving force behind most of Still Water’s groundbreaking social networks, including The Pool, the Variable Media Questionnaire, and UMaine New Media’s Just-in-time Learning initiative. His own projects have received acclaim for their technical and conceptual inventiveness; these include the connected online comment system Re:poste (later integrated into the ThoughtMesh distributed publishing service), the augmented reality installation Variable Museum, and a form of Tetris for the blind called Octris.
Among his many inter-collegiate collaborations are the multimedia publishing platform Scalar, sponsored by the University of Southern California and the Mellon Foundation. A HASTAC Scholar, Bell began work at Dartmouth last year as architect for the Media Ecology Project, where he has been working with Mark Williams to create better scholarly access to historic media archives.
Most importantly for the University of Maine, Bell will continue to teach online classes for the university’s Digital Curation program–a happy consequence of our curriculum being offered entirely online. This fall he’ll be teaching DIG 540 “Digital Collections and Exhibitions,” which introduces server technologies and database concepts to anyone interested in putting a collection online.
Although sad to be leaving Maine, Bell looks forward to continuing his research on digital repositories and helping set new standards for information access and reuse at a top-notch institution. We look forward to the exciting collaborations that his new position will make possible!