My work centers on playful ways in which machines can augment human creativity, whether by generating unreadable books, composing “poetry”, synthesizing photography, appreciating art history, or providing new ways to tell stories. I’m an amateur researcher of 19th century utopian novels and have a lifelong interest in interactive fiction.
I’m currently an Engineering Director with the Democratic National Committee and a board member of the Interactive Fiction Technology Foundation. Formerly I was Chief Technology Officer at Safari Books, and prior to that I founded a digital publishing company called Threepress.
I offer free, private mentorship to women in technical management roles. Please contact me to discuss mentoring options.
A computer-generated book based on the Voynich Manuscript.
Creates artwork in the style of Newspaper Blackout Poetry using natural language processing and optical character recognition. Featured on Waxy.org in 2016.
Generated compositions that resemble photomontages in the style of early surrealists.
A reimagining of a 1961 computer program that generated the screenplay to a Western, filmed by CBS television. Source code and history of the project. Invited contribution to the Workshop on the History of Expressive Systems.
An interactive mystery, playable in a web browser, about utopian ideals and bookish delights.
Harmonia is one of those rare pieces of interactive fiction where the author has woven a unified experience out of crosshatched decisions in writing and systems design, with the weft amplifying and supporting the warp.
– Bennett Foddy, designer of QWOP
“A marvel—an exploration of the space between the mind and the page the likes of which I’ve never experienced.” — Kotaku
Best Use of Innovation, 2013 XYZZY Awards.
A series on learning to manipulate text with computers, in five parts:
Manicule, developed under the direction of Whitney Trettien as part of Digital Book History, is an open source React/Redux webapp for exploring the physical structure of rare manuscripts. Scholars can provide page-by-page annotation both of the content, binding, and layout of notable volumes. Live demo
CC Search indexes a corpus of over 10 million publicly licensed images from museums, libraries, and individuals, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Europeana, and the New York Public Library. Coverage: Newsweek and TechCrunch. Technical notes
Label This!, for University of California, Davis, helps users explore and describe the library’s remarkable collection of historic wine labels. Based on scribeAPI, a Rails/React webapp that allows visitors to select and transcribe areas of interest on digitized material.
Generates abstract color tiles after Emily Noyes Vanderpoel’s 1902 work on color theory. Featured in the New York Times (October, 2018).
Finds tweets with inspirational-sounding messages and mis-attributes them to famous people like Mark Twain and Abraham Lincoln.
Picks a recipe, parses its ingredients, and makes random (usually revolting) substitutions, just like people who comment on internet recipes.
What makes for successful digital-first literature: it must be immersive, non-trivial, and participatory.
A tutorial for IBM Developerworks on using CSS3 media query, HTML5 navigation, and MathML in EPUB 3 publications.
A report prepared for the UK academic funding organization JISC on digital publishing, ebooks, and scholarly communication.
Interview for Atlas Obscura along with other Interactive Fiction Competition winners and organizers (Nov, 2017)
Podcast interview with Harvard Business Publishing on artificial intelligence and machine learning for publishers (Oct, 2017)
Photoessay and interview in Topic about mentorship relationships among women (Aug, 2017)
Podcast interview for Moonshot on AI and machine learning (July, 2017)
Interview about the relationship between interactive fiction and AI, featuring Emily Short, Lynnea Glasser, and Bruno Dias (Nov, 2016)
Strategies to help introverts network (FastCompany, 2015)
Ebooks in the cloud (Wired, 2011)
Interview on “digital detox” (NYT, 2010)
Interview on the effects of the iPad on reading (NYT, 2010)