I grew up in a small town in northeast Georgia. I was educated in the local public school system, where I played clarinet (in the symphony), bass drum (in the marching band), left midfield in soccer, was a proud member of the national art honor society, and was, much to my chagrin, voted ‘Most Academic’ by my senior class.
I first learned to program in Logo when I was in kindergarten, definitely had a very cool Geocities homepage as a teen, and eventually grew up to be a computer science major at Georgia Tech.
Since 2017, I’ve been teaching human-computer interaction, computer ethics, and introductory computer science at Portland State University.
In between my CS degree, and my current job, I’ve done a bunch of things:
2005: Epic 5-month road trip, through most of the lower 48 US states, camping in over 20 different national and state parks.
2005-2007: Back to Georgia Tech where I worked with philosopher Nancy Nersessian and cultural linguist Wendy Newstetter to examine the role of computing in scientific creativity. It was here that I first learned to practice ethnography.
2007-2008: I designed custom furniture, textiles, and architectural elements at Seret & Sons. I also designed and built the store website, and worked on its inventory system – in FileMaker Pro!
2008-2009: I lived in San Francisco, and worked first for the US Census Bureau – where I was thoroughly intrigued by the deployment of new “hand held computing (HHC)” devices within the strictures of an impressive government bureaucracy – and later for Microsoft’s then recent acquisition, Tellme – the Siri for BlackBerries that existed long before Apple popularized their voice-based assistant.
2009-2015: Completed my PhD at UC Irvine, in the department of Informatics. My dissertation examined the affects and experiences of ordinary life in time period marked by the arrival of ubiquitous mobile computing and the emergence of a popular conversation about disconnection and unplugging.
2014: Built the website for Method Quarterly.