Friday, January 21, 2011

Patrick joins the team

Greetings! My name is Patrick Cuba, the GUI Web Developer on the T-PEN project. As a member of the team, I am responsible for the graphical design and interface. This project is an exciting challenge to enhance the experience of transcription with deference to the analog nature of the manuscripts and the established conventions and habits of the scholars who will be using it. T-PEN should be a tool that feels obvious, not become something else to learn. My task is to create a flexible and simple interface that optimizes usability, intuitiveness, and comfort. Your feedback and input about the process of transcription (such as comments on entries like "How Do You Transcribe?") are invaluable to my work.

I have been employed by Saint Louis University for nearly a decade. My work in Student Development had been instructive, engaging, and fulfilling. When the position for GUI Web Developer posted, however, I saw an incredible opportunity to couple my undergraduate degrees of English and Philosophy & Religion (Truman State University) with my passion for the application of technology to the sincere advancement of knowledge and culture. As I learned about T-PEN and previous projects of the Center for Digital Theology at Saint Louis University, I found a door cracked open for myself in digital humanities, which had been previously unknown to me. To have entered into such a project with a competent and welcoming team already hard at work is intimidating and inspiring.

The first week is often too full of orientations about retirement planning, wrestling with the IT Department to get appropriate permissions, and finding the best lunch spots. Nevertheless, I will be working diligently to offer quality updates and adjustments to T-PEN that increase usability, expand compatability, and demonstrate the possibilities of technology intelligently applied.

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