I like to write software for libraries and archives. I try to live up to at least the former in Release Early, Release Often, so most of my code musings can be found on GitHub. The idea is things incubate there, and if they ever become anything more than a plaything they migrate to a place like CPAN, RubyGems, PyPI, npm, etc. I like to work in public because it’s been extremely useful to get advice from people over the years.
I’ve enjoyed using several computer programming languages over the years. I guess it started with BASIC, Fortran and Pascal in the 1980s. I was very lucky to have an excellent computer science teacher in High School. We had a lot of fun. Thanks Mr Cave!
I started university as an Engineering major, but after the first year I switched to Philosophy, then to Computer Science and finally landed on English Literature. On graduation I didn’t end up doing much work with computers but did spend five users working/traveling in the UK and working in a used bookstore. That’s when the web was just starting to really take shape, so I went back to university to get a Library and Information Science degree. The best bits of that were learning about hypermedia.
If you really want to know more you can read about the rest in my CV.
Here are a few things I’m particularly fond of that I’ve worked on in the past:
- anon - a bot to tweet when someone edits wikipedia from a particular IP address range, like Congress
- wikistream - a visualization of realtime edits to Wikipedia
- pymarc - process MARC data in Python
- bagit - a tool to package data using BagIt
- chronam - software that runs Chronicling America at the Library of Congress
- id - the prototype that ran at id.loc.gov to make the Library of Congress Subject Headings available as Linked Data.
You can find the reset on GitHub.