The year 2021 was yet another banner year for the Electronic Literature Lab. Working remotely during the pandemic via Slack, Basecamp, and Zoom, the ELL Team undertook and completed many projects. Here is the list:

Plans for 2022 include (thus far at least):

Besides the fact that these projects contribute to the cultural history of the field, they also break new ground. In terms of our work with The NEXT, we innovated the way interactive, multimedia art and writing are organized for access by developing a new metadata schema, called ELMS, that extends the more general way digital objects are handled by a framework, MODS. Moreover, we laid the groundwork for making these works accessible to people with disabilities. In terms of the reconstruction and preservation projects, we innovated an aesthetic that allows people to experience Holeton’s and Disch’s works both in their original and an updated 21st century presentations, thinking through their migration to open web languages as a form of media translation. Both of these contributions are part of the data collection for the book I am co-authoring with Mariusz Pisarski. In essence, the production we do sits at the heart of the research output of the lab. Anyone not seeing this connection is missing the point of the lab.

None of this work could have been achieved without our amazing ELL Team. Last winter we were fortunate to bring in Richard Snyder, a PhD candidate in English, as Assistant Director of the lab. Additionally we added spring 2021 graduates Joel Clapp, Ruth Woodcock, Betsy Hanrahan, Sarah West, and Dave Sabrowski, and fall 2021 graduates Ariel Wallace, Andrew Thompson, Arlo Ptolemy, Sierra O’Neal, Ahria Nicholas, and Hogan Coverdale, from the Creative Media & Digital Culture program to take on everything from image production, Flash preservation, game refining, animation development and programming. And of course still with us are CMDC alums Holly Slocum and Greg Philbrook, who with Richard, keep the engine running smoothly and great care.