Founding Director of the Center for Digital Initiatives, Arkansas State University
Alyson A. Gill (Ph.D. University of Memphis, 2004) is associate professor of Art History and founding Director of the Center for Digital Initiatives (www.astate.edu/cdi) at Arkansas State University, whose field of expertise is Greek art and architecture. When in Greece on a Fulbright scholarship, Gill began to realize the need for new ways to represent architectural models that she was studying, and in 2006 began to use 3D models for her own research on a spatial analysis of the Greek bath in the ancient sanctuary after participating in the NEH summer institute "Models of Ancient Rome." As a direct result of collaborative relationships developed in that institute, she applied for and was awarded an NEH Digital Humanities Start-Up grant in 2007 for a collaborative 3D modeling project with Coastal Carolina University entitled, "Ashes2Art: Virtual Reconstructions of Ancient Sites." In 2008 Gill launched the first of what would become a six ‘sim’ (simulated environment) virtual campus in the multi-user virtual environment Second Life, and in 2010 she began to replicate the campus in OpenSim—an open source multi-user virtual environment and Unity. Gill has published in digital archaeology and recently co-edited a special edition of Visual Resources (2010) entitled "Continuous Crossroads: New Directions in the Digital Humanities." In February 2012 Gill assumed the role of Associate Editor of Digital Applications in Archaeology & Cultural Heritage, an online peer-reviewed journal for cultural heritage. In 2011 Gill was appointed Director of the Center for Digital Initiatives, a Center of Excellence at ASU created under her leadership, and since then the CDI has created online 3D models of key ASU heritage sites, and has worked on extensive visualization projects with almost every college at the university and with groups across the state. Gill has been deeply involved with the Computer Applications in Quantitative Archaeology conference as a presenter, session chair, and member of the scientific committee for the past six years. In 2013 Gill was PI on an NEH Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities Summer Institute, "Humanities Heritage 3D Visualization: Theory and Practice," that was co-hosted at Arkansas State University and University of Arkansas-Fayetteville.