Tom Elliott graduated from Duke University in 1989 with B.S. in Computer Science and a second major in Classical Studies. Following service as a Communications and Computer Systems Officer in the United States Air Force, he worked as a software developer and program manager for AEgis Research Corporation (now AEgis Technologies) on a number of visual and engineering simulation projects. He received his Ph.D. in Ancient History from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 2004, for research focused on the intersection of Roman documentary, administrative and geographic studies. His doctoral dissertation was entitled Epigraphic Evidence for Boundary Disputes in the Early Roman Empire (see also github:demarc).
Tom has spent nearly two decades advancing the practice of digital humanities in ancient studies. In the late 1990s, he wrote database software that was used to prepare the alphabetical gazetteer and Map-by-Map Directory that accompanies the Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World (Princeton, 2000). During that period he also started the EpiDoc Community, which creates standards-based tools and guidelines for the digital encoding of epigraphic and papyrological texts like those published in the Inscriptions of Aphrodisias 2007 or by the Integrating Digital Papyrology project. In August 2000, he was appointed as Founding Director of the Ancient World Mapping Center at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. In February 2006, Tom stepped down from this position to assume full-time leadership of the Pleiades gazetteer of ancient places. In 2008, he brought this role with him to the Institute, where he is also responsible for developing and overseeing a spectrum of innovative digital projects and services.
Education and Degrees
- Ph.D. 2004: Ancient History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH). Dissertation: Epigraphic Evidence for Boundary Disputes in the Roman Empire.
- M.A. 1997: Ancient History, UNC-CH. Second field: Spatial Analysis. Thesis: Diocletianic Census Inscriptions from the Aegean Islands and Asia Minor.
- B.S. 1989: Computer Science, Duke University, cum laude. Second major: Classical Studies.
- 1985: Graduated high school from The Randolph School, Huntsville, Alabama.
- 2/2008 - present: Associate Director for Digital Programs and Senior Research Scholar, Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York University.
- 2/2006 - 1/2008: Pleiades Project Director, Ancient World Mapping Center, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC-CH).
- 8/2000 - 2/2006: Director, Ancient World Mapping Center, UNC-CH.
- 8/1995 - 1/2004: Multiple part-time positions while a graduate student in the Department of History, UNC-CH:
- 1996 - 1998: Graduate Teaching Assistant, Department of History;
- 1999 - 2000: Research Assistant, Classical Atlas Project;
- 1999 - 2000: Graduate Assistant: Digital Library Project;
- 1998 - 2000: Project Manager: Interactive Ancient Mediterranean;
- Summer 1997: Web Information Coordinator: Ancient Roman Technology, Department of Classics;
- Summer 1998: Technology Advisor: Technology in the Undergraduate Survey, Department of History.
- 11/1992 - 8/1995: Computer Scientist, AEgis Research Corporation, Huntsville, Alabama:
- Lead Developer: Computer Simulation for Guidance-aided Fuzing [sic] Experiments;
- Project Manager: Computer Simulation Testbed and Gunner Trainer for the Avenger Weapon System.
- 6/1989 - 10/1992: Communications and Computer Systems Officer, United States Air Force, Grissom Air Force Base, Indiana. In support of the 305th Air Refueling Wing of the Strategic Air Command:
- Chief of Maintenance, 1915th Communications Squadron;
- Chief of Operations, 1915th Communications Squadron;
- Base Closure Planning Officer, 305th Communications Squadron.
Academic Honors and Awards
- External fellow: Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities, University of Virginia, 2005.
- Morehead Fellow, UNC-CH College of Arts and Sciences, 1995 - 1997.
- US Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps Scholarship, Duke University, 1985. - 1989
At New York University:
- Principal Investigator: Pleiades 3, $322,615, National Endowment for the Humanities, Office of Digital Humanities, Digital Humanities Implementation Grant (HK-230973-15).
lightning talk | proposal (pdf) | website | twitter | facebook
- Co-Principal Investigator with John Muccigrosso (Project Manager Sebastian Heath): Linked Ancient World Data Institute (LAWDI), $217,081, National Endowment for the Humanities, Office of Digital Humanities, Institutes for Advanced Topics in the Digital Humanities (HT-50048-11), 10/1/2011 - 9/30/2013.
website | twitter hash tag: #lawdi
- Principal Investigator: Pleiades: Content and Community for Ancient Geography, $298,457, National Endowment for the Humanities, Division of Preservation and Access, Humanities Collections and Reference Resources (PW-50557-10), 5/2010 - 4/2013.
- Project manager and proposal co-author: Integrating Digital Papyrology 3, $373,848, Duke University subcontract under grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation (11-AMF-1063), 1/2011 - 12/2011.
- Project manager and proposal co-author: Integrating Digital Papyrology 2, $140,377, Duke University subcontract under grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation (09-SC-AMF-1048), 9/2008 - 12/2010.
- Project manager and proposal co-author: Concordia, $129,828, National Endowment for the Humanities, Office of Digital Humanities, JISC/NEH Transatlantic Digitization Collaboration Grant (PX-50003-08), 4/2008 - 3/2010.
At the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill:
- Project manager and proposal primary author: Pleiades: An Online Workspace for Ancient Geography, $389,883, National Endowment for the Humanities, Division of Preservation and Access, Research and Development Grant (PA-51873-06), 1/06 - 6/08.
List of Courses taught
At the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill:
- Roman Roads, Itineraries and Land Travel (9 undergraduate students), Spring 2004
- History of the Ancient Near East, Greece and Rome (121 students and two teaching assistants), Spring 2005
- Book Chapter: "Cumulative Bibliography of Works by Richard J.A. Talbert," pp. 12-25 in L. Brice and D. Slootjes (eds.), Aspects of Ancient Institutions and Geography: Studies in Honor of Richard J.A. Talbert, Brill, 2015.
- Book Chapter: "Epigraphy and Digital Resources," pp. 78-85 in C. Brunn and J. Edmondson (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of Roman Epigraphy, 2014.
- Online Resource: demarc: Epigraphic Evidence for Boundary Disputes in the Early Roman Empire, Department of History, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 2004; github.com 2012-, https://github.com/paregorios/demarc.
- Online Resource: "Peutinger Map Names and Features, With Commentary and User's Guide," with R. Talbert, 2010, Cambridge University Press, 2010, http://www.cambridge.org/us/talbert/talbertdatabase/prm.html (= Appendix 7 to R. Talbert, Rome's World, The Peutinger Map Reconsidered, Cambridge, 2010).
- Journal Article: “Digital Geography and Classics,” with S. Gillies, in Digital Humanities Quarterly 3.1 (Winter 2009), http://www.digitalhumanities.org/dhq/vol/3/1/000031.html.
- Book Chapter: “Constructing a Digital Publication for the Peutinger Map,” R. Talbert and R. Unger (eds.), Cartography in Antiquity and the Middle Ages: Fresh Perspectives, New Methods, Brill, 2008.
- Book Chapter: “Bringing an Ancient Map of the Roman World into Modern GIS: Cartographic and Historical Perspectives Revealed,” with R. Talbert, in A. Knowles and A. Hillier (eds.), Placing History: How Maps, Spatial Data, and GIS are Changing Historical Scholarship, ESRI Press, 2008.
- Published Conference Paper: "New Classroom Maps for Ancient Geography," The Occasional Papers of the American Philological Association's Committee on Ancient History 3 (2006), 61-80.
- Book Chapter: “Mapping the Ancient World” with Richard Talbert in Anne Knowles (ed.), Past Time, Past Place: GIS for History, ESRI Press, 2002.
- Online Resource: EpiDoc Guidelines: Ancient Documents in TEI XML, with G. Bodard et al., 2002-, http://www.stoa.org/epidoc/gl/latest/.
- Numerous original map designs and digital map production for publication in monographs, journal articles, and educational games, as well as educational use, under the auspices of Classical Atlas Project and AWMC, 1999-2005 (samples available from the AWMC map room).
- Web publication: “Abbreviations in Latin Inscriptions,” American Society of Greek and Latin Epigraphy (ASGLE) (http://www.asgle.org/?page_id=48), June 1998.
- Conference paper and panel participation: "Pleiades URIs: Bridging Digital Publications with Geography" with Sean Gillies, Geospatial Studies in Classical Archaeology: A Survey of Approaches and Methods, organized by Ulrike Krotscheck and James Newhard, 2013 Joint Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America and the American Philological Association, Seattle, 3-6 January 2013. Accepted.
- Conference paper and panel participation: "Digital Epigraphic Resources for Research and Teaching," Teaching History and Classics with Inscriptions, a panel of the Committee on Ancient History, organized by Georgia Tsouvala, 2013 Joint Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America and the American Philological Association, Seattle, 3-6 January 2013. Accepted.
- Conference panel: “The Publication and Study of Inscriptions in the Age of the Computer,” co-organizer with Paul Iversen, 2009 American Society of Greek and Latin Epigraphy Joint AIA/APA Panel, 2009 Joint Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America and the American Philological Association, Philadelphia, PA, 8-11 January 2009.
- Conference paper (session keynote): “Heterogeneity,” Space and Time: Methods in Geospatial Computing for Mapping the Past, E-Science Institute, Edinburgh, 23-24 July 2007.
- Conference paper: “pleiades.stoa.org: open collaboration and the enhancement of historical geodata,” workshop onWeb-based research tools for Mediterranean archaeology, 2008 Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America, Chicago, IL, 3-6 January 2008
- Conference paper: “Of lighthouses and bridges: the maturation of digital publication in epigraphy,” 13th International Congress of Greek and Latin Epigraphy, Oxford, 2-7 September 2007
- Panel commentator: The Future is Now?: Digital Library Projects and Scholarship and Teaching in Classics, organizer: Donald Mastronarde, 2008 Annual Meeting of the American Philological Association, Chicago, IL, 3-6 January 2008
- Workshop participation: Digital Coins Network workshop, London, 19-20 April 2007
- Workshop participation: Kickoff meeting for the Inscriptions of Roman Cyrenaica Project, London, 19 April 2007
- Conference paper: “Beyond the Barrington Atlas: An Online Workspace for Ancient Geography,” Ancient Geography: New Discoveries and Perspectives, Annual Meeting of the American Philological Association, San Diego, CA, 4-7 January 2007
- Workshop participation: Digital Gazetteer Research and Practice, Santa Barbara, CA, 7-9 December 2007
- Workshop participation: EpiDoc interoperability sprint, Chapel Hill and Durham, NC, 2-6 December 2007
- Workshop participation: Digital Coins Network workshop, British Museum, London, 27-28 October 2007
- Conference paper: “Epigraphic Documents in TEI XML (EpiDoc): Toward a P5 Customization” with Zaneta Au and Gabriel Bodard, Digital Humanities 2006, Paris, France, 5-9 July 2006
- Workshop participation: Web services code sprint, Center for Hellenic Studies, Washington, DC, 22-23 May 2006
- Workshop leadership: EpiDoc "Sandstorm" Sprint 2006, King’s College, London, 20-24 March 2006
- Workshop participation: Digital infrastructure for humanities (epigraphy forum), Stanford University, 9 May 2006
- Workshop participation: Technology Summit for the Next Generation of the Duke Databank of Documentary Papyri, Duke University, 16-17 April 2005
- Conference presentation: “Agenda for Digital Epigraphy: Asynchronous Collaboration and Temporal Compatibility,”Inscriptions of Aphrodisias: Digital Epigraphy Workshop, British School, Rome, September 2004
- Conference presentation: “Epigraphy and Context in Digital Publication,” Inscriptions of Aphrodisias: Digital Epigraphy Workshop, Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, June 2004
- Conference paper: “Bringing an Ancient Map of the Roman World into Modern GIS: Cartographic and Historical Perspectives Revealed,” with Richard Talbert, History and Geography: Assessing the Role of Geographical Information in Historical Scholarship, The Hermon Dunlap Smith Center for the History of Cartography, The Newberry Library, Chicago, 25-27 March 2004
- Conference paper: “The EpiDoc Aphrodisias Project,” with Gabriel Bodard, 12th International Congress of Greek and Latin Epigraphy, Barcelona, 3-8 September 2002
- Conference paper: “Developing Standards for Digital Epigraphic Publication,” Digital Epigraphy Workshop, King’s College London, 11-14 July 2002 (co-convenor with Charlotte Roueché)
- Conference paper: “The EpiDoc Aphrodisias Project,” with Gabriel Bodard, Colloquium on Ancient Greek Lexicography, Cambridge University, 7-9 July 2002
- Conference paper: “Semantic Markup for Epigraphy,” Digital Epigraphy Workshop, UNC Chapel Hill, 29-30 April 2002 (co-convenor with Charlotte Roueché)
- Conference Paper: “Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World,” with Richard Talbert, Keith Winters and Dave Stong, North American Cartographic Information Society Conference, Oct 2000.
- Presentations on the Interactive Ancient Mediterranean project at the Classical Association of the Midwest and South, Southern Section, Waco, TX, October 1998 and APA/AIA Joint Meetings, Washington, DC, December 1998.
- Conference paper: “You Can’t Always Get What You Want: iuga, iugera and IG XII.3, 343,” North Carolina Classics Graduate Colloquium , UNC-CH, March 1998
- Conference paper: “Diocletianic Census Inscriptions of the Aegean Islands and Asia Minor,” 22nd Annual Byzantine Studies Conference, UNC-CH, October 1996
- Conference paper: “Simulation for Guidance-Aided Fuze System Analysis,” Southeast Simulation Conference,Huntsville, AL, September 1994
- Seminar: “The future of digital publishing with EpiDoc: epigraphy, papyrology and web-enabled interoperability,”Università di Bologna, Facoltà di Lettere e Filosofia, Dipartimento di Storia Antica (Bologna Italy), 21 June 2008
- Workshop teaching: “EpiDoc Training”, co-taught with Gabriel Bodard and Charlotte Tupman, Libera Università di Lingue e Comunicazione IULM (Milan, Italy), 16-20 June 2008.
- Workshop presentation: “Cyrenaican archaeology, epigraphy and geography: an approach for webfeed-based interoperability” (delivered via Skype), Inscriptions of Roman Cyrenaica: First International Workshop, British School at Rome, 28-29 February 2008.
- Guest lecture: “Simple EpiDoc XSLT Customization,” EpiDoc Summer School 2007, King's College, London, 13 June 2007
- Presentation: Pleiades: Beyond the Barrington Atlas, London Ancient History Seminar, 27 October 2007
- Presentation: Toward a digital publication for the only surviving Roman world map, IEEE Region 3 Huntsville Section, Huntsville, AL, 16 May 2006
- Presentation: The World According to Rome?: Konrad Peutinger’s Roman Map, North Alabama Society of the Archaeological Institute of America, Huntsville, AL, 20 February 2006
- Presentation: “Pleiades: Toward a Secure, Public, and Collaborative Workspace for Ancient Geography,” Invited lecture at the Center for Computational Science, University of Kentucky, February 2001