RENCI, Duke to present first HASTAC international conference

The Humanities, Arts, Science and Technology Advanced Collaboratory (HASTAC, pronounced “haystack”) will hold its first international conference April 19 – 21, 2007, in Durham, NC.

The conference, titled Electronic Techtonics: Thinking at the Interface, will be one of the culminating events of HASTAC’s In|Formation Year, which began last June and runs through May 2007. In|Formation Year events include a series of networked discussions, lectures and performances hosted by HASTAC member institutions that highlight the human and humane dimensions of advanced technology.

The Electronic Techtonics international conference is co-sponsored by HASTAC members Duke University in Durham and the Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI) in Chapel Hill, NC.

The conference is seeking papers and proposals for panel discussions. Topics might include research on interfaces between:

  • humans and computers
  • mind and brain
  • real and virtual worlds
  • science and fiction
  • consumers and producers
  • text archives and multimedia
  • youth and adults
  • disciplines, institutions, communities, identities, media, cultures,  technologies, theories, and practices.

Other possible topics include the body as interface, neuroaesthetics and neurocognition, prosthetics, mind-controlled devices, telepresence, sensor spaces, virtual reality, social networking, games and issues related to learning, communication, access to information, interactivity, race, gender, sexuality, civic engagement and social activism.

In addition the conference welcomes papers that address the themes of the In|Formation Year events:  in|common, interplay, in|community, interaction, injustice, integration, invitation, innovation.

Panel and paper proposals of 500 – 1,000 words must be submitted to by Dec. 1, 2006.

Other highlights of the conference will include a keynote address by John Seely Brown, information scientist and author of The Social Life of Information, a talk by legal theorist James Boyle, co-founder of the Center for the Study of Public Domain, Creative Commons and Science Commons, a conversation among leaders of innovative digital humanities projects, and a presentation by media artist and researcher Rebecca Allen.

Details on registration fees, hotel accommodations, and a full conference agenda will be posted at the HASTAC website (link: as they become available.

Some scholarship funding will be available to graduate students to help defray conference costs. For more information or to request HASTAC’s In|Formation Year poster, contact Jonathan Tarr, HASTAC Project Manager, at or 919 684-8471.

HASTAC is a worldwide consortium of humanists, artists, scientists, social scientists and engineers from universities and other civic institutions committed to new forms of collaboration fostered by creative uses of technology. Since 2003 HASTAC members have worked to develop tools for multimedia archiving and social interaction, gaming environments for teaching, innovative educational programs in information science and information studies, virtual museums, and other digital projects.

RENCI…Catalyst for Innovation
The Renaissance Computing Institute brings together computer and discipline scientists, artists, humanists, industry leaders, entrepreneurs, state leaders and educators for collaborations designed to reshape science, the economy, the state of North Carolina and the world. RENCI leverages its expertise and resources in leading edge computing, networking and data technologies to ignite innovation and find solutions to previously intractable problems. Founded in 2004 as a major collaborative venture of Duke University, North Carolina State University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the state of North Carolina, RENCI is a statewide virtual organization.