Going to Iceland

The title is the tl;dr. (!)

Barring a catastrophe (a non-trivial assumption!), I’m traveling to Iceland with the field science program at Earlham in June 2020. I’ll be one of the faculty members on the student-faculty research team for the annual expedition. It’s a thrilling opportunity.

I’ve been working toward this for a while. I’ve acted as “ground control” for several summers, both as a student and in my current role as a member of the CS faculty. Between trips, I’ve been part of the team that’s engineering and coding software to do fascinating things:

  • DNA analysis
  • in-field mobile data collection
  • drone flight planning
  • image analysis

But for a variety of reasons, it’s never been feasible for me to take the trip. Finally, the path seems clear.

Of course, anything could happen. This could fall through, or it could turn out amazingly well. Wherever it ultimately falls on that spectrum, I’ll spend the next few months wrangling various software projects, mentoring students, and assisting the official leaders of the trip as we prepare to go do science. My focus will be on building software, but that will be just one task among many.

Text is not a perfect medium for communicating emotion, but I’m quite excited. I wanted to flag this as a personal and professional milestone. I’m certain to be posting more about it over time.