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Tool Development, Networking


IATH is a research unit of the University of Virginia. Our goal is to explore and develop information technology as a tool for scholarly humanities research. To that end, we provide our Fellows with consulting, technical support, applications development, and networked publishing facilities. We also cultivate partnerships and participate in humanities computing initiatives with libraries, publishers, information technology companies, scholarly organizations, and other groups residing at the intersection of computers and cultural heritage.

The research projects, essays, and documentation are the products of a unique collaboration between humanities and computer science research faculty, computer professionals, student assistants and project managers, and library faculty and staff. In many cases, this work is supported by private or federal funding agencies. In all cases, it is supported by the Fellows’ home departments; the College or School to which those departments belong; the University of Virginia Library; the Vice President for Research and Public Service; the Vice President and Chief Information Officer; the Provost; and the President of the University of Virginia.



Worthy Martin Daniel Pitti


Robbie Bingler

Shayne Brandon

Kim Dylla

Cindy Girard

Chad Keller

Doug Ross

Joy Shifflette

Sarah Wells


Founding Sponsor


Recent Sponsors of the Institute and its Projects

  • The Henry Luce Foundation
  • The Getty Grant Program
  • The Institute for Museum and Library Services
  • The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation
  • The National Endowment for the Arts
  • The National Endowment for the Humanities
  • The National Science Foundation
  • Daniel and Joanna Rose
  • Sun Microsystems

Past Sponsors

  • Alias Corporation
  • The AT&T Foundation
  • Chrystal Corporation
  • Inso Corporation
  • Enigma Software
  • Inxight Software
  • Internet Multicasting Services
  • The Mellon Centre for British Art
  • Sprint

Core Support from the University of Virginia

  • Information Technology and Communication
  • The Libraries of the University of Virginia
  • Office of the Provost
  • Office of the Vice-Provost for Research
  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • Department of Computer Science

Current Focus

ATH Receives NEH Award to Explore Historical Social Networks

Daniel Pitti, Co-Director of IATH, has been awarded a two-year $348,000 grant by the NEH Preservation & Access, Research & Development Program. The grant funds the Social Networks and Archival Context (SNAC) Project, which begins in May 2010.

Launch of On-line Edition of Miller’s Bibliography of Slavery

A reception and discussion marked UVA History Professor Joseph C. Miller release of an on-line edition of The Bibliography of Slavery and World Slaving on April 5. The Bibliography of Slavery is a searchable database containing verified references (except as noted) to nearly 22,000 scholarly works on slavery and slaving worldwide and throughout human history, including modern times. The bibliography includes works from all academic disciplines, in 28 languages. 

IATH Announces New Fellows for 2010-2011

Alison Booth, Professor of English, is the new IATH Resident Fellow for 2010-2012. She will be developing a project promoting on-line collaborative research on nineteenth and twentieth century English-language collections of biographies of women.

Max Edelson, Associate Professor of History, is the new Associate Fellow for 2010-2011. His project, theCartography of American Colonization Database (CACD), focuses on digitized maps of the Americas created between 1500-1800. 



IATH hosts Music Encoding Initiative (MEI) workshop

July 2009

IATH hosted a three-day joint workshop of the University of Virginia Music Library and Universität Paderborn, to further develop specifications for the Music Encoding Initiative (MEI) schema. MEI is an XML application for the representation of music notation, designed to support scholarly research and preservation of cultural heritage material. 


IATH Receives Major Grant to Start “Virtual Williamsburg” 

October 2008

IATH Director Bernard Frischer announced that the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) has given IATH and the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation a three-year grant of $943,000 to start “Virtual Williamsburg,” a 3D model of the city as it appeared during the eighteenth century. The overall project has three goals: (1) the make a state digital model showing the way the site looks today; (2) to make a corrected digital model that changes the state model to reflect the current thinking of the archaeologists and architectural historians of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation; and (3) to make a temporal model that shows how the town developed from its founding in the 1690s until the transfer of the capital to Richmond in 1780. “Virtual Williamsburg” received a planning grant in 2006-2007 from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The new IMLS grant will kick off implementation of this long-term project by funding creation of models of the area around the Capitol and along the eastern end of Duke of Gloucester Street.


World of Dante makes EDSITEment’s List 

September 2008

IATH Fellow Deborah Parker’s World of Dante project was added to EDSITEment’s list of peer-reviewed recommended educational web sites and lesson plans. EDSITEment, a partnership between the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Verizon Foundation, and the National Trust for the Humanities, receives several hundred nominations each year. Of this list, several dozen finalists are reviewed for intellectual quality and website design and impact. EDSITEment-linked sites cover a range of humanities subjects and are judged by humanities specialists to be of high intellectual quality and useful to parents, teachers, and students.

Other IATH sites that appear on the EDSITEment list are Salem Witch Trials, Uncle Tom’s Cabin and American Culture, The William Blake Archive, The Pompeii Forum Project, The Walt Whitman Archive which began at IATH and is now housed at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, was also recently added.


Rome Reborn debuts at SIGGRAPH 

August 2008

Rome Reborn, a 3D virtual reality project centered around the city of ancient Rome, released version 2.0 at SIGGRAPH 2008 in August in Los Angeles. The project was one of several cutting-edge New Tech Demos, intended to demonstrate how research into the past invigorates the future of computer graphics and interactive techniques. It is one of the largest virtual reconstruction, cultural heritage, and digital archaeology project to date, and relies on an international collaboration designed to create an interactive 3D digital model that illustrates the urban development of ancient Rome. Bernard Frischer, director of IATH, is the project director.

Version 2.0 allowed visitors to the exhibit to explore the ancient city landscape and its numerous buildings and immerse themselves in the reconstructed 3D models of ancient Roman architecture in real-time over an internet connection.

IATH Associate Director Invited to Join National Archive and Records Administration Advisory Committee
January 2008

Allen Weinstein, Archivist of the United States, invited Daniel Pitti, Associate Director for the University of Virginia’s Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities (IATH), to serve on the National Archives and Records Administration’s (NARA) Advisory Committee on the Electronic Records Archives (ACERA). The membership of the committee is drawn from a mix of private companies, government groups, and universities






Technologies of Interest
C++ (2), Collex (1), EAD (1), GIS (8), Ivanhoe (1), Java (3), Juxta (1), Quick Time VR (1), XML (10)


There is a constant flow of new tools for digital scholarly work, from software companies, research groups, open source consortiums, and individual developers. Humanities computing relies on a wide variety of tools that take advantage of innovative technologies in all the areas of humanities research. IATH uses a combination of proprietary and open source tools, some of which are designed and built by our Fellows and their project staff. Some of these tools are described here, along with links to other tools of particular interest to humanities computing.

  • Collex - will allow users of digital resources to assemble and share virtual "collections" and to present annotated "exhibits" and re-arrangements of online materials. 
  • IVANHOE is a playspace for collaborative interpretational work. The playspace promotes such activity, on one hand, and on the other provides different kinds of visualizations for studying and reflecting on the activity. 
  • Juxta -  is a text comparison and collation tool for XML files and the image files that stand behind the XML transcriptions. It allows a scholar to locate for comparison equivalent textual passages, to display both the equivalent image files as well as the transcriptions. 





IATH is pleased to offer consulting, programming, and data services to academic, cultural, non-profit, government, and business organizations. IATH's strengths are in the following areas:

  • eXtensible Markup Language (XML), especially with the TEI and EAD DTDs
  • XML-related technologies (XSLT, servlets, etc.)
  • Web-accessible relational databases (especially Postgres with JDBC)
  • Java and Perl programming
  • Unicode
  • 3D computer modeling of cultural heritage sites

Requests for IATH consulting services should be submitted to an IATH Director.


Mailing Address

Alderman Library

University of Virginia P.O. Box 400115







Direct Contact

Phone Number: (434) 924-4527
Fax Number: (434) 982-2363