by Nisar Keshvani
E-mail: nisarh [@] keshvani [dot] com
I consider myself rather fortunate sitting at the helm of the Leonardo
Electronic Almanac - besides the daily data mining, it allows me
to keep abreast of new developments and to interact with brilliant
individuals. As in every other year, this is the season for reflecting,
assessing where we have arrived and mapping out where we go from
During this process, what has become evident is LEA's machinery,
its international nature and the art, science and technology community
that drives the publication. It involves many man-hours to produce
each issue, not including the amount of time the author spends researching
and documenting their findings, the back and forth before their
essays are published and the time peer reviewers invest in providing
critical and valuable input.
The production team consists of four people, each based in a different
country. There are 23 individuals from 11 countries who serve as
editorial, gallery board members and corresponding editors. In 2004,
41 authors from 16 countries were published in LEA with input from
32 peer reviewers based in 13 countries. Naturally this is made
easier and more efficient by our existence online. The downside
however, is to date, academics and their peers are often asked if
essays published online are as rigorously reviewed, if the process
is blind and if the publication has a support infrastructure similar
to a print journal.
Like any other online journal, LEA faces the same questions, with
a steady stream of emails from academics asking these exact questions
right around promotion time. LEA is indeed an international, blind-reviewed
online journal with approximately 70 percent of submissions meeting
our publication criteria.
In this first issue of 2005, we'd like to extend a big "thank
you" to all our 2004 peer-reviewers. These anonymous significant
individuals play a crucial part by generously giving their educated
opinions on manuscripts submitted to us for publication, thus ensuring
that we publish only material that meets the highest academic standards
and adds to the existing body of knowledge in the field.
Kathryn Farley aptly describes most LEA authors' sentiments when
saying: "I wish to thank the anonymous LEA reviewers who provided
such helpful and detailed commentary on this paper. I greatly appreciate
their thoughtfulness and expertise."
Listed in LEA's 2004 Author index are our contributors who deserve
special mention for bravely pushing boundaries and presenting innovative
ideas. Our guest editors Fatima Lasay and Michael Punt have done
well in unearthing young scholars and identifying new research amidst
the tsunamii of submissions. Last year's content presented eclectic
material ranging from evolution of artworks using telephones to
hypertext to cross-cultural online collaborations, to the supernatural.
Our central text this month is an article by Kathryn on *The DuSable
Project*, a "collaborative, media-intensive" event that
combines elements of improv comedy, theater, computer-based technology
From LEA's archive, first published in January 1994, we present
an excerpt from "B*rbie'sVirtualPlayhouse@CityOfTheFuture.ent"
with Henry See providing an insider perspective, as he tackles sensitive
issues in the description about his piece. This is a multimedia
work lampooning Virtual Sex, and was presented at SIGGRAPH '93.
In Leonardo Reviews, we include reviews by Mike Leggett on the book
*Film Art Phenomena*, René Beekman on *New Philosophy for
New Media* and John Knight on *Funology: From Usability to Enjoyment*.
Check in on the latest events in the Leonardo/ISAST community.
Readers will find our author's index and summary of 2004 issues
a useful feature for research. This index provides direct URLs for
easy access and is available both in pdf and html format at: http://mitpress2.mit.edu/e-journals/LEA/archive.html
Backissues dating to 1993, are also available online and searchable
with our advanced search function.
Special thanks are due to Patricia Bentson and Nicholas Cronbach
for their guidance with the index and Phil Cadigan for his help
with the search function. We'd also like to thank managing editor
Patrick Lambelet, webmaster Andre Ho and administrator Lee Lia Irwin
for their untiring efforts and amazing energy. Kudos to Michael
Punt and the Leonardo Review Panel for their succint reviews that
arrive punctually each month. Thanks also to the LEA Editorial,
Gallery boards, corresponding editors, Roger Malina, Pamela Grant-Ryan,
Melinda Klayman and Kathleen Quillian for their strategic input.
We strongly encourage readers to email their manuscripts, special
issue proposals and artist statements to: email@example.com
Check out LEA's greeting at: http://mitpress2.mit.edu/e-journals/LEA/ecard
Warmest wishes for the new year from all of us at LEA!