Hi! As you have probably figured out by name my name is Laura Gibbs; please just call me Laura.
I work at the University of Oklahoma where I am a Faculty Liaison for Information Technology. This means that I help faculty members around campus to create web pages, put their course materials on line, and make better use of their computers in their scholarly research. I originally came to OU as a professor in the Classics Department, but in spring 2001, I decided to resign that job in order to work in computing full time. Why? Because I love the internet!
I think the internet is going to give us a new way to share stories again, in a way that was not exactly possible with printed books or television. We'll have to wait and see what happens, but I am very optimistic about the possibilities of the internet (have you read The Cluetrain Manifesto? This is a website that expresses many of my personal beliefs and hopes about how the internet makes it possible for people to really talk to each other online).
Now, by teaching online courses, I am able to combine both of my Oklahoma jobs into one! In Fall 2002 I taught a medieval Latin course online and a Folklore and Mythology course online too. Both classes were a lot of fun, and I'm teaching them both again in Spring 2003.
These two courses pretty much describe my academic background: I study the folklore and popular culture of the ancient world and the Middle Ages. Folklore can mean all kinds of things; I mostly work on folktales and stories and legends. In summer 2002 my translation of Aesop's Fables into English was being published in the Oxford World's Classics series (British edition) -- there are 600 fables in there, translated from Latin and Greek. You can read the whole thing online if you want, along with lots of other versions of the fables: just go to www.aesopica.net. The American edition will be publishing in April 2003.
I got my Ph.D. in Comparative Literature at UC Berkeley in 1999, and I was also an undergraduate at Berkeley. So yeah, I think Berkeley is a pretty cool place (it is just on San Francisco Bay, just across the water from San Francisco). You can look at a live webcam picture of Berkeley, including a great shot taken from the top of the Campanile clock tower.