Employee Portrait Gallery—Art Newhall
When he completed a B.S. in math at the University of Maine in 1985, Art Newhall wasn’t planning a career in oceanography. However, he found a perfect fit between his background in applied math, computer science, and music (including eight years on the road playing with popular performers) and the WHOI Ocean Acoustics Lab. “Since then,” he says, “I’ve participated in a variety of projects involving the whole process of collecting, analyzing, and documenting scientific data." Art currently creates instrument software for acoustic backscatter sensors and other oceanographic tools, is an expert in acoustic propagation modeling and acoustic data analysis, and is the author or co-author of more than 30 refereed and technical publications. He is often found at one of his many computers on the second floor of Bigelow. However, studies of internal wave activity and its effect on acoustic propagation routinely take him to sea, where he enjoys working both as a technician and as an experienced deck hand. One sea story he has never lived down was during his very first scientific seagoing experience aboard R/V Point Sur in Monterey Bay, "I got caught behind the closing watertight doors during a fire drill. The crew had to let me out—had my hat and life preserver on Many WHOI colleagues are grateful for Art’s help with developing technical skills. One says, "Arthur has become a 'guru', teaching most of us in similar positions everything we know about Perl programming and also offering Unix courses." At a time when CIS couldn't support Unix users, he was available for questions and submitted weekly tips and tutorials to WHOI Unix newsgroups. The Unix users group he initiated in 1989 still meets monthly as the WHIT users group to discuss computer technical issues. Art shares his musical talent with the annual, unrehearsed holiday party "AOPE Dept. band" as well as other groups performing at outside special events and fundraisers.