Our Team

The multidisciplinary team at Ideum is comprised of industry professionals from a diverse set of backgrounds in interactive exhibit development, game design and development, low-level software programming and web development. Our combined experience hails from both the commercial and informal science education worlds.

Jim Spadaccini

Founder and Creative Director

Jim Spadaccini / Founder and Creative Director

In 1999, Jim Spadaccini founded Ideum, where he is the Creative Director and Founder. He helps direct Ideum’s commercial hardware and software initiatives and provides creative direction for custom software and installation projects

Jim was the Principal Investigator for the National Science Foundation (NSF) sponsored Open Exhibits software and community initiative and a co-PI for the Creating Museum Media for Everyone (CMME) project. In addition, he was co-Chair of the NSF-funded Human Computer Interaction in Informal Science Education (HCI+ISE) conference. Additionally, Jim was a Principal Investigator on the NASA funded Space Weather Mobile project and co-PI on a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) sponsored project, Hurricanes and Climate Change.

In addition to his responsibilities at Ideum, Jim is active in the community and volunteers as a board member for the New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty. Before founding Ideum, Jim was the Director of Interactive Media at the Exploratorium in San Francisco. While at the Exploratorium, his department was responsible for developing educational Web resources and media exhibits for the museum floor. For his work at the Exploratorium, Jim received a Smithsonian Computerworld Award, an Association of Science and Technology Centers (ASTC) Award for Innovation, and three consecutive Webby Awards for “Best Science Site.”

Jim taught courses on design and technology at San Francisco State University’s (SFSU) Multimedia Studies Program for seven years starting in the mid-90s, and more recently taught Technology-Enhanced Communication for the Cultural Heritage (TEC-CH) program at the University of Lugano, Switzerland. For more than a decade, he has taught courses on digital media and museums for the Cultural Resource Management Program at University of Victoria, British Columbia. Along with his work in informal education, Jim has consulted with Apple and Adobe and has developed promotional and instructional materials for a number of professional software authoring tools.

Curtis Bennett

Technical Director, Creative Services

Curtis Bennett / Technical Director, Creative Services

Curtis is the Technical Director for Creative Services at Ideum. He has developed interactive applications for a variety of major brands, including LEGO, Hasbro, HP, and Intel, and has created digital exhibits for a wide variety of museums. Originally Curtis is from the games industry, where he worked on developing games that have reached tens of millions of players. He has a Master’s degree in Computer Science and teaches college courses on game development. Curtis has authored books on interactive application development and has published multiple academic research papers. He is an InfoComm recognized AV technologist and has a strong interest in hardware as well as software development. Curtis enjoys public speaking and regularly speaks on innovative interactive application development and design. His team projects have won multiple industry awards, including a prestigious AAM 2016 MUSE award. A fan of natural computer interaction, Curtis also currently manages Ideum’s Tangible Engine and GestureWorks projects. Outside of Ideum he enjoys studying early 20th century illustration, creating paper sculptures, and experimenting with mixing tangible, traditional arts and crafts with new, innovative technologies.

Angela Arzave

SEC / Director of Finance

Angela Arzave / SEC / Director of Finance

Angela Arzave is the Chief Financial Officer for Ideum Inc. She manages Ideum’s finance unit and helps with all strategic and tactical matters as they relate to budget management. Angela assisted in setting up Ideum’s accounting system and her group coordinates domestic and international payments along with logistics for Ideum’s worldwide multitouch hardware sales. Before working in management for Ideum, Angela was a well-known pastry chef at two top restaurants in San Francisco: EOS, and Bacar.

Rita Sanchez

Assistant Director of Finance

Rita Sanchez / Assistant Director of Finance

Rita brings extensive knowledge in the audit and accounting fields where she has worked off and on for the past 25 years. Rita brings experience implementing and managing financial and accounting systems for small privately owned businesses. Rita has extensive experience tracking grant funding, inventory tracking and financial reporting. She started her career as a bank auditor and was eventually promoted to Vice President for a small bank in Espanola, New Mexico. Rita holds a BA degree with honors in Business Administration from New Mexico State University. She has lived in Corrales, New Mexico for the past 12 years with her husband and two children.

Cyndi Wood

Producer

Cyndi Wood / Producer

Cyndi is a Producer at Ideum. She received her BBA in International Business at the University of Georgia and also studied at Nyenrode Business Universiteit in The Netherlands. She has a long and successful history creating and managing innovative communications projects for museums and cultural institutions like the Smithsonian Institution, Library of Congress and Harvard’s Museum of Comparative Zoology; for businesses such as AT&T and Discovery Communications; and for environmental and biodiversity conservation organizations including the Encyclopedia of Life, Nature Conservancy and Conservation International. She has a particular interest in decoding science for a general audience and explaining why scientific research matters.

Eric Yakley

Technical Projects and Facilities Manager

Eric Yakley / Technical Projects and Facilities Manager

Eric manages the Prototyping + Usability Lab and team, and oversees Creative Services technical operations and hardware/software integration projects. He has an extensive background in technical project management, and enterprise IT infrastructure and operations. His certifications include Project Management Professional (PMP), Certified Scrum Master, ITIL, and he holds a BA in English from UNM.

Prior to joining Ideum, he worked in a variety of industries including energy efficiency, nonprofit, manufacturing & logistics, software and brand development, and advertising. Eric is an avid hiker, cyclist, foodie, baker, musician, silversmith, and puzzle man. He is a formidable table tennis challenger, and spends most of his free time throwing frisbee for his working dog, exploring life with his lovely girlfriend, and keeping it real with his teenage daughter.

Hugh McDonald

Producer

Hugh McDonald / Producer

Hugh is a Producer at Ideum. From 2001 to 2016, he was Project Director, Researcher, and Senior Science Writer at San Francisco’s Exploratorium. He led the museum’s Science of Sharing project, an NSF-funded initiative to develop exhibits that allow visitors to experiment with negotiation and collaborative problem-solving and link those experiences to larger societal issues like climate change, international conflict, and environmental sustainability. He was also Co-Curator of the Osher Gallery, which focuses on cognition, social behavior, and the interplay between science, society, and culture, and served as writer, editor, and content developer on the museum’s Mind, Seeing, and Outdoor exhibitions and the Global Climate Change: Research Explorer website.

Hugh received a B.A. in psychology from the University of California and a Ph.D. in social psychology from Indiana University, and served on the faculty at Bates College and San Diego State University. He’s keenly interested in developing new ways to study how people use and learn from exhibits and how they interact and communicate about their experiences. In his spare time, he’s a musician, artist, and writer. His travels have led him full circle: he’s also an Albuquerque native.

Tom Nasca

Industrial Designer

Tom Nasca / Industrial Designer

Tom is an industrial designer with Ideum. He earned a BFA in Photography from SUNY New Paltz, and an MFA in Industrial Design from RIT. Tom has designed furniture, CNC machinery, fitness equipment, hand tools, and an interactive electronic costume for the Albany Symphony Orchestra. Tom also enjoys cycling, and is a lifelong woodworker through making furniture, lighting projects, and acoustic guitars.

Maddy Minnis

Photography / Videography / Motion Graphics

Maddy Minnis / Photography / Videography / Motion Graphics

Maddy Minnis is our in-house photographer, videographer, and motion graphics artist. Maddy received her BA in Broadcast Design and Motion Graphics from Savannah College of Art and Design. Her experience ranges from fashion show packaging to concert graphics to work for Dolly Parton’s non-profit. If she’s not behind the computer it’s a safe bet she’s probably climbing a mountain or traveling around the southwest.

Darold Ross

Senior Interactive Designer

Darold Ross / Senior Interactive Designer

Darold is a User Experience and User Interface (UI/UX) designer dedicated to creating interactive educational experiences consumed at large scale. Darold focuses on communicating through clean and minimal aesthetics, easy to understand user experiences, and captivating storytelling through interactive technologies. He has created interactive large-scale applications for museums around the world, including the Smithsonian, the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, the Kayseri Science Center in Turkey, and more. He received his BFA in graphic design at New Mexico State University. In his spare time he is a dedicated volunteer. As the president of AIGA New Mexico, the state chapter of AIGA, the professional association for design, he works to cultivate and enrich a culture of design knowledge and excellence in the New Mexico area through educational outreach and professional events. He is also a member of the board of the University Art Gallery at New Mexico State University.

Chris Steinmetz

Senior Technician, Hardware Specialist

Chris Steinmetz / Senior Technician, Hardware Specialist

Chris is the Senior Technician and Hardware Specialist at Ideum. He works in product and exhibit development assisting software developers, designers, and the manufacturing arm of Ideum with hardware integration across a number of platforms. Chris is an extraordinary problem solver who enjoys bringing even the most outlandish ideas to life. A maker at heart, Chris is well-versed in metal and wood fabrication, micro-controllers, sensors, mechanical systems, networking, and how to make them all come together seamlessly. Prior to joining Ideum, Chris spent several years in hardware and network support for HP and Intel, and also worked as a commercial electrician. Chris has an AS in Computer Science.

Shaun Marsh

Lead Open Exhibits Developer

Shaun Marsh / Lead Open Exhibits Developer

Shaun is a software developer for Ideum. He received a BS in Computer Science from New Mexico State University and before joining Ideum, worked on combat modeling and simulation for the Department of Defense. Shaun has contributed to the advancement of the Open Exhibits framework primarily in the expansion of the CML library and performance optimizations. Aside from acting as the Open Exhibits POC, Shaun frequently collaborates in the technical planning and implementation of custom interactive applications for Ideum’s creative services division.

Ben Hanken

Software Developer

Ben Hanken / Software Developer

Ben earned a B.S. in Chemical Engineering at Oregon State University, and subsequently a Ph.D. at UC Davis. He has researched a range of materials, from nuclear fuels to amorphous oxide semiconductors. Aside from his background in physical sciences, however, Ben is also an enthusiastic hobbyist game developer. It is this love of programming user experiences combined with a desire to learn and teach that has brought him to Ideum as a Software Developer in the Creative Services department. Ben also enjoys brewing beer, judging beer (BJCP “Certified” ranked), roasting coffee, hiking, camping, and just generally learning new skills (e.g., guitar).

Esther Lombardi

Marketing and Sales Associate

Esther Lombardi / Marketing and Sales Associate

Esther is a Marketing and Sales Associate at Ideum. She earned her MA in English from California State University, Sacramento. In her spare time, Esther enjoys hiking, reading and writing.

Nora Galler

Marketing and Sales Associate

Nora Galler / Marketing and Sales Associate

Nora is a Sales and Marketing Associate at Ideum, providing product and service information to clients with a focus on the needs of libraries, museums, universities, and non-profits. Nora received her MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh and has managed public libraries, special collections, and archives as well as having served as a Project Director for multiple National Endowment for the Humanities, Institute of Museum and Library Services, and National Historical Publications and Records Commission funded grant projects. Her project management and leadership experience was recognized in 2015 when she was selected to participate in the American Library Association’s Leadership Institute, an immersive leadership development program for future library leaders. She is currently studying graphic design in order to meld her user-centered experience with her love of art and design.

Jesse Jackson

Manager, Production + Support

Jesse Jackson / Manager, Production + Support

Jesse Jackson is the Production and Support Manager at Ideum. He works to coordinate construction of Ideum’s multitouch tables as well as providing multitouch hardware support. Before coming to Ideum, Jesse worked as an Engineer for an advanced materials research and development company as well as an explosives research and development lab. Jesse obtained his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in Electrical Engineering from New Mexico Tech. In his free time, Jesse enjoys playing on an adult kickball team and spending time with friends and family.

 

Becky Hansis-O’neill

Producer

Becky Hansis-O’neill / Producer

Becky is a Producer at Ideum. She received her BS in Psychology and MS in Biological Sciences from Idaho State University. As an undergraduate and graduate student, she conducted research on topics such as behavioral pharmacology, developmental neurobiology, parasite-host interactions, and stable isotope analysis. During that time, Becky discovered a passion for science communication while teaching undergraduate labs in general biology, ecology, and human anatomy and physiology. Before joining Ideum, she worked as the Education Specialist for the Idaho Museum of Natural History, managing educational programs and designing and implementing digital interactive components for public exhibits. She also has a keen interest in employing digital museum specimens for education and outreach using digital interactives, augmented reality, and virtual reality. In her spare-time she enjoys nature photography and bird watching. Her photography has been featured in various publications, websites, signage, and social media for organizations such as: the Smithsonian Insider, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Grand Teton National Park,and The Nature Conservancy.

Glass Cartwright

Web Developer

Glass Cartwright / Web Developer

Glass focuses on full-stack web development for Ideum. He began programming in Basic, Fortran and machine language in 1978. In the 80s and 90s he explored martial arts (Pencak Silat and Aikido), physical security and law enforcement, the copying and printing industry, early typesetting technologies, and rare book and art restoration and conservation. For most of his life he has studied traditional / aboriginal ontologies and epistemologies as well as world culture. Glass holds a Doctorate (in what? he’s not saying), is an old-school barista, avid reader, film-buff, motorcyclist, husband of 27+ years, and father of three interesting adults.

Kyle Fitzpatrick

Senior Software Developer

Kyle Fitzpatrick / Senior Software Developer

Kyle Fitzpatrick is a senior software developer at Ideum with an emphasis on UI/UX programming. Kyle has his BS in Computer Science from New Mexico State University. Before working at Ideum, Kyle developed educational games and applications using Flash, Unity, and HTML5. Kyle’s current interests include computer graphics, human-computer interaction, and robotics.

Rafael Picco

Senior Interactive Designer

Rafael Picco / Senior Interactive Designer

Rafael is an interactive designer determined to craft unique user experiences by focusing on clean aesthetics, easy to understand usability, and compelling storytelling through interactive mediums. Beginning his career as a brand designer in Austin, TX he has won numerous awards designing successful brand campaigns for non-profit organizations, health institutions, restaurants, and fortune 500 companies. Not only does he wrangle pixels during the week but also serves as a soldier on weekends in the Air National Guard and is a veteran of Operation Enduring Freedom. In his free time he is a bit of a farmer raising chickens, goats, and cattle in Albuquerque’s South Valley.

Matthew Gallegos

Exhibit Technician

Matthew Gallegos / Exhibit Technician

Matt works in both the production and prototype shops at Ideum. He is an experienced designer, integrator, and fabricator. His background includes design, fabrication, and sales of high performance fluid control systems, and custom products for use in cleanroom and other critical environments. As a lifelong student of the arts and engineering, his main focus is on design for manufacturing. Away from Ideum, Matt is an avid gamer who enjoys the outdoors, jeeping, and is a vociferous proponent of the reinstatement of Pluto’s rightful planetary status.

Ryan Leonski

Multitouch Developer

Ryan Leonski / Multitouch Developer

Ryan Leonski is a software developer at Ideum whose focus is creating awesome experiences on large displays. The years before working at Ideum Ryan forged his way as an indie game developer creating games that have too many cats for mobile and PC. Ryan is currently exploring closing the distance between art and it’s audience using techniques derived from his work with game design.

Braxton Collier

HCI Developer

Braxton Collier / HCI Developer

Braxton is an HCI (Human Computer Interaction) Developer at Ideum. He has a BS in physics from Yale University, a PhD in mathematics from The University of Texas at Austin, and an MSc in computer science from Imperial College London. During his time in academia he was involved in research in a wide range of topics in physics and math. More recently, he has worked as a software developer focusing on the creation of innovative educational applications for multitouch devices. In his spare time he loves to draw and paint, and is a lifelong lover of museums.

Andrew Ferrer

3D Artist

Andrew Ferrer / 3D Artist

Andrew is a 3D Artist at Ideum. Andrew comes to Ideum with a Bachelors of Fine Arts in Media Arts and Animation from the Illinois Institute of Art in Chicago and a strong fine arts background. Andrew has extensive experience working as a 3D artist and on visual effects for television and movies.

Jiani Chen

Software Developer

Jiani Chen / Software Developer

Jiani is a Software Developer at Ideum. She received her MS in Computer Science from the University of New Mexico. Jiani has worked on developing Light Stencil and other applications for the Sprout by HP. Jiani strives to create awesome human-computer interaction software.

Jason Martinez

Accountant

Jason Martinez / Accountant

Jason is the Accountant at Ideum. He is currently completing his Masters in Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting at the University of New Mexico. Prior to joining Ideum, Jason worked at the UNM Controllers Office. Jason has also worked with other areas of UNM and the City of Albuquerque to create and implement standard practices in Internal Auditing and IT implementation/strategy among organizations. Jason is a native northern New Mexican who enjoys the outdoors and auto-mechanics in his off time from work.

Luke Balaoro

Software Developer

Luke Balaoro / Software Developer

Luke is a Software Developer at Ideum. He received his BS in Computer Science at the University of New Mexico. Prior to joining Ideum, Luke wrote software for the ARTSLab @ UNM, including visualization software for their G-Dome, a miniature planetarium, and an augmented/virtual reality experience using an Oculus Rift and Vicon motion tracking system.

Jake McCullough

Exhibit Technician Team Leader

Jake McCullough / Exhibit Technician Team Leader

Jacob works in the Prototyping and Usability Lab where he aids in the assembly of new Multi-touch products. Creating the best multi-touch product is what Jacob strives to do. He currently attends CNM/UNM as a Computer Science Major. Lately, he has been meddling in Video Game development because his whole life has been spent playing games. He is also a Quadcopter and Drone enthusiast. Fun Fact: Jacob is the ninth cousin of President Obama and Brad Pitt (although he doubts they know that).

Cheyenne Bsaies

Project Coordinator

Cheyenne Bsaies / Project Coordinator

Cheyenne is a Project Coordinator at Ideum. She received a BA in Literature from the University of Houston and completed an MA in Museum Studies at Syracuse University. Prior to joining Ideum, she did curriculum design and fine arts instruction for museums and enrichment programs, designed and installed immersive gaming experiences and museum exhibits, and built custom frames and displays for both private and public collections. Across a varied career, she has been consistently committed to the craft of storytelling. Down dark alleys and behind ornately locked doors, you can find her dabbling in bookbinding, puppetry and voice acting.

Andrew Wallace

QA & Logistics Lead

Andrew Wallace / QA & Logistics Lead

Andrew works in Logistics, establishing new procedures and performing quality control on touch hardware. He graduated from the University of New Mexico with a triple major in Biology, Economics, and German, and is excited to apply his (very relevant) education to the challenges of the tech industry. In his free time, Andrew enjoys gaming, biking, snowboarding, and rock climbing.

Malik Daniels

Photography / Videography

Malik Daniels / Photography / Videography

Malik Daniels is a in-house videographer and photographer for Ideum. Malik received his BA in Moving Images Art from College of Santa Fe. Prior to joining Ideum, Malik worked in fashion and cinematic portrait photography, showcasing work in Trend Magazine, Ellements Magazine, KoKo Mag and Dreamingless Magazine. He has also worked as a director of photography and camera assistant on a number of short and feature films. In his free time, Malik reviews films for the online blog and public access show Media Glitch.

James Romero

Junior Designer

James Romero / Junior Designer

James works as a Junior Designer at Ideum. He is currently studying Entertainment Design and Film at the University of New Mexico. He has worked on numerous projects in design, motion graphics, game development, and quality assurance for the Lowell Space Observatory, Sullivan Brothers Veteran Museum, New York Racing Association, GestureWorks Gameplay, and others. Outside of the company, James enjoys working as a designer and lead artist for local community projects, animations, and games.

Robert Demsey

Exhibit Technician

Robert Demsey / Exhibit Technician

Robert works in Ideum’s production studio constructing Platform and Presenter multitouch exhibits. Robert also works in the technical support team aiding clients and Ideum staff alike. Away from Ideum Robert is a student at the University of New Mexico pursuing a Bachelors in mechanical engineering and also creates hand blown glass sculpture and jewelry.

Greg Derrick

Exhibit Technician

Greg Derrick / Exhibit Technician

Greg is an Exhibit Technician in Ideum’s production lab. A pop culture and technology obsessive, Greg has an extensive background in IT, networking, web development, graphic design, and he is usually rapid-firing quotes from movies and television. Outside of Ideum, Greg owns a karaoke company, enjoys playing video games and binge watching TV shows. He also has a pair of fluffy white dogs.

Finley Overbey

Exhibit Technician

Finley Overbey / Exhibit Technician

Fin s an exhibit technician at Ideum, carefully assembling the tops for Ideum’s multitouch tables with a desire to ensure that every unit is the best it can be. In fact, you’ll probably get a call from him the day your unit ships and, if you ask, he can tell you the name the team gave the unit during build-out. Fin is a cook, gamer, massage therapist, bassist, biker, but mostly just a heartfelt supporter of mom and pop businesses.

Joseph Donovan

Exhibit Designer

Joseph Donovan / Exhibit Designer

Joe is a designer at Ideum specializing in graphic and interaction design. He comes to Ideum from PRNewswire, where he worked at customer content optimization and copyediting. He also served on PRNewswire’s internal software development team, practicing enterprise UX design for improving workflow efficiency. In his spare time, he enjoys freelance graphic and web design, and also music composition and soundtrack production. Joe has a BA in both Music and English from Ave Maria University in Naples, Florida.

David Bayer

Exhibit Technician

David Bayer / Exhibit Technician

David is an Exhibit Technician at Ideum, where he assembles multi-touch tables. He has an extensive background in IT as well as an associates of applied science. He first got into computers thanks to gaming and later learned programming. After some years working for a small business doing IT he decided to return to school, where he graduated from CNM as an electrical technician.

Cairn Overturf

Software Developer

Cairn Overturf / Software Developer

Cairn Overturf is a software developer at Ideum. He recently graduated from the University of New Mexico with a B.S. in Applied Math. Cairn is interested in physical simulation and computer vision.

Jose Crespin

Creative Design Intern

Jose Crespin / Creative Design Intern

Jose is a Creative Services Design Intern for Ideum. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Communication with an emphasis in Graphic Design, graduating magna cum laude. He has over 6 years experience in graphic design doing freelance work for clients such as the United World College-USA, The Alzheimers Association of New Mexico, New Mexico Association for Museums, small businesses and individuals. In his free time he collects and shoots with vintage and modern day film cameras. He enjoys being in nature and hiking when not behind his computer. Some of his other interests are architecture, cooking, music, cinematography and art.

Nick Schrandt

HCI Programmer

Nick Schrandt / HCI Programmer

Nick is an HCI Programmer at Ideum. He graduated from UNM with a Bachelors degree in History and is in the process of pursuing a Masters degree in Computer Science. In his free time he is a private piano teacher working from his home studio, focusing mainly in Impressionist classical music. Nick also spends his time volunteering at the Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department as an adoption counselor and volunteer team mentor.