As an academic lab we focus a lot on formal user studies. But what about companies that are looking for a few simple ways to improve their user interface and get feedback? Lab member Katie Kuksenok’s recent blog post offers tips for organizations seeking to improve their user experience. Read more here. The post was also recently featured on LifeHacker.
Professor Cecilia Aragon presented the keynote address November 11th at the first annual I Chilean Conference on Human Computer Interaction (ChileCHI) in Temuco, Chile. PhD student Daniel Perry also presented recent research he’s conducted on game design. Aragon’s keynote talk offered insights into the evolving state of HCI, drawing on research she has conducted in visualizing large datasets. Aragon also delivered an inspirational talk in Spanish to women computer scientists titled “Choosing to fly: why getting a PhD in computer science is like flying upside down.” The first annual ChileCHI Conference was held in Temuco, Chile, and brought together the international and Latin American HCI communities to exchange ideas, methods, approaches and techniques. The conference theme focused on intercultural exchange and cooperation between people with different backgrounds and needs.
Daniel Perry (who is advised by Aragon) gave a well-received presentation on a paper titled “Diverse Player Experiences in the Design of Science Games for Bioinformatics.” The paper was co-authored by Perry, Aragon, and HCDE students Aaron Lynch, Asmi Joshi, Karin Hellman, John Robinson, Melissa Richtarik, and UW Microbiology student Alyssa-Cyre Oyadomari. The research described the design of the bioinformatics game Max5, built by Perry and HCDE’s Games for Good Directed Research Group. Perry remarked that, “It was really exciting to be a part of such an energetic HCI community. There’s a lot we can learn from increased exchange between the North American and Latin American research communities.”
SCC Lab Director and Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) Professor Cecilia Aragon is co-PI of a recently awarded $37.8 million collaborative initiative for data science research that was received from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The University of Washington, the University of California, Berkeley, and New York University are partners in the five-year initiative that was announced Tuesday at a White House Office of Science and Technology Policy event.
Dr. Aragon’s research focuses on computer-supported cooperative work, visual analytics, and creativity for scientific collaborations, including the socio-technical aspects of cyberinfrastructure. The award will support her further work in understanding relationships and collaborations between data science and science using an ethnographic approach. “It is critical to understand the culture of data science as a socio-technical system and not as a purely technical problem of developing better algorithms to process huge volumes of data, although those are needed as well. In the end, human insight will be required to make sense out of exponentially greater quantities of complex data,” said Aragon. The UW team, which is made up of faculty from across campus, is led by Ed Lazowska, Bill & Melinda Gates Chair in Computer Science & Engineering and Director of the UW eScience Institute. UC Berkeley’s team is led by Nobel laureate astrophysicist Saul Perlmutter, and NYU’s by neuroscientist and computer scientist Yann LeCun.
Further information on the initiative and award recipients can be found at the eScience Institute blog.
Undergraduate lab member Megan Torkildson gave a well received talk at HCDE’s Corporate Affiliates Day (CAP Day) yesterday morning. CAP Day is a time for faculty and students to share research projects and connect with industry partners including Microsoft, Mosaic, Boeing and others. Megan spoke about the department’s emphasis on community involvement in research and shared her recent work on text and social media analysis, discussing the development of the ALOE (Affect Labeler of Expressions) tool and research on social media Twitter posts around an oil spill.