Taylor Jackson Scott to join CogSci faculty at UC San Diego

Posted by Cecilia Aragon on October 24, 2017

Taylor Scott

Congratulations to Taylor Scott, who received his Ph.D. in Human Centered Design and Engineering in 2017, studying the role of distributed affect in collaboration with his dissertation titled “A Framework of Distributed Affect in Text-Based Communication.”

Taylor will be joining the Department of Cognitive Science at UC San Diego as a new faculty member. But the CogSci department isn’t new to Taylor, who earned his B.S. there in 2011. Taylor is happy to be returning to sunny San Diego after six years in the rain, but he will miss his friends here in Seattle.

Cecilia Aragon Appears in NBC News Story: Latina Engineers Push to Defy Odds

Posted by Cecilia Aragon on October 03, 2017

NBC News posted a story on Oct. 3, 2017 about Latinas in technology that featured HDS Lab Director Cecilia Aragon.

Cecilia Aragon

Cecilia Aragon

From the article:

For Latina engineers, the path to success continues to be an uphill battle.

Cecilia Aragón, the first Latina full professor at the School of Engineering at the University of Washington, says there is a lot of work to do.

“We have a lot more work to do,” said Aragón. “It is difficult being a Latina and a woman in a field that is predominantly white and male. But we are making inroads.” Aragón has done more than make inroads; she is a role model in the field. The recipient of multiple awards for her work in the field of Computer Science and Engineering, she’s the director of the Human-Centered Data Science Lab at the University of Washington and has created a visual augmentation system for helicopter pilots.

Read more at:


Ray Hong receives NSF I-Corps Site grant

Posted by Cecilia Aragon on March 10, 2017

HDS Lab member Ray Hong recently received an Innovation Corps Sites Program (I-Corps Site) grant from the National Science Foundation.  The I-Corps Site program is designed to support entrepreneurialism and smooth the transition of research from academia to the market. Hong will use the award to develop the commercial potential of his “Traffigram” distance cartogram, which considers more than just proximity when calculating distance.  “Most available distance cartograms are useful as long as you only care about travel time,” says Hong. “But people’s preferences are actually more complex than that.” For example, if someone is traveling to a city for a conference, they may want to find accommodation that’s not only nearby, but also within a certain price range and has been favorably reviewed. Ray is working on a series of techniques that that will make such tasks easier.

HDS Lab Good News Roundup

Posted by Cecilia Aragon on March 07, 2017

HDS Lab member Sayamindu Dasgupta and his coauthor Benjamin Mako Hill received an Honorable Mention Award at CHI for their paper, “Scratch Community Blocks: Supporting Children as Data Scientists.” The award recognizes the top five percent of submissions to the SIGCHI 2017 conference. In the paper, they present a system that allows children in the online community around Scratch, a visual block-based programming language, to access, analyze, and visualize data about their own learning and social participation. Read more in the paper and Dr. Dasgupta’s blog post.

Lab member Nan-Chen Chen recently passed her general exams and advanced to candidacy. She now begins work on her dissertation, which will focus on visual analytics for understanding changes in complex systems. Her committee is chaired by Cecilia Aragon, and includes Gary Hsieh of HCDE, Andy Ko of the iSchool, and Been Kim of CSE.

Lab members Meg Drouhard and Anissa Tanweer presented a paper co-authored with Brittany Fiore-Gartland at the CSCW 2017 Hackathon Workshop: Hacking and Making at Time Bound Events. They offered a preliminary typology of hackathon events that they’ve observed across various field sites while studying the practice and culture of data science. The typology identifies a number of dimensions for distinguishing different forms of hackathon-style events, and draws comparisons between what they dub “communal”, “contributive”, and “catalytic” hackathons. The paper can accessed here.

Also at CSCW, lab member Sarah Evans presented a paper coauthored with Katie Davis, Abigail Evans, Julie Ann Campbell, David P. Randall, Kodlee Yin and Cecilia Aragon. “More Than Peer Production: Fanfiction Communities as Sites of Distributed Mentoring” presents findings from a nine-month ethnographic study of fanfiction communities. Evans et al. find that members of these communities spontaneously mentor each other in open forums, and that this mentoring builds upon previous interactions in a way that is distinct from traditional forms of mentoring and is made possible by the affordances of networked publics. This current paper extends and develops the theory of distributed mentoring developed in the researchers’ previous work.