||All new students!
New student introductions!
Much like last year, this BBL is for new students to introduce themselves, talk briefly about their projects and interests and bounce their ideas off the HCIL members. The purpose of these informal and participatory talks is to help connect new students with professors and other students sharing the same interests. We'll also cover useful resources for students (e.g., this very wiki!)
Senior Research Scientist at INRIA (link)
ProgressiVis: a New Workflow Model for Scalability in Information Visualization
Abstract: Information Visualization (infovis) has, for years, been limited to
small data: a typical infovis application will work well with up-to 1000
items/records, a few can scale to 100,000 items, and very few, including
the leading commercial products such as Tableau and Spotfire, have been
able to deal with millions of items. Billions are seldom mentioned in
the infovis literature. In contrast, the research fields of machine
learning and databases are routinely dealing with datasets of several
billions of items, and the numbers are growing.
There are legitimate reasons why it takes time for infovis to start
catching-up with these large numbers, and some work such as Lins et al.
Nanocubes (http://www.nanocubes.net/) and Liu et al. imMens
(http://idl.cs.washington.edu/papers/immens), have started to show
possible routes to scalability. However, they both rely on either
pre-computed aggregations that need hours to compute for large datasets,
or on a highly parallel infrastructure performing aggregations on the
fly. In my talk, I will explain why we need more flexible solutions and
present a new workflow architecture called ProgressiVis, to achieve
progressive computations and visualization over massive datasets.
Bio: Jean-Daniel Fekete is Senior Research Scientist (DR1) at INRIA, the French National Research Institute in Computer Science. He received his PhD in Computer Science in 1996 from Université Paris-Sud. From 1997 to 2001, he joined the Graphic Design group at the Ecole des Mines de Nantes that he led from 2000 to 2001. He was then invited to join the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory at the University of Maryland in the USA for one year. He was recruited by INRIA in 2002 as a confirmed researcher and became Senior Research Scientist in 2006. He is the Scientific Leader of the INRIA Project Team AVIZ (see www.aviz.fr) that he founded in 2007 and that is well known worldwide in the domains of visualization and human-computer interaction. His main research areas are Visual Analytics, Information Visualization and Human Computer Interaction. Jean-Daniel Fekete was the General Chair of the IEEE VIS Conference in 2014, the first time it was held outside of the USA in Paris. He is an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (TVCG), Member of the IEEE Information Visualization Conference Steering Committee and of the EG EuroVis Steering Committee. During 2015, he is on Sabbatical at NYU and Harvard.
Assistant Professor of Graphic Design at the University of Maryland, College Park (link)
Exploring Information-Triage: Speculative interface tools to help college students conduct online research
Abstract: In many ways, the promise of the Internet has been overshadowed by a sense of overload and anxiety for many users. The production and publication of online material has become increasingly accessible and affordable, creating a confusing glut of information users must sift through to locate exactly what they want or need. Even a fundamental Google search can often prove paralyzing.The concept of information-triage may help mitigate this issue. Information-triage is the process of sorting, grouping, categorizing, prioritizing, storing and retrieving information in order to make sense and use of it. This work examines the role of design in the online search process, connects it to the nature of human attention and the limitations of working memory, and suggests ways to support users with an information-triage system. This talk will focus on a set of three speculative online search interfaces and user-testing sessions conducted with college students to explore the possibilities for information-triage and future interface prototypes and testing.
Bio: Liese Zahabi is a graphic/interaction designer and Assistant Professor of Graphic/Interaction Design at the University of Maryland in College Park. She received her Master of Graphic Design from North Carolina State University, and her Bachelor of Fine Arts from Eastern Michigan University. She has been working as a designer for thirteen years, and teaches courses in interaction design, motion design, typography and advanced graphic design. Liese’s academic research focuses on search as a cognitive and cultural process and artifact, and how the design of metaphoric interfaces can change the experience of search tasks. Her creative design work is also metaphorical, and explores how the nature of search manifests itself in visual patterns and sense-making, and how language and image intersect within the context of the Internet.
||HCIL Student Presentations
Graduate students will give short presentations about their past, present, and/or future work. If you are interested in participating, please email the BBL student co-coordinators Austin Beck (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Leyla Norooz (email@example.com)
Associate Professor at The University of North Carolina at Charlotte (link)
Borrowing from HCI: Teamwork, Design and Sketching for Intro Programming Classes
Abstract: In this talk, I will present recent efforts to reinvent introductory programming classes by borrowing teaching methodologies from HCI and design classes. A main component is the introduction of the concept of "Lightweight Teams", which has shown to increase student engagement in introductory programming. We also make use of Guzdial and Ericson's Media Computation approach, gamification and more recently formal use of sketchbooks. I will show the results we have so far, which were the subject of a best paper award at ACM SIGCSE earlier this year, and discuss how we continue to build on this work. We believe that bringing an HCI sensibility to introductory programming classes has the potential to increase retention in the classes and in CS majors, and is especially likely to help women and under-represented minorities feel more welcome in the classroom.
Dr. Celine Latulipe is an Associate Professor in the Department of Software and Information Systems in the College of Computing and Informatics at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. Her research involves developing and evaluating novel interaction techniques, creativity and collaboration support tools and technologies to support the arts, and developing innovation computer science curriculum design patterns. Dr. Latulipe examines issues of how to support exploration in complex interfaces and how interaction affordances impact satisficing behavior. She also conducts research into how to make computer science education a more social experience, both as a way of more deeply engaging students and as an approach to broadening participation in a field that lacks gender and racial diversity.
PhD Student, Department of Computer Science (link)
AggreSet: Rich and Scalable Set Exploration using Visualizations of Element Aggregations (InfoVis practice talk)
(AggreSet) Datasets commonly include multi-value (set-typed) attributes that describe set memberships over elements, such as genres per movie or courses taken per student. Set-typed attributes describe rich relations across elements, sets, and the set intersections. Increasing the number of sets results in a combinatorial growth of relations and creates scalability challenges. Exploratory tasks (e.g. selection, comparison) have commonly been designed in separation for set-typed attributes, which reduces interface consistency. To improve on scalability and to support rich, contextual exploration of set-typed data, we present AggreSet. AggreSet creates aggregations for each data dimension: sets, set-degrees, set-pair intersections, and other attributes. It visualizes the element count per aggregate using a matrix plot for set-pair intersections, and histograms for set lists, set-degrees and other attributes. Its non-overlapping visual design is scalable to numerous and large sets. AggreSet supports selection, filtering, and comparison as core exploratory tasks. It allows analysis of set relations including subsets, disjoint sets and set intersection strength, and also features perceptual set ordering for detecting patterns in set matrices. Its interaction is designed for rich and rapid data exploration. We demonstrate results on a wide range of datasets from different domains with varying characteristics, and report on expert reviews and a case study using student enrollment and degree data with assistant deans at a major public university.
Director, Masters of Professional Studies Programs at Maryland Institute College of Art (link)
Tipping the Balance
Abstract: When the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) began the Masters of Professional Studies in Information Visualization www.mica.edu/infovis, there was a document and a goal to take MICA in a new academic direction by integrating design education with course work in visual communication, data analysis, and statistical applications. The audience for this new program was wide ranging in professional skills, expertise, and industry, from designers to research professionals, statisticians, and analysts, coming from private and public industries. This talk will tell the story of how the program moved from an idea to launch, to its fourth year of students, and how design, data, and analysis work together to tip the balance to develop graduates who are more fluid and knowledgeable in the process of creating beautiful, informative, accurate, and persuasive visualizations.
Heather Bradbury, Director of MICA’s Masters of Professional Studies programs in Information Visualization and the Business of Art and Design, comes to MICA with over 15 years of experience in the fields of creative and educational project development and strategic communication. Heather’s background and broad professional experience, including Communications Specialist at the Maryland State Department of Education, Office of the State Superintendent; IDEAS Grants Manager and Education Specialist at the Space Telescope Science Institute (Home of Hubble Space Telescope); and co-owner of Balance-the Salon, an award-winning hair salon and photo gallery, provides her with a unique perspective in program operations and management as well as communication through various mediums to tell stories. Heather has additional experience working in the fields of architecture/interior design, engineering, events and catering, and production pottery.
Assistant Professor of Computer Science in HCI/CSCW at Virginia Tech (link)
Combining Crowds and Computation to Make Discoveries and Solve Mysteries
Abstract: We are living in the era of big data, and making sense of this data to improve the human condition is a major challenge. Automated techniques in machine learning, natural language processing, computer vision, and other areas have made significant headway, but many types of complex data analysis still require human intervention. Crowdsourcing and human computation raise exciting possibilities for enhancing computational data analysis techniques with scalable human intelligence and creativity, allowing us to solve harder problems and generate deeper insights than humans or computers working alone. In this talk, I will describe several of my recent projects exploring the potential of crowdsourced data analysis. These include Crowdlines, a system that crowdsources a comprehensive overview of a knowledge domain using existing material gathered from the web; Incite, a system that engages non-expert crowds in helping professional scholars make discoveries in large collections of historical documents; and Context Slices, a system that combines crowdsourcing and visual analytics techniques to help experts solve mysteries, such as identifying the subject matter in historical photos or uncovering a terrorist plot in a body of textual evidence.
Kurt Luther is Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Virginia Tech, where he is also Co-Director of Social Informatics for the Center for Human-Computer Interaction. He builds and studies social technologies that support creativity and discovery, often with applications to the creation and analysis of visual media, such as animation, graphic design, and photography. He also explores how social technologies can engage the public in historical research, preservation, and education. His work is currently funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Archives, and Google. Previously, he was a postdoc in the HCI Institute at Carnegie Mellon University, and he holds a Ph.D. in Human-Centered Computing from Georgia Tech.
||C. Scott Dempwolf
Research Assistant Professor and Director, UMD - Morgan State Joint Center for Economic Development (link)
Visualizing Innovation Ecosystems: Networks, Events and the Challenges of Policy and Practice
Abstract: For the past five years Scott Dempwolf has collaborated with faculty and students in HCIL to develop new visualizations of innovation using NodeXL and, more recently, EventFlow. This talk presents some of the fruits of those collaborations and discusses some remaining challenges where new visualizations could help shape policy and practice related to innovation and economic development. Scott’s innovation network models use large administrative datasets including patents and research grants in new ways to create novel visualizations of innovation and entrepreneurial ecosystems using NodeXL software. These models are being used by policymakers and economic developers to help accelerate the commercialization of research by identifying specific opportunities between university research and industry. Examples include the Illinois Science & Technology Roadmap; the Great Lakes Manufacturing megaregion; the emergence of innovation clusters in Pennsylvania; and local applications in Howard and St. Mary’s counties in Maryland. More recently, working with co-PI Ben Shneiderman and the EventFlow team in HCIL, Scott’s research uses EventFlow (and CoCo) software to analyze sequences of innovation activities. Funded by the National Science Foundation, the goals of this research are to develop new innovation metrics and new insights into the complex sequences of activities that comprise innovation processes. EventFlow’s novel visualizations and analytic capabilities are central to achieving these goals. This talk will present examples of Scott’s work using both NodeXL and EventFlow, focusing specifically on how the visualizations were created and used. The emphasis will be on the use of visualizations as tools for exploring and understanding data and for generating hypotheses. Some ongoing challenges, especially those pertaining to the use of visualizations to shape understanding and public policy will also be discussed.
Bio: C. Scott Dempwolf is Assistant Research Professor in the Urban Studies and Planning Program at the University of Maryland, College Park, and Director of the UMD – Morgan State Center for Economic Development. He is also affiliated with the National Center for Smart Growth Education and Research. His research focuses on understanding, modeling, visualizing and measuring innovation processes; their relationships to economic growth; and the implications for public policy, business strategy and economic development practice. Along with partners from BioHealth Innovation, Scott recently founded Tertius Analytics, LLC. The startup is focused on commercializing applications of his research. Prior to his “second career” in academia, Scott practiced community and economic development at the neighborhood, city, county and regional levels for over 20 years. He teaches an economic development planning studio and other planning courses. He earned his PhD in Urban and Regional Planning at UMD; a Masters in Community and Regional Planning at Temple University; and a Bachelor’s from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
||Matt Mauriello1, Zahra Ashktorab2, Uran Oh1, Brenna McNally2
 UMD CS PhD Student
 UMD iSchool PhD Student
Where Oh Where Have My Grad Students Gone?: An Internship Panel
This panel will feature HCIL graduate students in the iSchool and Department of Computer Science who have completed summer internships at Microsoft Research and Google. Panelists will discuss a variety of topics including their experiences in their respective positions, the hiring process, tips to succeeding during the internship, and differences and similarities between their positions across and within companies. Questions will also be welcomed from the audience.
Associate Professor at UMD's iSchool (link)
What I Did On My Sabbatical
Abstract: Last year I was on sabbatical and it was the best thing ever! My plan was to do a little work and mostly sit around and read novels. Instead, I did a TON of work on many cool new things. I'll talk about my book, my projects, my new ventures into public intellectual land, and my winter in Miami.
Bio: Jen Golbeck is the previous director of the HCIL and is an associate professor in the iSchool. She is a computer scientist and studies social media, AI, and privacy/security.
||No Brown Bag for Thanksgiving break.
Professor of Computer Science ()
Chief System Engineer at Elucid Solutions (link)
The Lucidity Project: Bringing Privacy Back to the Web
Abstract: Many of us have given up the hope of maintaining privacy on the web, willingly handing over our private lives for the opportunity to connect with those we care about. But imagine for a moment an Internet in which our personal information is secure, one in which corporations can't read our posts, scan our photos, or parse our private email. Lucidity is an open source content management system that places privacy at its core. Unlike Drupal and WordPress, Lucidity has been designed to protect our data from those to whom we entrust it while providing both ease of use and sophistication. Using Lucidity, developers can create sites that guarantee their users privacy – not just protection from theft – but also an assurance that those who steward their data can not exploit, sell, or manipulate it. The Lucidity project is backed by a small team at Elucid Solutions. We want to build a large coalition of developers, designers, and end users among the open source community, and to bring privacy back to the web! This talk will present Lucidity, describe its evolution, and paint a vision for its future. We invite you to join us in this exciting collaboration.
Bio: Larry Lee has over half a decade of experience developing websites and mobile applications for NGOs and public health initiatives through the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He is currently the chief systems engineer at Elucid Solutions and the technical lead for Lucidity - an open source content management system. He is committed to developing open source technologies that protect privacy and promote democratic freedom on the web.Larry Lee has over half a decade of experience developing websites and mobile applications for NGOs and public health initiatives through the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. He is currently the chief systems engineer at Elucid Solutions and the technical lead for Lucidity - an open source content management system. He is committed to developing open source technologies that protect privacy and promote democratic freedom on the web.
Seasonal Cookie Exchange
Cookie exchanges involve people making a certain number of cookies (e.g., 6 bags of 6 cookies each) and bringing them in with a card describing the cookies. They all get lined up and then each person can take six bags of whichever types of cookies they want.