Brown Bag Lunch Schedule

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The HCIL has an open, semi-organized weekly "brown bag lunch (BBL)" every Thursdays from 12:30-1:30pm in HCIL (2105 Hornbake, South Wing). The topics range from someone's work, current interests in the HCIL, software demos/reviews, study design, proposed research topics, introductions to new people, etc. The BBL is the one hour a week where we all come together--thus, it’s a unique time for HCIL members with unique opportunities to help build collaborations, increase awareness of each other’s activities, and generally just have a bit of fun together with free food every week. There is no RSVP; simply show up!

If you would like to give or suggest a talk, presentation, workshop, etc., send an email to BBL student co-coordinators Austin Beck ( or Leyla Norooz ( In the email, briefly describe the topic and preferred dates.

To be notified about upcoming events, please subscribe one of these mailing lists.

We thank YAHOO for its sponsorship of the HCIL Brown Bag Lunches Yahoo.jpg.

Spring 2016 Schedule

Date Leader Topic

Kickoff to a new Semester!

Come network, make introductions, share what each of us is working on, and learn about the new HCIL website

Please come to our first BBL of the spring and introduce yourself, and share what you're working on in the coming semester. We'll also cover our new HCIL website and ask our community to help us tweak and improve it (so bring your laptops if you can). The first BBL will be for us to network with each other and kickoff a great new semester.

Tom Yeh
Assistant Professor, University of Colorado CS (link). Host: Jon Froehlich

Printing Pictures in 3D

Abstract: The Tactile Picture Book Project (TPBP) is a research endeavor that utilizes 3D printing as a new media platform for designing, developing, and distributing information in a tangible format. The mission of TPBP is to give children with visual impairments access to a lot more pictures they can "see" by touch and feel. To date, the TPBP team has made 3D adaptations for several children's book classics such as Goodnight Moon, Harold and the Purple Crayon, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Dear Zoo, and Noah's Ark. In this talk, Yeh will demonstrate examples of 3D pictures, discuss the technical challenges encountered in creating these pictures, and share the many valuable lessons learned through the process. In addition, Yeh will present CraftML, a new 3D modeling markup language designed to mimic common web technologies including HTML5, CSS, and Javascript. CraftML allows web designers without prior 3D modeling experience to easily bring their creative talents and design skills to the domain of 3D modeling. The TPBP is supported by a research grant from the National Science Foundation and has appeared in several news outlets such as 9News, Newsweek, DailyCamera, DailyMail, New Scientist, Science Daily, and NPR. (For more information see:,,

Bio: Tom Yeh received his PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for studying vision-based user interfaces. In 2012, he joined the University of Colorado Boulder (CU) as an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science. Prior to joining CU, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS). Dr. Yeh's research interests include 3D printing, big data, citizen science, and mobile security. He has published more than 30 articles across these interest areas. He has received best paper awards and honorable mentions from CHI, UIST, and MobileHCI. In 2014, he received the Student Affairs Faculty of the Year Award. Dr. Yeh's research projects are funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

02/11/2016 Cliff Lampe
Associate Professor, University of Michigan iSchool (link) Host: Jessica Vitak

Citizen Interaction Design and its Implications for HCI

Abstract: Cliff Lampe will be describing the Citizen Interaction Design program at the University of Michigan, which has the goals of teaching HCI and UX skills to students by having them work on civic engagement applications in coordination with Michigan cities. The goals of the program are to explore the role of HCI in civic engagement, to train students in the concept of sustainable interaction design, and to develop new forms of “town/gown” relationships. Dr. Lampe will describe the elements of the program, and then discuss the pros and cons of different efforts over the last three years. The talk will conclude by placing CID in the context of larger trends in HCI and social computing research, in particular the expanding set of domains that HCI is trying to cover - and what that means for rigorous research.

Bio: Cliff Lampe is an Associate Professor at the University of Michigan School of Information. His research focuses on prosocial outcomes of social computing systems, including the positive effects of social media interaction, civic engagement through social software, and nonprofit use of social computing tools. In that work, he’s collaborated on studies of sites like Facebook, Reddit, Wikipedia,, Slashdot and more. Cliff is serving as the Technical Program Chair for CHI2016 and CHI2017, as Vice President for Publications for ACM SIGCHI, and as Steering Committee Chair Elect for the CSCW community. In Dungeons and Dragons, he prefers the Druid player class.

02/18/2016 Thomas Haigh
Associate Professor of Information Studies, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (link) Host: ???

Working on ENIAC: The Lost Labors of the Information Age

Abstract: Books and shows about the history of information technology have usually focused on great inventors and technical breakthroughs, from Charles Babbage and Alan Turing to Steve Jobs and the World Wide Web. Computer operations work has been written out of the story, but without it no computer would be useful. Information historians Thomas Haigh and Mark Priestley are writing it back in. This talk focused on ENIAC, the first general purpose electronic computer, based on research for their book ENIAC in Action: Making and Remaking the Modern Computer, published by MIT Press in January, 2016. They explains that the women now celebrated as the “first computer programmers” were actually hired as computer operators and worked hands-on with the machine around the clock. They then look at business data processing work from the 1950s onward, exploring the grown of operations and facilities work during the mainframe era. Concluding comments relate this historical material to the human work and physical infrastructure today vanishing from public view into the “cloud.”

Bio: Thomas Haigh received his Ph.D. in History and Sociology of Science from the University of Pennsylvania after earning two degrees in Computer Science from the University of Manchester. Haigh has published on many aspects of the history of computing including the evolution of data base management systems, word processing, the software package concept, corporate computer departments, Internet software, computing in science fiction, computer architecture, and the gendered division of work in data processing. As well as ENIAC in Action (MIT, 2016) he edited Histories of Computing (Harvard, 2011), a collection of the work of Michael S. Mahoney. He write the “Historical Reflections” column for Communications of the ACM. His new projects are an reexamination of the wartime Colossus codebreaking machine and a book, Acolytes of Information, on the history of information systems work in the American corporation.

02/25/2016 Adil Yalcin
PhD Candidate in Computer Science at UMD (link)

Keshif: Data Exploration using Aggregate Summaries and Multi-Mode Linked Selections

Abstract: We present a new aggregation and multi-mode linked selection framework for data exploration. To enable scalable data overviews, aggregates group records by their attribute values and measure group characteristics within data summaries. To reveal details, linked selections visualize data distributions on aggregations upon interaction with three complementary modes: highlighting, filtering, comparison. This model is domain independent, expressive, minimal, and scalable, and constructs an exploration space without the complexity of manual visualizations and interaction specification tasks. We implemented this framework for tabular data as a web-based tool, Keshif. A Keshif data browser combines summarized aggregations on existing or calculated attributes, and individual records. Data exploration is supported from importing raw data, to authoring, sharing, and forking data browsers, through a fluid, consistent, rapid, and animated interaction design. We demonstrate aggregation designs for multiple data types (categorical, set-typed, numeric, timestamp, spatial) using various glyphs and non-overlapping visualizations (bar, line, icon, disc, geo-area). We illustrate examples from 130+ publicly published Keshif data browsers from diverse domains.

Bio: M. Adil Yalcin, is a Ph.D. candidate at the Department of Computer Science at University of Maryland, College Park, and a member of Human Computer Interaction Laboratory (HCIL). His goal is to lower human-centered barriers to data exploration and presentation. His research focuses on information visualization and interaction design, implementation, and evaluation. He is the developer of keshif, a web-based tool for rapid exploration of structured datasets. In his previous work, he developed computer graphics techniques and applications.

03/03/2016 Eytan Adar.
Assoc Prof, School of Information, Univ. of Michigan (link). Host: Ben Shneiderman

All the Data Fit to Print: Newsroom Tools for Generating Personalized, Contextually-Relevant Visualizations (Campus Visualizations Partnership lecture)

Abstract Visualizations can enhance news article content by presenting complex facts clearly and providing contextually-relevant visualizations. By using novel natural language and text mining approaches, our systems define "queries" that encode the article's topic (e.g., "unemployment in CA in March," "global average temperatures in 2012") and the comparisons that are made in the article's text (e.g., differences between states or over time) to guide the visualization generation. Compelling visualizations are relevant and 'interesting'-concepts that are very hard measure, but we address these challenges in the Contextifier, NewsViews, and PersaLog systems, which are meant to help journalists tell their stories more effectively (joint work with Brent Hecht, Jessica Hullman, Tong Gao, Carolyn Gearig, Josh Ford, and Nick Diakopoulos).

Bio: Eytan Adar is an Associate Professor in the School of Information & Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan. He works at the intersection of HCI and IR/Data Mining and ranges from empirical studies of large-scale online behaviors to building new systems, tools and methods. He has a Bachelors and Masters from MIT and a PHD in Computer Science at the University of Washington. He was a researcher at HP Labs and Xerox PARC, and spun out a company called Outride. Eytan is co-founder of ICWSM and has served as general chair for ICWSM and WSDM. His website is

03/10/2016 Tim Summers
Director of Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Engagement at UMD iSchool (link)

How Hackers Think

Abstract Hackers account for enormous costs associated with computer intrusion in a world increasingly reliant on computer and Internet-based technologies. In the general sense, a hacker is a technologist with a love for technology and a hack is an inventive solution executed through non-obvious means. They speak the language of code which propels the evolution of our information technology. This makes hackers the solvers of our largest, most complex issues. They seek out weaknesses in computers and networks that can be used to steal data or impact the functionality of the entire Internet. In consequence, they are experts at solving poorly understood and challenging problems in a variety of settings requiring deep understanding of technical details and imagination. Hacking is an activity that requires exceptional cognitive abilities. Through explanatory, sequential mixed methods research completed over three empirical studies, I discover how the mental models and the cognitive skills and traits of skilled hackers affect the way they learn and perform forward thinking. Proficient hackers construct mental representations of complex systems and their components. As they learn and interact with the system, their mental models evolve and become more reliable. This research reveals that hackers use these continuously evolving cognitive structures to conceive of future results through speculative forecasting. These models are instrumental in setting the hacker’s expectations about effects of actions, planning of actions, and ways of interpreting feedback. This research makes theoretical and empirical contributions to the literature on the mental models and the cognitive faculties of hackers and practice through the development of evidence-based and research-informed strategies for improving the cognitive mechanisms necessary for hacking. The findings are useful for leaders and managers in private, government, and nonprofit sectors with an interest in the advanced thinking required for cybersecurity and innovation. Additionally, this research contributes to the development of strategies for developing and managing effective hackers and improving talent identification and recruitment performance. It can serve as the foundation for the development of a training and education that improve the cognitive abilities necessary for effective hacking.

Bio: Dr. Timothy C. Summers is a member of the esteemed faculty and the Director of Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Engagement within the iSchool (School of Information Studies) at the University of Maryland, College Park. Timothy is also President of Summers & Company, a cyber strategy & risk management consulting firm that helps clients understand cyber-related sensitivities of their organizations. At the age of eleven, Dr. Summers wrote his first computer program, and shortly thereafter he began hacking phone systems. By 14, he had hacked into [REDACTED] corporation. In 2007, he designed systems and processes at the U.S. Dept. of Defense (DoD), enabling the government, military and autonomous systems to withstand and recover quickly from adversarial interruptions. In 2009, he became an Executive Advisor and Cyber Strategist at Booz Allen Hamilton, a multinational strategic consulting firm. He was instrumental in increasing revenue through innovative and forward-thinking programs, resulting in over $3 billion in business value for the firm. He designed and exploited complex systems, both technical and human. Dr. Summers has been a consultant to Fortune 500 companies worldwide, such as Bank of America, Google, and Booz Allen Hamilton. In addition to being a regular guest and panelist on CNBC, BNN, CCTV and FOX, Timothy is also a regularly invited guest speaker at prestigious academic institutions and conferences. Additionally, he is a contributor to many print and online media platforms including Barron’s, MarketWatch, Modern Trader,, and various national newspapers. In 2015, he received a PhD from the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University, under the tutelage of Dr. Kalle Lyytinen, where he was selected Innovation and Design Fellow, and his disciplinary focus was on How Hackers Think. Having been involved with innovation at many levels, Dr. Summers has designed exploration and open-space design thinking concepts for Fortune 500 companies, with the last innovation project generating over $100 million in revenue for the company involved. He received an M.S. in Information Security Policy and Management from the Heinz College at Carnegie Mellon University, and completed his undergraduate studies at the historic Elizabeth City State University in Elizabeth City, NC. Today Dr. Summers lives in Odenton, MD, and is currently designing a Raspberry Pi supercomputer, seeks opportunities to help others, enjoys kite surfing, playing chess, and spending time with family.

03/17/2016 No Brown Bag for Spring Break.
03/24/2016 Daniel Robbins (link)

Visualize getting a job (Campus Visualizations Partnership lecture)

Abstract Everyone hates LinkedIn. While quite useful, its user interface and paucity of visualization tools requires users to infer relationships, rely on short term memory to form mental models, and resort to ancillary tools for tracking progress. Dan will discuss visualization techniques to assist in a typical job search process. These include views and tools to effectively give overviews of professional connections, stay on top of communications, cue up reminders, and generate summaries. To do this, Dan will suggest ways of integrating timelines, faceted search, and social networks, all in the context of mobile design constraints.

Bio: Dan Robbins has lead the creative design and strategy of high-profile, tech-heavy, immersive experiences at the Microsoft Envisioning Center, Artefact, Brown University Computer Graphics Group, Microsoft Research, and Burning Man. Although a trained sculptor, he has published and patented extensively in the areas of UX design for mobile, search, and 3D. Dan weaves together futuristic points of view, empathic observations of the real world, and leading design trends to bring more trust, beauty, magic, and joy into the world. Dan has a very large collection of sculpture supplies in his cold and wet Seattle basement and till very recently, was the proud owner of two broken down artcars. You can see some of Dan's projects via his work and art portfolios (;

03/31/2016 Greg Walsh Assistant Professor at U. of Baltimore, Division of Science, Information Arts and Technologies (link)

Abstract: TBD

Bio: TBD

04/07/2016 Andrea Wiggins
Assistant Professor, University of Maryland iSchool (link)

Abstract: TBD

Bio: TBD

04/14/2016 CHI Practice Talks
Kotaro Hara & TBD

Abstract: TBD

Bio: TBD

04/21/2016 CHI Practice Talks
Brenna McNally & TBD

Abstract: TBD

Bio: TBD

04/28/2016 Tamara Clegg
Assistant Professor, University of Maryland iSchool & Education (link)


Abstract: TBD

Bio: TBD

05/05/2016 Chris Preist
Reader in Sustainability and Computer Systems at Bristol University (link)
Host: Jon Froehlich

Abstract: TBD

Bio: TBD

Past Brown Bags

View the Past Brown Bag Lunch Schedules to learn more about prior talks.