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. 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 Deokgun Park ( or Rebecca Stone ( 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 past sponsorship of the HCIL Brown Bag Lunches Yahoo.jpg.

Spring 2017 Schedule

Date Leader Topic

Kickoff to a new Semester!

Come network, make introductions, and share what each of us is working on

Please come to our first BBL of the spring 2017 semester to introduce yourself and share what you're working on in the coming semester. The first BBL will be for us to network with each other and kickoff a great new semester.


Bilge Mutlu,
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Human-Centered Principles and Methods for Designing Robotic Technologies

Abstract: The increasing emergence of robotic technologies that serve as automated tools, assistants, and collaborators promises tremendous benefits in everyday settings from the home to manufacturing facilities. While these technologies promise interactions that can be highly complex and beneficial, their successful integration into the human environment ultimately requires these interactions to also be natural and intuitive. To achieve complex but intuitive interactions, designers and developers must simultaneously understand and address human and computational challenges. In this talk, I will present my group’s work on building human-centered guidelines, methods, and tools to address these challenges in order to facilitate the design of robotic technologies that are more effective, intuitive, acceptable, and even enjoyable through successful integration into the human environment. The first part of the talk will review a series of projects that will demonstrate how the marrying of knowledge about people and computational methods through a systematic design process can enable effective user interactions with social, assistive, and telepresence robots. The second part of the talk will cover ongoing work that provides designers and developers with tools to apply these guidelines to the development of real-world robotic technologies and that utilizes partnerships with domain experts and end users to ensure the successful integration of these technologies into everyday settings. The talk will conclude with a discussion of high-level design guidelines that can be drawn from this body of work.

Bio: Bilge Mutlu is an associate professor of computer science, psychology, and industrial engineering at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He received his Ph.D. degree from Carnegie Mellon University's Human-Computer Interaction Institute in 2009. His background combines training in interaction design, human-computer interaction, and robotics with industry experience in product design and development. Dr. Mutlu is a former Fulbright Scholar and the recipient of the NSF CAREER award as well as several best paper awards and nominations, including HRI 2008, HRI 2009, HRI 2011, UbiComp 2013, IVA 2013, RSS 2013, HRI 2014, CHI 2015, and ASHA 2015. His research has been covered by national and international press including the NewScientist, MIT Technology Review, Discovery News, Science Nation, and Voice of America. He has served in the Steering Committee of the HRI Conference and the Editorial Board of IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing, co-chairing the Program Committees for ROMAN 2016, HRI 2015, ROMAN 2015, and ICSR 2011, the Program Sub-committees on Design for CHI 2013 and CHI 2014, and the organizing committee for HRI 2017. More information on Dr. Mutlu and his research can be found at and


Susan Winter,
University of Maryland, College Park

Designing for Diversity: HCI and the Support of Scientific Research

Abstract: Understanding user needs and designing new technologies to meet those needs has long been a focus of HCI research. HCI has been embedded within a sociotechnical systems approach often considering user needs within a work context where an employing organization designs the work, chooses the technologies, and hires and trains the employees. This organizational “container” has been eroding, which raises interesting questions about the relationships among people, innovative technologies, work, and the role of HCI in this new hyper-diverse environment.

Bio: Susan J. Winter, Ph.D. is Associate Dean for Research and co-Director of the Center for Advanced Study of Communities and Information at the University of Maryland’s School of Information Studies. She has previously been a Science Advisor in the Directorate for Social Behavioral and Economic Sciences, Acting Deputy Director of the Office of Cyberinfrastructure at the National Science Foundation and a Program Director supporting distributed, interdisciplinary scientific collaboration where she was responsible for programs funding research on virtual organizations as sociotechnical systems, cyber-enabled discovery and innovation, and cyberinfrastructure education, and enabling resources for building community and capacity for complex data-driven and computational science including high performance computers, large-scale databases, and advanced software tools. Her award-winning research on the impact of information and communications technology on the organization of work has appeared in top journals; she has extensive international managerial and consulting experience, and currently serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Information Technology, Information and Organization, and Group and Organization Management. She received her PhD from the University of Arizona, her MA from the Claremont Graduate University, and her BA from the University of California, Berkeley.


Virginia Byrne and Joohee Choi,
University of Maryland, College Park

Research design review & CSCW Practice Talk

Research Design Review
Abstract: Virginia is seeking feedback on a new research project conducted in partnership with the Division of Information Technology: studying and designing an online orientation for college students about online success strategies. The project is motivated by instructor reports that online students have lower rates of retention and reported satisfaction. This project is an exploratory mixed methods design with a series of planned design iterations. We hope to better understand the real vs. perceived strategies enacted by successful online college students. Then, we will design an orientation program to scaffold online learning so that our online students are more likely to enact the strategies shows to predict success. Please come give advice & feedback!

Bio: Virginia Byrne is a Technology, Learning and Leadership PhD student in the College of Education's Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership department. She researches how the learning experience changes when learners interact with peers through technology. At the HCIL, Virginia is a member of the BodyVis research team.

Title: Characteristics of Collaboration in the Emerging Practice of Open Data Analysis
Abstract: The democratization of data science and open government data initiatives are inspiring groups from civic hackers to data journalists to use data to address social issues. The analysis of open government data is expected to encourage citizens to participate in government as well as to improve transparency and efficiency in government processes. Through interviews and survey responses we gathered information on forty projects that involved the analysis of open data. We found that collaborations were interdisciplinary, small in scale, with low turnover, and synchronous communication. Most of the projects asked exploratory questions and made use of descriptive statistics and visualizations. We discuss how these findings contribute to an understanding of the emerging practice of open data analysis and to a broader understanding of open collaboration.

Bio: Joohee Choi is a Ph.D. student in Information Studies at University of Maryland, College Park. She is advised by Prof. Yla Tausczik. Her research interest is in understanding collaborative problem solving phenomenon mediated by information technology. She studied how collaboration emerges around the practice of open government data analysis, as well as in multiple online platforms like Github and Stack Overflow. Her current research looks at online Q&A community, Stack Exchange, with a focus on moderators' roles in the community.


Diversity in Tech Discussion

To continue our discussions surrounding diversity in tech please come to Thursday's BBL prepared to talk about two current diversity topics:

1. Diversity and the LGBTQ Community

2. Sexism in Tech

The readings are simply posted as a quick read to get us all thinking about these topics. Please bring your questions and comments as we continue to support and build a diverse and inclusive community here in the HCIL, in the HCI field more broadly, and in the world as a whole.


Tim Summers & Sanjna Srivatsa,
University of Maryland, College Park

Using Business Intelligence and Machine Learning in financial decision making in Cybersecurity sector

Abstract: Cybersecurity is a complex and multifaceted challenge that is continuously growing in importance. It is a concern that not only affects banks and government agencies, as it constantly revealed through the media, but its implications expand beyond. It comes as no surprise that Wall Street would push efforts to cash in on the opportunity that is cybersecurity. In fact, cybercrime is fueling a worldwide cybersecurity market which is expected to grow from $75 billion presently to $170 billion by 2020. Hundreds of billions of dollars are being spent by consumers, businesses, governments, and the rest of the world to secure our ever-changing catalog of technology including, PCs, personal and corporate networks, the Internet of Things (IoT), and mobile devices. Despite a tumultuous stock market and poor venture capital returns, cybersecurity companies are raising large rounds of financing from investors. Due to the nascent nature of this field, the highly data-driven investment methodologies of old are not effective in guiding investment decisions. Investors complain that these methods are not agile and fall short when keeping up with current trends in the cybersecurity market. Our research utilizes principles of business intelligence and the latest research in hacker cognitive psychology to present a comprehensive, informative and easily digestible indicator for investors that is agile and self-optimizing. We present a model that considers blogosphere sentiment, relevant news, trend data, and real-time cyber-attack tools, techniques, and procedures to produce an investment indicator that will assist investors in their decision making.

Dr. Timothy Summers - Director of Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Engagement
PhD, Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University, selected Innovation and Design Fellow
M.S. in Information Security Policy and Management at Carnegie Mellon University
Field of Interest: Cybersecurity - Providing a better understanding of hackers and their influence on our largest, most complex socio technological issues

Sanjna Srivatsa - Graduate Student of the Information Management Program specializing in Business Intelligence and Machine Learning
Graduate assistant for the Virtual Computing Lab
Independent study with Dr. Summers
Recipient of the MIM Alumni award for Academic excellence 2016


Raja Kushalnagar,
Gallaudet University

Multimedia for Deaf Eyes: How do we make multimedia accessible for deaf and hard of hearing people?

Abstract: Deaf and hard of hearing (DHH) people have relied on assistive and accessible technologies/services to consume or produce aural information. Some hard of hearing people rely on an assistive technology approach to enhance aural information for easier perception and understanding. Other hard of hearing and most deaf people rely on an accessible technology approach to transform the aural information to visual or tactile information for easier perception and understanding.

We will briefly discuss the history of DHH assistive and accessible technology. We will then go through interactive examples of how deaf and hard of hearing people consume and produce information through assistive and accessible technologies. After the examples, we will discuss how the differences in aural, visual and tactile modalities influence multimodal information consumption and production Finally, we will discuss the design and development of effective accessible computing solutions for multimodal information access.

Bio: Raja Kushalnagar is the Director of the Information Technology program in the Department of Science, Technology and Mathematics at Gallaudet University in Washington, DC.

His research interests encompass the fields of accessible computing and accessibility/intellectual property law, with the goal of improving access to multimodal information for deaf and hard of hearing (deaf) individuals. In the accessible computing field, he investigates how deaf individuals use aural-to-visual access such as speech-to-text or sign language interpreters and on multimodal access disparities between hearing and deaf. He also develops accessible computing solutions to address these disparities in multimodal information access. In the accessibility/intellectual property law field, he advocates for updates in accessible and intellectual property law, to incorporate accessible computing advances such as captioning/subtitling.

He worked in industry for over five years before returning to academia and disability law policy. Towards that end, he completed a J.D. and LL.M. in disability law, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Computer Science. He served on the Federal Communications Commission’s Consumer Advocacy Commission. He has published several peer-reviewed publications and received grants in the fields of accessible computing, accessible law and intellectual property law. He can be reached at

03/23/2017 No Brown Bag, Spring Break.

Dion Goh,
Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and information Nanyang Technological University

Gaming the System: How Useful are Game-based Approaches for Crowdsourcing Content?

Abstract: Crowdsourcing has become a major way of getting work done through an online community. In addition to employing volunteers or paid human experts, computer games are a possible means to attract participants for crowdsourcing projects. Such games are seen as a promising approach to crowdsourcing because they capitalize on people's desire for entertainment. In other words, they make crowdsourcing fun and engaging, fostering participation in the process.

This talk will introduce game-based approaches for crowdsourcing. The talk will illustrate these ideas in a specific context of crowdsourcing content, and in particular, mobile media. By blending games with crowdsourcing of mobile media, such applications provide entertainment and content is created as a result of gameplay. Nevertheless, there are challenges associated with game-based approaches for crowdsourcing since they have to meet the twin goals of entertaining users and producing quality output. Through various studies that will be presented, issues in creating these games as well as design lessons are discussed.

Bio: Dion Goh has a PhD in computer science. He is currently Associate Professor with Nanyang Technological University (Singapore), where is also the Founding and current Director of the Masters of Information Systems program in the Wee Kim Wee School of Communication and Information. He was also the Founding Associate Chair of Graduate Studies of the school. His major areas of research are in mobile information sharing and seeking, social media perceptions and practices, and gamification techniques for shaping user perceptions and motivating behavior. Dion has led a number of funded projects in the use of gamification in mobile content sharing, the use of games for mental health interventions, human computation games for data analytics, mobile tagging, and collaborative querying.


Allison Druin
University of Maryland, College Park

An Information Activist, National Parks, and a Digital Future



Daniel Votipka
University of Maryland, College Park

Understanding and Supporting Vulnerability Discovery: Comparing White-Hat Hackers and Software Testers



Rebecca Stone
University of Maryland, College Park

Keeping Culture SAFe - DrupalCon Practice Talk

Abstract: The Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe) has provided one of the most accepted and widely used methods with which to scale agility within an organization. It also inherently calls upon the delivery of value to the customer. While value is typically encapsulated within the value stream, through areas such as vision and UX, one word that cannot be found anywhere within the framework is "culture".

This talk explores how consideration of culture and the target user(s) can dramatically shift the direction of a project, value stream or business. It also covers how this influences the vision and UX design within a portfolio. It will cover the cost of refactoring legacy code that did not consider target demographics when initially conceived, as well as some of the UX Research methods, such as ethnography, that can be used to build cultural consideration within your business model.

It will help people focus on a larger picture than just a team, project, program or portfolio approach to the end user... that end users themselves function as a system of systems that needs to be considered.

The talk is primarily aimed at intermediate practitioners: ScrumMasters/Developers/UX Content Strategists/Product Owners/CEOs/Biz Dev/UX Researchers/UX Designers/SAFe Practitioners

This session will be of interest to those with intermediate experience who work in UX, Agile, Business or Portfolio Vision/Management and who have an interest in how culture can be considered in SAFe and other Scaled Agile approaches.


Fan Du
University of Maryland, College Park

Brenna McNally and/or Matthew Mauriello

CHI Practice Talk

PeerFinder: Finding Similar People to Guide Life Choices

People often seek examples of similar individuals to guide their own life choices. For example, students making academic plans refer to friends; patients refer to acquaintances with similar conditions, physicians mention past cases seen in their practice. How would they want to search for similar people in databases? We discuss the challenge of finding similar people to guide life choices and report on a need analysis based on 13 interviews. Our PeerFinder prototype enables users to find records that are similar to a seed record, using both record attributes and temporal events found in the records. A user study with 18 participants and four experts shows that users are more engaged and more confident about the value of the results to provide useful evidence to guide life choices when provided with more control over the search process and more context for the results, even at the cost of added complexity.

Brenna McNally and/or Matthew Mauriello



CHI Practice Talk


Past Brown Bags

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