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HCII Seminar Series - Julian Brinkley

Julian Brinkley

Julian Brinkley
Assistant Professor of Human-Centered Computing, School of Computing, Clemson University


Newell-Simon Hall 1305

Video link


“(De)evolving Towards Inaccessibility? Exploring the Evolution of In-Vehicle Information Systems (IVIS) and the Implications for Human-Machine Interfaces in Emerging Self-Driving Vehicles”

Fully autonomous or “self-driving” vehicles have been described as a potentially transformative advance in personal mobility for those unwilling or unable to manually operate conventional motor vehicles. For blind and significantly low-vision individuals, for whom assistive driving technologies are limited, the self-driving vehicle may prove to be life-changing; creating new possibilities for employment, education, and social engagement. Despite the well-documented potential benefits of automotive automation technologies for persons with disabilities, there is a concern that this emerging technology is being designed in a manner that will render it ultimately inaccessible. Given the roughly 100-year history of automotive Human-Machine Interface design, there is concern that with the relatively rapid evolution of in-vehicle information systems (IVIS), that the HMI of emerging vehicles may be evolving in a way that perpetuates accessibility barriers. A growing belief is that the emerging self-driving vehicles are being designed around the driver of the present, who in all cases is sighted and has the physical ability to manipulate a vehicle’s manual controls, as opposed to the operator of the future who might be blind or have other physical or cognitive disabilities. In this talk, I discuss the evolution of automotive HMI, describe anti-patterns in emerging automotive design, and summarize my research that has sought to understand this problem, while designing, prototyping, and evaluating an accessible solution. I will then conclude the talk with a discussion of my Accessible Technology Leveraged for Autonomous Vehicles System prototype (ATLAS 2); a US Department of Transportation semi-finalist selection for the DOT’s Inclusive Design Challenge for Autonomous Vehicle Accessibility. ATLAS 2 is an ecosystem of technologies that combines natural language processing, machine learning, affective computing, and spatial audio with the goal of supporting the experiential needs of visually impaired users specifically.

Speaker's Bio

Dr. Julian Brinkley is an Assistant Professor of Human-Centered Computing at Clemson University and the director of the Design and Research of In-Vehicle Experiences Lab (DRIVE Lab). His research is focused on the intersection between human factors, automotive engineering, and computer science; work that has been supported by grants from the Center for Connected and Automated Transportation, Google, the US Army, the US Department of Transportation, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and the National Science Foundation. Beyond automotive research, he also explores how technology broadly may be leveraged for social good, public safety, and entertainment. Dr. Brinkley completed a Ph.D. in Human-Centered Computing at the University of Florida, holds an M.Sc. from East Carolina University in Software Engineering, and a B.A. from the University of North Carolina – Greensboro. He is currently spearheading the development of a new Center for Inclusive Design and Accessibility at Clemson University.

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