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Past Seminars

The HCII Seminar Series has been a weekly tradition at CMU since 1990. Details of our seminars from 2014 to present, as well as many of their recordings, are available below. A few years ago, we held a year of special programming in celebration of the seminar's 25th anniversary.

Date Title Speaker Seminar Video Abstract
Embodied Empathic Agents - Just What Tutoring Systems Need?
Ruth Aylett
Professor of Computer Science, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, UK
Seminar Video Embodied empathic agents are characters that, by their actions and behaviours, are able to show empathy (or not) for other characters; and/or characters that, by their appearance, situation, and behaviour, are able to trigger empathic reactions in the user. In this talk we discuss… Full Details
Social Capital as a Concept in Human-Computer Interaction - From Bowling Together to Friendsourcing Cliff Lampe
Associate Professor, University of Michigan School of Information
Seminar Video Social capital is a construct describing the resources one can draw from social network connections. This talk will describe social capital as a concept, and the ways it has been described, operationalized, and designed in HCI research. Using Paul Resnick’s classic “Bowling Together” article as a… Full Details
Post-Doc Short Talks 2
Michael Eagle, Swarup Kumar Sahoo, Ran Liu
Postdoctoral Researchers, Human-Computer Interaction Institute, Carnegie Mellon University
Speaker: Michael Eagle Title: Predicting Individual Differences for Learner Modeling in Intelligent Tutors from Previous Learner Activities Abstract: This study examines how accurately individual student differences in learning can be predicted from prior student learning… Full Details
Post-Doc Short Talks 1
Sangwon Bae, Joel Chan, Irene-Angelica Chounta
Postdoctoral Researchers, Human-Computer Interaction Institute, Carnegie Mellon University
Speaker: Joel Chan Title: Accelerating innovation with computational analogy: Challenges and new solutions Abstract: Ideas from research papers in a different domain can trigger creative breakthroughs. But most papers outside of one’s domain are not useful: the ones that trigger… Full Details
Instrumented and Connected: Designing Next-Generation Learning Experiences
Tovi Grossman
Distinguished Research Scientist, Autodesk
Today, we are moving faster than ever towards Weiser’s seminal vision of technology being woven into the fabric of our everyday lives. Not only have we adopted mobile, and more recently, wearable technologies, that we depend on almost every hour of our waking lives, there is an internet, and more… Full Details
Collaborative News: From “Narcotweets” to Journalism-as-a-Service
Andrés Monroy-Hernández
Affiliate Professor, University of Washington
Seminar Video How do people living in the midst of war use social media, and what can we learn from them to design the next generation of news technologies?  In this presentation, I start by narrating how residents of cities afflicted by the Mexican Drug War use social media to circumvent censorship imposed… Full Details
"Primordial", Ecological Design and the Nature of Things
Mickey McManus
Research Fellow, Office of the CTO, Autodesk
Seminar Video In his current research project, “Primordial," Mickey McManus and his team are exploring the impact on design when three inevitable technology trends converge. Often called the “Internet of Things,” pervasive computing is a game-changer that's on a collision course with two… Full Details
Special HCI Seminar: Finding Gender-Inclusiveness Software Issues in the Real World with GenderMag
Margaret Burnett
Distinguished Professor, School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Oregon State University
Seminar Video Gender inclusiveness in computing settings is receiving a lot of attention, but one potentially critical factor has mostly been overlooked: software itself. To help close this gap, we recently created GenderMag, a systematic inspection method to enable software practitioners to evaluate their… Full Details
CANCELLED - HCII Seminar Series: Kellee Santiago
Confessions of a Design Therapist Norm Cox
Owner/Principal, Cox & Hall, LLC
In this lecture, Norm Cox will explore the early design roots of user interface, interaction and experience design, beginning with Xerox’s Star workstation designed at the famous Palo Alto Research Center. Drawing from his 34 years of consulting in user experience design, he will also share stories… Full Details
Interactive Visual Tools for Mining Large Graphs Polo Chau
Assistant Professor, School of Computational Science & Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology
Seminar Video At the Polo Club of Data Science, we innovate at the intersection of HCI and Data Mining, combining the best from both worlds to synthesize scalable interactive tools for making sense of billion-scale graph data. I will present some of our latest works, including: (1) GLO-STIX, a… Full Details
Leading the Startup UX Uday Gajendar
Principal UX Designer (independent)
Seminar Video Let's imagine: You've happily graduated from CMU and just joined a startup as the lead (or maybe only!) designer. Nice! But you know you need to make quick impact for credibility and value to the product --and the company! But you’ve inherited a product lacking visual consistency or user-centered… Full Details
The Role of Cognitive Strategy in Human-Computer Interaction
Anthony Hornof
Associate Professor, Department of Computer and Information Science, University of Oregon
Seminar Video A fundamental challenge for the field of human-computer interaction (HCI) is to develop, identify and promote engineering approaches that can predict the usability and learnability of a user interface before it is built. Research in computational cognitive modeling aims to develop and… Full Details
Test Seminar James Bond
Her Majesty's Secret Agent
Think you have what it takes to become James Bond? This seminar will explain the process in which Her Majesty recruits James Bonde wannabes. Hail Britannia! We don't compare ourselves with other 3 letter agencies. 
A Computer Scientist's View of HCI, Systems and Theory Jason Hong
Associate Professor
Seminar Video This talk is actually two talks, one about research our team did in applying social psychology to cybersecurity, and another about the nature and role of theory in HCI and how it relates to systems and practice.   The research part of the talk looks at problems cybersecurity is facing, and… Full Details
HCII Seminar Series: Steven Dow
Steven Dow
Assistant Professor, Human-Computer Interaction Institute, Carnegie Mellon University
Seminar Video   A Research Journey from Telepresence to Design Theory to Social Computing Research, like life, often takes us in unexpected directions. This talk reflects on my research journey through HCI. It began nearly 20 years ago as a U. Iowa undergrad when I helped design the remote-operator… Full Details
From EHRs to Body-Worn Sensors: Finding Causes of Health and Disease Samantha Kleinberg
Assistant Professor, Computer Science, Stevens Institute of Technology
Seminar Video Massive amounts of medical data from electronic health records are now being mined by researchers, and can be used to improve care such as by finding factors affecting the recovery of patients in intensive care, or early risk factors for heart failure. However, patients are highly heterogeneous,… Full Details
Interacting with Personal Fabrication Machines Stefanie Mueller
PhD Student, Human Computer Interaction Lab, Hasso Plattner Institute
Seminar Video Even though considered a rapid prototyping tool, 3D printers are very slow. Many objects require several hours of printing time or even have to print overnight. One could argue that the way 3D printers are currently operated is similar to the batch processing of punched cards in the early days of… Full Details
Modeling Human Communication Dynamics Louis-Philippe Morency
Assistant Professor, Language Technology Institute, Carnegie Mellon University
Seminar Video Human face-to-face communication is a little like a dance, in that participants continuously adjust their behaviors based on verbal and nonverbal cues from the social context. Today's computers and interactive devices are still lacking many of these human-like abilities to hold fluid and natural… Full Details
Unlocking the Potential of Algorithms in Human Matters Min Kyung Lee
Research Scientist, Center for Machine Learning and Health, Carnegie Mellon University
Even beyond industrial domains such as production and operation management, algorithms increasingly act as mediators between people and the world around them, from curating Facebook walls to matching riders with Uber drivers to selecting top job candidates on LinkedIn. Yet despite their often-… Full Details
Playing with the Senses Heather Kelley
Assistant Teaching Professor, Entertainment Technology Center, Carnegie Mellon University
Seminar Video Widely-available digital games are usually limited to technologies that reach our sense of sight and sound.  Yet so much more is possible in the realm of expressive communication through playful interaction. In a review of some recent research-creation projects, we’ll explore the limitations… Full Details
Evidence-oriented Programming Andreas Stefik
Assistant Professor, Department of Computer Science, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Seminar Video Computer science has a long and complex history with programming languages. Historically, we have conducted evaluations using proofs, to ensure they give us the answers we intend, and performance data, to ensure they perform efficiently. While these two techniques are well established and… Full Details
From Paid to Organic Crowdsourcing Krzysztof Gajos
Associate Professor of Computer Science, Harvard Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Seminar Video Human computation systems seamlessly combine human perception, creativity and knowledge with machine-driven algorithmic computation.  Such systems have been demonstrated to accomplish tasks that could not previously be accomplished by either machines or by non-experts alone.  Contemporary… Full Details
Barbarians Ambra Trotto
Studio Director, Interactive Institute Swedish ICT
Seminar Video In an age of massive transnational migrations, it becomes relevant to explore the concept of Barbarians. Where do they come from? From afar or from within? Barbarians are the ones that do not speak the language, they do not share the same system of representations of the accepted situated… Full Details
Debiasing Decisions: Improved Decision Making With a Single Training Intervention Carey Morewedge
Associate Professor of Marketing, Questrom School of Business, Boston University
Seminar Video From failures of intelligence analysis to misguided beliefs about vaccinations, biased judgment and decision making contributes to problems in policy, business, medicine, law, education, and private life. Early attempts to reduce decision biases with training met with little success, leading… Full Details
Data-Driven Healthcare: Visual Analytics for Exploration and Prediction of Clinical Data Adam Perer
Research Scientist, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
Seminar Video Healthcare institutions are now recording more electronic health data about patients than ever before, including data about patient conditions, lab tests, genomics, treatments, and outcomes.  However, an open question remains on what one can do with all of this data.   Many hope… Full Details
Designing At The Intersections Austin Lee
Assistant Professor, School of Design, Carnegie Mellon University
Seminar Video Despite growing interest in interdisciplinary educations, many young art students still fear the idea of learning about technology. One of the missing pieces in enabling art students to get excited about learning something beyond their comfort zone is helping the students figure out how other… Full Details
Design History: The Bauhaus Karen Berntsen
Associate Teaching Professor, Human-Computer Interaction Institute, Carnegie Mellon University
Seminar Video The Bauhaus was the first academy for design in the world and has played a significant role in the history of design, art, and new media. The motivations behind the creation of the Bauhaus lay in 19th century anxieties about the soullessness of manufacturing and its products. Many historians… Full Details
HCII Seminar: Yao Cheng
A Glance at Design Education and Practice in China Cheng Yao
Deputy Director of Information Product Design Program, Zhejiang University
Seminar Video In recent years, China is more and more focused on innovation and design as it's desired to transform itself from "Made in China" to "Designed in China" or "Created in China". How are we doing in this dramatic change? In this talk, I introduce the development of design education of Zhejiang… Full Details