The Power of Examples

The Power of Examples

Scott Klemmer

Associate Professor of Computer Science and Co-Director Human-Computer Interaction Group, Stanford University


Gates and Hillman Centers 4401 (Rashid Auditorium)


Designers in many fields rely on examples for inspiration, and examples play an important role in art and design curricula. In this talk, I’ll describe several ways that examples help the creative process by illustrating concepts and alternatives. Online media offer a corpus of examples at a scale and diversity never before seen. This wealth of examples opens up new possibilities, but also poses several challenges. How can we leverage these resources? My group’s research tools harvest and synthesize examples to empower more people to design interactive systems, learners to acquire new skills, experts to be more creative, and programmers to engage in more design thinking. This research shapes my project-based design teaching, which emphasizes creating diverse alternatives, self-assessment, and using examples to provide design insights and teach abstract principles.

Katayanagi Emerging Leadership Prize Award Presentation and Lecture

The Katayanagi Prizes honor the best and the brightest in the field of computer science and are presented annually by Carnegie Mellon University in cooperation with the Tokyo University of Technology (TUT). The prizes are endowed with a gift from Japanese entrepreneur and education advocate Mr. Koh Katayanagi, who founded TUT and several other technical institutions in Japan over the last six decades.

Speaker Bio

Scott is an Associate Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University, where he co-directs the Human-Computer Interaction Group. Organizations around the world use his lab’s open-source design tools and curricula; several books and popular press articles have covered his research and teaching. He has been awarded the Katayanagi Emerging Leadership Prize, Sloan Fellowship, NSF CAREER award, Microsoft Research New Faculty Fellowship, and several best paper awards at the premier human-computer interaction conferences (CHI and UIST). His former PhD students are leaders at top universities, research organizations, and in Silicon Valley. He has a dual BA in Art-Semiotics and Computer Science from Brown University, Graphic Design work at RISD, and an MS and PhD in Computer Science from UC Berkeley. He is the program co-chair of UIST 2011.

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