2018 Summer Research Program Faculty Projects

Below are short descriptions of the projects some of our faculty are working on this summer

Faculty Member

Research Projects

Jeff Bigham

- Sensors to Support Training and Excellence in Wheelchair Basketball

- Using AI to Improve Crowd Worker Productivity and Skill Building

- Computer Vision to Assist People Who Are Blind

- Improving Access to Social Media for People with Disabilities

Jodi Forlizzi

With John Zimmerman:

- Research on the design and communicative value of Electronic Health Records

With Aaron Steinfeld:

- Research on how people perceive intelligent agents as they move from embodiment to embodiment

- Research on how intelligent agents should be designed

Jessica Hammer

- Design and evaluate novel interfaces for game streaming on Twitch

- Prototype novel interfaces for interacting with video in AR/VR

- Study how social justice activists use technology

- Develop and study in-class, real-time systems for peer feedback

Jason Hong

- Build Android smartphone privacy tools

With Laura Dabbish:

- Design and evaluate better user interfaces for changing people's cybersecurity behaviors

Aniket Kittur

- Design and build new ways for people to make sense of information (e.g., searching the web, scientific papers)

- Accelerate innovation and discovery (e.g., finding and using analogies from other products or fields)

Robert Kraut

- Roles in Online Communities

Member in many online groups take on distinct social roles – e.g., providers of informational or emotional support in health support groups, norm enforcers in Wikipedia, persuaders in a lending site such as Kiva and greeters of newcomers in many communities.  Our research examines how roles operate online and how to configurated them to improve online groups.  Depending upon students’ interests and skills, this project could go in several directions. 1.Students will help develop new machine models to identify roles in health support group and use empirical research methods to validate the roles identified. 2.Students will help to design, implement and evaluate a recommender system that encourages members of an online community to take on the responsibilities associated with particular social roles. We are currently working with the American Cancer Society and its support groups.

- Behavioral Pathways Linking Social Ties to Psychological Well-being

Social ties are positively and causally related to psychological well-being, mental health, physical health, and longevity. However, the behavioral pathways through which social ties lead to these positive health outcomes are far from clear. The major goal of our summer project will be to use mobile technology and social media data to identify the behaviors people moving into a new environment do to build social ties and how these ties influence day-to-day fluctuations in their mood and well-being. 

Chinmay Kulkarni

- Design and build next-generation lab notebooks to scaffold and train novices in developing expertise in cell culture

- Redesign and productionize an online peer review tool already used by thousands of learners worldwide

- Design scaleable systems for finding and sharing knowledge in Slack groups

- Design and build new ways to support less traditional forms of work

- Design and build new ways for users to understand game theoretical algorithms effectively in crowdsourcing settings

Marti Louw

- Design and study learning support tools for citizen science and environmental education

- Design and evaluate identification games and tools for water quality biomonitoring

- Design, prototype and test smart documentation tools for project-based learning

Bruce McLaren

- Porting an Intelligent Tutor and Tests from Flash to HTML

For this task, the intern will port online instructional and assessment materials from Flash ActionScript to HTML/JavaScript.  This task is for an educational technology research project in which intelligent tutors are being used to help middle school students learn decimals.  The intern should have an interest in education and educational technology, a computer science and programming background, and experience using HTML and JavaScript and, preferably, also Flash ActionScript.

- Working with an Educational Game for Learning Decimals

For this task, the intern will port an educational game and assessment materials from Flash ActionScript to HTML/JavaScript.  This task is for a learning games research project in which games are being used to help middle school students learn decimals.  The intern should have an interest in education and educational technology, a computer science and programming background, and experience using HTML and JavaScript and, preferably, also Flash ActionScript.

- Data Engineer for a Genetics Tutor Project

In this data mining and data analysis task, the intern will convert log data generated from a genetics intelligent tutor to a form in which the data can be statistically analyzed.  The intern will then perform data analyses on the resultant data to support the genetics tutor research team. The intern should have an interest in data mining, a statistics background (R, SPSS), and, preferably, hands-on experience with both.

Brad Myers

- Smartphone end-user programming by example

- Studying API Usability

Dan Siewiorek

Using an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED) requires many pre-usage checks before users can proceed to mounting the AED. One of these checks is to confirm that the patient does not have a pacemaker implanted on the chest as the implant can interfere with placement of the AED pads. Currently, there is no elegant solution for the cognitive assistant to detect the pacemaker other than asking the users for confirmation. But due to lack of knowledge of pacemakers, previous user studies showed that the users were confused by the task. In this project, students will:

- Develop possible solutions to detect implanted pacemakers

- Integrate it with existing wearable cognitive assistant on using an AED machine 

- This is an open-ended project question and may require strong problem solving and engineering skills. Experience with Computer Vision is preferred.

John Zimmerman

With Jodi Forlizzi and Carolyn Rose:

- Investigate how patient access to online to electronic health records leads to a misalignment of goals between clinicians and patients. Design new structures and visualizations for EHRs that better align patient and clinician goals

With Amy Ogan:

- Prototype a smart classroom that detects both student and instructor behaviors and provides both training and quantified self like feedback to instructors to help them improve their teaching.

With Jodi Forlizzi and Aaron Steinfeld:

- Investigate when robots (ranging from Alexa to driverless cars to Baxter) should allow other intelligent systems to take over their bodies. Design how the robot communicates that this is happening and assess how this impacts people’s sense of trust in the robot.