Author: karenjoh

Computer Science Groups to Participate in Campus World Usability Day Events

World Usability Day (WUD) is an annual event highlighting the importance of humans as participants in technology. In a world where basic infrastructures (including health, education and finance) depend on rapidly changing technologies, World Usability Day organizers call for ways to serve people first.

We are taking the spirit of WUD to the Upper Peninsula with WUD-UP. If you are interested in research, education or service that is associated with human factors, human-centered design, usability, ergonomics or other fields related to humans and technology, you are invited to attend.

Here’s what’s on tap for WUD-UP on Thursday, Nov. 13:

9:30-11a.m.: Tour of the Mind Music Machine Lab

  • Meese Building: Indoor wayfinding for the blind; Brain-computer interfaces; Interactive robots for children with autism; Advanced auditory menus
  • MEEM 128: Driving research
  • EERC 510: Immersive interactive sonification

11 a.m.-2 p.m.: Open House, Humane Interface Design Enterprise (HIDE)

Rekhi 116: Join HIDE members for an open house, which will feature a driving simulator and a new technology that will soon be competing for our attention—the Google Glass.

2-3 p.m.: Lab Tours, Kinesiology and Integrative Physiology (begins at the SDC ticket counter)

  • Exercise Physiology Lab: Come try the cycling workstation (integrated exercise bike and computer desk), designed to facilitate increased physical activity and recently featured in the Wall Street Journal.
  • Neuromechanics Lab: Get a free report on your segmental body composition, muscle strength and power. You can compare your strength and power with Michigan Tech student-athletes, and you will find our players are very powerful!
  • Integrative Physiology Lab: Research in this lab primarily focuses on neural control of circulation in humans. These studies aim to better understand the mechanisms underlying cardiovascular disease and orthostatic hypotension, with the goal of uncovering methods for reducing their incidence.

7-8:30 p.m.: “Cyber-Seniors” Screening and Discussion

East Reading Room, Van Pelt and Opie Library: A humorous and heartwarming feature documentary, “Cyber-Seniors” adds to the important international conversation about the growing generation gap. Focusing on a group of senior citizens who take their first steps into cyberspace under the tutelage of teenage mentors, the film expertly renders a thought-provoking look at a spirited group of men and women who are enriched by digitally reconnecting with their families and each other. Finding their footing rather quickly, the group moves on to compete for the most YouTube views while swiftly building their online inventory of friends.

Following the screening, we will have a discussion of the Cyber-Seniors project and ideas for implementation in the Copper Country. Teachers from the Copper Country Intermediate School District and members of Michigan Tech’s Breaking Digital Barriers group will participate.

From Tech Today, November 11, 2014


Recent Grants

Philart Jeon: PI, National Health Institute. “NRI: Colloborative: Interactive Robotic Orchestration – Music-based emotion and social interaction therapy for children with ASD,” 2014-2017.

Philart Jeon: Co-PI, US DOT-OST, National University Rail Center Project. “NURail-Tier I,” 2014-2017

Robert Pastel & Charles Wallace: CI-Team, National Science Foundation.”Environmental CyberCitizens: Engaging Citizen Scientists in Global Environmental Change through Crowdsensing and Visualization,” 2011 and on-going

Laura Brown & Zhenlin Wang: Co-PI, National Science Foundation. “Adaptive Memory Resource Management in a Data Center – A Transfer Learning Approach,” 2014-2017

Leo Ureel: Recipient, Jackson Blended Learning Grant. “Canvas TA: Auto Program Feedback,” 2014-2015


Making energy efficient in the UP

Abhilash Kantamneni, a Computer Science Ph.D. candidate, presented research on solar energy in the Upper Peninsula at the Solar Powering Michigan conference. See the complete Michigan Land Use Institute article here.

Also, see the October 2, 2014 Keweenaw Now article about Abhilash Kantamneni’s community presentation at the Keweenaw Research Center.

Kantamneni was also featured in the October 6, 2014 article in Midwest Energy News where he discusses renewable energy options. Kantamneni’s work in solar energy with Michigan Tech’s Keweenaw Research Center has led to a Federal Economic Development Assistance grant in collaboration with CUPPAD. See the associated TV interview about the grant.


Charles Wallace Named Fulbright Alumni Ambassador

image45069-persAssociate Professor Charles Wallace (CS) has been chosen as a Fulbright Alumni Ambassador. Fulbright Alumni Ambassadors are selected competitively for two-year terms. During that time, they present information on their Fulbright experience at campus workshops, academic conferences and other venues.

The goal of the alumni ambassadors is to help increase the diversity of the individuals and institutions of higher education that participate in the Fulbright Scholar Program, which sends more than 800 faculty and professionals to teach or conduct research in 125 countries around the world.

The Fulbright programs are supported by the US Department of State. They are named for the late Sen. J. William Fulbright, who served as long-standing chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and established a program of international exchanges after World War II.

Wallace worked as a Fulbright Scholar at Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile in Santiago, Chile, during 2010.


Call for Presenters: World Usability Day in the UP

World Usability Day, an annual event highlighting the importance of humans as participants in technology, is Thursday, Nov. 13. Michigan Tech is the center of activities for World Usability Day in the Upper Peninsula (WUD-UP).

In a world where basic infrastructures—including health care, education and finance—depend on rapidly changing technologies, WUD organizers call for ways to “serve people first.” This year’s theme is “Engagement: Getting People on Board with an Idea, Earning Trust and Working Toward Mutual Goals.”

If you are involved in research, education or service that is associated with human factors, human-centered design, usability, ergonomics or other fields related to humans and technology, you are invited to participate in WUD-UP. Participants from other institutions are welcome.

For more information, visit WUD UP or contact Charles Wallace at wallace@mtu.edu.

From Tech Today