Tag: s-kuhl

Closer Than You Think

The Wild World of Virtual Reality

As consumer costs for virtual-based products slide, Scott Kuhl’s interest in VR ramps up. “The technology used to be so expensive, only large companies could afford to use it. Now it’s on the brink of becoming more affordable and accessible, and we’re looking at how to make the systems useful for more and more users,” Kuhl explains.

It’s on the brink of becoming more affordable and accessible, and we’re looking at how to make the systems useful for more and more users.

If you think virtual reality can’t impact your everyday life, Kuhl says: think again. “Let’s say you’re in the market for a new home. You’re in Manhattan, but your home prospect is in Brazil. Virtual reality can be used to tour houses from anywhere in the world.”

Of course you’ll need to be able to judge size correctly. A typical problem with VR—much like with car mirrors—is that objects appear closer than they actually are. Kuhl, who’s worked in virtual-reality spheres since his PhD, goes on to explain how his research team intentionally distorts graphics to counter the issue. Newer, cheaper displays—like the Oculus Rift—appear to have reduced or eliminated the nagging distortion problem altogether. Are the newer head-mounted displays (HMD)better? Kuhl and his team will take a closer look.

Today’s gamers aren’t content sitting with a handheld control.  They want to slap on an HMD and explore worlds under sea and in outer space. Until they crash. Into their living room wall. Solving this challenge not only has gaming implications, but safety, too. Together with PhD student Ruimin Zhang, Kuhl is studying how to walk freely around a big, virtual space in a tiny, confined room—like a dorm room. “It’s a given you’ll run into walls. We’re looking at tricks we can integrate without disrupting the user experience. For example, perhaps one real step equals two virtual steps . . . we can amplify user movement.”

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After the gamer graduates, they may want to wear their HMD into the workplace. Kuhl says it can happen. The advantage of wearing one at work? Virtual screens and lots of them. “Just as iPads haven’t replaced desktops, I don’t think everyone will jump on board wearing a head-mounted display. But when they do, they’ll need to type, read, and talk.” Kuhl’s collaborating with colleague and text-entry expert Keith Vertanen and PhD student James Walker to address future VR needs.

“I never thought I’d be working with a text-entry researcher on projects. But that’s the nature of this work. Immersive virtual environments will impact the training, prototyping, education, and entertainment of the future and it requires a team of experts to navigate it.”


Scott Kuhl Receives the C2E2 Award

Scott Kuhl
Scott Kuhl won an award.

Scott Kuhl received the C2E2 award in the amount of $1,600. The award will help Scott purchase affordable head-mounted displays (HMDs) to support research, education, and outreach. The Michigan Tech Century II Endowed Equipment Fund (C2E2) is a program aimed at providing equipment money to improve the lives of faculty, students, and staff campus-wide. The program is supported by the Michigan Tech Fund, through donations by individuals and organizations in the Fund.

Congratulations Scott!


Keith, Nilufer, Philart and Scott Receive Exceptional Instructor Evaluation Score

4_facultyProfessors Keith Vertanen, Nilufer Onder, Scott Kuhl, Philart Jeon, have been identified as four of only 85 instructors who received an exceptional “Average of 7 Dimensions” student evaluation score during Spring semester 2016.

Their scores are in the top 10% of similarly sized sections across all courses/sections on campus. These great achievements reflect the tremendous effort and commitment Keith, Nilufer, Philart, and Scott have put on their teaching.


Promotions for Onder, Wang, and Kuhl

Michigan Tech Board of Control Adopts New Strategic Plan

At its regular meeting on Friday, May 1, 2015, the Board of Control promoted 11 associate professors with tenure to professor with tenure. Among them are Soner Onder and Zhenlin Wang.

The Board also promoted 18 assistant professors to associate professor with tenure and one associate professor without tenure to associate professor with tenure. Among them is Scott Kuhl.

Read more at Michigan Tech News, by Jennifer Donovan.

Zhenlin Wang
Zhenlin Wang
Soner Onder
Soner Onder
Scott Kuhl
Scott Kuhl

Scott Kuhl is a Co-Recipient of NSF Funding on Robotics Education

Scott Kuhl
Scott Kuhl won an award.

Aleksandr Sergeyev (SoT), Abdulnasser Alaraje (SoT) and Scott Kuhl (CS) have received a $702,324 grant from the National Science Foundation. The grant will fund their three-year research and development project, University, Community College and Industry Partnership: Revamping Robotics Education to Meet 21st Century Workforce Needs.


Husky Game Development Participates in 2015 Design Expo

Husky Game Development at Design Expo 2015
Husky Game Development at Design Expo 2015

The Enterprise team Husky Game Development presented at the 2015 Design Expo held at the Memorial Union Ballroom on April 16.

Team Leader
Mitch Davis, Computer Science and Ryan George, Computer Network and System Administration
Advisor
Scott Kuhl, Computer Science
Sponsors
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Mel Visser (Michigan Tech Alumnus)
Project Overview
Husky Game Development is a growing enterprise that has been developing games for computers, gaming consoles, and mobile devices since 2004. Our mission is to design and develop games for business, education, and fun. We work as an interdisciplinary, student-run enterprise that fosters productivity, creativity, and effective business practices.

HGD

HGD


Dean’s Teaching Showcase: Scott Kuhl

Scott Kuhl
Scott Kuhl

The Dean’s Teaching Showcase nominee for this week comes from the College of Sciences and Arts. Dean Bruce Seely has chosen to recognize Scott Kuhl, an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science with an adjunct appointment in Cognitive and Learning Sciences. Dean Seely values “what Scott Kuhl attempts to accomplish as a teacher mainly for the mindset he employs, and less for the specific teaching techniques has adopted.” He notes that Scott “does not differentiate between regular classes, summer youth and support for Enterprise activities as educational venues—but approaches all with the goal of creating a fun and motivating environment.”

In his more traditional courses, Scott does attribute his teaching success to specific techniques, like providing detailed assignment descriptions with numerous tips to “help get students going in the right direction.” He also provides numerous examples, some of which he walks through in class in detail, and encourages students to share additional examples with each other. Finally, he emphasizes prompt feedback for his students. He has accomplished this by creating an automatic grading program which provides a “provides a transparent, well-defined set of expectations for assignments” and a score that can be adjusted by an instructor or grader as necessary. He’s even willing to share this tool with those interested.

Kuhl is also focused on continual improvement. Though the Husky Game Development (HGD) Enterprise he leads is focused on games, he attributes its dramatic growth under his leadership to a careful cycle of feedback, change and evaluation. He sees the value of interdisciplinary teamwork, communication, development and management for students in HGD, and has led the group in both publishing academic papers and receiving sponsorship from both Chrysler and the Department of Labor.

Scott will be formally recognized with the 11 other Dean’s Teaching Showcase nominees at a luncheon near the end of spring term. Please join Dean Seely, computer science chair Min Song and the Jackson Center for Teaching and Learning in thanking Scott for his outstanding contributions to the teaching mission of the College of Sciences and Arts.

From Tech Today, by Mike Meyer, director, William G. Jackson CTL.