Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Opp: Johns Hopkins U Applied Physics Lab is hiring at all levels

Folks,

Chris Sexton, a former lab member, tells us that Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, which does a great deal of government contracting, is hiring at all levels.

If you're curious about what it's like to work there, feel free to get in touch with him.

Best,

Ben


---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Sexton, Christopher G. (A4C) <Christopher.G.Sexton@jhuapl.edu>
Date: Mon, Oct 5, 2009 at 12:59 PM
Subject: FW: College Relations Networking
To: "bwatson@ncsu.edu" <bwatson@ncsu.edu>


Hi Ben,

 

Just passing this way, in case you have any students that would be looking for employment anytime soon. APL is doing a lot of hiring in some relevant areas (graphics, math, physics, etc).

 

Regards,

Chris

 

From: Murphy, Stacy D.
Sent: Monday, October 05, 2009 12:55 PM
Cc: +College Recruiting Office
Subject: College Relations Networking

 

Greetings from the APL College Recruiting Office,

 

The APL College Recruiting Office is actively recruiting again for new graduates (BS/MS/PhD) for full-time technical professional opportunities here at APL. We are contacting you because you were hired through our office in the last year or so and may be able to assist us with our recruiting and outreach efforts currently underway at the universities where we recruit.

 

We would be very appreciative if you would be willing to share any contacts you have with faculty, advisors, or colleagues at your respective alma maters that you think might be willing to refer strong candidates (like yourselves) that would be a good fit for APL.  If you have a name and/or contact information of anyone that you feel we should be reaching out to we would love to hear from you.

 

Likewise,  if you have friends still attending university and are close to graduating that might be a fit, we would love to speak to them about possible employment opportunities for them here at APL.

 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me by phone or email.

 

Thank you,

Stacy D. Murphy

College Recruiting Manager

Employment Systems and College Recruiting
Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory
11100 Johns Hopkins Road
Laurel, Maryland 20723

(443)778-8227
(301)362-8248 Fax 
Stacy.Murphy@jhuapl.edu

 

  

 




--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Monday, September 21, 2009

Meet: More Abs & Pics -- High Performance Graphics 2009

Hey all,

Last week we finished our examination of High Performance Rendering conference proceedings. You can find the proceedings online here. (If you don't have NCSU/ACM access, you can find most of the content here, along with many of the talk slides).

You can find a last of papers we discussed in some depth after the break.

Best,

Ben


Friday, September 04, 2009

Hack: Non-Adobe PDF plugins in Chrome

If you like Chrome and hate Acrobat PDF, this hack is for you.

Acrobat Reader is slow, crash-prone and intrusive. Chrome is fast and clean, but not obviously friendly to Acrobat alternatives.

Here's how to make it friendly:
  • Locate the Firefox plugin for your favorite Acrobat Reader replacement (check these general and Windows specific lists). In Windows, this is typically this is in the reader's Program Files directory. Mine is at: C:\Program Files\Tracker Software\PDF Viewer\npPDFXCviewNPPlugin.dll.
  • Locate the Chrome plugin directory. Mine is at C:\Documents and Settings\Ben\Local Settings\Application Data\Google\Chrome\Application\Plugins.
  • Put a copy of your preferred reader plugin into the Chrome plugin directory.
  • Restart Chrome.
And you're done.

Eagerly awaiting the update to Chrome that officially adds plugins....

Best,

Ben

Meet: Abs & pics -- ACM CHI 2009

Hey all,

We went fairly quiet over the summer, but that doesn't mean we weren't meeting. We continued our discussion of the spring's ACM CHI conference. We thought these papers were interesting:
  • PenLight: combining a mobile projector and a digital pen for dynamic visual overlay, Song, Grossman, Fitzmaurice, Guimbretiere, Khan, Attar and Kurtenbach. A paper about pens that contain both camera and projector, enabling the projection of additional layers of content onto architectual drawings, in an augmented reality fashion that is properly registered with the drawing content.
  • The performance of touch screen soft buttons, Lee and Zhang. Examined the use of buttons on small UIs, such as phones. They found, surprisingly, that hard buttons were no better than soft, and capacitive (touch) buttons no better than resistive (pressure). Perhaps the hard/soft surprise might be explained by the distance between display and input with hard buttons, and the display/keyboard unification with soft? As to the capacitive/resistive surprise, certainly capacitive would win with gestures, and maybe also with more prolonged use. Finally we note that all the tasks here used numeric keys only, which allowed the use of larger keys. Would the results hold for typing text with smaller keys?
  • NewsCube: delivering multiple aspects of news to mitigate media bias, Park, Kang, Chung and Song. A news browser for depicting all the sides of a newsstory ("aspects"). It uses keyword clustering to identify aspects, and in an informal evaluation, helped users identify aspects.
  • Comparing usage of a large high-resolution display to single or dual desktop displays for daily work,Bi and Balakrishnan. This paper studied the use of a large (16' x 6', 6k x 2k pixels) display for several days of daily use. It found that users preferred large displays to small, that they made heavy use of the central display area with a focal/peripheral work pattern, and that interface operations mirror this. They suggest that applications and interfaces be designed to support this work pattern by having focal and peripheral modes, and operations that simplify switching between the modes.
There were other papers that also sounded interesting, but we didn't have time to examine them together.

Best,

Ben

Monday, August 17, 2009

Meet: Abs & pics -- High Performance Graphics 2009

Update: my back of the envelope below was a few orders of magnitude off! Three to be exact.

***

Hey all,

For the last two weeks, we've been skimming the High Performance Rendering conference proceedings (the merger of Graphics Hardware with Interactive Ray Tracing). You can find the proceedings online here. (If you don't have NCSU/ACM access, you can find most of the content here, along with many of the talk slides). There were two keynotes at the event; one in particular was given by Epic Games cofounder Tim Sweeney, responsible for the Unreal engines and games. The guys who authored the book Real Time Rendering blogged the whole event.

Two weeks ago we began looking over the papers and discussed a few in a bit of depth:
  • A Parallel Algorithm for Construction of Uniform Grids, Kalojanov and Slusallek. A GPU-based method for gridding 3D geometry in real time.
  • Scaling of 3D Game Engine Workloads on Modern Multi-GPU Systems,
    Monfort and Grossman. Studying methods for synchronizing systems using multiple GPUs.
  • Embedded Function Composition, Whitted, Kajiya, Ruf and Bittner. As displays grow in size and resolution, input bandwidths cannot continue to grow with the number of pixels. The authors tackle this problem by embedding processors in displays, enabling the use of higher level primitives in communication with displays.
  • Efficient Depth Peeling via Bucket Sort, Fang Liu, Meng-Cheng Huang, Xue-Hui Liu, and En-Hua Wu. Depth peeling is a hardware method for sorting geometry in depth. This paper describes a technique that avoids the need for multiple passes.
  • Data-Parallel Rasterization of Micropolygons With Defocus and Motion Blur, Fatahalian, Luong, Boulos, Akeley, Mark and Hanrahan. The future of interactive rendering will involve film techniques. This paper describes hardware methods for REYES-like rendering.
Last week we continued our discussion and spent most of the time talking about Tim Sweeney's keynote talk on the future of interactive rendering. He made several interesting points:
  • The GPU shader programming model is limited and will not scale
  • Interactive graphics will use more techniques from film
  • It will require much more parallelism
  • In software, this will require high level, functional programming and a new style of vectorization
  • In hardware, this will require 4 tflops of computing, and 4 tBps of bandwidth!
To give you an idea of what that last stat means, that is about 16,000 1M pixel textures read per frame. I have to ask, are pixels the right primitive to be pushing around at these bandwidths?

Next week we'll finish our discussion of this event.

Best,

Ben.

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Find: data.gov and competition

Hello all,

The guv'ment is beginning to make their stuff digitally transparent (long way to go). Their data repository is at data.gov. The Sunlight Foundation has a competition for visualizing this new info.

Best,

Ben.

Find: Google Wave video

From DGL lab member Tyler Arehart: An hour and 20 minutes of google wave.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v_UyVmITiYQ. Opinions?

Find: Sharp's new color gamut

From DGL alum Alex Kuhl:

Sharp is improving the color gamut on monitors, here's a little
information about how they are going about it.

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/news/2009/06/expanding-the-gamut-sharp-to-increase-color-range-of-lcds.ars


Friday, May 29, 2009

Talk: Future of Games -- Chris Hazard on Gameplay Using Time Travel

THE FUTURE OF GAMES SPEAKER SERIES
Talk Announcement

Date: Wednesday June 3, 2009
Time: 10:30 AM
Place: 3211, EB2; NCSU Centennial Campus

Speaker: Chris Hazard, NC State University and Hazardous Games, Inc.
Title: Innovative Gameplay Using Time Travel and Time Manipulation
For more info:
http://dgrc.ncsu.edu/index.php/activities/the-future-of-games/the-current-semester/118-chris-hazard-nc-state-university-and-hazardous-games-inc

Abstract: While many games have utilized the enormous computing power available on consoles and PCs for graphics, physics, and artificial intelligence, few games have realized this untapped resource for innovative gameplay.  In this talk, I will discuss in-depth about the use of time travel and time manipulation in gameplay, sharing our experience developing the world's first meta-time strategy game Achron, a real-time strategy game where all players and units can jump to and play at different times independently and simultaneously.  I will present a brief history and overview of time travel and time manipulation as it is used in literature, movies, and current games.  The types of time travel described in science fiction are much richer than have been previously implemented in video games, and I will discuss ways of implementing them from a gameplay perspective, while touching on some technical aspects.  I will share various nuances about time travel and time manipulation mechanisms and how they affect game design, showing benefits and pitfalls, and how they relate to traditional puzzles and strategies in gaming.

Short Bio: Chris Hazard is both a PhD student in computer science at North Carolina State University and the president and founder of Hazardous Software Inc.  His research at NCSU involves the study of trust and reputation in computational settings, guided by ideas from economics.  At Hazardous Software, Chris has designed and developed the world's first time travel game Achron, where all players and objects within the game can jump to different positions in time independently.  Chris won the Best Paper Award at the 2007 International Conference on Electronic Commerce and an Outstanding Teaching Assistant award at NCSU in 2008.

Host: R. Michael Young, Computer Science/DGRC, NCSU


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Talk: Future of Games -- Geogames, May 29, 2009

THE FUTURE OF GAMES SPEAKER SERIES
Talk Announcement

Date: Friday May 29, 2009
Time: 10:30 AM
Place: Room 3211, EB2; NCSU Centennial Campus

Speaker: Sebastian Matyas , Otto-Friedrich-University Bamberg
Geogames -- Getting Gamers on the Move
http://dgrc.ncsu.edu/index.php/activities/the-future-of-games/the-current-semester/116-sebastian-matyas-otto-friedrich-university-bamberg

Abstract:

Movement plays an increasing role in the game space. The traditional image of interactive entertainment - games that reduce players' physical involvement to moving a joy stick - is obsolete. Games researchers and designers are already integrating complex movement into games; Nintendo's Wii, Sony's EyeToy, or Konami's Dancing Stage are good examples. Games for these devices might use simple sensor contacts, such as stepping on a dancing mat, or more intricate forms of movement captured by video or infrared, such as waving gestures to trigger game events. They involve moving parts of the body but only limited displacement of the body as a whole.


In this talk I will present what we think is the next logical step in this process: games that require the displacement the whole body. We define location-based mobile games as games that use mobile devices that feature some sort of localization technology, for example GPS, and use as one of their main game element the movement of the player as a whole.


Although there are early examples of location-based mobile games, even commercial ones, it is still not completely understood how the physical challenges (locomotion) of such a game interact with the strategic elements (reasoning) and how each contributes to the game playing experience. Our Geogames framework (http://www.kinf.wiai.uni-bamberg.de/geogames/) has been designed to systematically explore that issue. This framework enables a game designer to turn almost any classical board game or card game – together with its specific form of strategic reasoning – into a location-based mobile game. A special synchronization mechanism controls the spatio-temporal game flow of a Geogame and permits the seamless integration of educational content.


Further topics in this talk are the spatial separation of players, Geogames for linear game boards, where players are only interested to move in one direction, and the design principles for location-based mobile games with purpose.

Speaker Bio:
Sebastian Matyas is a PhD candidate at the Chair of Computing in the Cultural Sciences and research assistant at the Laboratory for Semantic Information Technology since 2004 at the University of Bamberg. In his PhD project he is interested in data quality aspects of geospatial documents created by communities of voluntary contributors. His other main research interests are in the field of semantic information technology, spatial data handling and mobile applications, especially location-based mobile games. As part of his further scientific tasks he has done reviewing work for the German Artificial Intelligence (KI 2006), the Geographic Information Science (AGILE 2007), the Advances in Computer Entertainment (ACE 2008) and the Computer Human Interaction (CHI 2009) conference. Furthermore he was part of the program committee for the Gameo-On NA (2006 and 2007) and the Game-On (2007) conference series.e co-founded the ethnographic research group that eventually became People and Practices Research, and Tektronix Laboratories, where he developed qualitative design methodologies and built advanced interface prototypes.

Parking:

Visitors coming to this talk from off-campus locations should obtain a visitors' parking pass from the Centennial Campus Visitors' Center and park in the Partners Way Parking Deck. For Specific directions, see this map (pdf). Note that this map directs you to EB2. This talk is held in EB2, shown on the map adjacent to EB1.


R. Michael Young
Director, Liquid Narrative Group
Department of Computer Science, NC State University
http://liquidnarrative.csc.ncsu.edu/rmy





--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Course: analyzing messy human data

Folks,

Simon Hsiang, a collaborator, is teaching an interesting course on optimizing and analyzing messy human-generated data.

Best,

Ben.

***

Ben,

 

I am offering ISE794 next semester.  It is a course on how to find a satisficing solution based on ambiguous human opinions, uncertain situations, and unreliable data. The syllabus is attached, and I will have the lecture notes ready for review.  I call it the "touchy-feely" optimization, though the official course title is risk assessment. 

 

At any rate, could you pass the syllabus to your students with similar research interest?

 

Thank you

 

Simon M. Hsiang, PhD PE CPE

Associate Professor

 

Department of Industrial and System Engineering

446 Daniels Hall

111 Lampe Drive

Raleigh, NC 27695-7906

Phone (919) 513-7208

email: smhsiang@ncsu.edu

 




--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Find: In defense of eye candy

Hello folks,

From former lab alum Chris Sexton. It touches on many themes of interest in our lab:

Here's an interesting light read on aesthetics and design. Thought it was worth passing on:

http://www.alistapart.com/articles/indefenseofeyecandy

Best,

Ben.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Find: new display tech

From Chris Healey, new display tech is reflective, color, and interactive: http://www.pixelqi.com/products#

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Hey folks,

This Thursday and the next couple weeks, we'll delve deeper into the recent CHI proceedings, which was unusually large (~350 papers accepted) this year.

Our theme this week is aesthetics:
Best,

Ben.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Meet: abs & pics -- ACM CHI 2009

Hey folks,

Today at 1:30 we'll survey the papers being presented at the ACM CHI 2009 conference. You can find the papers online here.

Best,

Ben.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Course: COM477: Mobile Technologies and Cultures

A forthcoming course at NCSU about the use of mobiles in various cultures.

Best,

Ben.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: R. Michael Young <young@csc.ncsu.edu>
Date: Thu, Apr 2, 2009 at 3:24 PM
Subject: [dgrc-people] Fwd: COM477: Mobile Technologies and Cultures
To: dgrc-people@lists.ncsu.edu


A very relevant course from Adriana.

-M

Begin forwarded message:

From: Adriana de Souza e Silva <asilva@chass.ncsu.edu>
Date: April 2, 2009 3:15:17 PM EDT
To: Pat Fitzgerald <pfitz@ncsu.edu>, len_annetta@ncsu.edu, "R. Michael Young" <young@csc.ncsu.edu>, Jason Swarts <jswarts@unity.ncsu.edu>, david_rieder@ncsu.edu, bill.seaman@duke.edu, Michael Devetsikiotis <mdevets@ncsu.edu>, Joyce Rudinsky <rudinsky@unc.edu>, Timothy Buie <tim_buie@ncsu.edu>
Subject: COM477: Mobile Technologies and Cultures

Hi all,

I'm teaching again this Fall the course mobile Technologies and Cultures (COM477). This is supposed to be an interdisciplinary course and I would love to have students from other departments / programs as well. Could you please forward the attached flyer to your undergraduate students? If you have any questions, please let me know.

Best,
Adriana

PS: Michael, could you please forward this ad to the DGRC list? Thanks!

________________________
Adriana de Souza e Silva, Ph.D
Assistant Professor
NCSU Department of Communication
http://www.souzaesilva.com
Director, The Mobile Gaming Research Lab
http://mglab.chass.ncsu.edu






R. Michael Young
Director, Liquid Narrative Group
Department of Computer Science, NC State University
http://liquidnarrative.csc.ncsu.edu/rmy





--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Find: Spore API

By way of our Digital Gaming Research Center, this announcement of EA/Maxis releasing an API to their procedural game Spore.

It appears to be primarily about analyzing and navigating through the very large DB of content that Spore players have created.

Best,

Ben.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: R. Michael Young <young@csc.ncsu.edu>
Date: Mon, Apr 6, 2009 at 3:00 PM
Subject: [dgrc-people] Fwd: [GAMESNETWORK] Spore API
To: dgrc-people@lists.ncsu.edu



Below is a note indicating a very interesting development wrt EA's Spore and a new API that EA is making available to explore the space of creatures and creature editing performed by the game's user community.

-M

Begin forwarded message:

-
From: Michael Twardos <miketwardos@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Apr 2, 2009 at 11:21 AM
Subject: Spore API

*******************************************************
Exploring Custom Content in Spore

Spore is a social network based on player creativity.  Each user in
Spore is equipped with powerful 3D editors that enable the user to
design any creature, building or vehicle they imagine and then share
their creations with each other.  Spore also allows players to
exchange ideas and critiques about each other's creations, keep track
of a creator's most recent work and collaborate on projects.  Since
the launch of Spore back in June of 2008, over 3 million users have
joined and created nearly 100 million assets.  The community also
continues to grow with a new user joining every minute and a new
creation being shared every second.  For a glimpse into this online
community, see www.spore.com/sporepedia which provides basic
information about the newest and most popular creations among other
perspectives. Sporepedia reveals that creations have spanned a broad
space, alluded to a wide array of genres (Star Wars, Sesame St.,
Pokemon) and even explored new ideas in architecture, sculpture and
other design.

However, one website alone is inadequate to explore this huge
collection of custom content.  As a result, Spore has released the
Spore API:  www.sporeapi.com.  It is a collection of public web
services that provide access to data about user activity, their
relationships and the content they produce.  This poses a unique
opportunity for aspiring or seasoned developers, academics, and data
visualization gurus.  What tools can be built to navigate through this
data set, track trends, organize and discover new content?  For the
novice, building a web application that allows a user to easily
navigate through the millions of Spore creations and social web would
be a tool welcomed by the community.  For the more advanced student,
understanding the propagation of ideas across the social network or
building recommendation algorithms based on past user activity are
just some examples of research projects to pursue.  In any case, the
Spore API awaits new approaches to exploration and understanding of
this unique online world.



R. Michael Young
Director, Liquid Narrative Group
Department of Computer Science, NC State University




--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Fwd: Meet: randomized/sampled rendering of complex geometry



---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Ben Watson <bwatson@ncsu.edu>
Date: Thu, Apr 2, 2009 at 11:00 AM
Subject: Meet: randomized/sampled rendering of complex geometry
To: watsonbunny.designgraphicslabnews@blogger.com


Hey folks,

We're back! Today we'll look at randomized rendering of complex geometry:
See you at 1:30.

Best,

Ben.

--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/



--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Talk: March 10 -- David Roberts on games and interactive narrative

Folks,

A talk on creative interactive narratives coming soon.

Best,

Ben.

***

Date: Tuesday March 10, 2009
Time: 09:45 AM
Place: 3211, EBII; NCSU Centennial Campus (click for courtesy parking request)

Speaker: David Roberts , Georgia Institute of Technology
Computational Approaches to Shaping Player Experiences in Interactive Narratives

Abstract: Interactive narratives have an increasing variety of applications in training, education, and entertainment. In the early days, games required large physical enclosures, simple inputs, and produced very simple 2D output. At that point, the challenge of designing a game came from the constraints imposed by the hardware. Since then, hardware technology has grown at a significantly increasing pace. With these improvements to hardware and the potential for vastly different experiences, the challenges faced by today's game designer are completely different.

In this talk, I will describe a class of interactive virtual experiences at the forefront of those design challenges. I will motivate the use of a 'drama manager' to control these types of experiences by guiding players down a path consistent with the author's goals. I will describe the Declarative Optimization-based Drama Management (DODM) architecture, will present some results demonstrating the effectiveness of a DODM drama manager, and then describe some of its limitations.

I will conclude the talk by describing efforts to address those limitations by incorporating theories from behavioral economics and social psychology in the design of a DODM drama manager and games in general.

Short Bio: David Roberts is a fifth year Ph.D. student in the School of Interactive Computing at the Georgia Institute of Technology. His research is focused on various aspects of interactive virtual experiences, with special attention paid to the design of compact representations and efficient algorithms to support the authoring process. As a member of the Laboratory for Interactive Artificial Intelligence--which specializes in statistical machine learning and artificial intelligence--David brings a computational focus to his work but also draws upon ideas from computer game design, narratology, social psychology and behavioral economics. He has published more than 20 papers on topics ranging from combinatorics to multiagent systems to interactive narrative. He co-organized the NSF Creative IT program workshop and is co-organizer of the upcoming AAAI Spring Symposium on Intelligent Narratives Technologies II. David has been a Graduate Research Fellow of the US Department of Homeland Security, a President's Fellow of the Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Visiting Scholar at Telcordia Technologies and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.

--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Find: dabbleboard distributed whiteboard

Dabbleboard is an online, shared whiteboarding system that actually seems to work. Meets the need for visual communication during a conference call. Free, no login required.

Best,

Ben.

Monday, February 16, 2009

opp: Information Analytics Job Postings at PNNL (www.pnl.gov)

PNNL is a government lab in the northwest that works on various information visualization related projects.

Best,

Ben.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Wong, Pak C <Pak.Wong@pnl.gov>
Date: Tue, Feb 10, 2009 at 12:57 PM
Subject: Information Analytics Job Postings at PNNL (www.pnl.gov)
To:


Dear colleagues,

We currently have positions open for (a) UI designer/researcher, and (b) Visualization Science Researcher. Attached are fliers of the two postings. Please share these among your colleagues and students.

<<UI Designer flier.pdf>> <<Vis Science Researcher flier.pdf>>

I apologize if you have already received this message. Thanks in advance!!

Best regards,

Pak Chung Wong

http://www.pnl.gov/wong




--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Talk: on search for games

Hello everyone,

We'll be visited this week by Nathan Sturtevant, who will speak about search for computer games. Come if you can!

Ben.

***

Date: Friday February 20, 2009
Time: 10:15 AM 
Place: 3211, EBII; NCSU Centennial Campus (click for courtesy parking request)

Speaker: Nathan Sturtevant , Computer Science Department, Univeristy of Alberta

New Forms of Memory-Based Heuristics

Abstract: Heuristics are important for improving the performance of search-based algorithms. Pattern databases are the most common form of memory-based heuristics, and have been well-studied over the last decade. But, in many domains pattern databases are ineffective at improving heuristic estimates. In this talk I will describe several of these domains, including path-finding for commercial video games, and motivate how improved heuristics can be used. I will then present new research on canonical and differential heuristics. These heuristics provide an order of magnitude or larger reduction in search effort over the previous best-known techniques.

Short Bio: Nathan Sturtevant is currently an adjunct professor in Computer Science at the University of Alberta, in Edmonton, Canada. He received his bachelor's degree from UC Berkeley and his PhD in from UCLA in 2003. His main research focus is in heuristic search with an interest in single- and multi-player games. Nathan's techniques have been implemented in BioWare's upcoming game, Dragon Age (http://dragonage.bioware.com/). Nathan is also known as the author of the popular 1990s Mac shareware game, Dome Wars.




--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Opp: RIT Graduate Program in Imaging Science

For those of you not already in graduate school. Jim is a good colleague and a friendly fellow, and an expert in imaging and perception.

Best,

Ben.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Jim Ferwerda <jaf@cis.rit.edu>
Date: Sat, Feb 14, 2009 at 11:21 PM
Subject: RIT Graduate Program in Imaging Science
To: bwatson@ncsu.edu


Dear Ben,

We are growing our graduate program in Imaging Science and are looking for additional applicants. If you know of strong students who would be a good fit to our program, please pass this note on to them. Also, we would appreciate the word getting out more broadly as well through a student group list.  Thanks!

-Jim

Graduate Assistantships in Imaging Science at the Rochester Institute of Technology

The Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Science offers M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Imaging Science with concentrations in earth remote sensing, astronomical imaging, biomedical imaging, visual perception, nanoimaging, optics and algorithms for image processing, mining and visualization. Our program is growing and we are seeking additional applicants for our competitively selected assistantships. Full tuition and a generous stipend are provided. More information is available on our web site www.cis.rit.edu. Applicants are urged to apply before March 9, 2009.



--
Benjamin Watson
Design Graphics Lab
Associate Professor
Dept. Computer Science
North Carolina State University
EBII 2280, 890 Oval Dr, Box 8206
Raleigh, NC 27695-8206
Phone: 919-513-0325
Fax: 919-515-7896
Lab: 919-513-0847
Email: bwatson@ncsu.edu
URL: http://designgraphics.ncsu.edu/

Friday, February 13, 2009

Meet addendum: aesthetics and usability

Hey folks,

Because I was late and several had to leave, we delayed the roundup to next time.

Instead we talked about this paper:
This work was followed up in these papers, which we also discussed:
We ran across these related papers, which we didn't really discuss:
  • Zhang. 2005. The importance of affective quality. Comm. ACM, 48, 9, 105.
  • Lavie, Tractinsky. 2004. Assessing dimensions of perceived visual aesthetics of websites. Int. J. Human-Computer Studies, 60, 3, 269-298.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Meet: roundup

Hey everyone,

We will indeed meet today. For a change, let's talk about what we're each doing, and our current problems. We'll raise awareness, share information, and help each other out this way.

Best,

Ben.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Meet: on textures and search result modality

Hey folks,

We probably won't get through both of these, but let's talk this week about two papers:

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Meet: Abs and pics -- ACM UIST 08

Hey folks,

Next week we'll skim through the interesting publications at UIST 2008. UIST is a more engineering oriented HCI conference. If you can, have a look ahead of time and see what interests you.

Best,

Ben.

Meet:: More Healey and Enns on texture and color in graphics

Folks,

We'll be meeting at 1:30-3 on Thursdays this semester.

This week we'll pick up the Healey and Enns reading from last time and hopefully finish it!

Best,

Ben.

***

Hey folks,

We met yesterday and spoke about the following paper:

Healey, C. G. and Enns, J. T. "Large Datasets at a Glance: Combining Textures and Colors in Scientific Visualization." IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics 5, 2, (1999), 145-167.

The paper deals with a number of basic issues that have come up in our own work, including that by students Eric Price, Alex Kuhl, Ju Hee Bae and Matt Rakow.

Best,

Ben.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Find: spoonflower -- create textiles online

Hi all,

Some folks at internet publisher lulu have started a new co that lets you upload any image and have it printed on textiles in any amount, for $18/yard. It's called spoonflower, recently featured in Raleigh's N&O.

Best,

Ben.