One of the largest conferences held annually for new research in human computer interaction is the Association for Computing Machinery‘s (ACM) Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, often referred to by its short name CHI. CHI was held this year in San Jose, California from May 7-12. Below are a few summaries of the experiences of some of our HCI students who attended.
“It was amazing to see so many people from different backgrounds with different interests all coalesce around the same goal: to improve the way that humans and technology interact. I predominantly attended sessions where papers or notes were presented because my interests lie heavily in the research arena. Some of the talks were very well done with solid methodologies and sound conclusions while others bordered on the absurd with vastly overreaching conclusions completely unfounded by the results presented. The diversity lunch was also a great idea because it brought together people who are often excluded from conversations around technology. Hearing about the experiences of people in marginalized groups as they navigate the tech world provided a glimpse into the gaps that exist in technological development and where efforts can be concentrated to improve the experience of all users. Also, someone created an augmented reality experience for indoor rock climbing. That was hands down the coolest thing at CHI.”
“CHI is the great place to see and learn how people interact with the most emerging technology. The most impressive scenery was to see remote attendance robots everywhere, which allow many people right to be present whenever they need to be although they were thousands of miles away. At the conference, there were keynote talks from many well renowned leaders in the industry every day such as the founder of Khan Academy Salman Khan and the CEO of Yahoo Marissa Mayer. In addition, there are various interesting research talks and workshops from universities, corporations and startups from all over the world, which contains topics in the fields of education, health care, game, automation and etc., to name a few. The most importantly, I got a chance to meet with top researchers from different countries and know about their latest research. By evolving in the HCI field, I also met a lot of peers in the industry, talked with employees from big corporations, and learned about how they do research in the real world. CHI provided a great opportunity for people in the same field get to together sharing, learning and having fun.”
“Norene Kelly presented a poster on her dissertation work, for which she developed a scale to measure the social acceptability of wearable devices. She spoke to a number of people interested in this work, for example, a consultant who had recently developed a medical wearable device. Also, Stephen Gilbert introduced Norene to Tony Fernandes, CEO of UEGroup, a San Jose UX consulting firm. After extending her stay to learn more about UEGroup, Norene is now doing some research and consulting work for the firm.”