My main research interests lie in the field of human-computer interaction (HCI), a discipline concerned with the design, evaluation and implementation of interactive systems, and the study of major phenomena surrounding them. More specifically, my work has taken two main directions: research that leverages human perception and performance to support end-user interaction, and research into alternative interaction techniques for mobile interaction.
My dissertation work focused on understanding users by applying established theories in psychology and kinesiology to model end-user performance to facilitate interaction. Early in my PhD, this consisted of the examination and modeling of bimanual (two-handed) interaction for tablet computers. As my PhD progressed, my focus shifted to using laws of motion to infer user intention and facilitate pointing within interfaces.
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Sensor hardware has become increasingly complex and pervasive. Hardware manufacturers have embedded sensors into mobile phones, media players, game consoles, and laptops. In addition, the introduction of the Nintendo Wii gaming console, whose primary interaction is motion-based, has brought sensor-based interactions into the mainstream. Since completing my dissertation research, my research has focused on the use of motion as a technique to extend the input space of smartphones.
Motion gestures--a gesture performed by physically translating and/or rotating the device-provides several advantages to mobile interaction, including expanding the input space of mobile devices, providing quick access to commands, and allowing user interaction when the touchscreen is unavailable. Recently, I have explored the use of motion gestures for mobile interaction and am currently exploring how the gestures can be used to interact with large shared displays and be used to aid in accessibility.
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The goal of this project is to examine the use of large public-shared interactive displays and how mobile devices can enrich interaction around these displays. In shopping malls, amusement parks, airports, and other public spaces, large digital displays are replacing traditional signs as the medium of choice for communicating information to the general public. The advantage of a digital sign is that it can display generic, long-term information, similar to its non-digital counterpart (e.g. a directory or map), in addition to being augmented with information that is timelier for passers-by. For example, a map of a mall or amusement park can be augmented with information on promotions or events that are occurring nearby. Digital displays are thus able to provide information more tailored to viewers' contexts. Their ability to process input also enables interactivity, permitting users to execute information retrieval and/or transactional operations. Together, larger interactive displays can support both multi-group interactions while preserving persistent ambient information for less-engaged passers-by.