Monthly Archives: March 2010

Pertti Huuskonen from Nokia presented his keynote at Percom in Mannheim. I worked with Pertti in 1999 on a European Project TEA – creating context-aware phones [1].

After telling us about CERN and some achievements in physics he raised the issue that an essential skill of humans is that they are context-aware. Basically culture is context-awareness – learning how to appropriately behave in life is essential to be accepted. We do this by looking at other people and by learning how how they act and how others react. “Knowing how to behave” we become fit for social life and this… Continue reading

About 300 people are at Percom 2010, which is held in the palace in Mannheim – and amazing location! The conference had 233 submission and is truly international (1/3 of the papers come from Europe, 1/3 from America, and 1/3 from Asia/pacific) and highly competitive (acceptance rate of about 12%).

Kurt Rothermel from the University of Stuttgart presented the opening Keynote on Large-scale Context Management. He presented a set of interesting example from Nexus (Collaborative Research Center 627, Spatial World Models for Mobile Context-Aware Applications) that showed the challenge in large scale systems. The size of the problem is can… Continue reading

Mohan Kumar and Marco Conti organized an EU/NSF workshop on Future Directions in Pervasive Computing and Social Networking for Emerging Applications. They managed to get together an interesting set of people and the discussion in the break out session were very enjoyable and I got a number of ideas what really are the challenges to come.

There are the position statements on the web page and at some point the identified grand challenges will be available.

PS: blackboards are still highly effective ūüėČ

The call for the 2nd International Conference on Automotive User Interfaces and Interactive Vehicular Applications is online – see http://auto-ui.org – AutomotiveUI’10.

The conference will be in Pittsburgh on 11-12 Nov 2010.

Do not miss the submission deadline: 02 July 2010.

The call includes a wide range of topics, including:

  • new concepts for in-car user interfaces
  • multi-modal in-car user interfaces
  • in-car speech user interfaces
  • text input and output while driving
  • multimedia interfaces and in-car entertainment
  • evaluation of in-car user interfaces
  • methods and tools for automotive user interface research
  • development tools and methods for automotive user interfaces
  • automotive user interface frameworks… Continue reading

A video describing the poker surface is available in youtube. It is an implementation of a poker game on a combination of a multi-touch table and mobile phones, for details see [1].

It is amazing how quickly it is picked up. It gained about 5000 views in a single day and it is already features in engadget.com, gizmodo.com, ubergizmo.com and on recombu.com. But as the comments on pokerolymp.com show the real poker players are hard to impress…

This really makes me think how research, publishing, and public perception of research is changing Рrapidly…

[1] Shirazi, A.… Continue reading

Heiko worked the last 6 years towards his PhD. He did a lot of things during this time – and even though not everything was on his PhD topic – I think the time was well spent, e.g. some visually interesting things came out [1].

The core of his PhD was on eye gaze as an additional modality for human computer interaction and it is worthwhile to read the thesis (which will be available in a few weeks) – till than you can have a look at the following papers. [2] describes a system that positions the mouse pointer on… Continue reading

For the second time we organize a doctoral seminar for PhD students in CS from Bochum, Dortmund, Duisburg und Essen. The main purpose is to provide networking opportunities beyond the own subject area and to highlight to options for life after the PhD.

This year we had 4 invited speakers highlighting opportunities in academia, industry, and in SMEs:

Friday and Saturday we hosted the GI working groups on tangible interaction (GI Arbeitskreis Be-greifbare Interaction in gemischten Wirklichkeiten) for the second inventor’s workshop. We were positively surprised that more than 30 people took part. We started with a set of nice demos from our students and then Nicolas Villar presented an invited talk.

The concept of the workshop was to create ideas by looking more closely at different materials that may be used for interaction and by assessing novel interaction technologies. On Friday afternoon we had several tables with material (e.g. smart materials, conductive fabric, magnetic materials,… Continue reading

Nicolas visited us in Essen to give the opening talk of our German meeting on tangible interaction. In his talk he first showed some examples of the hardware and sensors group at Microsoft research in Cambridge, most notably the SenseCam (which we learned is licensed and will be soon commercially available).

In the main part of the talk Nicolas presented a modular embedded architecture that allows developers to create custom made digital systems with fairly little effort. By integrating physical development (3D printing), functional blocks and software development the approach aims at empowering developers to create entirely new devices. His… Continue reading

I recently got more often used about cloud computing and what my take on it is. So far I have not had time to write up my view but I can share at least my reading list on the topic:

Hayes, B. 2008. Cloud computing. Commun. ACM 51, 7 (Jul. 2008), 9-11. DOI= http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1364782.1364786

Vaquero, L. M., Rodero-Merino, L., Caceres, J., and Lindner, M. 2008. A break in the clouds: towards a cloud definition. SIGCOMM Comput. Commun. Rev. 39, 1 (Dec. 2008), 50-55. DOI= http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/1496091.1496100

John Viega, “Cloud Computing and the Common Man,” Computer, vol. 42, no. 8,… Continue reading

I came across 2 Sensor module recently released by ST Microelectronics:

There will be in the future probably very few mobile devices without such sensors. When we worked on the project TEA in 1999 it seemed far away… What can you do with sensors on the mobile? There are a few papers to read: using them for context awareness [1], for interaction [2], [3], and for creating smart devices [4].

Last week in Finland I met Antii Takaluoma (one of… Continue reading