Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Is ACI a subset of HCI?

Received this conference announcement and could not resist sharing with the group (sorry it has been so long since my last note).  It does reflect how ubiquitous intelligent devices are and how they will affect interaction with other species.  I would be interested in your comments and whether there is a place for an app store for pet owners.  If you have heard of the app Yo, why not Woof or Meow!  Actually Yo has a practical side - check out this:  http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2014/07/15/Yo-app-being-used-to-alert-Israelis-of-Hamas-rocket-attacks/6801405450267/?spt=hts&or=6 - it is being used to alert Israelis to rocket attacks.



ACI’14 - Animal-Computer Interaction: Pushing Boundaries beyond ‘Human’

Workshop, NordiCHI’14, 27th October 2014, Helsinki

An increasing body of work originating from within the HCI community is shaping the emerging discipline of Animal-Computer Interaction (ACI), aiming to: study the interaction between animals, technology and humans in naturalistic settings; develop user-centered technology that supports animals and interspecies relationships; inform user-centered approaches to the design of technology intended for animals.
The ACI’14 workshop aims to bring together researchers who have worked in areas relate to or are interested in ACI, from within HCI or other relevant disciplines. Through a range of collaborative activities (including short presentations, group design exercises and plenary discussions) the workshop will explore issues relevant to ACI, for example in relation to accessibility, methodology and ethics.
We invite position papers - up to four pages in ACM extended abstract format - on theories, applications and practices related, for example, to: interaction modalities for diverse sensorial apparatuses, cognitive capabilities, and ergonomic characteristics; methodologies potentially useful for researching, designing or evaluating multispecies technology; ethical frameworks and approaches possibly appropriate for working with humans and other animals. Email submissions to: Clara.Mancini@open.ac.uk

Deadline for workshop papers: August 14, 2014
Notifications of acceptance: September 11, 2014
Workshop dates: October 27, 2014

Clara Mancini, The Open University
Oskar Juhlin, Stockholm University
Adrian David Cheock, City University London
Janet van der Linden, The Open University
Shaun Lawson, University of Lincoln

For more information about NordiCHI’14 workshops:

-- The Open University is incorporated by Royal Charter (RC 000391), an exempt charity in England & Wales and a charity registered in Scotland (SC 038302). The Open University is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.
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Sunday, May 25, 2014


I have been teaching courses for an Executive Master's in Technology Management at the University of Pennsylvania, EMTM, since 2004.  This is the last year of the program and I decided to provide all my class notes on the web.  They can be found at my personal web site.  I hope you find it useful.

Some statistics from my involvement int he program: taught 26 trimesters involving 126, 3 hour lectures.

I hope you enjoy the material.  More posts soon, I have a backlog finally.  Later!

Monday, December 23, 2013

Using User Stories

Seems like I spend considerable time each week working on user stories either for work or for class.  One of my students, Pradnya Agarwal, suggested this article http://www.scrumalliance.org/community/articles/2010/april/new-to-user-stories.

Although the article tries to make user stories more complex than they should be, it is a great discussion of them and does start a debate on what should and should not be included and why.

More coming now that I have some time to think.  Also heating up my soldering iron to attack some of the kickstarter kits I received.  More here or on the aging hacker chronicles   Later!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Killer UX Design

I just got finished reading Killer UX Design by Jodie Moule.  (Please note that O'Reilly provided a copy of this for free through their review program, which I recommend by the way.)  The book has several features that make it ideal for someone who is interested in usability or has been doing it for a few years.  What is unique about this book is that it provides a very comprehensive case study and weaves it into a thorough usability process.  This book is a great complement for more encyclopedic books such as Designing the User Interface or User Interface Design and Evaluation.  At the end an app, cook,  is produced and I actually downloaded it from Apple's app store. 

The book takes the reader through the process using the app to illustrate the steps in the process: Research, Insight, Concept and Design.  Throughout she provides sage advice on when to delve deeper and when to let it go.  She also focuses on behavior and behavior change.  A quote from page 125:
Based on what we know about the users and the environment, what does a [new way of living and behaving] look like?
This illustrates the constant strong emphasis on behavior change and not just cranking out an app.  The book is lavishly illustrated and I do recommend it highly especially for folks interested in usability or in their early years.  Do not get it if you want a comprehensive survey of Usability.  Do get it if after reading the comprehensive books listed above you want to then actually focus on usability in your next project.

Bottom line is that I do highly recommend it.  In fact, I am going to use it in my HCI class in 2014.
It has been a while sicn eI posted on this site, hope to do better!  Later,

Monday, August 12, 2013

Python Definitely or Fruit Pi, Clouds and a Snake!

Okay, so maybe I went overboard on the title!  If you are interested in effectively using the Raspberry Pi and also working with admin on the open source cloud software,  OpenStack, one of the best languages to use is python.  Even if you are not interested in clouds or raspberry pi's, python is just a blast to use, so long as you pay attention to white space.  I am brushing up on my python and was pleasantly surprised when I supported a kickstarter  on a python course.  Real Python and Real Python on the web are superb courses.  The style quickly whisks you through the knowledge with lots of examples very efficiently.  These course/books should be a model for future language texts.  Highly recommended!

Although I have not been fortunate in generating much discussion, hope springs eternal.  My topic for this post is, "What version of Python are you using?"  I have been sticking to 2.7 since OpenStack uses it.  Would anyone recommend learn 3+ or should I wait?

Please note this was originally posted on my Aging Hacker  blog but it is very appropriate for this blog too.  Recall my admonition to learn at least one language a year and learning python is a must.

Thursday, February 28, 2013


The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) coalition
http://www.stemedcoalition.org/ is a very special organization to
increasing technical literacy in the US by enriching the education in
k-12.  I think a crucial component to this literacy is code literacy. 
Others may disagree, but learning to code is and coding are truly
transforming and exhilarating.  One of my Stevens students, recommended
an excellent short video
which captures many of these thoughts much better than I can articulate
them.  Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!  Later


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

iPad experience revives market for real books!

Will my subject tagline, "iPad experience revives market for real books!" appear in a newspaper article in the next few years?

my experience is any judge, there is at least a chance.  I've noticed
that when using my iPad if I come across a boring part of a novel or a
tech book, rather than plowing through it, I often revert to web browing
or playing a game.  The result is I read less.  I ma now combating this
by using ereaders and dare I say, real books!

Am I just an anachronism or does anyone else share my experience?



ps- also posted in my google group, software experience