2015 Gibbons Lecture 2: Beyond Touch

The 2015 Gibbons Lecture series, presented by the University of Auckland's Computer Science department in association with IITP, is a free public lecture series this year focusing on Man Meets Machine: Human-Computer Interaction. All are welcome.

Although now living symbiotically, humans and computers remain poles apart. We are thoughtful and emotional, but slow and error prone with computation. They are thoughtless, without emotion, but extremely fast.

Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) that bridges this gap has involved techniques that range from those we may now regard as ridiculous - such as punching holes in card or paper - to those we currently regard as truly sublime - such as controlling machines by our thoughts alone. HCI remains a fascinating area of research and development.

Lecture 2: Beyond Touch: using everyday tools as input devices

 Human thought is closely linked to the tools that we use to enact our intentions, by using language, by writing and drawing, and in controlling our immediate environment. In fashioning these tools we have adapted their physicality so that they are natural for us to use. This makes such tangible tools ideal to be further modified so as to be useful in our interactions with computers. Progress requires better sensing technologies, the use of Artificial Intelligence, innovative interaction design and software support.

This talk will discuss this approach to HCI using examples from geometry, hand drawn diagramming and making messages with the Penan of Borneo's object language.

About the Speaker

Dr Beryl Plimmer started her career in computing by completing a NZ Certificate in Data Processing at Auckland Institute of Technology. She then worked in IT at a number of local companies, including Nestles and Air New Zealand. She later returned to tertiary education, working at UNITEC and Manukau Institute of Technology, while herself studying for a Massey University Bachelor of Business Information Systems and a Masters degree from Curtin University. Cementing her interest in research, she completed a Computer Science PhD in the area of Human-Computer interaction at The University of Waikato and moved to The University of Auckland where she is an Associate Professor.

Dr Plimmer's research remains centred in Human-Computer Interaction. Her speciality lies in finding better interaction paradigms so that computers can be used by anybody without instruction. She has engaged in a research programme for the past 10 years that has attracted many grants and awards. Among her successes in this area was receipt of the "Best Paper Award" for the paper "Multimodal collaborative handwriting training for visually-impaired people" at the premier international Human-Computer Interaction conference "ACM CHI" in 2008. She teaches Auckland's advanced courses in Human Computer Interaction and supervises numerous student projects and theses.

Registration Details:

Attendance is free, however please register for catering and to secure your place: More Info and Registration ]


General Information
Location text
Thursday, May 7, 2015 - 18:00 to 19:30