Archive for May, 2006

Monthly Archive

Me and two very tiny octopuses. Soon to be ex-octopuses thanks to Mike!
Say hello to my little friends.

I got word in April that my first paper, the alluringly-titled “Collaborating in Context: Immersive Visualisation Environments” which I submitted in March to the Context in Advanced Interfaces workshop at AVI06, had been accepted. So, Mark, Mike and I headed off to Venice for the week to watch presentations, ride around on boats and eat octopuses.

The paper concerns the design and development of our unique visualization lab here in UCD. My presentation at the workshop went fairly well, considering I had completed a cross-city dash minutes before starting (Venice is a big place!). My slides are available with the others at the workshop’s results page. My paper has been published in the ACM digital library.

AVI 06 proper was an excellent conference, with plenty of interesting work going on, and people to meet. My trip report is available:

[PDF] Trip Report: AVI 2006 May 23–26, Venice Italy

Our own photos are online, and you can also check out the very lovely Geoffrey EllisAVI photos (spot the goons!).

A number of the SRG volunteered were conscripted for active service as helping hands for Pervasive 2006 this week, which was chaired by Aaron and Paddy. The conference was really well managed, and I think can confidentally be called a great success, our two fearless leaders being the apotheosis of cool under pressure (Lorcan on Paddy: “I don’t think he knows how to sweat.”).

While being a volunteer was tough going, seeing my first conference from behind the scenes has been a very interesting experience. The SRG gang really gelled together well, and our ranks were further bolstered by a complement of other great volunteers, who we had a terrific time with.

We have the official photo gallery. The man William “Richie” Hazlewood — who can down a carbomb like nobody else I’ve ever met ;) — has also uploaded a great set of photos from the conference (and the after-party…).

Some of the gang in the Guinness Brewery.
Celebrating a job well done!

As part of the new structured PhD program in operation in CSI, we all have to give a talk on something relevant to our research.

I chose/it was suggested to me to present “fisheye” visualizations, a technique described by George Furnas in his seminal paper “Generalised Fisheye Views”, and the 20 years on review paper, “A Fisheye Follow-up: Further Reflections on Focus + Context”. This is a really interesting data filtering approach (and not a visual technique as the name might imply).

The talk seems to have gone down well, which is nice, as I have some workshop talks coming up later this month. Creating this presentation, the first I’ve given since I left IBM last September, has proven to be very good practise for preparing a talk, and then — erk! — fielding questions. My slides are linked below.

[PDF] Talk: Information Visualization
Using View & Data Distortion

And here are some of the things I learned from my presentation:

  1. Never, ever try and say “specificity” out loud in front of other people. That is all.