Published: May 14, 2021

ATLAS researchers presented 10 published works and one special interest group at the 2021 Human Factors in Computing Conference, the world’s preeminent forum for the field of human-computer interaction. The conference, commonly referred to as CHI, was held virtually May 8-13, 2021. 

Researchers affiliated with Danielle Szafir's VisuaLab authored four of the nine ATLAS papers admitted to the conference, two of which received awards, including "Best Paper" and "Honorable Mention."  The Unstable Design Lab had two papers accepted, while the THING, Emergent Nanomaterials, Superhuman Computing, and Living Matter labs each had one. An additional paper was co-authored by alumna Andrea DeVore TAM '18, who is not associated with an ATLAS lab.

In all, 2,844 papers were submitted to CHI 2021, 28 of which were selected for the "Best Paper" award and 114 received "Honorable Mention."  In 2020, CHI accepted nine ATLAS papers, including four from the Unstable Design Lab and one each from the Superhuman Computing, Living Matter, VisuaLab, ACME and IRON labs.

CHI 2021 papers, position papers and workshops by ATLAS faculty and students


Understanding Data Accessibility for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities[Best Paper Award].  
Keke Wu (PhD student, ATLAS), Emma Petersen, (CTD MS student, ATLAS), Tahmina Ahmad, (Computer Science BS student), David Burlinson (PhD Computer Science, University of North Carolina), E. S. Tanis (faculty, CU Denver–Anschultz), and Danielle Szafir (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science)
Researchers conducted a web-based mixed-methods experiment with 34 participants with and without Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDDs) to identify their differences in reading data and summarized the findings into four accessible visualization design guidelines. 

Immersive Design Reviews through Situated Qualitative Feedback (workshop paper)
M. Whitlock  (PhD student, Computer Science) and Danielle Albers Szafir (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science)
This paper on Immersive Design Reviews through Situated Qualitative Feedback was accepted to the Evaluating User Experiences in Mixed Reality Workshop at CHI 2021.

VisuaLab Collaborations

Grand Challenges in Immersive Analytics 
Danielle Szafir (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science), Matt Whitlock (PhD student, Computer Science) and 22 other international experts.
A diverse group of 24 international experts developed 17 key research challenges, providing a systematic roadmap of current directions as well as the impending hurdles to facilitating productive and effective applications for Immersive Analytics.

danceON: Culturally Responsive Creative Computing for Data Literacy [Best Paper Honorable Mention]
Willie Payne (BS/MS alumnus Computer Science/Music Composition), Mary West (PhD student, Computer Science), Carlie Charp (CTD BS student, ATLAS), Ben Shapiro (faculty, Computer Science),  Edd Taylor (faculty, Education).

Dance provides opportunities for embodied interdisciplinary learning experiences that can be personally and culturally relevant. danceON's system supports learners to leverage their body movement as they engage in artistic practices across data science, computing and dance. It allows users to bind virtual shapes to body positions in under three lines of code, while also enabling complex, dynamic animations that users can design working with conditionals and past position data. The work identifies implications for how design can support learners' expression across culturally relevant themes and examines challenges from the lens of usability of the computing language and technology.

Unstable Design Lab

The Fundamental Uncertainties of Mothering: Finding Ways to Honor Endurance, Struggle, and Contradiction
Laura Devendorf (faculty, ATLAS/Information Science), Laura Kristina Andersen, (faculty, Eindhoven University of Technology/Department of Industrial Design)Aisling Kelliher(faculty, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University/Computer Science).
Parent-focused smart devices and data-tracking platforms frame the responsible parent as one who evaluates, analyzes and mitigates data-defined risks for their children and family. In this article, the researchers turn away from self-improvement narratives to attend to their own experiences as mothers and designers through creating Design Memoirs, speaking directly to the HCI community from their positions as both users and subjects of optimized parenting tools.

Late-breaking work
From The Art of Reflection to The Art of Noticing: A Shifting View of Self-Tracking Technologies’ Role in Supporting Sustainable Food Practices

Janghee Cho, (PhD student, Information Science), Laura Devendorf (faculty, ATLAS/Information Science) and Stephen Voida (faculty, Information Science).
This paper explores using self-tracking technologies that might help people draw attention to the impact of their food practices on the environment and promote sustainable food habits.

Living Matter Lab 

Self-deStaining Textiles: Designing Interactive Systems with Fabric, Stains and Light
Fiona Bell, (PhD student, ATLAS), Mirela Alistar (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science),  and Laura Devendorf (faculty, ATLAS/Information Science) 
More information
While staining happens unintentionally (e.g., spilling coffee), this paper introduces “destaining” as an intentional design tool that can be used by HCI practitioners and designers alike to selectively degrade stains on textiles in aesthetic ways. 

Superhuman Computing Lab 

Exploring Technology Design for Students with Vision Impairment in the Classroom and Remotely
Vinitha Gadiraju (PhD student, Computer Science),  Olwyn Doyle (BA Computer Science and Political Science '20) and Shaun K. Kane (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science)
This work explores how classroom technology design can imitate the instructional strategies educators use to teach visually impaired students the academic and behavioral skills outlined by the Expanded Core Curriculum.

THING Lab & Laboratory for Emergent Nanomaterials

Soft Electrohydraulic Actuators for Origami Inspired Shape-Changing Interfaces 
Purnendu (PhD student, ATLAS), Eric Acome (Keplinger Research Group), Christoph Keplinger, (faculty, Mechanical Engineering)Mark D. Gross (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science)Carson Bruns (faculty, ATLAS/Mechanical Engineering) and Daniel Leithinger (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science).  
This work introduces electrohydraulic actuators capable of producing sharp hinge-like bends that can be used to actuate existing objects or fold origami creases.


Parental Mediation for Young Children’s Use of Educational Media: A Case Study with Computational Toys and Kits 
Junnan Yu (INFO PhD Candidate), Andrea DeVore (ATLAS Undergrad Alumna), Ricarose Roque (INFO Faculty)

Special Interest Group

Microbe-HCI: Introduction and Directions for Growth
Raphael Kim (Queen Mary University), Pat Pataranutaporn (MIT), Jack Forman (MIT), Seung Ah Lee (Yonsei University), Ingmar Riedel-Kruse (University of Arizona), Mirela Alistar (faculty, ATLAS/Computer Science),  Eldy S. Lazaro Vasquez (UC Davis), Katia Vega (UC Davis) Roland van Dierendonck (Studio Roland van Dierendonck), Gilad Gome (The Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya), Oren Zuckerman (The Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya), Angela Vujic (MIT), David Sun Kong (MIT), Pattie Maes (MIT Media Lab), Hiroshi Ishii, (MIT), Misha Sra (UCSB), Stefan Poslad (Queen Mary University).  

Microbes bring a distinct set of functional, practical and ethical ramifications in interaction design. This special interest group addresses the various forms that microbial integration in human-computer interaction can take.  The sessions are engaging, focused and orientated conversations around microbes acting as agents of interaction.