Personal ubiquitous interfaces require research enabling multiple, rich communication channels between people and vast bodies of information
Every day, huge numbers of people interact with information, and each other, via a diverse set of systems that combine computing and communication. These systems include desktop computers, shared computer clusters, the internet, mobile phones, PDAs, cameras and cars. Yet, while the amount of information online inexorably increases, our systems remain less usable and useful than they should be, with problems at the interface between human and system. Today, the commonest case of information access involves an individual person sitting at a computer screen, typing a query in English to the search engine Google. This time-worn model of interaction is out of date; but going beyond it demands a new approach to human-information interaction which combines an understanding of people, and information, and the interactions between them: individual human intellectual and social abilities; means of structuring vast amounts of information; and ways of exploiting multiple rich communication channels.
Within Scotland, we have a range of expertise that can address the problems of human-information interaction, and especially the new dimensions of interfaces which are opened up by multimodal information processing capacity. There is a broad range of work going on internationally, considering both conventional, textual ways of accessing multimodal information (such as video), and also unconventional, multimodal ways (such as gesture) of accessing information, multimodal or otherwise. The groups in Scotland have traditionally had different emphases: for instance, in Glasgow, information retrieval and human-computer interaction; or in Edinburgh, information extraction, and other language technologies, and speech recognition and synthesis. But in working together within the existing MATCH SRDG, several of the groups are recognising that they can share solutions to enable interaction that adapts to the individual and their continually evolving context, and they also share the concomitant need for more effective machine learning techniques. So adaptive access in multimodal interaction will provide an initial focus area where SICSA can help Scotland make an international-level contribution.
A record of all past Multimodal Interaction events is available here.
An outline of forthcoming events for the MMI theme is available below.
Year Date SICSA MMI Event Location
2013 17th May All Hands Meeting Edinburgh
2013 31st May IR/HCI Workshop GCU
2013 11th June Doctoral Consortium Stirling
2013 8th-12th July Big Data Info Vis Summer School St Andrews
2013 TBC Gadgeteer Workshops St Andrews & Glasgow
2013 TBC Multimedia information retrieval, RGU
Social media & context workshop