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Research Projects & Publications

  2014 (12)
Knowledge Co-Creation and Assistive Technologyogy. Baljko, M.; and Hamidi, F. Scholarly and Research Communication, 5(3): Article ID 0301162, 19 pp. 2014.
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Subversion and Empowerment in Digital Interactive Design. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Design & Emotion. Bogota, Columbia, October 6--10 2014.
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Sparkles of Brilliance: Incorporating Cultural and Social Context in Co-design of Digital Artworks. Hamidi, F.; Saenz, K.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Interaction Design and Children (IDC'14). ACM, Aarhus, Denmark, 2014.
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HugBug: A Wearable Interface for Facilitating Digital Design. Hamidi, F.; Comeau, N.; Saenz, K.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Design & Emotion. Bogota, Columbia, October 6--10 2014.
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Electromagnetic articulography in the development of ``serious games'' for speech rehabilitation. Haworth, M. B.; Kearney, E.; Baljko, M.; Faloutsos, P.; and Yunusovaz, Y. In Proceedings of PMHA 2014 --- the 2nd International Workshop on Biomechanical and Parametric Modeling of Human Anatomy. Vancouver, Canada, August 22--23 2014.
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Electromagnetic articulography in the development of ``serious games'' for speech rehabilitation. Haworth, M. B.; Kearney, E.; Baljko, M.; Faloutsos, P.; and Yunusova, Y. In Proceedings of the 2nd International Workshop on Biomechanical and Parametric Modeling of Human Anatomy (PMHA). 2014.
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Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Assistive Technology: A Communication Board Case Study. Hamidi, F.; Baljko, M.; Kunic, T.; and Feraday, R. In Proceedings of ICCHP'14: the 14th International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs, pages x-y, Paris, France, July 9--11 2014. Berlin: Springer
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Rafigh: A Living Media Interface for Speech Intervention. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 32nd Annual ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, of CHI '14, pages 1817--1820, New York, NY, USA, 2014. ACM
Rafigh: A Living Media Interface for Speech Intervention [link]Paper   doi   bibtex
Rafigh: A Living Media Interface for Learning Games. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In CHI '14 Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, of CHI EA '14, pages 407--410, New York, NY, USA, 2014. ACM
Rafigh: A Living Media Interface for Learning Games [link]Paper   doi   bibtex
Empowerment Through Interaction: A Living Media Interface for Children with Disabilities. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the Workshop on Interaction Design with Children with Disabilities, of ICDC'14, New York, NY, USA, 2014. ACM
Empowerment Through Interaction: A Living Media Interface for Children with Disabilities [link]Paper   doi   bibtex
Rehabilitative speech computer game calibration using empirical characterizations of Articulatory Working Space (AWS). Haworth, M.; Yunusova, Y.; Kearney, E.; Faloutsos, P.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of Motor Speech Conference, Florida, USA, February 27-March 2 2014.
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Articulatory working space as a kinematic target in augmented feedback applications. Kearney, E.; Yunusova, Y.; Haworth, M.; Faloutsos, P.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of Motor Speech Conference, Florida, USA, February 27-March 2 2014.
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  2013 (5)
On-Line Discussion Fora: Computational Techniques, Structuralist Abstractions, and the Personal Narrative. Baljko, M.; Davidson, D.; and Letherby, G. In Proceedings of the World Social Sciences Forum (WSSF'13). Oct 13-15 2013.
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Research, civic engagement, and social media: The Why and how of a digital archive of memorial tattoos. Davidson, D.; and Baljko, M. In First Annual International Conference on Social Media: Implications for the University. May 3--5 2013.
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Automatic Speech Recognition: A Shifted Role in Early Speech Intervention. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 4th Workshop on Speech and Language Processing for Assistive Technologies (SLPAT'13), Grenoble, France, 21--22 August 2013.
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Rafigh: An Edible Living Media Installation. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Tangible, Embedded and Embodied Interaction, of TEI '14, pages 345--346, New York, NY, USA, 2013. ACM
Rafigh: An Edible Living Media Installation [link]Paper   doi   bibtex
Knowledge Co-Creation and Assistive Technology. Baljko, M.; and Hamidi, F. Presentation at the York Symposium on the Scholarship of Engagement, Oct 2 2013.
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  2012 (14)
Sensory, sonic and symbolic features of a collaborative media art practice. Baljko, M.; and Tenhaaf, N. Canadian Journal of Communication, 37(1): 109--119. March 2012.
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Acquisition of the 3D surface of the palate by in-vivo digitization. Yunusova, Y.; Baljko, M.; Pintilie, G.; Rudy, K.; Faloutsos, P.; and Daskalogiannakis, J. Speech Communication, 54(8): 923--931. October 2012.
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Positional targets for lingual consonants defined using electromagnetic articulography. Yunusova, Y.; Rosenthal, J. S.; Rudy, K.; Baljko, M.; and Daskalogiannakis, J. Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 132(2): 1027--1038. August 2012.
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A Game System for Speech Rehabilitation. Shtern, M.; Haworth, M.; Yunusova, Y.; Baljko, M.; and Faloutsos, P. In Kallmann, M.; and Bekris, K., editor(s), Motion in Games, volume 7660, of Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pages 43--54. Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2012. r̆lhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-34710-8_5
A Game System for Speech Rehabilitation [link]Paper   bibtex   buy
Huffman Base-4 Text Entry Glove (H4-TEG). Bajer, B.; MacKenzie, S.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of ISWC 2012, the Sixteenth Annual International Symposium on Wearable Computers, pages 41--47, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, June 18--22 2012. IEEE
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Griefwork Online: Community Through Computer-Mediated Communication. Davidson, D.; Baljko, M.; and Letherby, G. In 2012 Motherhood Initiative for Research and Community Involvement (MIRCI) Conference, Toronto, Canada, October 18--20 (to appear) 2012.
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Using social networks for multicultural creative collaboration. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 4th ACM International Conference on Intercultural Collaboration (ICIC 2012), pages 39--46, Bangalore, India, March 21--23 2012.
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Reverse-Engineering Scanning Keyboards. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of ICCHP'12: the 13th International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs, pages 431-438, Linz, Austria, July 11--13 2012. Berlin: Springer
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A Reverse-Huffman Algorithm for Text Entry Interface Evaluation. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the CHI12 Workshop on Designing and Evaluating Text Entry Methods, pages 1--4, Austin, Texas, May 5-10 2012.
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Synchrum: A Tangible Interface for Rhythmic Collaboration. Hamidi, F.; Baljko, M.; Moakler, A.; and Gadot, A. In Proceedings of UIST 2012, the ACM Symposium on User Interface Software and Technology, pages 63-64, Cambridge, Massachusetts, October 7--10 2012.
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Treating Phobias With Computer Games. Haworth, M.; Baljko, M.; and Faloutsos, P. In Proceedings of the Fifth International ACM Conference on Motion in Games (MIG2012), pages 374-377, Rennes, France, November 15--17 2012.
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PhoVR: A Virtual Reality System to Treat Phobias. Haworth, M.; Baljko, M.; and Faloutsos, P. In Proceedings of the 11th ACM SIGGRAPH International Conference on Virtual-Reality Continuum and its Applications in Industry (VRCAI '12), pages 171-174, Singapore, Dec 02--04 2012.
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A Game System For Speech Rehabilitation. Shtern, M.; Haworth, M.; Yunusova, Y.; Baljko, M.; and Faloutsos, P. In Proceedings of the Fifth International ACM Conference on Motion in Games (MIG2012), pages 43-54, Rennes, France, November 15--17 2012.
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Digital Tangible Games for Speech Intervention. Hamidi, F. Technical Report CSE-2012-02, York University, 2012.
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  2011 (3)
Acquisition of the 3D Surface of the Palate by In-vivo Tracing with a Probe. Pintilie, G.; Rudy, K.; Yunusova, Y.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of ISSP'11: the Ninth International Seminar on Speech Production, Montreal, Canada, June 20--23 2011.
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Reconsidering Media Art Dynamics. Tenhaaf, N.; Baljko, M.; and Sawchuk, K. In Proceedings of ISEA'11: the 17th International Symposium on Electronic Art, volume 18, pages 1--3, Instanbul, Turkey, September 14--21 2011. Leonardo Electronic Almanac
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Professional Second Lives: An Analysis of Appearance Codes, Ethnographies and Sociometrics of Virtual World Professionals. McArthur, V. Master's Thesis, York University, 2011. Co-Supervisors: M. Baljko, E. Jones-Imhotep, C. Fisher
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  2010 (4)
Collaborative Poetry on the Facebook Social Network. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the 16th International Conference on Supporting Group Work (GROUP10), pages 305--306, Sanibel, Florida, November 7--10, 2010 2010. New York: ACM.
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CanSpeak: A Customizable Speech Interface for People with Dysarthric Speech. Hamidi, F.; Baljko, M.; Livingston, N.; and Spalteholz, L. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs (ICCHP10), pages 605--612, July 12--13 2010. Berlin: Springer
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Extraction and Analysis of Ethnographic Data from an Online Disability Community. Tam, A. Master's Thesis, York University, 2010. Primary Supervisor: M. Baljko
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Speech Elicitation for Voice Banking using Augmented Everyday Objects. Hamidi, F.; and Baljko, M. Poster presented at the ALS Society of Canada 6th Annual ALS Research Forum, May 2010.
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  2009 (2)
Outsiders, Interlopers, and Employee-Identified Avatars. McArthur, V.; and Baljko, M. In Proceedings of Presence 2009: The 12th Annual International Workshop on Presence, pages 1--8, Los Angeles, USA, November 11--13 2009. International Society for Presence Research
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Phenomena of Emergence in Hetereogenous Agent Populations. Kaftarian, M. Master's Thesis, York University, 2009. Primary Supervisor: M. Baljko
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  2008 (4)
The Aesthetics of Emergence: Co-constructed Interactions. Baljko, M.; and Tenhaaf, N. Transactions on Human--Computer Interaction (TOCHI), 15(3--4): 1-11. November 2008.
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Artificial Life and Lo-Fi Embodiment: a conversation with Nell Tenhaaf and Melanie Baljko. Sawchuk, K. Atlantis: A Women's Studies Journal, 32(2): 6--17. 2008.
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Indirect Text Entry Interfaces Based on Huffman Coding with Unequal Letter Costs. Hussain, F. O. Master's Thesis, York University, May 2008.
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Lo-Fi. Tenhaaf, N.; Baljko, M.; Kamevaar, J.; and Sawchuk, K. Presentations of \em Subtle Technologies, peer-reviewed Digital Arts Festival, May 28--30 2008.
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  2007 (4)
Sound for A-Life Agents. Baljko, M.; Kamevaar, J.; and Tenhaaf, N. In Proceedings of the Second International Conference on Affective Computing and Intelligent Interaction (ACII'07), volume 4738, of Lecture Notes in Computer Science, pages 763--765, Lisbon, Portugal, September 12--14 2007. Springer
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Attribution of Communicative Capacity Among Agents in a Hetereogeneous Population. Baljko, M.; and Tenhaaf, N. In Proceedings of Artificial and Ambient Intelligence (AISB'07), pages 322--327, Newcastle upon Tyne, UK, April 2--4 2007. Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behaviour (AISB)
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Analysis and Automatic Derivation of Containment Hierarchies for Text Composition Facilities. Hamidi, F. Master's Thesis, York University, May 2007. Primary Supervisor: M. Baljko
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Lo-Fi Collaborative Agent Populations. Baljko, M.; and Tenhaaf, N. Appeared in ``FUSION 2007: Make a change'', an Annual Exhibition at the Ontario Science Centre, May 5--6, 2007, Toronto, Canada, May 5--6 2007.
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  2006 (2)
Indirect Text Entry Using One or Two Keys. Baljko, M.; and Tam, A. In Proceedings of the Eigth International ACM Conference on Assistive Technologies, ASSETS'06, pages 18--25, Portland, OR, October 23--25 2006. ACM
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Different Experiences, Different Types of Emergence: A-life Sculpture Designer, Interactant, Observer. Baljko, M.; and Tenhaaf, N. In Proceedings of AAAI Fall 2006 Symposium on Interaction and Emergent Phenomenon in Societies of Agents, pages 104--110, Arlington, VA, October 12--15 2006.
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  2005 (2)
The Information-Theoretic Analysis of Unimodal Interfaces and their Multimodal Counterparts. Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the Seventh International ACM Conference on Assistive Technologies, ASSETS'05, pages 28--35, Baltimore, MD, October 9--12 2005.
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The Contrastive Evaluation of Unimodal and Multimodal Interfaces for Voice Output Communication Aids. Baljko, M. In Proceedings of the Seventh International Conference on Multimodal Interfaces ICMI'05, pages 301--308, Trento, Italy, October 4--6 2005.
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  2004 (1)
Computational Simulations of Mediated Face-to-Face Multimodal Communication. Baljko, M. Ph.D. Thesis, University of Toronto, May 2004.
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  2003 (1)
Issues of Semantic Representation for Augmentative and Alternative Communication Systems (and Other Systems that Mediate Human-Human Communication). Baljko, M. In First Meeting of the SIGSEM Working Group on the Representation of Multimodal Semantic Information, Tilburg, Netherlands, January 14 2003. Available at~r̆lhttp://let.uvt.nl/research/ti/sigsem/wg/
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  2001 (4)
Review of The Structure of Multimodal Dialogue II, M. M. Taylor, F. Neel, and D. G. Bouwhuis (editors). Baljko, M. Computational Linguistics, 27(4). 2001.
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Articulatory Adaptation in Multimodal Communicative Action. Baljko, M. In Thompson, C.; Paek, T.; and Horvitz, E., editor(s), Proceedings of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics (NAACL) Workshop on Adaptation in Dialogue Systems, June 2001. Pittsburgh, PA
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The Evaluation of Microplanning and Surface Realization in the Generation of Multimodal Acts of Communication Realization in the Generation of Multimodal Acts of Communication. Baljko, M. In Pelachaud, C.; and Poggi, I., editor(s), Proceedings of the Workshop on Multimodal Communication and Context in Embodied Agents, Fifth International Conference on Autonomous Agents, pages 89--94, May 2001. Montreal, Canada
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Research Proposal: Computational Simulations of Mediated Face-to-Face Multimodal Communication. Baljko, M. Internal document. Prepared for departmental checkpoint and distributed to thesis advisory committee., July 2001.
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  2000 (3)
The Computational Simulation of Multimodal, Face-to-Face Communication Constrained by Physical Disabilities. Baljko, M. In Proceedings of ESSLLI 2000 Workshop Integrating Information from Different Channels in Multi-Media Contexts, pages 1--10, Birmingham, UK, August 6--10 2000. European Association for Logic, Language, and Information
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Incorporating Multimodality in the Design of Interventions for Communication Disorders. Baljko, M. In Dahlqvist, P., editor(s), Proceedings of 4th SSoMC, the Fourth Swedish Symposium on Multimodal Communication, pages 13--14, October 26--27 2000. Stockholm University/KTH
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MMSim: Simulated Multimodal Communication. Baljko, M. Technical Report CSRG-411, University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, 2000. Available at r̆lftp://ftp.cs.toronto.edu/pub/reports/csri/411/
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  1999 (2)
The Importance of Subjectivity in Computational Stylistic Assessment. Baljko, M.; and Hirst, G. Text Technology, 9(1): 5--17. Spring 1999.
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Uses of Natural Language Processing Techniques in Augmentative and Alternative Communication. Baljko, M. Paper for Departmental Depth Exam, January 1999. 49 pp.
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  1997 (2)
Subjectivity in Stylistic Assessment: An Issue for Supporting Computer-Supported Collaborative Writers. Baljko, M.; and Hirst, G. In Shurville, S.; and Pemberton, L., editor(s), Proceedings of Writing the Future: Writing and Computers 10, Brighton, UK, September 18--19 1997.
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Ensuring Stylistic Congruity in Collaboratively Written Text: Requirements Analysis and Design Issues. Baljko, M. Master's Thesis, University of Toronto, 1997. Also published as technical report CSRI-365, Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto, r̆lftp://ftp.csri.toronto.edu/csri-technical-reports/365
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Thumbnail of a view of a model of the vocal tract fabricated from acyrlic, a part of H. Dewey-Hagborg's student project.

Real-Time Visualizations of the Vocal Tract for Clinical Interventions (VTV)

These research activites are being undertaken by a collaborative team consisting of members from York, University of Tornoto, and OCADU (M. Baljko, Y. Yunosova, P. Faloutsos, N. Tenhaaf, F. Lebouthillier).

Speech impairments arise often due to difficulties controlling and coordinating the tongue, the most important speech organ. In this project, we are devising novel modes of visualization for use in a clinical setting for interventions focused on tongue movements. Our goal is to develop a suite of visualization techniques to provide salient feedback both to clients and to clinicians, for use among the client-clinician therapeutic dyad. The feasibility of this approach is predicated on recently completed work (by a collaborative research team to which the applicant belongs) that provides a sensor-rich alternative to acoustic-to-articulatory inversion, an approach that is based on the Wave system (Norther Digital, Inc.), which is a state-of-the-art enabling technology that can track a patient's tongue with sub-millimeter accuracy.

This work is funded in part by the Centre for Information Visualization and Data-Driven Design (CIV-DDD)

Thumbnail of an image of people walking through an intersection, from a high bird's eye perspective, intended to convey societal participation for all.

Assistive Technology Innovation through Critical Analysis

These research activities have been organized around the following question: Which presumptions of disability are tacit in the designs of assistive technologies and products? Software and hardware researchers and developments infrequently acknowledge the domain of critical disability studies in their work and thus embed their assumptions within their formulations of user requirements. Next, how can knowledge from this analysis be applied to the design of future assistive technologies and products? This research, based on this framework, has produced a series of specific advances and innovations in assistive technology development [See publication list by keyword for relevant publications].

Connected to this component is a program of research that applied principles of soure coding (Huffman encoding) to design optimal text entry interfacces from first principles.

Image of a close-up view of the artwork Push/Pull

Embodiment and Performativity in Interactive Digital Media

This research activity has centered on a multi-year collaboration with New Media artist Nell Tenhaaf (Fine Arts, York), anchored by a New Media Initiative Grant (2005-08) and subsequently funded by SSHRC and CCA grants. This work has taken the form of a collaborative Media Art practice, within which we have built a number of prototypes and interactive artworks (all are interactive digital media-based). These have functioned not only as works for exhibition but also as research outcomes. They not only have been analyzed in terms of their symbolic import for viewers, but also have served as test-beds for hybrid HCI-styled ethnographic and evaluation studies, albeit deployed in museum, gallery, and public display spaces. Embodiment and performativity are core concepts; a number of scholarly analyses have been published on these topics. Other components of this research thread concern the examination of the “Uncanny Valley” phenomena and attributions of agency to artificial life forms by interactants [Kaftarian, 2009].

See the Lo-Fi website for further information.

Thumbnail of an image of threads of from a pieces of a weaving, pinned up on a wall, intended to represent the replationships that draw us into contact with one another.

On-line Identity and Discourse in Social Media

These research activities have concerned the investigation of a number of phenomena, such as: individualization of the avatar as an expression of self in virtual worlds [McArthur, 2010]; terminology usage and discourse around models of disabilities in on-line communities [Tam, 2010]; memorialization and discourse about perinatal loss in web-based discussion fora [Davidson, Baljko, and Letherby, 2012]; and the use of social networks as an enabling technology for collaborative and performative poetry [Hamidi and Baljko, 2012].

Methodological aspects of this work have concerned reflexivity in on-line ethnography, processes around acquiring informed consent from those in on-line communities, and the utility of autoethnography. Specific technology innovations have concerned the adaptation of algorithms for the extraction, processing and analysis of unstructured, heterogeneous data.