Human-Computer Interaction

    The HCI research program in EECS comprises a diverse group of faculty and students who work in many different areas, all tied together by a common concern: creating systems that enhance human experience. This concern gives a different flavor to our research from much of traditional computer science, which is typically focused on engineering goals (such as performance, scalability and reliability) or on serving the needs of engineers themselves (eg through goals such as maintainability).

    As software-enabled devices, appliances and systems have become pervasive, we not only depend on them in every aspect of our daily life, but the very quality of our lives is impacted by our interactions with them. Moreover, it has become clear that understanding how humans interact with machines is essential not only for usability but also for safety and security: all major security attacks include a social engineering component, and unusable medical devices are responsible for thousands of deaths every year.

    Our research programs address all aspects of the development of systems that involve human-computer interaction, including design, construction and evaluation. We create systems that demonstrate new kinds of functionality in individual and community settings (eg, in social media, personal information management, and data visualization), as well as tools for building such systems more easily and effectively. Our work extends beyond software to physical design and new technologies for fabrication. We also develop foundational theories of design, and seek to understand the social and ethical ramifications of systems.

    Latest news in human-computer interaction

    The MIT senior will pursue postgraduate studies in intelligent systems in Ireland.

    Advance incorporates sensing directly into an object’s material, with applications for assistive technology and “intelligent” furniture.

    Mustafa Doğa Doğan, shown here in front of MIT’s Great Dome. Photo credit: Hannah Harens. Mustafa Doğa Doğan is a 3rd year PhD student working with Prof. Stefanie

    From R to L: Margaret Huang and Thomas Shi-Tao Huang SM ’60, ScD ’63 stand in Killian Court. Photo courtesy of the Huang family. Thomas Shi-Tao Huang SM

    In this deformation-sensing lamp, the solid supports, textile lampshade, and sensing conductive pads are created as a single print. Photo: Jack Forman Sometimes 3D printers mess up. They

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