VISUALIZATION FRIDAY FORUM
Fridays 12-1pm LSRC D106
Lunch is served
January 25 – Models and techniques that improve and augment interactive visualization
Regis Kopper (New Duke DiVE Director)
Immersive virtual reality offers the possibility for high fidelity understanding of 3D visualizations. The interaction with components of the 3D visualization, however, is challenging. The complexity of the display coupled with the unconstrained interaction space makes the interaction in such an environment a non-trivial endeavor. In this talk, I will go over my career research arc, from touch generation and multiscale navigation in virtual environments to models for understanding and techniques that improve ray-casting, the basic 3D interaction metaphor. I will also discuss my postdoctoral work on interaction between humans and virtual humans with the goal of interpersonal training. I will finish by presenting and discussing the prospects for continuing research at the Duke immersive Virtual Environment (DiVE) as a unique multidisciplinary research tool.
• Video of the talk (We're very sorry, but due to a technical problem there is no audio!)
February 1 – Coordinating Community Reconstruction after Conflict in Colombia
Erin Parish (Duke BorderWork(s) Lab)
"To be displaced is an easy thing. Returning home, now that¹s hard."
-Fernando Pamplona, resident of San Carlos, Colombia
Drawing from her fieldwork in Colombia, Erin Parish explores the process of rebuilding lives, homes, and communities after conflict, focusing on avenues for greater individual, communal, governmental, and institutional collaboration in reconstruction.
February 8 – 3D vessel visualization from optical coherence tomography retinal scans
Ramiro Maldonado, MD (Duke Eye Center)
Babies born prematurely are prone to several diseases. One of them is Retinopathy of Prematurity, a leading cause of blindness due to retinal vessel immaturity. We will present visualization techniques to better understand this serious disease affecting the eyes of these babies.
February 15 – The Science in Art: Applications of Pump-Probe Microscopy
Tana Villafana (Duke Center for Molecular and Biomolecular Imaging)
The interplay of art and science is subtle, but important. Art conservators need strong support from the scientific community in order to address the many issues that arise during preservation. Uncovering the ideal or original state of an object is vital to ensuring its proper restoration. For a painting, this may include identifying the nature and source of the pigments; the thickness and composition of layers that give rise to the texture and depth of the final appearance, or even identifying degradation pathways and products of certain aged pigments. For pottery, low- and high-fired pieces require different treatments, which will also depend on the nature of the glaze and the chemical components of the clay. Optical pump-probe microscopy provides three-dimensional, chemical specific images of historical pigments, with far reaching applications for conservation science. Demonstrated applications here include the geo-sourcing of lapis lazuli, a historically important blue pigment, completely non-destructive depth imaging on a 14th century painting, differentiation of earth pigments applied to inferring pottery firing conditions, and distinction between cadmium yellow and its degradation products in a cross section taken from The Joy of Life by Henri Matisse.
February 22 – Visual Exploration of Multi-dimensional Data Sets
Sam Gerber (Duke Math)
In many scientific fields data acquisition and storage is relatively cheap and fast, leading to large data sets capturing very detailed information. This talk will cover two new approaches to visualize and explore such large multi-dimensional data sets. The first approach focuses on the visualization of high-dimensional scalar functions: An important goal of scientific data analysis is to understand the behavior of a system or process based on a sample of the system. In many instances it is possible to observe both input parameters and system outputs, and characterize the system as a high-dimensional function. Such data sets arise, for instance, in numerical simulations, as energy landscapes in optimization problems, or in the analysis of socio-economic data. The second approach concerns visualizing correlation: The degree of correlation between random variables is a key quantity in many scientific inquires. In today's scientific process correlation is often used as an exploratory tool to help form new hypotheses and sift through vast amounts of data. However, low-level visualization tools for exploratory correlation analysis lack the capacity to deal with these increasingly large data sets. We develop a visualization method for Pearson's correlation that takes advantage of human pattern recognition capabilities to explore correlations and is able to scale to data sets with tens to hundred of thousands of random variables.
March 1 – The Role of Visualisation for Understanding Complex Systems
Ardis Cheng (Medical Education Unit in the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry, and Health Sciences at the University of Melbourne,
Understanding complex systems (CSs) is an important skill in science education that is characterised by the ability to interrelate multiple scales of information. Visualisations play a significant role in supporting this cognitive skill by externalising these complex relationships into a perceptible form. This dissertation investigated how to optimally design visualisations to support student understanding of the renal system (the example CS) through four user studies and two iterations of a functional prototype visualisation.
March 8 – ML2VR: Providing MATLAB Users an Easy Transition to Virtual Reality and Immersive Interactivity
David Zielinski (Duke Engineering)
MATLAB is a popular computational system and programming environment. One feature of MATLAB is the capability to generate 3D visualizations, which can be used to visualize scientific data or even to simulate engineering models and processes. We have developed a software system that easily integrates with MATLAB scripts to provide the capability to view visualizations and interact with them in virtual reality (VR) systems. We call this system “ML2VR” and expect it will introduce more users to VR by enabling a large population of MATLAB programmers to easily transition to immersive systems.
March 15 – Spring Break
March 22 – What can we learn about local neighborhoods from a (virtual) ride in the Google Van?
Candice L. Odgers (Associate Professor of Public Policy, Psychology and Neuroscience)
The recent Google sponsored initiative “More than a Map” has inspired researchers, policy makers and app developers to leverage Google API tools to solve local community problems. With the support of a Google Faculty Research Award, our team developed an instrument (the SSO i-Tour: Systematic Social Observation Inventory – Tallying Observations in Urban Regions) for conducting virtual systematic social observations of the neighborhoods where the 2232 children in our ongoing longitudinal study live. This talk will describe how we used Google Street View and related tools to capture key neighborhood features, including: signs of disorder, decay, safe play areas, safety and income inequality. The possibilities and challenges that accompany the use of online mapping information within social science research will be discussed alongside key findings from our ongoing research.
March 29 – Design for Non-Designers
Michael Faber (Multimedia Project Studio Manager, Duke OIT)
Visual communication is a skill that, although many of us don't have, we all find a need for every now and again. Whether it's for promoting an event, displaying information, or a creating a poster, something is always cropping up that requires a bit of creative finagling. So if you're not a designer, and don't have the money to pay for one (we are expensive!), I'll share a handful of tips and themes that you can employ to help take even the most visually-challenged design and turn it into an effective project. This won't be a technical talk about how to use Illustrator or Photoshop, but more of a high-level collection of ways to approach a design project.
April 5 – Designing Multiple Relation Visualizations: Case Studies from Text Analytics
Christopher Collins (Assistant Professor of CS, University of Ontario Institute of Technology)
Datasets often have both explicit relations (e.g. citations between papers in a data set, links in a parse tree), and implicit relations (e.g. papers by the same author, words that start with the same letter). Drawing on grounding research into the real-world problems faced by computational linguists, in this talk I will explore several examples of visualizations designed to support simultaneous exploration of both explicit and implicit relations in data. I will suggest the concept of 'spatial rights' - the primacy of the spatial visual encoding, and present several methods for enhancing visualizations through adding implicit relation information without disrupting the spatialization of the explicit relation. The techniques have been generalized by others beyond the linguistic domain to be used in bioinformatics, finance, and general statistical charts.
April 12 – Reusable Visualization for Digital Humanities Projects
William Shaw (Digital Humanities Technology Consultant, Duke University Libraries)
In this talk, Will reflects on some guiding questions about data visualization techniques and the humanities: what problems of data, modeling, and visualization are unique to the humanities? What issues must traditional humanists learn to grapple with as they develop data sets for visualization, and how can graduate methodological training in the humanities change to address these new challenges?
April 19 – Visualizing California History and Landscape: Fort Ross Virtual Warehouse Project
Nicola Lercari (Duke VTG, AAHVS)
Fort Ross was a Russian fur trading outpost and a successful multi-cultural colony located in the Northern California coast. Between 1812 and 1841 the Ross colony was the southernmost redoubt (fortified compound) in the Russian colonization of North America and served as an agricultural and shipbuilding facility for the Russian American Company. Today’s Fort Ross is a popular State Historic Park visited every year by over 100,000 visitors and students from all over the world. In March 2011 California State Parks and the University of California Merced started a digital scholarship and visualization initiative, the Fort Ross Virtual Warehouse (FRVW) Project, with the goal of creating a digital archive of historical artifacts and reconstructed buildings as well as an online interactive learning tool able to educate elementary school students and park visitors about this important phase of California history.
In this talk, Nicola reflects on serious games (3d game environments with purpose different than entertainment) as novel tools for visualization and education. For example, what is the role of landscape in a serious game, and how does it indirectly influence the learning process? This presentation exhibits key features and short game sessions, and illustrates scientific data and methodologies employed in the FRVW project.
For more information, please contact Eric Monson or Angela Zoss.
The Visualization Friday Forum is sponsored by: