Jeff Bigham

jbighamMy research spans HCI, accessibility, crowdsourcing, human computation, artificial intelligence, social computing, computer vision, machine learning, and language technologies.

Currently, I am focused on four broad projects:

  • Transitioning crowd-powered systems to automation. I’m working on integrating speech and language technology into Chorus; automatic speech recognition into Scribe; and, automatic computer vision into VizWiz and Zensors.
  • Creating a more accessible Web with WebAnywhere, and by crowdsourcing accessibility improvements to existing web content.
  • Working to understand dyslexia using human-computer interaction measures, creating tools that help people with dyslexia read and write better, and eventually building tools to diagnose dyslexia earlier and easier.
  • Creating a brighter future for crowd workers through education and training. I’m working to design tasks that leverage the expertise that crowd workers already have, and tasks that allow workers to build useful skills while they work.

Bob Kraut

bob-demin-4-crop_0Robert E. Kraut
Herbert A. Simon Professor of Human-Computer Interaction
Human-Computer Interaction Institute, School of Computer Science
Tepper School of Business
Center for the Future of Work, Heinz College
Carnegie Mellon University
Ph.D., Social Psychology, Yale University, 1973

Dr. Kraut has broad interests in the design and social impact of computing and has conducted empirical research on online communities, the social impact of the internet on personal relationships and psychological well-being, the design of information technology for small-group intellectual work, the communication needs of collaborating scientists, the impact of business computer technologies on organizational networks employment quality and home-based employment. He is a fellow of both the Association for Psychological Science and the Association of Computing Machinery.

His recent research has focused on the analysis and design of online communities, such as health-support communities, Facebook groups, guilds in multi-player games, and Wikipedia project. This research consists of both empirical analyses of how they operate, such as how they socialize newcomers and they coordinate their work, and interventions to improve their operation. He is the coauthor of Building Successful Online Communities: Evidence-Based Social Design, a handbook published by MIT Press.

He wrote a biographical essay, Re-engineering social encounters, in 2003 for the American Psychological Association. In 1980, his research on the evolution of the human facial expressions won a Proxmire Golden Fleece award. His biographical essay, Why bowlers smile, and Ed Diener’s essay, Why Robert Kraut smiles, describe the legacy of that award. CMU’s School of Computer Science alumni magazine recently published an article describing his role in the formation of the Human-Computer Interaction Institute.

Jon Pearlman

Jon Pearlman, PhD is HERL’s Associate Director of Engineering and assistant professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Science & Technology at the University of Pittsburgh.  Dr. Pearlman earned his BS and MS in mechanical engineering at the UC Berkeley and Cornell University, respectively.  Dr. Pearlman completed his PhD work Rehabilitation Science and Technology at the University of Pittsburgh in 2007, with an emphasis on assistive technology design and transfer to developing countries.  Dr. Pearlman’s research interests are in the areas of participatory action design, assistive technology transfer methods, and new product development.


Mary Goldberg

Mary Goldberg, PhD serves as the Education & Outreach Project Director at the Human Engineering Research Laboratories and is also an Assistant Professor in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology at the University of Pittsburgh.  She has a background in education with a concentration in rehabilitation science; psychology; and Spanish.  She has served as Co-PI on several training programs in the field of assistive technology for undergraduates, veterans, and graduate students, with a particular emphasis on students with disabilities. Dr. Goldberg received her PhD in Administrative and Policy Studies of Education with a focus on online learning in assistive technology and her additional research interests include program evaluation, STEM education, and international capacity building in assistive technology.

Adam Arabian

1ec329a21992353743647d9652298517_400x400Dr. Adam Arabian is an assistant professor of Mechanical Engineering at Seattle Pacific University where he conducts researcher in the development and evaluation of low-cost prosthetic devices with specific interests in international undeserved populations.  Prior to this he spent fifteen years in industry, most of which was in the world of prosthetic devices.  Prior positions include lead engineer for the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab DARPA Modular Prosthetic Limb and director of research and development for Orthocare Innovations. He earned his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Louisville (2008)

Aleks Tapinsh

imageI am a Computer Science student at the University of Pittsburgh. I work on the backend of the EDIGS project, implemented in Flask and an SQL database under the mentorship of Jennifer Mankoff. I enjoy seeing how little details come together to form a working application.

Dimeji Onafuwa

Onafuwa_Dimeji-1024x682Dimeji’s experience in design, research and consulting spans over a decade.

At CMU, his research in the field of social design focuses on design’s impact on initializing maintaining and contributing to a commons by exploring how collaboration around tenancy as common property may amplify community strength in ways that contribute to societal transition to sustainable futures.

Gary Yang

47435_154820504533197_3999386_nFull-stack Developer, visualize data to help people solve problems.

Nidhi Vyas

12310448_1098476153503407_3811405813891964160_nI am presently in my Junior year at DA-IICT, India and I work as a remote intern on project ‘eDigs’, mentored by Dr. Jennifer Mankoff at HCI. I was a programmer for building an application on Android and iOS SDK, and we successfully deployed it on both systems. Currently, I am mentored by Dr. Mankoff and am working independently as a researcher on a project called ‘SunScore’. I have found a method to give a lightweight estimate of the internal light level a room gets, compared to the external light level, just by looking at the Satellite and Street View of it provided by Google Earth.

Vikram Kamath

I am a web developer working at the Dean’s office at CMU. In my spare time, I work as a Research Assistant and contribute to EDigs and the Prosthetics study. I enjoy building applications and am learning about research.