Research Projects

We creating general accessibility solutions that empower people with disabilities to accomplish their goals, including programming, physical computing, and more. We also create novel fabrication technologies, including for accessibility. Our goal is to improve inclusion in and accessibility of our digital future. In addition, prior work done by our group focused on sustainability. A list of all publications in order of time can be found at the end.


accessibility | inclusion | all

President Obama once said ‘3D printing […] has the potential to revolutionize the way we make almost everything” [Obama 2013].’ One might say that computers have the same ability. Together, computational advances and fabrication can revolutionize personal problem solving, particularly with respect to accessibility. 

Our group is embarking on an effort to enhance fabrication technology, both through the use of new and better materials and in its ease of program. Much of our effort here is on embedding standard programming capabilities such as testability, modularity, iterability, and version control into the design and fabrication process.

Challenges at the intersection of fabrication and accessibility

More publications…


 fabrication | inclusion | all

One in 5 Americans has a disability, and the needs of people with disabilities are extremely heterogeneous. Yet accessibility is not a given, and assistive technology today is mostly homogenous and very expensive. Our group is focused on the scientific challenges that can address accessibility across a broad range of domains. A major focus of this work is creating general tools so that anyone can use tools such as 3D printing, knitting and other fabrication technologies.

Challenges at the intersection of fabrication and accessibility

More publications…


accessibility | fabrication | all
Our group also works to address inclusion of other under represented groups. Our particular focus currently is the UW Experience Study which is looking at experiences that differentially impact under represented groups among undergraduates at the University of Washington. Other recent work has looked at gender in academia and other settings.

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More publications…

All recent publications

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14 drawings of participant gestures organized as 2 rows and 7 columns. The top row represents high agreement gestures, and the bottom row represents unique gestures that participants designed. The columns are functions (from left to right): move/pan, select, rotate, delete, open/close, zoom-in/-out, duplicate. For move/pan, the high agreement gesture was moving hand from left to right in mid-air and the unique gesture was flexing fingers from left to right. For select, the high agreement gesture was pointing with hand or finger, and the unique gesture was squeezing hand into fist. For rotate, the high agreement gesture was grabbing object and rotating about the person's wrist and the unique gesture was rotating shoulders. For delete, the high agreement gesture was swiping away and the unique gesture was looking down. For open/close, the high agreement gesture was swiping down, and the unique gesture was shrugging shoulders. For zoom-in/-out, the high agreement gesture was moving both hands towards and away from body, and the unique gesture was flexing shoulders in and out. For duplicate, the high agreement gesture was tapping twice in mid-air in two separate locations with the hand and the unique gesture was tapping chin twice.

How Do People with Limited Movement Personalize Upper-Body Gestures? Considerations for the Design of Personalized and Accessible Gesture Interfaces

Artwork by Lydia X.Z. Brown,(they/them) 2020. Watercolor and ink drawing of four disabled people. The first is wearing a bipap respirator and a shirt that says disabled and proud! and has brown skin and dark brown hair in a bob. The second is wearing a green shirt that says Access is Love and has short green hair and green lips. They are in a wheelchair and have brown skin. Next is a person holding a white cain wearing a blue shirt saying "my other disability is a bad attitude" with shoulder-length brown hair and lighter skin. Finally, there is a person with dreadlocks in an orange shirt. Words like "disability" and "genius" are visible behind them. The bottom right of the image states "By Lydia X Brown, 2020. Honor crip, mad, disabled & neurodivergent wisdom & genius. Disability Justice Now! Downloaded from

Race, Disability and Accessibility Technology

A picture of part of a dashboard visualization showing sales by state, using a US map, bar charts, a pie chart, and total sales. To the side, part of a textual dashboard description is visible summarizing the same information visible in the charts. Above, a filter menu is visible where the user can select which region to show sales for.

Azimuth: Designing Accessible Dashboards for Screen Reader Users

A picture of a physical therapist helping a patient to use a stretch band

I’m Just Overwhelmed”: Investigating Physical Therapy Accessibility and Technology Interventions for People with Disabilities and/or Chronic Conditions

A picture of two mock heads showing how color and position can be used to visualize phonemes around the head. A green circle at bottom left shows the wh phoneme in the left image. A yellow blob at the top right shows the f phoneme.

Understanding and Enhancing the Role of Speechreading in Online d/DHH Communication Accessibility

GLOBEM logo, blue text with a world for the O.

Cross-Dataset Generalization for Human Behavior Modeling

PSST: Enabling Blind or Visually Impaired Developers to Author Sonifications of Streaming Sensor Data

A picture of two people wearing 3D printed PPE. On the left is a face shield (42.2% of submissions) and on the right a facemask (28.4% of submissions).

Rapid Convergence: The Outcomes of Making PPE during a Healthcare Crisis

A picture of a slightly see through shoulder and neck with ribs showing. A spaghetti strap is visible.

Chronically Under-Addressed: Considerations for HCI Accessibility Practice with Chronically III People

A complex diagram showing the flow of information from sensors through feature extraction, formation of a user behavior profile, and then final prediction.

Personalized behavior modeling: depression detection

A diagram showing how we build stress & resilience frameworks for student mental health. The framework has three components -- social characteristics, cumulative stress, and resilience resources. At the center where all three overlap is perceived stress, anxiety and depression.

Distress and resilience among marginalized undergraduates

A quote from the paper

COVID-19 and Remote Learning for Students with Disabilities

Optimized tactile map


Knitted sweaters and associated patterns

Computational Design of Knit Templates

A barplot showing intervention acceptance for typout (57.2%) and typing only (48.8%) among 54 users over 10 weeks.

TypeOut: Just-in-Time Self-Affirmation for Reducing Phone Use

What Do We Mean by “Accessibility Research”?

Designing Tools for High-Quality Alt Text Authoring

Mixed Abilities and Varied Experiences in a Virtual Summer Internship

Anticipate and Adjust: Cultivating Access in Human-Centered Methods

Practices and Needs of Mobile Sensing Researchers

A lineplot showing anxiousness (Y axis, varying from 0 to 4) over time (X axis). Each student in the study is plotted as a different line over each day of the quarter. The plot overall looks very messy, but two things are clear; Every student has a very different trajectory from every other, with all of them going up and down multiple times. And the average, overall, shown is a fit line, is fairly low and slightly increasing (from about .75 to just under 1).

College during COVID

Sampler of PPE found on the NIH repository

Medical Making During COVID

(Left) Users can select accessibility qualities to filter the places shown on the map. (Right) Clicking on a place opens a popup window to see all of that place's coded accessibility qualities, pictures, reviews, and additional textual descriptions.

Navigating Illness, Finding Place

BLV Understanding of Visual Semantics

A user is tapping on their cheek. The tapping is sensed by a microphone in the earphone.

Interaction via Wireless Earbuds

HulaMove: Waist Interaction

Understanding Disabled Knitters

A picture of a knit lampshade in blue and green surrounding a lit lamp on an orange table.

KnitGIST: Generative Texture Design

Shows barchart of import of different features onetecting change in depression

Detecting Depression △

Gender in Online Doctor Reviews

A picture of Megan in her wedding dress leaning on her cane with a river and skyscrapers in the background. A second picture shows her partner working on the cane while wearing a mask and a faceshield for protection.

Living Disability Theory

Detecting Loneliness

The Limits of Expert Text Entry Speed

KnitPick: Manipulating Texture

Passively-sensing Discrimination

A venn diagram showing the domains of expertise of those we interviewed including people from hospitals, universities, non-profits, va networks, private practices, and government. We interviewed clinicians and facilitators in each of these domains and there was a great deal of overlap with participants falling into multiple categories. For example, one participant was in a VA network and in private practice, while another was at a university and also a non-profit.

Digital Fabrication in Medical Practice

A Makapo paddler in a one-person outrigger canoe (OC1) with the final version of CoOP attached.

Designing in the Public Square

Clench Interaction: Biting As Input

Picture of potted plants and a bench with the word Africatown in the background, painted in bright red and green colors

Who Gets to Future?

Splint that has been 3D printed in a material of an appropriate skin color and fit to a client's hand.

“Occupational Therapy is Making”

Sign showing: Sustainability -- Next Exit

Automatically Tracking and Executing Green Actions

Lyme Disease’s Heterogeneous Impact

Understanding gender equity in author order assignment

Picture of a 3D printed arm with backscatter sensing technology attached to it.

3D Printed Wireless Analytics



Nonvisual Interaction Techniques at the Keyboard Surface

Picture of 3D models and a printout

Expressing and Reusing Design Intent in 3D Models

Picture of an elastic band with a sensor about the size of a belt buckle attached to it.

Hypertension recognition through overnight Heart Rate Variability sensing

The Tangible Desktop

Examples of 3d printed objects that are robust to measurement uncertainty.

Uncertainty in Measurement

Making the field of computing more inclusive for people with disabilities

Volunteer AT Fabricators

Tactile Interfaces to Appliances

Aversion to Typing Errors

Modeling & Generating Routines

The top of a young person's head with long hear, wearing a red felt crown with 3D printed decorations on it.

3D Printing with Embedded Textiles


Shows someone placing a pen in a cap with two different types of adaptations.

Printable Adaptations

A teddy bear wearing a knit hat, scarf (with pocket) and sweater

A Knitting Machine Compiler

Sketchup Interface with plugin for RapID being used to create a Tic Tac Toe board.

RapID — interactive RFID

Modeling Human Routines


Diagram of FOCUS method for dynamic, cost-sensitive feature selection

Dynamic question ordering

3D printed attachments

Helping Hands

Supporting Navigation in the Wild for the Blind

I red bunny made of layers of felt fabric.

Layered Fabric Printing

Infant Oxygen Monitoring

3D Printed Prosthetics: Case Study

Images from a variety of projects supporting green behavior


Probabilistic Input

Severity of Chronic Lyme Disease

Replacing ‘Wave to Engage’ with ‘Intent to Interact’

Automatically tracking green actions

A picture of the clavicle and neck of a person with translucent skin. The rib bones are visible through the skin.

Competing Online Viewpoints and Models of Chronic Illness

Access SIGCHI protest

Disability Studies and Accessible Technology Creation

Exiting the cleanroom: On ecological validity and ubiquitous computing