PhD Student Eric Colbert’s Mobile HCI Conference Experience

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Digital media PhD’s and some select Masters students had the opportunity to attend and present at the Mobile HCI conference held recently in Florence, Italy. As part of the 18th International conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile devices and Services. Held between September 6-9. 2016 is MobileHCI 2016 welcomed contributions related to any aspect of HCI technology, experience, methodology, and theory—or any mix thereof, and beyond, and solicits proposals for workshops, demonstrations, tutorials, and industrial case study papers.

Eric Colbert - PhD Student - Digital Media presented a paper at the Mobile HCI conference highlighting research he did as part of his Summer Internship at Google.

Corbett shared his experiences on being a part of the conference:

“Earlier this month I had the privilege of attending the 18th International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services (MobileHCI 2016). The conference took place in Florence, Italy September 6th - 9th, 2016. This conference presented a number of first experiences for me - first time presenting a paper at a conference, my first paper ever actually, as well as my first time being Europe. The research I presented was conducted at Google while I was an intern last summer. My role at Google was user experience researcher - my project was to investigate how to improve accessibility to mobile device for individuals with motor impairments using voice interactions. This was a great experience for me to not only intern and conduct research at Google but then also writing a research paper and having it accepted into a major ACM conference.

Attending the conference and presenting was a great experience. Definitely a learning experience. Especially when it comes to the type of talk that one gives at these types of venues. The presentation is short; just enough to set the motivation, discuss methods, and findings and implications. The talk is minimal - just enough to get people interested enough to read the paper. In fact, watching other talks after giving mine gave me a whole new appreciation for creating these types of presentations that will definitely be a great help for me in the future.

The best part of the conference to me was the opportunities to network with other attendees. There were several people I happened to have met at Google while interning who were in attendance. I also met researchers from Facebook and Spotify. The stunning moment was having some of these researchers come up to me after my talk to ask more questions and how our work relates. Stunning in that it was my first time being on the other side of that situation; being asked questions as opposed to asking questions! Outside of that, the conference was small enough to allow many individual conversations as well which was refreshing.

Overall, attending MobileHCI 2016 was a great experience for me both academically and professionally. I made many professional, industry connects as well as gaining practical experience submitting and presenting research papers.”



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