News

What you Can do in College to get into a CS PhD Program Posted: 21 Nov 2020

Are you considering grad school? Here are a few steps you can take to maximize your chances. The bad news is that it’s best to start planning and working towards getting into grad school early: I recommend you take first steps some time at the end of your sophomore year in college. The good news is that the process is not only about admission, but will give you a good sense of what grad school is like and prepare you for it.

Letter of Recommendation

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What we Should and Shouldn’t Change About the VIS Review Process Posted: 3 Nov 2020

The review process at IEEE VIS hasn’t changed in the last decade. Here I lay out some suggestions to make the process more equitable, open, and to possibly raise the quality of reviews.

Reviewer 2 Jack-O-Lantern. Image by Clara Nellist, used with permission.

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The Interpretivist Lens – What Design Study as a Method of Inquiry Can Teach Us. Posted: 30 Oct 2020

Much of the current conducting and reporting on design studies leaves little room for contributions outside of the end tool or technique. An interpretivist approach embraces the messy, subjective nature of design studies and emphasizes the ways in which we can conduct research of this nature with rigor. In this post, we advocate for interpretivist design studies and give three recommendations for conducting them.

Artifacts of a design study.

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Introducing Trrack – A Library for Tracking Provenance on the Web Posted: 28 Oct 2020

Tracking a history of actions of an interactive visual analysis session (i.e., its provenance) has benefits ranging from simple undo/redo, to enabling reproducibility, to making post-hoc analysis of user sessions possible. However, there are no established provenance tracking libraries that visualization developers can use with their web-based tools. This blog post introduces Trrack – a web-based library designed for easy integration in existing and newly developed visualization systems.

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VDL at IEEE VIS! Posted: 27 Oct 2020

VDL members are contributing in various ways to Virtual Vis 2020 this year.

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How Far Can We Push Crowdsourced Evaluation of Visualization Techniques? Posted: 23 Jul 2020

Crowdsourcing is a popular method for conducting quantitative studies, yet up to now, the types of studies that were run on crowdsourcing platforms is narrow. In this blog post, we describe a method to evaluate complex visualization techniques in a crowdsourced setting, which we developed for a 2020 CHI paper on evaluating multivariate network visualization techniques.

A spectrum of studies from perceptual, to static visualization, to studies with controlled interactions are amenable to quantitative studies. Complex visualization systems are not

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State COVID-19 Dashboards Posted: 20 Jul 2020

tldr: As states are navigating the influx of COVID data, they are using dashboards to communicate with their constituents. Although many states are doing a good job at collecting and sharing data in open data portals, dashboard quality varies a lot across states, and some have considerable room for improvement.

State Dashboard Compilation

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The Case Against Dashboards (when Visualizing a Pandemic) Posted: 6 Jul 2020

tldr: Using dashboards comes with risks: they leave out critical context by over-simplifying and hence give false certainty. A more nuanced approach including interpreation by experts, and showing multiple perspectives is needed when visualizing data for something as complex as the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic of 2020 has negatively impacted our lives in many ways. The anxiety felt by many is amplified by the obsessive consultation of the latest numbers and statistics about cases, testing rates, deaths, and so on. Both the public and experts have turned to data visualizations to understand what is going on, as data visualization is a powerful tool to discover and communicate trends and relationships. Government agencies, news organizations, and academic labs have published a plethora of graphs and dashboards tracking minute details, sometimes with deceiving precision.

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Introducing the VDL Blog Posted: 6 Jul 2020

tldr: We're starting a blog to communicate about our research and share our thoughts on data visualization!

As of today, the Visualization Design Lab has a blog!

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Carolina Nobre Successfully Defends Dissertation Posted: 19 Feb 2020

Carolina Nobre successfully defended her dissertation “Visualizing Multivariate Networks”. Congratulations also to Alexander Lex for his mentorship. Carolina will join Harvard University as a “Harvard Data Science Postdoctoral Fellow”.

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Two now pilot projects for VDL Posted: 15 Feb 2020

Two new pilot projects with VDL participation have been funded out of the 1U4U initiative.

Miriah Meyer is collaborating with Janet Iwasa and Jason Shepherd on a project to capture and communicate diverse biomedical hypothesis through visualization.

Alexander Lex is working with Thomas Zangle and Robert Judson-Torres on visualizing cancer cell growth response data based on quantitative phase imaging.

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VDL at IEEE VIS! Posted: 19 Oct 2019

VDL members are contributing in various ways to VIS in Vancouver this year.

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Nina McCurdy Successfully Defends Dissertation Posted: 13 Sep 2019

Nina McCurdy successfully defended her dissertation entitled “Action Design Research for Applied Visualization Design”. Congratulations also to Miriah Meyer for her great mentorship. Nina will join NASA’s Ames Research Center as a staff scientist.

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Welcome to new PhD students and Software Engineers, Goodby to Others Posted: 4 Sep 2019

We welcome three new PhD students and two software engineers to our Group.

  • Derya Akbaba is a new PhD fellowship student joining us after spending a couple of years at Locus Analytics in New York City.
  • Max Marno is a new PhD fellowship student who has spent his last two years as a GIS analyst in Breckenridge, CO..
  • Cole Polychronis joins us as a PhD fellowship student after graduating from Westminster College.
  • Kaleb Bickmore is a new full stack software engineer who will work on health-related projects.
  • Jack Wilburn is a new full stack software engineer who will support the NSF MultiNet project.
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VDL at EuroVis in Porto Posted: 31 May 2019

Several VDL members will be at EuroVis in Porto. In addition to the PIs, Carolina Nobre and Samuel Quinan will be attending. Sam will present the full paper on implicit discretization in color maps (rainbows!), and Carolina will present the state of the art report on multivariate network visualization. Please join us for these talks or just say hi if you see us!

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Alex Bigelow Successfully Defends Dissertation Posted: 13 May 2019

Alex Bigelow successfully defended his dissertation entitled “Reflections, Models, and Software for Iterative Visualization Design”. Congratulations also to Miriah Meyer for her great mentorship. Alex has already moved on to a postdoctoral position with Kate Isaacs at the University of Arizona.

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One Keynote, Four Papers, and Two Posters at VIS Posted: 19 Oct 2018

VDL members are contributing in various ways to VIS in Berlin this year:

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VDL Indoor Air Quality Research Featured in The Salt Lake Tribune Posted: 7 Oct 2018

If you could see how chores impact your home’s air quality, you might do them differently! This piece is based on new research by VDL members Jimmy Moore, Pascal Goffin, Miriah Meyer, and the School of Computing’s Jason Wiese to help local families see the unseen with indoor air quality senors. The one article your child doesn’t want you to read!

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VDL Receives NSF Award to Develop Multivariate Network Visualization Platform Posted: 10 Sep 2018

Miriah Meyer and Alexander Lex, in collaboration with teams from Kitware, the University of Idaho, Knowedge Vis, Duke University, and the Carnegie Institution of Science, have received an award from NSF’s Office of Advanced Cyberinfrastructure to develop a web-based reproducible visual analysis platform for multivariate networks. We’re very excited about this project and about the prospect of working with this amazing team!

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Welcome to new PhD students Posted: 9 Sep 2018

We welcome three new PhD Students to our Group.

  • Kiran Gadhave joins us as a PhD student after being a TA and an intern with the group before.
  • Ilkin Safarli is a new PhD fellowship student who has previously contributed to the NEWT Pathway Editor.
  • Haihan Lin joins us as a PhD fellowship student after graduating from Macalester College.
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Ethan Kerzner successfully defends Dissertation Posted: 9 Aug 2018

Ethan successfully defended his dissertation entitled “A Framework for Creative Visualization-Opportunities Workshops”. Congratulations also to Miriah Meyer for her great mentorship. Once the revisions are completed, Ethan will begin a job at Google X as a Data Visualization Engineer.

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Three Papers Accepted at InfoVis'18 Posted: 1 Aug 2018

Three VDL papers were accepted at InfoVis. The topics range from creative visualization-opportunities workshops, to spanning-tree based graph visualization, to characterizing implicit errors in visualization.

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New Seed Grant to Support Development of Genealogical Visualization Tool Posted: 23 Feb 2018

Alexander Lex and Hilary Coon have received a $ 50,000 seed grant from the Utah Genome Project for developing Lineage, the visualization tool that helps researchers study clinical geneaolgies provided by the Utah Population Database. For details, see the project page.

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Alexander Lex wins NSF CAREER grant Posted: 21 Feb 2018

Alexander Lex has received $ 512,000 from the National Science Foundation for developing software that will capture the decision-making process of doctors and other researchers by using algorithms and human-computer interaction methods. For details, see the project page.

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Heading to Phoenix, for IEEE Vis Posted: 28 Sep 2017

Most of our group will be at VIS again; we’re especially excited for our first-timers Aspen Hopkins and Jen Rogers.

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VDL at SIGGRAPH Posted: 27 Jul 2017

Three VDL members will be at the 2017 SIGGRAPH conference in Los Angeles. If you see them, say hello and go check out Jennifer’s poster. We look forward to connecting with everyone at the conference!

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Meyer presents BioVis Keynote Posted: 24 Jul 2017

Miriah Meyer gave a keynote for BioVis at ISMB in Prague, Czech Republic. The topic was “Just a tool, or a science? The role of visualization in biology”, and it was standing room only!.

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VDL at EuroVis Posted: 30 Mar 2017

Two VDL members will be at the EG/VGTC EuroVis conference in Barcelona. Be sure to say hello, come to our talks, and we look forward to connecting with everyone at the conference!

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VDL back at IEEE Vis Posted: 25 Oct 2016

We’ll be back at IEEE VIS this time in Baltimore. Our students will be presenting multiple papers and also host a party together with other SCI members! Make sure to say hi, come to our talks and to the Party.

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VDL at IEEE Vis Posted: 14 Oct 2015

Members of VDL will be at IEEE VIS in Chicago. We will be presenting multiple papers and also host a party together with other SCI members! Make sure to say hi, come to our talks and to the Party.

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Open PostDoc and PhD Student Position @ University of Utah Posted: 19 Jun 2015

We are seeking a postdoctoral fellow and multiple PhD students to join the Vis Design Lab and the Caleydo Team at the University of Utah. Please get in touch with Alexander Lex at alex@sci.utah.edu.

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