Monday, October 19, 2015

VL/HCC 2015 - Atlanta, GA (GC & Day 1)


After traveling to Houston for Grace Hopper (post to come soon about the happenings there), and now to ATL for VL/HCC (IEEE Symposium on Visual Languages and Human Centric Computing) I'm pretty exhausted. BUT not too exhausted to share some of the greatness that has gone down since I've gotten here for the conference :).

To start, the GC (Graduate Consortium for those who don't know) was amazing. I found myself comparing it to last year, and I can honestly say it just keeps getting better. Now, this may be because my research gets more refined, which makes it more suitable to feedback, but I feel like I really got some ideas that are gonna push me in the right direction. On top of the great feedback I got, I met and connected with some AMAZING PhD students at various stages of their career. Despite all having unique research interests and directions, we were all able to provide insights to improve each others' work (and even potentially reference each others' work).

Now, for the first day of the conference. The theme this year is "Computational Thinking and Computer Science Education" thing I love about VL/HCC is that it's a smaller venue, so it's a lot more personal. I walked in for the intro and first session and found a seat next to a friendly looking female...of course I asked if the seat was taken and then proceeded to introduce myself. Come to find out, I was sitting next to none other than Felienne Hermans of Delft University in the Netherlands! The cool thing about it is I've been virtually stalking her ever since she wrote a blog post about my first conference paper/presentation 2 years ago...and now I've met her face to face. And it feels awesome. The most awesome part is I got to talk to her about my dissertation research, and she loved the idea! We did some brainstorming and she even had some work she's going to pass my way related to it. Yet another boost of confidence for my dissertation research :).

It would have been hard to ruin my day after how it started; fortunately, I didn't have to worry about that. The day was filled with interesting talks related to computational thinking and computer science education. Although all the talks were great, here are some of my favorites from the day:

Tutorons: Generating Context-Relevant, On-DemandExplanations and Demonstrations of Online Code - context relevant explanations of code (browser add-on)
Andrew Head, Codanda Appachu, Marti A. Hearst, Bjorn Hartmann

Codepourri: Creating Visual Coding TutorialsUsing A Volunteer Crowd Of Learners - crowdsourced visual tutorials for learning to program (using crowd of learners)
Mitchell Gordon and Philip J. Guo

Personality and Intrinsic Motivational Factors in EUP - model that predicts motivation based on personality profiles
Saeed Aghaee, Alan F. Blackwell, David Stillwell, Michal Kosinki
1. bricoleurism - like to build things, tinkering with stuff
2. technophilia - love of tech/new tech
3. artistry - enjoy experimenting with creative ideas
MyPersonality dataset
Big Five Inventory Personality Test
Facebook 'likes' to predict personality profiles
Computer better predictor of personality than people

Scientists Tell Stories About Seeking Help with Programming - "war stories" to determine help seeking behaviors of EU scientists [qualitative study]
Brian Frey and Carolyn Seaman

Facilitating Testing and Debugging of Markov Decision Processes with Interactive Visualizations
Sean McGregor, Hailey Buckingham, Thomas G. Dietterich, Rachel Houtman, Claire Montgomery, Ronald Metoyer

A Study of Interactive Code Annotation for Access Control Vulnerabilities
Tyler Thomas, Bill Chu, Heather Lipford, Justin Smith, Emerson Murphy-Hill
Memorable Quote: "Ain't nobody wanna be hacked"

Codechella: program for interactive and collaborative tutoring/building mental models - simulate in-person help in an online platform
Philip J. Guo, Jeffery White, Renan Zanelatto

Semantic Zooming of Code Change History
Youngseok Yoon and Brad A. Myers

That's all for now - I'll try to post again for day 2 and will definitely be posting about GHC soon. Until next time!

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