Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Title: Crowd Agents: Interactive Crowd-Powered Systems in the Real World
Speaker: Jeffrey Bigham (CS, University of Rochester)
Date: Wednesday, Dec 5th
Time: 12-1pm
Room: GHC 4405

Over the past few years, I have been developing and deploying interactive crowd-powered systems. For instance, VizWiz has the crowd answer visual questions for blind people in less than a minute, Legion allows outsourcing of desktop tasks to the crowd, and Scribe allows the crowd to caption audio in real-time. Overall, thousands of people have engaged with these systems, providing an interesting look at how end users interact with crowd work in their everyday lives. Collectively, these systems illustrate a new approach to human computation in which the diverse and changing crowd is provided the computational support necessary to act as a single, high-quality actor. The classic advantage of the crowd has been its wisdom, but our systems are beginning to show how crowd agents can surpass even expert individuals on difficult real-time motor and cognitive performance tasks.

Jeffrey P. Bigham is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Rochester where he heads the ROCHCI Group. His work is at the intersection of human-computer interaction, human computation, and artificial intelligence, with a focus on developing innovative technology that serves people with disabilities in their everyday lives. Jeffrey received his B.S.E degree in Computer Science from Princeton University in 2003. He received his M.Sc. degree in 2005 and his Ph.D. in 2009, both in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Washington working with Richard E. Ladner. Dr. Bigham has won a number of awards, including the Microsoft Imagine Cup Accessible Technology Award, the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Award for Technology Collaboration, the MIT Technology Review Top 35 Innovators Under 35 Award, and Best Paper Awards at UIST, WSDM, and ASSETS. In 2012, he received the National Science Foundation CAREER Award.