Keynote I: Reaching Our Users

Dr. Catherine Plaisant

August 30 Wednesday 8:30am to 9:45am

As our field matures, the tools and ideas described in our research publications are reaching users. How can we make sure we develop powerful visual tools that can deal with user diversity (age, language, disabilities, etc.) but also with the variety of technology used and the gaps in user's knowledge? Another challenge is to adequately study the impact of our technologies. We will review many examples, and discuss evaluation methods and the emergence of Multi-dimensional In-depth Long-term Case studies (MILCs) to study the creative activities that users engage in.

About Dr. Catherine Plaisant

Dr. Catherine Plaisant is Associate Research Scientist at the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory of the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies. She earned a Doctorat d'Ingenieur degree in France in 1982. In 1987 she joined the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory. Her research contributions range from focused user interaction techniques (e.g. Excentric Labeling) to innovative visualizations (such as LifeLines for personal records or SpaceTree for hierarchical data exploration) and interactive search interface techniques such as Query Previews. She has written over 90 refereed technical publications and recently co-authored with Ben Shneiderman the 4th Edition of "Designing the User Interface".

Catherine Plaisant

Keynote II: Using Multi-Media to support Command and Control in Crisis Management Systems

Dr. Erland Jungert

August 31 Thursday 8:30am to 9:45am

Societies have always been challenged by different kinds of crises, disasters and difficult times. During such challenging events society must be able to deal with the situations that often require major efforts. It is thus important to be aware of which resources that are needed to handle these crises. As a consequence, tools that can support command and control functionality in various types of crisis management systems are needed. These tools should support both proactive and operative crisis management, that is, they are needed to support the prevention of those situations that may occur as well as operative handling of ongoing crises. They must also be able to handle the uncertain situations related to crises where the conditions hastily can change. Consequently, crucial qualities needed in the crisis management systems will include situational and crisis awareness. Furthermore, to achieve reliable command and control functionality, supporting net centric crisis management means for collection, analysis, handling, visualization as well as exchange of large amounts data between different users are necessary. These data are generally of spatial/temporal type and originate in most cases from multiple sensor data sources. For these reasons techniques for handling multi-media data in various ways are required when developing command and control functionalities in crisis management systems. Other corner-stones, besides the above mentioned, that touches upon multi-media aspects in connection to crisis management architectures, are command and control models, service related structures, distributed ontologies and models of information flow.

Proactive aspects of crisis management are quite often dealing with physical protection of facilities that eventually can be subject to different types of threats. Historically, such systems can be seen as simple alarm systems i.e. the threat becomes a reality and the alarm is activated. Most of the time, when the alarm goes off the effects of the possible actions that can be carried out are limited since nothing or very little can be done to prevent the consequences of the activated threats. For these reasons, the surroundings of the facilities must be subject to intelligent over long periods of time to achieve knowledge about possible activities that may be set into effect by antagonistic individuals or groups of individuals. Multi-media systems can here play an important role to achieve a higher degree of security. For instance, by supporting the detection of anomalous behavior.

In this presentation aspects of multi-media will be discussed in connection to techniques that can be used to give the society higher levels of security both before and during crises. Other techniques and methods that may influence the design of multi-media systems for support of crisis management systems will be discussed as well. Among these are information fusion, interoperability and means for situation awareness.

About Dr. Erland Jungert

Erland Jungert has a Ph. D. in Computer Science from the University of Linköping, Sweden, 1980. Currently he is Director of Compute Science Research at FOI, Linköping, Sweden since 1987 and since 1998 he is also part time professor in Geoinformatics at the Department of Computer and Information Science, at Linköping University. He has also been visiting Associate Professor at the department of Electrical Engineering, at the Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago, Ill. in1985-1986. Dr Jungert is co-author of one book on spatial reasoning and the co-editor of two other books on Visual Languages and on Intelligent Database Systems. Furthermore, he is also associate editor of the journal of Visual Languages and Computing. His interests are concerned with methods for spatial reasoning, query languages especially for sensor data sources. Lately, he has developed an interest for command and control systems for crisis management also including techniques and methods for prevention of crises and antagonistic threat activities.