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Human-Computer Interaction

Human-Computer interaction (HCI) is the study of the interaction between people (users) and computers. Such an interaction traditionally occurs at the user interface, but its effectiveness is strongly related with the design of the entire interactive system, re- ferring in particular to the way in which it supports the user in achieving her/his goals and executing her/his tasks. Indeed, an important facet of HCI is the securing of the in- teractive system usability.

The research group started working on HCI topics during the late ’80s, while developing a visual interface for databases. This pioneering work can be regarded as one of the first and most significant examples of deep analysis and formaliza- tion of the interaction between the user and the database, which takes into consideration both usability issues and language related aspects.

Following these lines, the group developed another relevant research topic, namely the definition of adequate visual representations of the databases, in terms of both schema and instances. Note that using a consistent visual representation to depict the information of interest is crucial in order for the user to correctly grasp the database in- formation content. Related with visual representation is information visualization, i.e. the use of computer-based, visual, interactive representations of information with the purpose of making sense out of data, acquire knowledge, discover new information, and effectively present the result.

In the last years we focused on clutter reduction for information visualization ana- lyzing the visual issues associated with the use of density maps focusing on the correct assignment of visual variable values to a data domain, taking into account its frequency distributions. Other HCI topics are also investigated, including the study of specific usability, accessibility, and adaptivity methodological aspects, the interaction with dif- ferent realms, e.g. digital libraries, cultural artifacts, mobile and ubiquitous systems, technology-enhanced learning environments.

Designing interactive systems that could be effectively, efficiently and with satisfac- tion used by people exhibiting different characteristics, needs, preferences and abilities is getting more and more important in Information Technology research and develop- ment, as it is clearly demonstrated by the growing importance of the user role in research projects as well as in public administration developments, by the introduction in several Laws of precise usability and accessibility requirements for governmental information systems, by the continuous increase of funding for HCI-related research at EU and inter- national level.

We have been among the pioneers of the research in this field in Europe, in particular in the effort of giving formal basis to the definition of interaction while considering human-related, perceptual aspects. We are still continuing in this direction, in particular by working on a machine-interpretable and machine-learnable model of user task that will be the basis for a novel task-oriented interaction model, to be tested in personal in- formation environments. Furthermore, innovative interaction styles, e.g. brain-computer interfaces, ubiquitous and sensor-based environments, extreme visualizations, are under study, as well as novel design methodologies, advancing traditional user-centered design both with the injection of agile concepts and directly encompassing accessibility aspects.

Scientific roles:

• Tiziana Catarci is Editor in Chief of EAI Transactions on Ambient Systems.

• Tiziana Catarci since 2016 she is member of the prestigious European Academy of Sciences and Arts.

• Tiziana Catarci since 2016 she has been included among the “100 Women for Sci- ence” project - http://www.100esperte.it/.

• Tiziana Catarci in 2018 has been included among the “InspiringFifty”, https://italy.inspiringfifty.org/ , the most influential women in the tech world.

• Tiziana Catarci in 2018 she has been nominated fellow of the EAI – European Al- liance for Innovation.

• Giuseppe Santucci is in the Steering Committee of IEEE Conference on Visual Ana- lytics Science and Technology - VAST.

• Giuseppe Santucci is in the Steering Committee of EG/VGTC Conference on Visu- alization - EUROVIS.

• Giuseppe Santucci is in the Program Committee of EG/VGTC Conference on Visu- alization - EUROVIS.

• Giuseppe Santucci is in the Program Committee of IEEE Conference on Visual An- alytics Science and Technology - VAST.

• Giuseppe Santucci is in the Steering Committee of ACM International Workshop BEyond time and errors: novel evaLuation methods for Information Visualization BELIV.

• Giuseppe Santucci is Workshop & Tutorial Chair in the conference Advanced Visual Interfaces AVI.

• Massimo Mecella is general chair of International conference of Advanced Visual Interfaces (AVI) 2018.

• Marco Temperini is Associate editor in the journal IJDET (Int. Journal on Dis- tance Education Technology, https://www.igi-global.com/journal/international- journal-distance-education-technologies/1078).

• Marco Temperini is member of the Steering Committee of the workshop IEE- TEL (Int. workshop on Interactive Environments and Emerging Technologies for eLearning, https://sites.google.com/view/ieetel2019).

• Andrea Marrella is the Poster & Demo Chair of 14th International Conference on Advanced Visual Interfaces (AVI 2018).

• Francesco Leotta is Poster & Demo Chair for Intelligent Environments 2018.

• Marco Angelini was co-chair of ITA.WA, 1st Italian workshop on Advanced Visu- alizations and Visual Analytics, co-located at AVI 2018.

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