Is your dog watching TV?

If you’d like to scientifically determine whether your dog (or any other dog) is watching TV, you could try using a high-quality method of face tracking (from a Human Computer Interaction [HCI] standpoint) as suggested by PhD researcher Ilyena Hirskyj-Douglas and Prof. Janet C Read from the Animal Computer Interaction Design (ACID), a research group […]

The Lure of Horse-Computer Interaction : an ethographic approach

Dr Steve North and colleagues at the University of Nottingham, UK have developed a new study-area methodology, and have coined a new word for it : “Ethographology“ (derived from ‘ethnographic’ and ‘ethology’). “The ethnographic elements of ethographology describe practices, reasons, cultures, and competencies. By way of contrast, the ethology components of ethographology are more concerned […]

How well scientists understand how to figure out how the brain works…

An essay (in The Elusive Self blog) about a demonstration of how little anyone really understands how the brain works: False functional inference: what does it mean to understand the brain? A few days ago Eric Jonas and Konrad Kording [pictured here] (J&K) posted a thought-provoking paper on bioRxiv entitled “Could a neuroscientist understand a microprocessor?” […]

“Overtaken by curiosity” Users Really Do Plug in USB Drives (which) They Find

“We investigate the anecdotal belief that end users will pick up and plug in USB flash drives they find by completing a controlled experiment in which we drop 297 flash drives on a large university campus. We find that the attack is effective with an estimated success rate of 45–98% and expeditious with the first […]

Progress in grandma and grandpa detection

A joint US research Project from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Disney Research, Pittsburg, has made steps towards an automated digital image family member detection system. The new Bayesian photo-analysis methodology is able, for example, to perform ”identity clustering” and make attempts at identifying not only which individuals might be mothers, fathers, and […]

‘Ludefaction’ defined

If you haven’t come across the word ‘Ludefaction’ before, it may be because you haven’t seen the latest issue of the scholarly journal games and culture. There, the word is described by Graeme Kirkpatrick, Professor in Media Arts, Aesthetics & Narration at the University of Skövde, Sweden. as “the negative underside of ludification.” (see: Ludefaction […]

They gamely plant a secret password in the participant’s brain

They gamely plant a secret password in the participant’s brain, they say, in this presentation: “Neuroscience Meets Cryptography: Designing Crypto Primitives Secure Against Rubber Hose Attacks,” Hristo Bojinov [Stanford University], Daniel Sanchez and Paul Reber [Northwestern University], Dan Boneh [Stanford University], Patrick Lincoln [SRI], 21st USENIX Security Symposium, August 8-12, 2014, Bellevue, Washington. (Thanks to […]

Rod constraints for simplified ragdolls

Programmers sometimes love rag dolls. This study is the fruit of one such love: “Rod constraints for simplified ragdolls,” Chris Lewin, Matt Thorman, Tom Waterson, Chris Williams, and Phil Willis, Proceedings of the 12th ACM SIGGRAPH/Eurographics Symposium on Computer Animation, pp. 79-84. ACM, 2013. The authors, at the University of Bath, UK, and Electronic Arts, […]

Binary obfuscation using signals, for the confused

Are you (or is someone you know) a bit confused about binary obfuscation using signals? This report could help, one way or another: “Binary Obfuscation Using Signals,” Igor V. Popov, Saumya K. Debray, Gregory R. Andrews, 16th USENIX Security Symposium, pp. 275–290 of the Proceedings. The authors are, or were, at the Department of Computer Science, The […]

Professor Bender’s Kissing Goodbye Algorithm

“Given a rectangular room with n people in it, what is the most efficient way for each pair of people to kiss each other goodbye?“ Professor Bender, (pictured, of the Department of Computer Science, Stony Brook University, New York) along with his colleagues Ritwik Bose, Rezaul Chowdhury and Samuel McCauley, have made progress towards an […]