UMSI WIRE - Winter 2018

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Welcome to UMSI WIRE, a quarterly compendium of news and research from the University of Michigan School of Information for educators and information professionals.


University of Michigan to offer new certificate program in augmented/virtual/ mixed reality

Augmented, virtual and mixed reality have become dominant technologies used by scholars and researchers from IT departments to hospitals. The University of Michigan has launched a comprehensive cross-campus initiative that will result in one of higher ed’s first formal recognitions of the burgeoning technology: a graduate certificate in AR/VR/MR


Human trust and autonomous vehicles

Autonomous vehicles have arrived and soon will be widely available. But are drivers ready to trust these vehicles? Associate professor Lionel Robert has completed two studies on human trust in AVs. A 3-minute video demonstrates the research that puts his test subjects in the “driver’s” seat.


Countertop Robot Makes Time Cover

Jibo is the first social robot designed for the home. The little guy made the cover of Time Magazine’s issue featuring the top 25 tech innovations of 2017. UMSI PhD student Chuan-Che “Jeff” Huang helped develop the robot’s artificial intelligence (AI).


All in the Family: Technology at Home

Social media, smartphones, Echo, Siri, TV sticks and lots of other technology are now a part of family life. How’s that working out? Answers will come from a new UMSI study, “Understanding Emerging Technologies in Domestic Contexts,” to be conducted by Sarita Schoenebeck, UMSI assistant professor of information, and UMSI doctoral student Tawfiq Ammari. Read more.


ACM honors for Qiaozhu Mei

Qiaozhu Mei, associate professor at UMSI and the U-M College of Engineering, has been named a Distinguished Member of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) in recognition of his outstanding contributions to the field of computing and information technology. Read more.


 Designing digital reminders

Forgetting is part of human nature, but it can sometimes be costly. At a recent UbiComp conference Robin Brewer, UMSI Presidential Postdoctoral Fellow, and her Microsoft collaborators presented research findings on the possibilities of digital reminder systems tailored to individual needs. 


 Making sense of privacy policies

Few people really bother to read, much less understand, the privacy policies that accompany nearly everything they buy or use online. Assistant professor Florian Schaub has done extensive research on privacy policies and has designed policies that are easy to use and understand. 


The health benefits of data sharing

For hospitals, sharing huge amounts of patient data between facilities is crucial – and difficult. UMSI clinical associate professor David Hanauer and associate professor Qiaozhu Mei are addressing ways to improve the search engines that enable this sharing. Read more. 


Training librarians for the digital age

The digital age has transformed the role of librarian. UMSI and University of Michigan Library faculty members, including UMSI associate professor Soo Young Rieh and Elizabeth Yakel, UMSI senior associate dean for academic affairs, have received a grant to reinvent librarian training.


New MOOC on public library management 

A professional certificate program consisting of eight online courses and developed by UMSI faculty members Kristin Fontichiaro and Lionel Robert offers librarians the opportunity to hone their management skills in areas such as budgeting, personnel, identifying community needs and strategic planning. Learn more.