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ECREA 4th European Communication Conference 2012

Opening Keynote at 4th ECC ECREA 2012 in Istanbul

The 4th ECC conference of ECREA, the European Communication Research Association, was located in Instanbul. It provided a perfect platform to meet and discuss profound transformations that are taking place globally in modern societies. While social media was the particular focus at this years conference, contemporary topics were encouraged, regarding the old and the new within the European communicative sphere. Graduate Members Benny Liebold and Daniel Pietschmann visited Istanbul and engaged in discussions about new theoretical research and empirical studies presented at the conference. Each thematic section and temporary working group of ECREA hosted parallel panels at the main conference, including Audience and Reception Studies, Digital Culture and Communication, Interpersonal Communication and Social Interaction. Both Crossworld colleagues are active members of the TWG Digital Games Research which hosted a preconference prior to the ECC. After one week of networking, fruitful discussions and interesting talks with the European Communication Research Community, both graduates returned with new ideas, contacts and concepts for research cooperations within the field of media psychology and virtual worlds.


Visit to Ars Electronica Center in Linz

Our fellow researchers Michael Heidt and Kalja Kanellopoulos visited the Ars Electronica Center (AEC) in Linz from October 16-17. The AEC unites art, science and technology in many different ways. One of the projects, which made the AEC famous all over the world, is the Ars Electronica Festival. It takes place in Linz every year in September.

The museum’s permanent exhibition introduces the visitor to topics of genetic engineering, robotics, neurology and media art, while the current temporary exhibit “Out of Control” delivers some insight into “What the Web knows about You”. Overall the center’s main focus lies on interactivity and participation and one cannot avoid the impression to visit a huge playground. Whether old or young, people seem to love it and while exploring deep space, interacting with little robots, or doing scientific experiments – supported by the museum’s accommodating staff members – they learn while playing. Next to the wide-ranging exhibition space one can find the Ars Electronica FutureLab, the center’s think tank, consisting of 50-60 research staff members. In addition to exploring the exhibition our two fellow researchers had a meeting with Michael Badics, one of the directors of Ars Electronica Solutions.


Bernstein Conference Computational Neuroscience 2012

The Bernstein Conference Computational Neuroscience (BCCN) is the largest European conference in Computational Neuroscience. This year the conference was hosted by the Bernstein Center Munich (September 12-14). It was filled with three days of stimulating presentations of international top researchers from MIT, Harvard, UCL, Stanford, or MPI, giving insights in their newest brain research and modeling. The conference provided the opportunity to present new research approaches and results in two poster sessions in the evening.

Beside the interesting contributions of many other researchers all over the world the CrossWorlds member Michael Teichmann presented its well frequented poster to “Learning invariance in object recognition”. The poster reviews his current work and gives an insight how models of the visual system could be designed and trained to obtain human-like recognition and processing abilities. The poster abstract is published in the conference proceedings by Frontiers of Computational Neuroscience (Abstract)


Student Symposium at the Department of Computer Science

This year the first Student Symposium of the Department of Computer Science was held at Chemnitz University of Technology on July 4th 2012. It was an overwhelming success, as many undergraduate and graduate students contributed and raised it to an very successful event. The symposium provided students the opportunity to present their latest research including their thesis or their PhD project. The contributions could be in form of posters, short or full papers. Each contribution was subjected to a peer-review process to guarantee its quality.

The CrossWorlds member Michael Teichmann took this opportunity to present his current research as a short paper. In his contribution he brought the functioning of the human visual cortex together with methods of designing object recognition systems. For the interdisciplinary character of his paper and his presentation Michael Teichmann has been awarded a honorable mention. Read the rest of this entry »


CrossWorlds presented research at German Society for Sociology Conference

The biennial conference of the German Society for Sociology (DGS) with the 2012 headline “Diversity and Coherence” was held during the first week of October at the Ruhr University Bochum. More than 2.100 participants listened to featured lectures, discussed in plenary meetings or learned about recent research in self organized ad hoc groups.  CrossWorlds collegiates Kalja Kanellopoulos and Andreas Bischof attended the conference. Andreas presented findings of his Master Thesis (published OpenAccess here) as part of the group “Virtual Worlds: Between Euphoria and Pathologisation – Sociological Approaches and empirical Analyses“. Read the rest of this entry »


9. Workshop Virtuelle und Erweiterte Realität 2012 (9th Workshop Virtual and Augmented Reality 2012)

The 9th Workshop for Virtual and Augmented Reality from September 19 to 20 in Düsseldorf was an opportunity for young academics of that research field to publish their findings and get to know scientists with similar interests. The collegiate Vincent Küszter presented his paper “Erweiterung des Position-Based-Dynamic-Verfahrens für die Kollisionsbehandlung für Kleidung an animierten Menschmodellen” (Expansion to Position Based Dynamics to improve Collisions for Clothin and Virtual Humans) in a talk at the workshop.

Many attendees were showing gesture based or touch interfaces, which synergizes with our research at CrossWorlds. Socializing with the other scientists was not only possible between the presentations or demo sessions, but also at the Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, where the attendees took a guided tour.


CrossWorlds goes Social Media

For more news and activities from the CrossWorlds team, you can now follow us on Facebook and Twitter. While this website will cover most of the news regarding our research activities, we will use social media for more broader and informal news.


CrossWorlds switches to English

The CrossWorlds initiators and doctoral candidates decided to revise this website to use English as main language instead of German. This way, we hope to broaden our audience and keep our international colleagues up to date with this website, too. So we will switch to English effective immediately, beginning with the news. The rest of the website will be translated in the coming weeks.


Crossworlds auf der Konferenz „Mensch und Computer 2012“ in Konstanz

Demonstrator Multitouch-Tisch der Universität Konstanz auf der MuC 2012

Vom 9.-12. September besuchten sieben Kollegiaten des Graduiertenkollegs die Konferenz „Mensch und Computer 2012“ in Konstanz. Das diesjährige Motto lautete „Interaktiv Informiert allgegenwärtig & allumfassend!?“.

Über die vier Konferenztage gab es ein breites Angebot an Fachvorträgen, Workshops, Diskussionen, Tutorien und Demonstrationen zum Themenbereich „Mensch-Computer-Interaktion“. Höhepunkte der Konferenz waren unter anderem die Keynotes von Miriam Meckel und Giles Colborne. Ebenso boten die Abendveranstaltungen gute Möglichkeiten mit anderen Wissenschaftlern unterschiedlicher Fachgebiete in Kontakt zu kommen.

Im Rahmen der Demo-Session „inter | aktion“ konnten interaktive Demonstrationen aus 20 Projekten genauer unter die Lupe genommen und mit den beteiligten Wissenschaftlern und Unternehmensvertretern diskutiert werden. Viele der vorgestellten Projekte basierten auf touchempfindlichen Oberflächen wie Tablets und Multitouchtischen oder auf gestenbasierter Interaktion mit Hilfe der Microsoft Kinect. Diese und andere Projekte boten den Kollegiaten Denkanstöße und Inspirationen für ihre eigenen und gemeinsamen Vorhaben.


3rd International Symposium on Facial Analysis and Animation

The 3rd International Symposium on Facial Analysis and Animation (FAA) was held on September 21 at the Museum of Young Arts in Vienna. According to the organizing committee the FAA is the only international conference that solely focusses on the analysis of animation of faces. The field of participants ranged from social scientists who analyzed the perception of different animation techniques to companies that presented their newest tracking algorithms. Therefore the talks as well as the poster presentations gave a good overview of this very interesting field of research with multiple relations both to professional applications (e.g. entertainment industry) and interdisciplinary research.

One of the currently investigated research topics is performance driven animation, i.e. facial animation controlled by facial movements of human actors. Despite the fact that the state of development of the presented animations seems intriguingly spohisticated the research community aims at even more robust methods for both tracking and animating for professional applications. Another interesting topic are facial analysis and animation tools with live support that do not require professional 3D-tracking hardware but rely on consumer hardware like simple webcams (Image Metrics Live Driver) or the Microsoft Kinect (Face Shift) instead.

At the conference CrossWorlds made some interesting contacts to both professionals and researchers resulting in research collaborations with Image Metrics and intense information exchange with researchers from different backgrounds.