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Communications of the ACM

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Benefits and Challenges for Social Media Users on the Autism Spectrum

Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) often face difficulties creating and maintaining social connections with others, which has been shown to negatively affect their well-being. Some researchers have investigated whether social media use can lead to social benefits, but with mixed results. To better understand how social media use can be beneficial and what challenges it poses, we conducted an interview study with eight adults on the Autism Spectrum. We report on the perceived benefits and real challenges participants faced when trying to engage with others through social media. Often the benefits users hope for are overshadowed by negative ramifications and safety risks that accompany their social media use. We conclude with recommendations for designing social media for neurodiverse users.

Solusforge: controlling the generation of the 3D models with spatial relation graphs

In this paper, we propose Solusforge, a system for automatically generating Lego models from a graph of the components' spatial relationships. The system uses a two step constraint solving approach in which the spatial layout is solved for first, followed by the specific pieces that make up the model, thereby allowing us to explore two separate solution spaces independently. This technology has many uses, including in games featuring a system of snap-together pieces, including Kerbal Space Program, Beseiged, and Spore. While many of these games involve procedurally augmenting human generated design, none of them feature a fully procedural system for generating the artifacts within that space.

A building automation case study setup and challenges

Smart buildings will play a fundamental role in ensuring comfort while reducing the energy required. However, due to the lack of knowledge about the operation of the smart controllers, the occupants can unintentionally increase the energy spent. Nevertheless, there is evidence that the informed and motivated user will actually cooperate with the system.

Some of the issues associated with researching control systems in the context of building automation are difficult to address, because of the chronic lack of effective laboratory settings for experimentation. In this paper, we describe a system representative of the usual complexity found in cyber-physical systems, whose purpose is to address the needs for experimenting with building automation, with a focus on control systems and gamification. Designed with pragmatic concerns, this system presents a unique set of challenges and opportunities to research a new generation of software control systems, and supporting interfaces, that leverage the occupants' behaviour.

Efficient Indexing of Regional Maximum Activations of Convolutions using Full-Text Search Engines

In this paper, we adapt a surrogate text representation technique to develop efficient instance-level image retrieval using Regional Maximum Activations of Convolutions (R-MAC). R-MAC features have recently showed outstanding performance in visual instance retrieval. However, contrary to the activations of hidden layers adopting ReLU (Rectified Linear Unit), these features are dense. This constitutes an obstacle to the direct use of inverted indexes, which rely on sparsity of data. We propose the use of deep permutations, a recent approach for efficient evaluation of permutations, to generate surrogate text representation of R-MAC features, enabling indexing of visual features as text into a standard search-engine. The experiments, conducted on Lucene, show the effectiveness and efficiency of the proposed approach.

Project Us: A Wearable for Enhancing Empathy

Enhancing the empathy of our human interactions has been the object of intensive psychological studies for decades. The emergence of affective computing has opened the door towards technologically-enabled solutions. Yet, existing techniques struggle to attain their desired impact, often being difficult and expensive to deliver, and disconnected from daily life. Project Us' goal is to help overcome these challenges through a pair of wearable devices (in this case wristbands) that aim to trigger an empathy-enhancing effect, when being worn by two people during day-to-day conversations. The small-sized, wireless devices sense each person's electrodermal activity, associated with their level of emotional arousal, and share it to the other partner (when a threshold is exceeded) through a discreet, haptic nudge, creating a real-time feedback loop. The user study performed with 18 participants (nine romantically engaged couples) revealed that most of them found the wristbands to increase their level of awareness of the partner's emotional experience. Their interaction was analyzed based on interviews (qualitatively), and natural language processing techniques (quantitatively).

SIGCSE '20: Proceedings of the 51st ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education

Welcome to the 51st SIGCSE Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education (the 2020 Symposium), the premiere technical conference for computing educators. The 2020 Symposium is sponsored by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education (SIGCSE).

SIGCSE has the third largest membership of any of ACM's Special Interest Groups (SIG), and is among the oldest SIGs. Only ten SIGs were founded prior to 1968 when SIGCSE was formed. Last year, we marked the 50th anniversary of the Symposium. Only six SIGs have held conferences with 50+ iterations. We truly have a history to celebrate and we did celebrate with a series of events that honored our past and we are coming into 2020 looking forward to our next 50 years.

One of the most exciting things about the Symposium is the fact that it continues to grow. I made a bold prediction last year that we will see 2020 attendance in 2020. Our submission rates for this year's conference broke records again. The conference organizing committee rose to the challenge of accommodating the clear demand from the community while maintaining the character of a conference that so many look forward to each year by adding a full session of papers, panels, and special sessions after the traditional Saturday lunch. As our community continues to grow, these challenges will continue to face our conference. The board and the conference organizing committees are continually looking for ways to incorporate growth while maintaining the character of our event. The Symposium is about the people, community, and a desire to become better computing educators and it is important to celebrate and honor that every year.

Speaking of the SIGCSE Board, I would like to take a moment to remind everyone that this is the first conference for the new SIGCSE Board (2019-2022). All of the members of the current board are at the conference and are very interested in hearing what we as a board can do for the community during our term on the board. Please feel free to reach out during the conference or after with feedback to the board about the event or any other aspect of SIGCSE.

As an attendee, it is often difficult to imagine the amount of time and effort needed to put together an event the size of the Symposium. There are countless hours, handling crises that arise (big and small), and coordinating a committee of nearly 100 volunteers that help shape the program and events of the conference. It truly is a dedication to the community and the conference that motivates Symposium chairs to do their job. While it may be my honor on behalf of the SIGCSE organization and Board to be the first to thank them for their hard work this past year, I would like to not be the last. Feel free to reach out to the conference co-chairs Jian Zhang and Mark Sherriff and program co-chairs Sarah Heckman, Pamela Cutter and Alvaro Monge and thank them as you see them over the next few days.

Our conference provides us with a chance to honor two people for their contributions to computer science education and the SIGCSE community. The annual SIGCSE award for Outstanding Contribution to Computer Science Education will be given to Lauri Malmi (Aalto University/Helsinki University of Technology). Lauri is world leader in computer science education research focusing on automatic assessment and program and algorithmic visualization. For over 20 years, he has been producing high quality publications and has won several awards, most recently, the best paper award at ICER 2019. He has also supervised 17 iv computing education PhD students. Starting in his native Finland, Lauri has led initiatives to disseminate computing education tools and research among university faculty. However, his reach is much larger, including his work to expand the Koli Calling conference to be an international venue for computer science education research, his work with the Scandinavian Pedagogy of Programming network and his editorial board work (ACM Inroads, ACM TOCE, IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies). Lauri was also co-chair of ICER 2016 and 2017 and helped to lead major changes to the structure and reviewing for the conference. Lauri has truly helped to shape the global computing education community.

MobileHCI '12: Proceedings of the 14th international conference on Human-computer interaction with mobile devices and services companion

It is our great pleasure to welcome you to the 2012 ACM International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction with Mobile Devices and Services -- MobileHCI 2012.

MobileHCI is the world's leading conference in the field of Human Computer Interaction concerned with portable and personal devices and with the services to which they enable access. Mobile HCI provides a multidisciplinary forum for academics, hardware and software developers, designers and practitioners to discuss the challenges and potential solutions for effective interaction with and through mobile devices, applications, and services.

The conference continues to attract a significant number of submissions; this year we received 212 valid paper submissions. We have continued our commitment to improve the quality of the review process. A senior program committee of 38 internationally renowned scientists from academia and industry was assembled. Each paper received 3 or more high-quality peer reviews, as well as an additional meta review by the assigned PC member. Following last year's successful cross-Atlantic, split committee meeting, the 38 committee members assembled in two locations (Palo Alto and Berlin) that were linked by audio and video connections. This provided an opportunity for the papers and reviews to be discussed in detail and all final decisions to be agreed upon by the Program Committee as a whole.

The outcome of this process was that 54 of the 212 submissions were accepted (25%) for inclusion in the final Program, to be presented in San Francisco in September 2012. Of these, 39 were full papers and 15 were notes. A shepherding process was also used in which 6 of the 54 accepted papers were revised and improved under the expert guidance of a dedicated committee member. In our commitment to continually improving the quality of the Program, 8 papers/notes were given special recognition of excellence by being nominated for consideration as a Best Paper. A jury, consisting of 5 members of the Program Committee, was established to judge which of these papers represented the highest caliber of research in the field to be deserving of the Best Paper award. The final decision is to be revealed at the conference itself.

Searching in metric spaces

The problem of searching the elements of a set that are close to a given query element under some similarity criterion has a vast number of applications in many branches of computer science, from pattern recognition to textual and multimedia information retrieval. We are interested in the rather general case where the similarity criterion defines a metric space, instead of the more restricted case of a vector space. Many solutions have been proposed in different areas, in many cases without cross-knowledge. Because of this, the same ideas have been reconceived several times, and very different presentations have been given for the same approaches. We present some basic results that explain the intrinsic difficulty of the search problem. This includes a quantitative definition of the elusive concept of "intrinsic dimensionality." We also present a unified view of all the known proposals to organize metric spaces, so as to be able to understand them under a common framework. Most approaches turn out to be variations on a few different concepts. We organize those works in a taxonomy that allows us to devise new algorithms from combinations of concepts not noticed before because of the lack of communication between different communities. We present experiments validating our results and comparing the existing approaches. We finish with recommendations for practitioners and open questions for future development.

MobiHoc '16: Proceedings of the 17th ACM International Symposium on Mobile Ad Hoc Networking and Computing

On behalf of the organizing committee, we are pleased to welcome you to ACM MobiHoc 2016 held in Paderborn, Germany on July 5--8, 2016. ACM MobiHoc is a premier international symposium dedicated to addressing challenges in dynamic networks and computing. It aims bringing together researchers and practitioners from a broad spectrum of networking research to present the most up-to-date results and achievements in the field.