The Partner Technologies Research Group
studies, develops, and teaches about technologies that
facilitate and increase human participation in life's
interesting and important challenges.
Some of the things we enjoy the most in life are ones we find difficult: playing challenging computer games, designing complex software, creating innovative artistic works, and engaging in demanding research.
Although there is a great deal of research in the field of advanced HCI that concentrates on making life easier, the Partner Technology Research Group tries to make life harder -- by doing applied research to help people spend more time engaged in the activities that make life good and difficult. A particularly powerful way to facilitate participation is through partnership -- and new media technologies hold the promise of partnership when human partners are not easily available or appropriate.
We develop partner technologies that facilitate and increase human participation in life's interesting and important challenges. Specifically, we develop technologies to support joint human-machine activity ("human in the loop" systems) -- where the activities are those in which humans want to engage and remain engaged. Our goal is to develop technology to augment and enhance human participation in different kinds of activities, not reduce or replace it.
Much of our focus is on end-user technologies for people who may not be technically inclined, but who want to use the power of computation to build and explore things. We approach this problem by developing enactive/constructivist-inspired software, hardware, and biological partner systems that support multimodal, real-time interaction/control.