Friday, July 25, 2014

Dr. Chris Weaver of The University of Oklahoma School of Computer Science receives National Science Foundation Grant

Dr. Christopher Weaver of The University of Oklahoma School of Computer Science has been awarded a grant by the National Science Foundation, by the Division of Information and Intelligence. 

This is a five year project beginning August 1, 2014 with a $496,124.00 budget. 

Career: Interactive Gesture-Based Manipulation and Visualization for Exploratory Learning and Research 


Visual exploration and analysis of data is increasingly important for advancement in virtually every area of human endeavor. Whether recorded directly by people or indirectly using machines, data captures our observations and interpretations of the world. When people interact with data, it is almost always in a visual form like graphics or text. The goal of this project is to vastly expand the usefulness of interactive visualizations by providing a general way to create and edit data inside the visualizations themselves. The key new idea of the project is that visualization users can perform sequences of gestures with common input devices to express their observations and interpretations directly in visual form. The visualizations not only show data, but also serve as meaningful graphical spaces in which to edit that data. By extending the data processing workflows and display techniques that are currently used in popular visualization tools and software libraries, we can flexibly and expressively translate the details of interactions into precise data changes with simultaneous visual feedback.

The innovative contributions of the project will include a general method to support interactive data editing in visualizations, a diverse collection of data editing gestures, a set of patterns to guide the process of designing visualization tools with data editing features, a declarative programming language for quickly building those tools, and a variety of built tools that show off real applications of data editing in visualizations. The project focuses on developing, evaluating, and distributing tools for scholarly research in the digital humanities. It tightly integrates education to bring together students and researchers from computer science, information science, and the humanities, and provide them with concrete opportunities to engage in authentic interdisciplinary collaboration. Scholarly research and education in the humanities involves open-ended exploration, analysis, and interpretation of complex data sets in diverse areas of study. This makes it an exemplary first target to demonstrate how gesture-based visual editing can be broadly applied to data analysis in virtually every segment of society. The broader impacts of the project will spring from the availability of a new, foundational, general-purpose methodology to support data entry, organization, annotation, and correction. Project products will include publications, tutorials, videos, the visualization gesture system as open source software, a compendium of data editing gestures, and a gallery of demonstration visualization tools for public download. Information on the project and resulting resources can be accessed on the project web site ( 
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University of Oklahoma Awarded Mellon Foundation Grant for the Development of Digital Latin Library

Norman, Okla.—The University of Oklahoma has been awarded a $572,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for the development of a digital library of Latin texts of all eras.  The Digital Latin Library—a Linked Open Data resource—represents a significant collaborative effort to advance access to these texts. The Society for Classical Studies (formerly the American Philological Association), the Medieval Academy of America and the Renaissance Society of America endorsed this project.

“I am excited about hosting this project at the University of Oklahoma because it is consistent with the high value we place on humanities scholarship, and because it will enhance scholarly endeavors on an international scale.  The project will complement and derive substantial benefit from other digital initiatives, particularly with regard to Open Access Data, and greatly enhance the collaborative culture across the University and beyond with our external partners,” said David L. Boren, President, University of Oklahoma.

Samuel J. Huskey, OU Department of Classics and Letters and principal investigator on the project, will collaborate with June Abbas, OU School of Library and Information Studies, and Chris Weaver, OU School of Computer Science.  External collaborators on the grant include New York University, St. Louis University and Duke University.  The Digital Latin Library has two components:  The Digital Latin
Library and the Library of Digital of Latin Texts.  The Mellon grant was awarded for the first year of this three-year project.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for OU and its burgeoning digital humanities community.  It show what can happen when professors and students from different disciplines work together as a team.  I am grateful to the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for its support and to all of the people at OU who helped to bring this project here.” 

The Digital Latin Library will provide a single point of access to texts and resources for reading and working with them, e.g., images of inscriptions and manuscripts, reference works, tools for analysis, etc.  The Library of Digital Latin Texts will provide resources and support for the production of new scholarship and educational materials.  A number of interfaces will facilitate activities such as reading and annotating texts, textual or visual analysis and collaborative learning and scholarship.

Some will use the Digital Latin Library’s space for private study or teaching, others will use it to produce new critical editions and commentaries.  They will have the option of submitting them for publication in the Library of Digital Latin Texts, which will have three series:  classical, medieval and neo-Latin texts.  All publications will be peer-reviewed and endorsed by one or more of the three learned societies affiliated with the Library.  The Library of Digital Latin Texts may be the boldest part of this entire project, since it will be a major step forward for textual criticism and critical editions.

The goal for the first year of this project is to assemble the content management system for the library component of the Digital Latin Library, complete a user behavior study to optimize resources for different classes of user, develop and test a version of the visualization environment for texts in the Library of Digital Latin Texts, and produce a number of scholarly and educational materials on the development and use of born-digital critical edition.  For more information about this project, please contact Samuel J. Huskey at

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Microsoft Hosts OU CS Party

OU CS students are taking over Microsoft! OU CS and Microsoft hosted a party in Redmond, WA last Friday for current students and alumni working as interns or full-time at Microsoft. Dr. Radhakrishnan joined them to celebrate their accomplishments and a wonderful partnership!