Thursday, March 19, 2015

Videos/Code: Free Unity Shader Demos from my Rendering Course @ QUT

I've made videos and Unity project files from my teaching at QUT available on my Youtube channel  The playlist is here.  Enjoy and feel free to pass onto interested people.

NB: If you want to know about the theory, come and do my course INB382 Real-time Rendering Techniques at QUT. ;-)


Sunday, March 8, 2015

Review: Imagination Inflation: Imagining a Childhood Event Inflates Confidence that it Occurred

Imagination Inflation: Imagining a Childhood Event Inflates Confidence that it Occurred

Maryanne Garry, Charles G. Manning, Elizabeth F. Loftus

Psychonomic Bulletin & Review
3 (2), 208-214


Counterfactual imaginings are known to have far reaching implications. In the present experiment, we ask if imagining events from one's past can affect memory for childhood events. We draw on the social psychology literature showing that imagining a future event increases the subjective likelihood that the event will occur. The concepts of cognitive availability and the source monitoring framework provide reasons to expect that imagination may inflate confidence that a childhood event occurred. However, people routinely produce myriad counterfactual imaginings (i.e., daydreams and fantasies) but usually do not confuse them with past experiences. To determine the effects of imagining a childhood event, we pretested subjects on how confident they were that a number of childhood events had happened, asked them to imagine some of those events, and then gathered new confidence measures. For each of the target items, imagination inflated confidence that the event had occurred in childhood. We discuss implications for situations in which imagination is used as an aid in searching for presumably lost memories.

Am strongly interested in the effect of false memories on the process of expert elicitation.  In particular, the stimulus used in the process of extracting the information from experts.

So, in this paper, I am interested in the quality of the inputs into a session.  Could one plant false memories of the work or knowledge using such systems.  Could it be that using a virtual world to perform the elicitation, if incorrectly configured, will introduce more errors, due to the creation of powerful false memories from the visuals created.  Hmmmm.

Interesting to note that the effect is easier with early childhood memories - attributed to vagueness of distant memory.  This is also possibly related to the credulity of young children; do you become a little childlike by remembering your childhood?  If the effect is consistent, this opens up all sorts of possibilities for creation of beneficial false memories, or to reduce the effects of bad environments (GTA 5 comes to mind) by making sure the rules in such environments make moral sense, removing the effect of such false memories induced by gameplay.

So what is War Thunder doing to me?  Do I know have false memories of driving a Tiger I?

The weird part would be the eerie familiarity of driving the Tiger in real life, the eerie familiarity is my false memory of driving in a game, but I experience familiarity in real life.  Would I discern the difference, can I, as the familiarity is beyond my control to an extent.

Interestingly enough, this experimental method almost reads like an elicitation session.  The experiment manager states to the participant: "What are you likely to do next" while imagining the false event.  They are, in concept, creating a false sequence of events or episodes in the memory.

Note, the early estimate of past memory was repeated after the experimenter has faked losing their results - might be dodgy, could people see through this.  I wonder if they controlled for insight into the ruse; it is not noted in the description of results.

So, the data showed a consistent increase in confidence of remembering the fake event, especially after imagining the event (personal VR :-) ).  They controlled for big jumps, conjectured to be actual priming of actual lost memories; this is important in elicitation.  They also note that the number of big jumps is small.  Also note, that people who did not imagine between tests still went up, but not as much.  Another effect in play, maybe regression to the mean, or just a familiarity effect.  These effects are important in any elicitation test; just repeating questions may bring about a false memory - this is what cops and psychologists do.

They also bring up the issue of self being in the imagination session.  Brings up the idea that an avatar should represent the person who is doing the elicitation, to bring the participant a sense of performing the task in world; might increase the concept of presence.


Paper: Model as you do : engaging an S-BPM vendor on process modelling in 3D virtual worlds

Have recently had a book chapter "Model as you do : engaging an S-BPM vendor on process modelling in 3D virtual worlds," accepted.  The paper was written with Joel Harman, my Honours student from QUT, and Udo Kannengiesser, Nils Meyer and Thomas Rothschaedl from Metasonic GmbH.  It describes the processes Joel and I went through to implement a virtual world process elicitation tool in conjunction with Metasonic in Germany.  The chapter will be published in "In S-BPM in the Wild – Value Creating Practice in the Field," Springer, Berlin Heidelberg.

QUT eprints entry is here, email me on if you want a copy.

Abstract: Accurate process model elicitation continues to be a time consuming task, requiring skill on the part of the interviewer to extract explicit and tacit process information from the interviewee. Many errors occur in this elicitation stage that would be avoided by better activity recall, more consistent specification methods and greater engagement in the elicitation process by interviewees. Metasonic GmbH has developed a process elicitation tool for their process suite. As part of a research engagement with Metasonic, staff from QUT, Australia have developed a 3D virtual world approach to the same problem, viz. eliciting process models from stakeholders in an intuitive manner. This book chapter tells the story of how QUT staff developed a 3D Virtual World tool for process elicitation, took the outcomes of their research project to Metasonic for evaluation, and finally, Metasonic’s response to the initial proof of concept.


Thursday, March 5, 2015

Paper: Evidence that virtual worlds improve business process elicitation

Our paper "Virtual Business Role-play: Leveraging Familiar Environments to Prime Stakeholder Memory during Process Elicitation," has been accepted for CaISE 2015 in Stockholm, Sweden.  This paper is a product of an Honours thesis by my student Joel Harman, in collaboration with Stefanie Rinderle-Ma (Uni. Vienna), Daniel Johnson (QUT) and Udo Kannengiesser (Metasonic GmbH).  

The paper is stored here at QUT eprints, contact me on if you want a pdf copy.

Abstract. Business process models have traditionally been an effective way of examining business practices to identify areas for improvement. While common information gathering approaches are generally efficacious, they can be quite time consuming and have the risk of developing inaccuracies when information is forgotten or incorrectly interpreted by analysts. In this study, the potential of a role-playing approach for process elicitation and specification has been examined. This method allows stakeholders to enter a virtual world and role-play actions as they would in reality. As actions are completed, a model is automatically developed, removing the need for stakeholders to learn and understand a modelling grammar. Empirical data obtained in this study suggests that this approach may not only improve both the number of individual process task steps remembered and the correctness of task ordering, but also provide a reduction in the time required for stakeholders to model a process view.

Not only is this is a great achievement by Joel, CaISE is a very competitive conference, but the preliminary evidence is very encouraging.  Virtual worlds do indeed work well as a process elicitation tool, especially, we believe, for naive stakeholders.


Thursday, February 12, 2015

CFP: VINCI 2015 : The 8th International Symposium on Visual Information Communication and Interaction

VINCI 2015 : The 8th International Symposium on Visual Information Communication and Interaction

<< Call For Papers >>

The 8th International Symposium on Visual Information Communication and Interaction (VINCI15) will be held during August 24-26 in Tokyo, Japan. VINCI15 aims to provide an international forum for researchers and industrial practitioners to discuss the state of the art in visual communication theories, designs, and applications. Papers can be submitted as long papers, short papers and posters.
All accepted papers will be published by ACM Press and made available in the ACM Digital Library. Selected papers will be published in special issues of appropriate journals including Journal of Visualization (JoV).

1. Papers and Posters
Authors are invited to submit original and unpublished research and practical applications in all areas of visual communication and interaction. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:

Area 1: Visualization methodologies
Information visualization, Graph drawing and visualization, Cognitive aspects of visual information comprehension, Visual metaphors and symbols, Usability or empirical study of new visual metaphors, Design theory in the digital age, Aesthetics in visual communication and digital media, Interaction methods (touch-based, haptic, vision-based, multi-modality, Big Data, Visual languages, Diagrams, Art + Science

Area 2: Visualization applications
Visual Analytics, Sketching, Graphical user interface design, Software visualization, Visual approaches to knowledge discovery, Visualization on mobile devices, Animation, Game design, Biological visualizations

Area 3: Visual design and art
Interaction design, Interactive art, Infographie and data-driven art, Visual perception and cognition, Multimedia, Virtual actors, Interactive storytelling, Augmented reality and its applications, Virtual reality and its applications, Computational (or digital) aesthetics, Wearable computers, Ubiquitous / responsive environments, Entertainment technology

2. Workshops and Tutorials
VINCI15 is also soliciting proposals for full-day and half-day workshops and tutorials on topics that address areas of interest to the community. Proposals should be a maximum of 2 pages. In particular, workshop proposals should include:

* A brief description of the specific issues that the workshop will address, the reasons why the workshop is of interest in these times, the main research areas involved.
* Contact information of the workshop chairs, their competence in the proposed topic(s) and previous experience in chairing scientific events.
* A tentative list of Program Committee members.
* A draft of the Call for Papers  It is possible to extend the symposium one day if many workshops or tutorials are proposed.

while tutorial proposals should include a CV of the proposer, a dradt of the tutorial content and evidence of the possibility of attracting audience to the tutorial.

<< Important dates >>
Submission of workshop/tutorial proposals: April 1, 2015
Notification of proposal acceptance: April 5, 2015
Submission of long/short papers: April 10, 2015
Notification of paper acceptance: June 10, 2015
Submission of posters: June 5, 2015
Notification of poster acceptance: June 15, 2015
Camera-ready copy due: June 25, 2015

<< Committees >>

General Chair
 Takayuki Itoh, Ochanomizu University, JAPAN
Program Chairs
 Paolo Bottoni, Sapienza University of Rome, ITALY
 Shigeo Takahashi, University of Tokyo, JAPAN
Local Arrangement Chairs
 Kazuo Misue, University of Tsukuba, JAPAN
 Yuriko Takeshima, Tohoku University, JAPAN
Publicity Chair
 Tomoko Kajiyama, Aoyama Gakuin University, JAPAN

Program Committee
 Tomasz Bednarz, CSIRO
 Robert P. Biuk-Aghai, University of Macau
 Paul Bourke, The University of Western Australia
 Stephen Brooks, Dalhousie University
 Ross Brown, Queensland University of Technology
 Michael Burch, University of Stuttgart
 Antonio Camurri, University of Genoa
 Li Chen, Tsinghua Unversity
 Gennaro Costagliola, Universita di Salerno
 Phil Cox, Dalhousie University
 Alberto Del Bimbo, Universita degli Studi di Firenze
 Kate Dunn, University of Sydney
 Liang Gou, IBM Research - Almaden
 Masahito Hirakawa, Shimane University
 Xavier Ho, University of Sydney / CSIRO
 Seok-Hee Hong, University of Sydney
 Hiroshi Hosobe, Hosei University
 Weidong Huang, University of Tasmania
 Xiaodi Huang, Charles Sturt University
 Masahiko Itoh, The University of Tokyo
 Andreas Kerren, Linnaeus University
 Karsten Klein, Monash University
 Jun Kong, North Dakota State University
 Yina Li, Nankai University
 Chun-Cheng Lin, National Chiao Tung University
 Zhanping Liu, Kentucky State University
 Aidong Lu, UNC Charlotte
 John Mcghee, The University of New South Wales
 Kazuo Misue,  University of Tsukuba
 Chris Muelder, University of California at Davis
 Quang Vinh Nguyen, University of Western Sydney
 Yoshihiro Okada, Kyushu University
 Marc Olano, University of Maryland
 Semi Ryu, Virginia Commonwealth University
 Raimondo Schettini, Universita degli Studi di Milano-Bicocca
 Kamran Sedig, University of Western Ontario
 Guanglei Song, Twitter
 Arcot Sowmya, University of New South Wales
 Changming Sun, CSIRO
 Guodao Sun, Zhejiang University of Techonology
 Gualtiero Volpe, InfoMus-DIST-University of Genoa
 Zhiyong Wang, The University of Sydney
 Sai-Keung Wong, The National Chiao Tung University
 Hsiang-Yun Wu, The University of Tokyo
 Yu-Bin Yang, Nanjing University
 Kang Zhang, University of Texas at Dallas
 Ye Zhao, Kent State University
 Hong Zhou, Shenzhen University
 Jianlong Zhou, National ICT Australia

Saturday, February 7, 2015

CFP: TAProViz 2015 : 4th International Workshop on Theory and Application of Visualizations and Human-centric Aspects in Processes


4th International Workshop on Theory and Application of Visualizations and Human-centric Aspects in Processes, Innsbruck, Austria - 31 August 2015

In conjunction with the 12th International Conference on Business Process Management BPM2015 - at Innsbruck, Austria.

Call for Papers

Visualizations can make the structure and dependencies between elements in processes accessible in order to support users who need to analyze process models and their instances.
However, effectively visualizing processes in a user-friendly way is often a big challenge, especially for complex process models which can consist of hundreds of process components (e.g., process activities, data flows, and resources) and thousands of running process instances in different execution states.

Many challenges remain to be addressed within the broad area of process visualization, human interaction and user led design such as: scalability, human-computer interaction, cognitive aspects, applicability of different approaches, collaboration, process evolution, run-time requirements of process instances and applications, user-engagement etc.

Topics of interest include (but are not limited to):
* Visual Metaphors in Processes
* Visual Design and Aesthetics for Processes
* Visualization of Dynamic Data in Processes
* Change Visualization for Processes
* Interface and Interaction Techniques for Process Visualization
* Visualization Techniques for Collaboration and Distributed Processes
* Visualization of Large-scale Processes
* Cognition and Perception in Process Visualization
* Evaluation and User Studies of Process Visualization
* Evaluation Methods for Human Aspects in PAIS
* Visual Modeling Languages
* Analysis Techniques and Visualization for Processes
* Process Visualization of Large Screens
* Mobile Process Visualization
* Visualization Tools and Systems for Processes
* Visualization Techniques for Processes
* Process Visualization and Sonification
* Virtual World Process Visualization
* Immersive Process Modeling Approaches
* Human Computer Interaction Design Applied to Process Systems
* 3D Process Visualization Approaches
* Human-centric aspects in business process management
* User-centered design for BPM
* User Interface design for Processes

Format of the Workshop

The half day workshop will comprise accepted papers and tool evaluations. Papers should be submitted in advance and will be reviewed by at least three members of the program committee.

This year will also include a new innovation in the programme. Part of the workshop time (depending on the number of prototype submissions) will be set aside for focus group assessments of tools. We will be requesting tool report authors, successful workshop paper authors and panel members attending BPM, to assist in the assessment of demonstration visualization techniques and software. This evaluation process will be a service to attendees, as these heuristic assessments can be written up later as separate papers, or by the workshop chairs as an aggregated workshop outcome. Such evaluations will be an exciting addition to the workshop, as people experienced in Information Visualization, BPM, HCI and related fields, will provide detailed feedback on your prototypes. The evaluation approach is largely in the hands of the tool report writers, but at a minimum, should involve direct interaction with your software and some form of validation via a questionnaire.

All accepted papers will appear in the workshop proceedings published by Springer in the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing (LNBIP) series. There will be a single LNBIP volume dedicated to the proceedings of all BPM workshops. As this volume will appear after the conference, there will be informal proceedings during the workshop. At least one author for each accepted paper should register for the workshop and present the paper.

Important Dates

* Deadline for workshop paper submissions: 29 May 2015
* Notification of Acceptance: 29 June 2015
* Camera-ready version: 20 July 2015
* TAProViz Workshop: 31 August 2015

Paper Submission

Prospective authors are invited to submit papers for presentation in any of the areas listed above.

Three types of submissions are possible:

* (1) full papers (12 pages long) reporting mature research results
* (2) position papers reporting research that may be in preliminary stage that has not yet been evaluated
* (3) tool reports, to be evaluated at the workshop

Position papers and tool reports should be no longer than 6 pages. Tool reports should include a brief evaluation plan as an appendix, for the evaluation session at the workshop on the day.

Papers must be in English and must present original research contributions not concurrently submitted elsewhere. Papers should be submitted in the LNBIP format. The title page must contain a short abstract, a classification of the topics covered, preferably using the list of topics above, and an indication of the submission category (regular paper/position paper/tool report).

All accepted workshop papers will be published by Springer as a post-workshop proceedings volume in the series Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing (LNBIP). Hard copies of these proceedings will be shipped to all registered participants approximately four months after the workshops, while preliminary proceedings will be distributed during the workshop.

Submitted papers will be evaluated, in a double blind manner, on the basis of significance, originality, technical quality, and exposition. Papers should clearly establish their research contribution and the relation to the theory and application of process visualization.

Accepted papers imply that at least one of the authors will register for BPM2015 and present the paper at the TAProViz workshop.

Further workshop information is available from the website:

Hope to see you at TAProViz'15!

Thanks and best regards,

Ross Brown
Simone Kriglstein
Stefanie Rinderle-Ma

TAProViz Organising Committee

Monday, January 12, 2015

Review: Presence and Memory: Immersive Virtual Reality Effects on Cued Recall

Presence and Memory: Immersive Virtual Reality Effects on Cued Recall

Jakki Bailey, Jeremy N. Bailenson, Andrea Stevenson Won, June Flora and K. Carrie Armel

Stanford Tech Report - only Preliminary Results


Presence, the psychological experience of “being there,” is an important construct to consider when investigating the impact of mediated experiences on cognition. Though several studies have investigated the influence of presence on the memory of virtual environments (i.e. recalling virtual objects), few have tested how presence impacts memory on subsequent tasks in the physical world. Thirty-three male and female college students were exposed to a pro-environmental message in an immersive virtual environment. After the virtual reality treatment, they completed a memory task in the physical world regarding pro-environmental principles. Results showed a significant negative association between levels of reported presence in the virtual world and the number of correct water conservation examples remembered in the physical world. These findings suggest that media technology that induces presence can influence an individual’s ability to remember information in the physical world. Possible theoretical explanations of how presence may negatively impact cognition are presented.


Here they seek to relate a specific component of VW to memory, viz., presence or subjective levels of being there, with memory recall in cueing experiments.

They use a nVisor SX111 HMD (NVIS, Reston, VA) with a resolution of 2056 x 1024 and a refresh rate of 120 frames per second to perform the work, framerate is very high compared to Oculus, which may improve presence?  Need to keep this in mind.

Experiment context is that the task involved an environmental narrative, so emotional resonance with such a concept could be a factor here as well.  Does it work the same with other more humdrum narratives?

They also look at free recall and cued recall, so the memory tests are of a different type in each case to cover possibly differing memory processes.

Useful presence scale for assessing level of presence: "A five- item scaled was adapted from presence scales used in previous studies (Bailenson and Yee, 2007; Ahn & Bailenson, 2011; Nowak & Biocca, 2003)."

Note they get a NEGATIVE correlation with memory and presence (n=33).  This needs to be considered for my experiments.  It would be interesting to see if a comparison with desktop levels of presence will map to my other results with Unity and Metasonic?!?!?

Negative correlation is potentially explained by:

1. Vivid inputs from VW could drain cognitive capacity to remember items.
2. Arousal - high levels of emotion - limit memory tasks.
3. People who report high levels of presence actually remember things using different processes, and so are actually a different subject group, so could be a confounding factor that needs to be controlled.
4. Only correlational experiment, no details on causation, so needs further work.

An interesting result, bring out many research questions to answer on the relationship of VW elements with cognitive processes.


Lin, Duh, Parker, Abi-Rached, & Furness, 2002
Mania & Chalmers, 2001
Dinh, Walker, Song, Kobayashi, and Hodges 1999