Thèse TU Graz – Collaborative Information Exploration in Multi-Display Environments

Research Assistant (PhD Position): Collaborative Information Exploration

Technische Universität Graz (TUG), Austria, invites applications for an open research position in the project Caleydoplex, aiming at the development of collaborative information exploration. We are looking for a candidate having (most of) the following qualifications:

University degree, preferably MSc (Diplom, DEA, or equivalent) in computer science or related field, plus the intent to pursue a PhD at TUG.

Strong interest in research on information visualization, human-computer interaction and computer-supported cooperative work. Some background in computer graphics, multimedia and statistics is expected.

Considerable experience with software development methodology and tools, in particular object-oriented programming with Java and/or C++. Knowledge in OpenGL is recommended. Prior involvement in research or development projects is a plus.

Fluency in English, good communication skills and capability of working in teams complete the profile of a successful candidate. Note that knowledge of German is not expected (but this may be your chance to learn it! :-).

  • What do we offer in exchange:
  • The opportunity of pursuing a PhD/research position in an exciting new field
  • Guaranteed initial funding for 1 year (full-time employment)
  • A lot of freedom to explore both your scientific and creative interests in the course of your work
  • Extensive infrastructure at the TUG Institute for Computer Graphics and Vision
  • A very good working climate
  • A chance to live in the beautiful city of Graz

Project Summary:

Critical decisions involving a lot of data are rarely made by a single person, but are rather discussed and evaluated by a team of experts. Examples are doctors deciding for treatment of severe illness, emergency services having to react to ongoing crises, or engineers collaborating to make technical decisions concerning expensive products. These activities can be assisted by information visualization tools. However, traditional information visualization rarely considers the collaborative nature of data analysis tasks. The foundation of our research proposal is the extension of a multiple view visualization system to a multi-display environment. Multiple view visualization shows data in different representations and thereby accommodates for different knowledge backgrounds and user preferences. Multi-display environments turn unused wall and table spaces into interactive surfaces using off-the-shelf projection technology and integrate private workstations smoothly into this shared interactive workspace. Our research aim is the design and creation of a co-located collaborative information visualization workspace dealing with two principal challenges: display space management and collaborative interaction techniques. Intelligent display space management adopts information visualizations and placement of views automatically to the physical display properties and supports the users interacting with the environment. Combined with visual linking of related data entities distributed across the environment, it will help to establish a common knowledge ground. Collaborative interaction techniques are required to organize such a rich, but potentially complex environment. We will investigate high-level activity support for typical tasks in shared information workspaces and how users can maintain awareness of each other’s activities. The proposed research benefits from two ongoing projects at Graz University of Technology: Deskotheque delivers the basic technology necessary for collaborative work in multi-display environments, while Caleydo, a visualization project from the biomedical domain, provides an excellent use case, including the necessary experts willing to collaborate in studies. Using these frameworks, we plan to conduct several usability studies, with prototypes of different levels of sophistication.

This research will be part of the Caleydo project.

If you are interested in the research topic and think of applying, send a letter including curriculum vitae and publications list (preferable by email) to: caleydo(at)

Contact person: Prof. Dr. Dieter Schmalstieg

Expected start: January 2012 (earlier begin date possible as well)

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