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The Context Blog leaves the drydock

Welcome to The Context Blog. I began this weblog on a bit of a whimsy when I realized that I didn’t have a good place to discuss some of my ongoing work and thoughts in the area of context-aware applications and adaptive user interfaces. This area is intended to serve as a half-way point between the chaos inside my head and more formal avenues such as conferences, journals, and books.

A bit about me: I am graduate student at Northwestern University in the Media, Technology, and Society MA/Ph.D. program in the School of Communication. My main research interest is conceptualizing, describing, implementing, and deploying new kinds of applications and user interfaces in both traditional desktop and ubiquitous computing environments.

At the moment, I am working on creating context-aware applications on MacOS X. These applications currently include a context-sensing and learning toolkit, a home automation application, and a “smart” CallerID-based notification system for traditional landline phones. Over the next few weeks, I’ll discuss these specific pieces of software in more detail.

In addition to the technology, I am also interested in studying the impact of these technologies in everyday situations and observing how “smarter” applications change (or not) users’ interactions with both their own computers and other users. Will making applications more knowledgeable about their users make them more effective and usable? I think so, but I’m still far from able to make that case definitively, and this humble weblog will chronicle that journey.

In closing, thanks for tuning in and I hope that you’ll stick around for the ride.

Posted by admin at 12:31 am on January 27, 2008 . Filed under Meta.

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