Colloquium: Humanizing Data with Interactive Visualization

October 12, 2020 - 11:15am to 12:15pm
Dr. Daniel Keefe
Abstract: Data-intensive computing is central to so many aspects of society today.  Scientists and engineers continue to collect and simulate data that challenge our most sophisticated computational tools.  However, today's users of data-intensive computing extend well beyond these "traditional users" to include, for example, designers, visual artists, the general public, and Indigenous communities.  Our research explores how processes of analyzing and communicating about data will change in the future and can better serve this wide range of users and computing applications.  Our methods, employed with interdisciplinary collaborators across a range of projects, include a combination of novel visual designs, interactive techniques, and computer graphics and data processing algorithms.  In this talk, I will present specific examples that include: 1) advanced art-inspired algorithms for rendering multi-variate global climate data in immersive environments, 2) interactive simulation-based engineering design tools for understanding supercomputer ensemble datasets, and 3) interdisciplinary cultural revitalization and data storytelling within the UMN Indigenous Futures Grand Challenges project.
Bio: Dan Keefe is a Distinguished University Teaching Professor and Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota. His research centers on interactive data visualization, immersive computer graphics, art+science collaborations, and computing for social good. Keefe’s awards include the National Science Foundation CAREER award; the University of Minnesota Guillermo E. Borja Award for research and scholarly accomplishments at the time of tenure; the University of Minnesota McKnight Land-Grant Professorship; and the 3M Non-tenured Faculty Award. He also shares multiple IEEE and ACM conference best paper awards with his students and collaborators.  Outside of computer science venues, Keefe has published and exhibited work in top international venues for digital art, such as South by Southwest, Northern Spark, ISEA, and Leonardo.  His research and art practice have been supported by grants from the National Science Foundation; the National Institutes of Health; the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative; the US Forest Service; the City of Minneapolis office of Arts, Culture, and the Creative Economy; and industry. Before joining the University of Minnesota, Keefe did post-doctoral work at Brown University jointly with the departments of Computer Science and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and with the Rhode Island School of Design. He received the Ph.D. in 2007 from Brown University’s Department of Computer Science and the B.S. in Computer Engineering summa cum laude from Tufts University in 1999.