ISPR Presence News

Monthly Archives: April 2014

Call: Affective Agents Workshop (AAW) at IVA 2014

Call for Papers

Affective Agents Workshop (AAW)
Workshop homepage:

To be held in conjunction with IVA (Intelligent Virtual Agents) 2014 in Boston, MA, USA, 27-29 August 2014
Conference homepage:


Many researchers in the virtual agents and social robotics communities are exploring the integration of affective computing into their systems. However, the majority of this research focuses on only one aspect of affective computing, such as the detection, modeling, or expression of emotion. The goal of this workshop is to create collaborations between the experts in each of these areas to share their latest findings so as to shape the picture of how all of these systems can be integrated together to create an Affective Agent that senses, models, expresses and responds to a user’s affective state in real time.

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to:

  • Agents and robots that respond to a user’s affective state
  • Real time sensing of affect
  • Expressing emotions in embodied agents
  • Multimodal affective detection and expression
  • Evaluation of affective systems
  • Computational models of emotion, empathy and emotional contagion
  • Perception-action affective loops in agents and robots
  • Affective interactions in real-world environments
  • Applications for affective interactive games, robots and virtual agents
  • Techniques for handling multimodal and noisy data in real world scenarios

Read more on Call: Affective Agents Workshop (AAW) at IVA 2014…

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Knightscope K5 autonomous security robot will begin patrolling this year

[From Gigaom, where the story includes more images and a 1:01 minute video; a 2:46 minute BBC News report is available here; both reports touch only briefly on how people respond to the robot]

Knightscope K5 with CEO

[Image: CEO William Santana Li with a K5. Photo by Signe Brewster.]

The K5 security robot will begin patrolling one Silicon Valley campus this year

By Signe Brewster

Feb. 25, 2014

The Knightscope K5 robot’s 5-foot-tall bullet-shaped frame is impressive. Studded with cameras and sensors and colored Stormtrooper black and white, it really is imposing. But that’s the point: It’s a robot cop, and it doesn’t want you to forget it.

At the Launch Festival today in San Francisco, CEO William Santana Li showed me the robot’s capabilities. The K5 can see, feel, hear and smell to determine whether biochemicals or radiation are present and collect data like license plate numbers, video and thermal images. It charges itself and moves autonomously.

While it’s not about to shoot someone, it can instantly report a problem to authorities and include relevant data like a video of the incident and license plate data. Imagine if no one had to call 911 in a panicked state; the robot does it calmly and more thoroughly.

Knightscope created the K5 after being horrified by the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, Li said. Because there can never be an armed officer in every school, this could be an alternative. He said that the K5 is meant to make a perpetrator at least do a double take, if not leave entirely. And, if they don’t, the K5 can alert authorities and record the entire situation. Read more on Knightscope K5 autonomous security robot will begin patrolling this year…

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Call: Array Telepresence Open House on May 2 – “Prepare to be amazed”

Array Telepresence Open House

Hello ISPR Community,

We are introducing a revolutionary telepresence camera and image improvement processor that turns any traditional videoconferencing codec (Avaya/RADVISION, Cisco, ClearOne, LifeSize, Polycom, Vidyo, etc.) into a dual screen telepresence environment that exceeds the quality of $250,0000 telepresence group systems from Cisco & Polycom for $14,000 and the cost of a 2nd display. The company is called Array Telepresence and their patent-pending Equal-i technology includes a unique camera and “Image Improvement Processor” that brings the furthest participants in a videoconferencing meeting “Up Close and Personal”, hides the camera, improves the eye-line, improves the meeting format, and spreads the scene out over a large format dual screen display at the right aspect ratio of the human eye and powers both displays using a single videoconferencing codec and single bitstream.

It really has to be seen to be believed so we are hosting an open house for organizations that would like to improve their videoconferencing, potential resellers, systems integrators, industry analysts, academics, researchers, potential investors, and the press.

The Open House will be held from 2:00 – 6:00 PM EST on Friday, May 2nd at:

The Istanbul Room
Hilton McLean Tysons Corner
7920 Jones Branch Drive
McLean, Virginia 22102
703-847-5000 Read more on Call: Array Telepresence Open House on May 2 – “Prepare to be amazed”…

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New production frontiers: Creating virtual reality narratives for Sony and Oculus Rift

[From The Hollywood Reporter]

Flying Monsters 3D scene

[Image: Atlantic Productions/Zoo]

British TV Producer Creating Virtual Reality Narratives for Sony and Oculus Rift

Atlantic Productions, the company behind the BAFTA-winning “Flying Monsters 3D,” is working on documentary, animated and dramatic pilots for Oculus Rift and Sony’s Project Morpheus.

4/25/2014 by Adrian Pennington

British TV producer Atlantic Productions, the company behind natural-history documentaries fronted by Sir David Attenborough (Galapagos, Kingdom of Plants and the BAFTA-winning Flying Monsters 3D) is pioneering virtual-reality narrative content. It includes documentary, CG and drama pilots in development for Facebook’s virtual-reality headgear-maker Oculus Rift and for Sony’s Project Morpheus.

Anthony Geffen, CEO and creative director of Atlantic Productions, told The Hollywood Reporter that he expects at least one of its 10-minute VR projects to be bundled with the release of Oculus Rift headsets when it comes to retail, possibly this Christmas.

Atlantic, which was an early innovator of stereoscopic 3D with productions, began VR development six months ago and has partnered with several virtual-reality firms to create content.

“VR will be a game-changer,” said Geffen. “The point of entry [for consumers] is cheaper than a mobile phone, and content distribution will be global. VR is known for gaming, but what it needs is quality narrative content, and that’s where we come in.” Read more on New production frontiers: Creating virtual reality narratives for Sony and Oculus Rift…

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Call: Playful Virtual Characters Workshop 2014

Call for Participation for Playful Virtual Characters Workshop 2014

Boston, MA
Tuesday August 26, 2014 (Full day workshop)


This workshop is part of the IVA Conference 2014. It focuses on Playful Virtual Characters.

Important Dates:

Submissions Due: July 1, 2014
Notification: August 1, 2014
Camera Ready: August 15, 2014

This workshop will focus on Characters that can be described as Playful. We focus on narrative characters that can be part of a story or standalone characters and have history, goals, rich complex personality, and attitudes. The workshop will borrow from theatre improvisation and Live Action Role-Playing games (LARPs) to define playful virtual characters and situate the context for a rich interaction about what it means to develop such narrative and personality for rich playful characters.

The workshop will take on an activity-based approach, where group exercises and experiences are emphasized. We intend to start with two 1.5 hour long sessions: engaging the audience in an improv exercise based on the theatre of the oppressed forum-theatre, and on a LARP-based activity. We will follow these activities with short talks from participants and then a panel.

This workshop will span many topics pertaining to the development, use and our perceptions of playful virtual characters inhabiting virtual environments, public virtual spaces, and entertainment products. Read more on Call: Playful Virtual Characters Workshop 2014…

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This interactive site gives you a taste of what it’s like to drown

[From Fast Company’s Co.Create, where the post includes a 1:01 minute video]

A Trip Out To Sea screenshot

This Interactive Site Gives You A Taste Of What It’s Like To Drown

By Jeff Beer
April 22, 2014

French marine clothing and safety brand Guy Cotten takes the scared straight approach to life jacket awareness.

Summer is approaching and with it the migration of millions of people to the coast to enjoy the sun and the sea. Guy Cotten, a French marine clothing and safety equipment brand, is taking the opportunity to dramatically remind us that when it comes to boating, a life jacket is necessary no matter how strong a swimmer you might be.

The brand, along with agency CLM BBDO, Wanda Digital and director Ben Strebel, have created A Trip Out To Sea, an immersive interactive experience that plays out a truly nightmarish scenario. Read more on This interactive site gives you a taste of what it’s like to drown…

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[Please consider filling out this new telepresence survey and distributing the message below via your personal and professional social networks!  –Matthew ]

Request for your help with a research project:

Have you ever felt present in or connected to the people or things in a media experience like watching a movie or TV show, reading a book, using Skype, etc.? We’re studying these and other common experiences with technology and would very much appreciate and value your help with a short survey. It’s online, completely anonymous and will take from 5 to 20 minutes. If you’re interested and willing, please click on the link below for more information and the survey.


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Call: Tangible, Embedded and Embodied Interaction (TEI) 2015


January 16-19, 2015 in Palo Alto, California, USA


  • Papers:  01 August 2014, 11:59 pm PST
  • Studios & Workshops:  22 August 2014, 11:59 pm PST

The work presented at TEI focuses on physical interaction with computing technology and addresses theories, design, user experience, interfaces, interaction, and technical development. The intimate size of this single-track conference provides a unique forum for exchanging ideas and presenting innovative work through talks, demonstrations, posters, art installations and performances, and participating in hands-on studios and workshops.

With the rise of DIY and maker culture and the acceptance of research in tangible, embodied and embedded interaction, the TEI conference has gained substantial visibility and activity over the past decade. It brings together research disciplines, including tangible computing, physical computing, speculative design, IT product design, appliance design, whole body interaction, gestural interaction, embodied interaction, responsive architecture, and responsive and interactive environments and spaces. Application areas are diverse, including: public art and performance; games; learning; planning; automotive, fashion, furniture, and architectural design; music and sound creation; as well as productivity and creativity tools in domains ranging from scientific exploration to non-linear narrative. TEI brings together researchers, practitioners, businesses, artists, designers and students in this emerging field, providing a meeting ground for diverse communities of research and practice including computing software, hardware, mechatronics, camera vision and sensor technology; human computer interaction; interaction, interface and experience design; computer supported collaborative work and learning; product, industrial and architectural design; and interactive art and performance. We invite submissions from all of these perspectives: theoretical, conceptual, technical, applied, or artistic. The conference is designed to provide appropriate presentation forms for different types of contributions. Accepted submissions of all types will be included in the ACM digital library proceedings. Read more on Call: Tangible, Embedded and Embodied Interaction (TEI) 2015…

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Brain Games host Jason Silva on the transformation that occurs when we’re immersed in a story

[From Fast Company’s Co.Create, where the story includes more pictures and two short videos, “Lucid Dreaming” and “Reality of the Virtual”]

The Beginning is Near graphic

Dreaming With Your Eyes Open: How Humans Are Hardwired For Stories

Brain Games host Jason Silva explains the transformation that occurs when we’re immersed in a story, and what makes an effective storyteller.

By Joe Berkowitz
April 23, 2014

Talking to Jason Silva might make your head spin. Perhaps not quite in the same manner as the possessed child at the center of The Exorcist, but something closer to the way the film itself does a number on audiences. This is not by accident. Silva’s goal is nothing less than to explain the attention-paralyzing power of storytelling by harnessing that power within his demonstration. It’s kind of a meta approach.

“I want to create media that talks about what media does,” says Silva. The philosophical filmmaker and host of NatGeo Channel’s show Brain Games has lately been making short videos he calls Shots of Awe that illustrate the complex science behind how the mind works, in ways that are both literal and metaphorical. With these videos he’s hoping to not only do what all storytellers want to do, and captivate an audience; he also wants to explain why it’s working.

“We are narrative beings. Our humanness is built on the ability to understand ourselves in the context of a story, so we’re basically hardwired for stories,” Silva says. “In the age of YouTube, though, we have many more signals competing for our attention. We have the tyranny of the small screen, attention spans are shrunken. You have to change how you tell a story, because at the end of the day, stories only work if you are immersed in them.“ Read more on Brain Games host Jason Silva on the transformation that occurs when we’re immersed in a story…

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Call: International Conference on Education Technologies and Computers (ICETC 2014)

The International Conference on Education Technologies and Computers (ICETC 2014)

Lodz University of Technology, Lodz, Poland
September 22-24, 2014

The conference aims to enable researchers to build connections between different digital applications. The event will be held over three days, with presentations delivered by researchers from the international community, including presentations from keynote speakers and state-of-the-art lectures.

The conference welcomes papers on the following (but not limited to) research topics:

  • Distance and E-Learning in a Global Context
  • E-Learning Platforms, Portals
  • E-Testing and new Test Theories
  • Educating the Educators
  • Groupware Tools
  • Immersive Learning
  • Intelligent Tutoring Systems
  • E-Learning Success Cases
  • E-learning in Electrical, Mechanical, Civil and information engineering
  • Errors in E-Learning
  • Higher Education vs. Vocational Training
  • Impact and Achievements of International Initiatives
  • Interdisciplinary Programs for Distance Education
  • Joint Degrees
  • Lifelong Learning: Continuing Professional Training and Development
  • Pedagogy Enhancement with E-Learning
  • Simulated Communities and Online Mentoring
  • Supervising and Managing Student Projects
  • Teacher Evaluation
  • Technology Support for Pervasive Learning
  • Virtual Labs and Virtual Classrooms

Read more on Call: International Conference on Education Technologies and Computers (ICETC 2014)…

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