I am a research scientist in the Creative Technologies Lab at Adobe Systems. Before that, I obtained my Ph.D. under the supervision of Maneesh Agrawala at UC Berkeley in 2013. During my Ph.D., I have also been fortunate to work with Takeo Igarashi at the University of Tokyo, Raanan Fattal at the Hebrew University, Eitan Grinspun at Columbia University.
My research interests are in computer graphics and HCI. My work aims at building tools that make it faster and easier for people to create and visualize high quality media content. I have focused so far on two different types of media content: photo manipulation tutorials and digital storytelling. Photo manipulation tutorials are procedural instructions that describe the step-by-step sequence of actions required to edit a photograph. They are very common on the Web and sites such as tutorialized.com collect tens of thousands of such hand-designed tutorials. My research aims at developing algorithmic tools for analyzing, designing (SIGGRAPH 2009), and automatically applying (TOG 2011) these procedural instructions to new photographs. Digital storytelling is another type of media that has become an important form of communication online. Recent studies have shown that over an hour of video is uploaded to youtube.com every second. However, communicating a story effectively is difficult, time-consuming and requires good design skills. The goal of my work in digital storytelling is to build a set of automatic and semi-automatic tools that facilitate the creation of effective video (SIGGRAPH 2012) and audio stories (UIST 2012, UIST 2013).
While most of my research focuses on photo manipulation tutorials and digital storytelling, I have also worked on automatically generating tourist maps (SIGGRAPH 2008) and augmenting the perceived resolution of displays (TOG 2012, SAP 2012). Similarly to my other projects, this work investigates and exploits cognitive principles to convey data as effectively as possible.
During my Ph.D., I have also co-founded CS KickStart, a one-week introductory computer science program for incoming undergraduate women. CS KickStart aims to encourage women to pursue computer science through programming labs with real world applications and exciting presentations about the diverse aspects of this field. Since we founded it in 2011, CS KickStart has been a tremendous success. 91% of our past participants agreed that CS KickStart strongly increased their motivation to pursue computer science. Furthermore, 33% of the 2011 participants stated that they would not have taken a computer science class at UC Berkeley if they had not participated in CS KickStart; and 21% even went so far as to switch their majors to computer science.
Besides work, I am a feverish traveler, never getting tired of visiting new places, learning new languages, understanding different cultures. I travel with my eyes, with my thoughts, with my curiosity, with my hopes and dreams. Every trip has been a life time experience and has shaped my personality in an incredible way.