Prof. Dr. Ben Shneiderman

(Dept. of Computer Science, Univ. of Maryland)

"Creativity Support Tools: A Grand Challenge"

(Gemeinsames Kolloquium der TU-Kaiserslautern und der Universität des Saarlandes)

Creativity Support Tools is a research topic with high risk but potentially very high payoff. The goal is to develop improved software and user interfaces that empower users to be more productive, and more innovative. Potential users include software and other engineers, diverse scientists, product and graphic designers, architects, educators, students, new media artists, and many others.

Enhanced interfaces could enable more effective searching of intellectual resources, improved collaboration among teams, and more rapid discovery processes. These advanced interfaces should also provide potent support in hypothesis formation, speedier generation of alternatives, deeper insights through visualization, and better dissemination of results. For creative endeavors that require composition of novel artifacts (computer programs, scientific papers, engineering diagrams, symphonies, artwork, poems, etc.), enhanced interfaces could facilitate evaluation of proposed designs, prevent unproductive choices, and enable easy backtracking.

A U.S. National Science Foundation-sponsored workshop ( brought together 25 research leaders and graduate students to share experiences, identify opportunities, and formulate research challenges. Two key outcomes emerged: 1) Formulation of guidelines for design of creativity support tools. 2) Novel research methods emphasizing Multi-Dimensional Indepth Longitudinal Case Studies (MILCs)

This talk will give an overview of creativity research, demonstrate current software, suggest ways to improve design of creativity support tools, and propose evaluation strategies.

BEN SHNEIDERMAN ( is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science Founding Director (1983-2000) of the Human-Computer Interaction Laboratory (, and Member of the Institutes for Advanced Computer Studies & for Systems Research, all at the University of Maryland at College Park. He was elected as a Fellow of the Association for Computing (ACM ) in 1997 and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in 2001. He received the ACM SIGCHI Lifetime Achievement Award in 2001.

Ben is the author of Software Psychology: Human Factors in Computer and Information Systems (1980) and Designing the User Interface: Strategies for Effective Human-Computer Interaction (4th ed. 2004) . He pioneered the highlighted textual link in 1983, and it became part of Hyperties, a precursor to the web. His move into information visualization helped spawn the successful company Spotfire . He is a technical advisor for the HiveGroup and ILOG. With S Card and J. Mackinlay, he co-authored Readings in Information Visualization: Using Vision to Think (1999). His recent books include Leonardo's Laptop: Human Needs and the New Computing Technologies (MIT Press) and with B. Bederson, The Craft of Information Visualization (Morgan Kaufmann).

Zeit: Montag, 19.06.2006, 15.00 Uhr
Ort: Gebäude 57, 208/210 (Rotunde)