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IS Graduate Seminar – Palashi Vaghela/Ian Arawjo - 2/17/2017

Friday, February 17, 2017 - 2:30pm
Gates 114

On Friday, February 17, the Info Sci Graduate Student Seminar will feature two speakers, Palashi Vaghela and Ian Arawjo. The talk will take place from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. in Gates 114.

The first speaker will be Palashi Vaghela, who presents "Against the Odds - Intersectional Feminist Theory and Practice in India".

Abstract: This project is a critical memoir of my time spent as an activist with organizations using technology to further the feminist agenda of consciousness raising and movement building in India. This work aims to outline the fascinating attempt of navigating a space between feminist theory and practice, in the context of a development organization/NGO in South Asia. My intent with this talk is to introduce ways in which implementing a feminist techno-science approach towards women’s movement, activism and mobilization work in India, can help us situate these efforts as key players in bridging the gap between our imagination of ‘developed’ and ‘underdeveloped’. Finally I suggest looking critically at the limit experiences of such organizations as openings for newer considerations, conversations and re-evaluations of the feminist movement in India.

The second speaker will be Ian Arawjo, who presents "TypeTalker: A Speech Synthesis-Based Multi-Modal Commenting System".

Abstract: Speech commenting systems have been shown to facilitate asynchronous online communication from educational discussion to writing feedback. However, the production of speech comments introduces several challenges to users, including overcoming self-consciousness and time consuming editing. In this paper, we introduce TypeTalker, a speech commenting interface that presents speech as a synthesized generic voice to reduce speaker self-consciousness, while retaining the expressivity of the original speech with natural breaks and co-expressive gestures. TypeTalker streamlines speech editing through a simple textbox that respects temporal alignment across edits. A comparative evaluation shows that TypeTalker reduces speech anxiety during live-recording, and offers easier and more effective speech editing facilities than the previous state-of-the-art interface technique. A follow-up study on recipient perceptions of the produced comments suggests that while TypeTalker’s generic voice may be traded-off with a loss of personal touch, it can also enhance the clarity of speech by refining the original speech’s speed and accent.