PhD Grads Named Computing Innovation Fellows

July 15, 2009

Nick Diakopoulos and Stephen Voida, both recent Ph.D. graduates of the College of Computing, have been named Computing Innovation Fellows by the Computing Research Association (CRA) and the Computing Community Consortium (CCC).

The joint CRA/CCC program, funded by the National Science Foundation, allows new graduates to obtain postdoctoral positions for up to two years at host organizations, such as universities, industrial research laboratories and other organizations, that advance the field of computing and its positive impact on society. The "CIFellows" program's goal is to retain new Ph.D. holders in research and teaching, and to support intellectual renewal and diversity in the U.S. computing field.

Diakopoulos recently completely his Ph.D. in the School of Interactive Computing under adviser Irfan Essa. His research interests span human computer interaction, information visualization and multimedia content analysis, with themes from media including collaborative authorship and annotation, games and journalism. He also holds a bachelor's in computer engineering and multimedia signal processing from Brown University and an M.S. in computer science from Georgia Tech. Diakopoulos has accepted a postdoctoral position at the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University, working in social media.

Voida finished his Ph.D. in August 2008, also from the School of Interactive Computing under adviser Beth Mynatt. His area of specialization is human-computer interaction, and his dissertation explored the design of "activity-based" user interfaces--a re-envisioning of the traditional desktop computing model designed to more closely reflect the way information workers think about and organize their work into cohesive tasks or activities in the real world. Since early 2008, he has worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Calgary in Canada. With his CIFellows award, he will continue his research on activity-based computing systems at the University of California, Irvine.