Publications

Publication date: 2021

Thanks to modern technological advances, we now enjoy seemingly unlimited access to information. Yet how did information become so central to our everyday lives, and how did its processing and storage make our data-driven era possible? This volume is the first to consider these questions in comprehensive detail, tracing the global emergence of information practices, technologies, and more,...

Publication date: 2020

The functionality of the Internet and the Web are determined in large part by the design of technical standards that allow for interoperable implementations. Those design decisions are important both in terms of functionality and in maintaining basic public policy values including accessibility, freedom of expression, privacy and security. This is one instance of a phenomenon variously...

Publication date: 2020

In 1950 Robert L. Gitler went to Japan to found the first college-level school of library science in that country. His mission, an improbable success, was documented in an assisted autobiography as Robert Gitler and the Japan Library School (Scarecrow Press, 1999). Subsequent research into initiatives to improve library services during the Allied occupation has revealed surprising...

Publication date: 2020

This dissertation investigates social biosensing: the sharing of physiological information between people, particularly through the lens of empathy and related interpersonal psychological processes. Self-tracking is the the collection and sharing of physiological information about oneself and has been a focus in academic research, but a next step in the use of this data, particularly...

Publication date: 2020

Enhancing machine capabilities to answer questions has been a topic of considerable focus in recent years of NLP research. Language models like Embeddings from Language Models (ELMo)[1] and Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers (BERT) [2] have been very successful in developing general purpose language models that can be optimized for a large number of downstream language...

Publication date: 2020

Recognizing the prevalence of initiatives to align technology with social values through design and “by design” (such as privacy by design, security by design, and governance by design), this dissertation explores the current and potential role of design techniques in attending to values, and analyzes user experience (UX) professionals’ “values work” practices—practices used to surface,...

Publication date: 2020

How many steps did you take today? Counting steps may seem like a clear-cut number, but this number is embroiled in bigger goals around health, broadly conceived, how we feel about our bodies, behavior, and lifestyle. We engage these issues on a personal level while also influenced by social relationships and societal narratives. Technologies such as step-counters influence what “counts”, or...

Publication date: 2020

Migrants play a central role in the economy and society of most developing countries and are primary drivers of economic mobility among poor and rural households. The decision to migrate is one of the most important economic decisions an individual can make. On the one hand, social networks play a crucial role in influencing people's migration decision. On the other hand, as migrants adapt to...

Publication date: 2020

This paper introduces "infrastructural speculations," an orientation toward speculative design that considers the complex and long-lived relationships of technologies with broader systems, beyond moments of immediate invention and design. As modes of speculation are increasingly used to interrogate questions of broad societal concern, it is pertinent to develop an orientation that foregrounds...

Publication date: 2019

Significant resources have been directed towards K-12 computing and data education over the past ten years, as part of what has come to be known as the CSforAll initiative. This initiative has focused on raising awareness of computing education among parents and students, developing situated learning progressions that resonate with many different interests and pursuits, training teachers, and...

Publication date: 2019

The explosion in the use of software in important sociotechnical systems has renewed focus on the study of the way technical constructs reflect policies, norms, and human values. This effort requires the engagement of scholars and practitioners from many disciplines. And yet, these disciplines often conceptualize the operative values very differently while referring to them using the same...

Publication date: 2019

A fascinating examination of technological utopianism and its complicated consequences.

In The Charisma Machine, Morgan Ames chronicles the life and legacy of the One Laptop per Child project and explains why — despite its failures — the same utopian visions that inspired OLPC still motivate other projects trying to use technology to “disrupt” education and...

Publication date: 2019

Recent interest in ethical AI has brought a slew of values, including fairness, into conversations about technology design. Research in the area of algorithmic fairness tends to be rooted in questions of distribution that can be subject to precise formalism and technical implementation. We seek to expand this conversation to include the experiences of people subject to algorithmic...

Publication date: 2019

Historians identify the process of registration as key to the ‘modern mark’. Hence the introduction of trademark registration with the US federal law of 1870 appears as a pivotal event, endorsing Chandlerean accounts of the modern mark as a product of the ‘Second Industrial Revolution’. Such accounts overlook the earlier registration laws in places where economic conditions challenge claims...

Publication date: 2019

Differential privacy is at a turning point. Implementations have been successfully leveraged in private industry, the public sector, and academia in a wide variety of applications, allowing scientists, engineers, and researchers the ability to learn about populations of interest without specifically learning about these individuals. Because differential privacy allows us to quantify cumulative...

Publication date: 2019

Modern data-driven technologies are providing new capabilities for working with data across diverse storage architectures and analyzing it in unified frameworks to yield powerful insights. These new analysis capabilities, which rely on correlating data across sources and types and exploiting statistical structure, have challenged classical approaches to privacy, leading to a need for radical...

Publication date: 2019

At a time when globalization is taking a step backward, what’s the best way to organize a global enterprise? The key, explains political economist Steven Weber, is to prepare for a world increasingly made up of competing regions defined by their own rules and standards.

Globalization has taken a hit as trade wars and resistance to mass migrations dominate headlines....

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