Skip to main content

UW researchers recognized with 2 Best Paper Awards and 10-Year Impact Award at UbiComp and ISWC

Eric Whitmire, Mayank Goel, Edward Wang

Best Paper Award winners Eric Whitmire (left) and Edward Wang (right), with UW CSE Ph.D. alum Mayank Goel

Members of UW CSE’s UbiComp Lab led by CSE and EE professor Shwetak Patel are celebrating not one but two Best Paper wins this week: “HemaApp: Noninvasive blood screening of hemoglobin using smartphone cameras” earned a Best Paper Award at the International Joint Conference on Pervasive & Ubiquitous Computing (UbiComp 2016) in Heidelberg, Germany, while “EyeContact: Scleral coil eye tracking for virtual reality” took home the Best Paper prize from the co-located International Symposium on Wearable Computers (ISWC 2016). And once again – for the third year in a row – the late CSE professor Gaetano Borriello was recognized with UbiComp’s 10-Year Impact Award for work submitted a decade ago that, looking back, has had the greatest impact on the field.

HemaApp, which measures blood hemoglobin to screen patients with anemia and other blood disorders, is the latest in an impressive line of mobile health projects from the UW that will benefit communities around the world. The paper—which was co-authored by EE Ph.D. student and lead author Edward Wang, undergraduate EE student William Li, Doug Hawkins of Seattle Children’s Hospital, Terry Gernsheimer and Colette Norby-Slycord of UW Medicine, and Patel—captured one of five Best Paper Awards bestowed upon the top 1% of submissions to UbiComp this year. Check out the recent UW News release on HemaApp here and a related blog post here.

EyeContact, which earned the sole Best Paper Award at ISWC, is a magnetic eye tracking system using scleral search coils for virtual and augmented reality applications. Unlike existing systems that rely on large generator coils—too large for a person to walk around—the EyeContact headset enables high-speed, high-accuracy mobile eye tracking without limiting the user’s movement or requiring instrumentation of the environment. UW CSE Ph.D. student and lead author Eric Whitmire and Patel co-authored the winning paper with researchers Laura Trutoiu, Robert Cavin, David Perek and Brian Scally of Oculus and Facebook, and James Phillips of UW Medicine.


The late UW CSE professor Gaetano Borriello

Gaetano Borriello and his fellow researchers were recognized with a 10-Year Impact Award for the 2006 conference paper, “A Practical Approach to Recognizing Physical Activities.” The paper was co-authored by then-UW EE Ph.D. student and lead author Jonathan Lester, and Borriello’s Intel Seattle colleague at the time, Tanzeem Choudhury. This is the third year in a row that one of Borriello’s papers has been recognized with a UbiComp 10 Year Impact Award—yet more evidence of his lasting contributions to the field of ubiquitous computing.

Way to go, team! (We miss you, Gaetano.)