Interactive Visualization Lab

Our Mission

To imagine the future, inventing and creatively employing new computer tools for the benefit of society. We use interactive computer graphics, data-processing algorithms, and radical new computer input-output technologies to address challenging problems in data understanding, digital design, and art. We work in an interdisciplinary, collegial, collaborative atmosphere, where outstanding students partner with faculty to conduct research integrated with education.

Our vision is a world where all human-computer interactions are created mindfully and where these interactions fundamentally make people better. To contribute to this vision, we aim to be a leading, internationally recognized academic resource for generating and disseminating new knowledge, specifically new understandings of the complex and interconected relationship between humans and computers.

About our research group

Research

Our research centers on data visualization, computer graphics, and human-computer interaction. Current projects include visualization of large-scale time-varying data, 3D modeling in virtual reality, and creativity-support tools for complex design tasks. We are committed to reproducable science. In addition to traditional publications and presentations, we also release all of the software we develop to the academic community via open source projects. Our work is supported by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative, the University of Minnesota, and industry partners.

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Lab

Our research group includes about 10 undergraduate and graduate students. Our lab in 2-203 Keller Hall is equipped with high-end graphics workstations that drive a series of innovative visual displays and interactive devices. Major equipment includes a 4-wall CAVE Virtual Reality display; a Multi-Surface, Multi-Touch Virtual Reality Environment; and a 3D Haptic (Force-Feedback) Display. We also work regularly with the visualization facilities at the Minnesota Supercomputing Institute.

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Education & Outreach

Academic presentations, teaching at the University of Minnesota, and reaching out to the local community are all important ways that we disseminate the results of our research. Many of our academic talks are available online. At the U, there are many great ways for students to get involved. And, in the local community, we work with K-12 schools and organizations, such as the Science Museum of Minnesota and the Minnesota State Fair.

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News

Creative City Challenge 2017

June 2017: MINN_LAB, a design collective of architects and computer scientists from the IV/LAB, was awarded a $50,000 grant from the City of Minneapolis for winning the Creative City Challenge 2017. The grant funded the public art installation called, Orbacles, which opened at Northern Spark 2017 in The Commons park in downtown Minneapolis.

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Ph.D. student Volcano Kyungyoon Kim profiled in the CRA Bulletin

September 2016: Volcano's story and research are highlighted in a great article within the Computer Research Association Bulletin.

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IV/LAB at SIGGRAPH 2016

July 2016: Two IV/LAB papers will be presented in "best of" sessions at SIGGRAPH 2016. These special presentations highlight the best work during the past year to appear at related conferences and journals in the field. "Lift Off" will be presented in the "Best of VR" session and "Visualization-by-Sketching" will be presented in the "Best of VIS" session. Work on both projects was supported by the lab's NSF grant, "Visualization by Sketching, Analogy, and Computational Creativity".

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