GSoC/GCI Archive
Google Summer of Code 2012

Interface Ecology Lab @ Texas A&M University

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The Interface Ecology Lab develops human-centered creative and expressive computing. We imagine and explore new relationships among people and technology. We develop interdisciplinary research and education. We mash-up disciplines, methods, concepts, and media, taking an interface ecosystems approach. Our open source research areas involve S.IM.PL, meta-metadata, and embodied interaction.

We bring forth the open source S.IM.PL (Support for Information Mapping in Programming Languages) initiative, developing new declarative mark-up languages integrated with extensions to imperative programming languages (e.g., Java, Objective-C, Python, ...), and communications frameworks, to assist developers traversing the divide between information and software.

We consider metadata not just as a few fields in an image header or library catalog, but more broadly, as the complex data structures that describe entities in the real world and their relationships. Meta-metadata is a language and software architecture for representing the rich structures of metadata in the world, and facilitating the manipulation and presentation of this rich metadata in applications.

We are developing open source software for connecting multi-touch hardware like ZeroTouch with common software platforms.


  • Django Information Composition Social Network This proposal is to develop an information composition social network. An information composition is a spatially arranged set of rich bookmarks that visualizes concepts and ideas. InfoComposer is made to support the creative process of collecting, arranging, reflecting, and generating new ideas. Currently user can create information composition using InfoComposer’s drag and drop interface. User can save created Information composition in icom file, which is a zip compressed file that includes all information about the composition. Letting users save and collaborate with compositions will help people share ideas and communicate in a flexible, visually appealing medium. Goal of this project is to create a social network in which user can upload, download, browse, share and publish information composition. This site will also serve applications with an API for retrieval and storage of information compositions.
  • M4: Interactive Metadata Browser Extension and Mashup My plan is to design and create a Chrome application which will empower and inspire web surfers to collect, curate, and share personal information collections. Building off the 'pinning' metaphor, my application will join together concepts such as rich-bookmarks, information composition, touch interaction, & semantic zooming.
  • Meta-Metadata SDK The project would enable a large meta-metadata developer community through improvements in the framework that make it robust, easy to use, and standardized. It would also aid the ever-increasing exploring of information by providing an easy mechanism to inspect the multidimensional data and its associations.
  • Project M1 - Meta-Metadata C# Porting My objective is to have all the deliverables done in time and respecting the same high quality standards as in the Java version. For each deliverable I will follow this pattern: study the Java version of the code, port to C#, test the new C# code. I have detailed this in the "Deliverables and Timeline" section of the application.
  • Project S1: Make Python S.IM.PL My plan is to implement the existing S.IM.PL serialization/deserialization in Python for the XML and JSON formats. I will then continue with the development of HTTP OODDS in Python/Django.Finally I want to create a web application which will use these new features. I have detailed the timeline and the deliverables in my proposal.
  • Trans-surface Metadata Message Passing with NFC I want to participate in this project to build OODSS services based on NFC and develop NFC based API for various languages used in the SIMPL. Meanwhile, I will also extend the applications of Metadata to the smart phones to support trans-surface interaction.
  • TUIO Windows Touch Driver The only available TUIO to Windows touch bridge application is Multi-Touch Vista This application is difficult to use, does not support multiple monitor setups, and contains bugs and memory leaks. The aim of the project is to build a application that can easily and accurately convert TUIO touch events to windows touch events.