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Professor Johannes Schöning receives second Google Faculty Research Award    Feb 27, 2015

Professor Johannes Schöning receives second Google Faculty Research Award
Feb 27, 2015

Research to improve map-based navigation using wearables


Navigation applications for smartwatches and other wearable devices, such as Google Glass, present new challenges in cartography, a domain in which larger display sizes are advantageous. Dr. Johannes Schöning, assistant professor at the department of computer sciences of Hasselt University, is studying innovative approaches in map-based navigation on wearable devices and has received a Google Faculty Research Award. Google Faculty Research Awards are gifts from Google to universities to support the work of world-class faculty members at top universities around the world.

“In this project we want to explore the use of navigation applications on wearables” says dr. Johannes Schöning. “Wearables are small computers or devices that are worn on the body, e.g. as part of clothes or on the wrist. Hence wearables only have a limited display space, which leads to interesting challenges. In this research project, we want to study techniques to transform any two-dimensional route map into a one-dimensional strip, which should be better most suit wearables. We also want to look into new, intuitive interaction techniques, so that pedestrians can easily navigate using their wearable device, be it a smartwatch or a device like Google Glass.”

800 proposals from 55 different countries
The purpose of the Google Faculty Research Awards is to support cutting-edge research in computer science, engineering, and related fields. Faculty members from universities all over the world can apply for these research awards by submitting a proposal to a project call, which is organized twice a year. In the October 2014 funding round, Google received more than 800 proposals from 55 different countries. After expert reviews and committee discussions, Google decided to fund 122 projects, of which just 20% of the funding was awarded to universities outside the U.S.
Together with the other Belgian award winners living abroad, dr. Pattie Maes (MIT, VS) and dr. Marc Pollefeys (ETH Zurich, Switzerland), the ‘Belgian German’ Johannes Schöning has managed to put Belgium on the map in the latest edition of the Google Faculty Research Awards.

About dr. Johannes Schöning
Dr. Johannes Schöning has joined Hasselt University in the summer of 2012. He is active at the Expertise centre for Digital Media (EDM), ICT research institute of Hasselt University and of iMinds. His research area is human-computer interaction (HCI), one of EDM’s core competence areas, with a focus on new methods and novel interfaces to navigate through spatial information. In general he develops, designs and tests user interfaces that help people to solve daily tasks more effectively.
In 2013 dr. Johannes Schöning received his first Google Faculty Award for his research on map-based navigation on mobile devices. Two years ago he also received the prestigious ACM Eugene L. Lawler Award, together with Thomas Bartoschek, for his work on the "GI@School" project.

For more info on:

• the Google Faculty Research Awards: http://research.google.com/university/relations/research_awards.html