June 6, 2014

Beam Me Up, Scotty (But Pay the Toll First)

(photo credit Flickr/FreePress) Chief Engineer Scott of Star Trek had an answer to long distance travel (be it interstellar or across a backyard): “beaming”. While the technology of disassembling and reassembling people atom by atom remains elusive, many companies today are focusing on a different kind of “beaming” [1] – mobile robotic telepresence (“MRP”). MRP […]


June 2, 2014

“App Stores for the Brain” Wins Best Paper Award

“App Stores for the Brain: Privacy and Security in Brain-Computer Interfaces” recently won the Best Paper award at the 2014 International Symposium on Ethics in Engineering, Science and Technology. This collaboration between Tech Policy Lab Student Scholar Tamara Bonaci, UW Biorobotics Lab co-Director Howard Chizeck and Tech Policy Lab Co-Director Ryan Calo identifies privacy and security issues […]


April 25, 2014

Spotlight on Tech Policy Lab Scholar Tamara Denning

This week marks the beginning of the International Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, better known as CHI, where Tech Policy Lab member Tamara Denning will be presenting her new paper on augmented reality glasses. In the video preview on YouTube, you can see an explanation of how they examined perspectives on bystander privacy […]


April 15, 2014

iAffiliates Day with Avatars and Virtual Environments

Sims House

The University of Washington’s iSchool recently held their iAffiliates Day and used the “un-conference concept” to highlight the interesting research being done by members of the iSchool. At an un-conference, ideas for topics are presented to the audience and those that gain interest breaking into smaller groups to discuss them. A staple of the video game industry for years now, the idea of playing a game through an online avatar was one of the topics chosen by the audience. Both offline games like The Sims and massively popular online ones such as World of Warcraft and Second Life place a user in a virtual world behind an avatar. Ran Hinrichs, CEO of 2b3d and member of the iSchool at the University of Washington spoke on the topic. Ran, led a presentation on where the online avatar is today, what we have learned and what we can build.


April 14, 2014

Value Sensitive Design Course Meets Personal Drones

(photo credit Don McCullough) Undergraduate students learn value sensitive design by envisioning the possibilities for personal drones, a new category of personal technology. The Tech Policy Lab provided funds for purchasing drones for classroom use. Prof. David Hendry, Associate Professor, The Information School recently taught an undergraduate class in value sensitive design, a design methodology […]


April 1, 2014

Security and Privacy for Augmented Reality Systems

Communications of the ACM

Augmented Reality (AR) technologies promise to enhance our perception of and interaction with the real world. Unlike virtual reality systems, which replace the real world with a simulated one, AR systems sense properties of the physical world and overlay computer-generated visual, audio, and haptic signals onto real-world feedback in real time. In this article, we consider the security and privacy concerns associated with AR systems themselves as well as those that arise from the supporting technologies.


March 27, 2014

Spotlight on Tech Policy Lab Scholar Franzi Roesner

(pictured with fellow Tech Policy Lab member Ada Lerner) The Tech Policy Lab has interesting projects in the works thanks to our student scholars. We are lucky to count Franzi Roesner from UW’s Computer Science & Engineering as one of our Lab members. Part of the 2013 Rising Stars in EECS at MIT, Franzi is […]


March 21, 2014

Can You Sue a Robot for Defamation? – (Forbes Cross-Post)

(Image courtesy of Katy Tresedder) Life moves pretty fast.  Especially for journalists. When an earthquake aftershock shakes America’s second largest city, news outlets scramble to be the first to cover the story.  Today the news itself made news when various outlets picked up on a curious byline over at the Los Angeles Times: “this post […]


March 1, 2014

Robot Research at the University of Washington

The Tech Policy Lab was proud to sponsor the 2014 Winter Scholars’ Studio: Robot Research @ the Commons. Scholars’ Studio is an opportunity for graduate students and postdocs to do 5 minute lightning talks describing their research. Imagine trying to explain what may have taken five years to develop for a dissertation in under 5 […]


February 24, 2014

Spotlight on Tech Policy Lab Scholar Tamara Bonaci

The Tech Policy Lab works to sponsor interesting tech events and the people involved. This week the Lab is co-sponsoring the Scholars’ Studio on Robot Research and Lab member Tamara Bonaci will be presenting her work. Tamara Bonaci is a Ph.D. Candidate in Electrical Engineering at the University of Washington and her research focuses on […]