Personal Information Management at CHI2006

I've just been perusing the CHI2006 advance program, and since Personal Information Management (PIM) is a particular interest of mine, I paid special attention to this area.

Its a busy year for PIM, just go back 3 years and there was barely anything presented at CHI on this field. Here are the PIM papers (PIMPs?) which caught my eye … plus links to researchers' homepages. Descriptions are from the CHI website. I plan to fill in more commentary on these papers at the conference itself. Did I miss any?

Session: Personal Information Management

  • Fast, Flexible Filtering with Phlat – Personal Search and Organization Made Easy We describe the design and deployment of a new UI for searching personal information. The interface encourages fast, intuitive query iteration and includes a unified tagging system for personal content. Edward Cutrell,
    Daniel Robbins, Susan Dumais, Raman Sarin
  • The Project Fragmentation Problem in Personal Information Management Identifies a usability problem associated with the fact that users sometimes store documents related to a project in different directories based on the format of the documents. A new solution is presented to improve usability. Ofer Bergman, Ruth Beyth-Marom, Rafi Nachmias
  • To Have and to Hold: Exploring the Personal Archive Describes a study of 48 academics' personal archives, highlights their rationales behind archiving: 'finding it later', legacy, sharing, confronting fears, identity construction. Describes how this affects archive structure and function. Joseph 'Jofish' Kaye, Janet Vertesi, Shari Avery, Allan Dafoe, Shay David, Lisa Onaga, Ivan Rosero, Trevor Pinch
  • Peripheral Display of Digital Handwritten Notes. Describes the development and initial testing of a peripheral display supporting digital handwritten notes. Guides designers in balancing serendipity with the costs of ambient display. Gary Hsieh, Kenneth Wood, Abigail Sellen

Session: Navigation

  • Faster Document Navigation with Space-Filling Thumbnails Describes the Space-Filling Thumbnails interface for document navigation, which replaces scrolling with page-selection from a thumbnail matrix. Evaluations show large performance advantages over scrolling across various document types and lengths. Andy Cockburn, Carl Gutwin, Jason Alexander

Session: Activity – Design Implications

  • Share and Share Alike: Exploring the User Interface Affordances of File Sharing Describes a typology of sharing technologies and presents a new user interface for file sharing. Informs the design of file sharing mechanisms that more closely match users' actual sharing practices. Stephen Voida, W. Keith Edwards, Mark W. Newman, Rebecca E. Grinter, Nicolas Ducheneaut

Session: Media

  • Personal vs. commercial content: The similarities between consumer use of photos and music Our work explores similarities between consumer use of music and photos based on two separate ethnographic studies. This work contributes new insights for applications that manage and share digital content. Frank Bentley, Crysta Metcalf, Gunnar Harboe

Course: Personal Information Management in Theory and Practice.

  • Personal Information Management in Theory and Practice – This highly interactive, general-audience course provides an overview of personal information management (PIM) both as a field of inquiry and as an activity that each of us performs every day. William Jones, Jacek Gwizdka

Panel: Why Do Tagging Systems Work?

  • Why Do Tagging Systems Work? – Web-based social tagging systems such as and Flickr allow participants to annotate a particular resource, such as a web page or an image, with a freely chosen set of keywords ('tags'). As tagging systems grow in scale and popularity, new challenges must be addressed in their design and affordances. George W. Furnas, Caterina Fake, Luis von Ahn, Joshua Schachter, Scott Golder, Kevin Fox, Marc Davis, Cameron Marlow, Mor Naaman

Session: Collecting and editing photos

  • Understanding Photowork – Field study of how users work with their home photo collections. Offers implications for software design and a descriptive framework of realistic tasks against which new tools can be assessed. David Kirk, Abigail Sellen, Carsten Rother, Ken Wood

Session: Everyday Use of Mobiles

  • Because I Carry My Cell Phone Anyway: Effective Everyday Task Management Develops a novel location-based reminder system. Demonstrates its utility for everyday task management and identifies a rich model for effective location-based information delivery. Pamela Ludford, Dan Frankowski, Ken Reily, Loren Terveen
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4 Responses to Personal Information Management at CHI2006

  1. rashmi says:

    very thorough. Can I convince you to do the same for all the social software ones. Will a beer do it?

  2. rickb says:

    Nope (-; I want to get out and enjoy the sun! But you should do the same, we should cross-link and set a new conference attending trend.

    Every year I seem to do this same thing, extracting all the papers related to my particular interests. It takes time, and its hard to share. This post is an attempt to (1) save other people some time, and (2) not do my usual thing of scribbling in my paper programme and losing it on Day 2!

    Of course this should be easy, if only the chi program was taggable/annotatable …

  3. Robin says:

    This is the CHI2006 Technical Program Chair speaking

    First, please list your blog at
    so that we know who’s blogging CHI.

    Aecond, the program will be annotatable. Watch the blog. We will have entries for all the sessions (we hope — there are some legal/policy issues around when we can get the data) and you will be able to do a number of interesting things with the program. Contact m.c. schraefel for more information. I’m sure she’d love to have you contribute to a community effort around the CHI program.

    This is the first year we’ve tried this. I’m sure there will be glitches, but please help us learn how to make it better next year.

  4. Pingback: Richard Boardman’s Blog » Blog Archive » Personal Information Management Research - its all happening in the Pacific Northwest

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