Seeking Simplicity in Search User Interfaces

Wednesday, November 18, 2015 - 17:30
TH 329
Marti Hearst (UC Berkeley)

It is rare for a new user interface to break through and become successful, especially in information-intensive tasks like search, coming to consensus or building up knowledge. Most complex interfaces end up going unused. Often the successful solution lies in a previously unexplored part of the interface design space that is simple in a new way that works just right.

In this talk I will give examples of such successes in the information-intensive interface design space, and attempt to provide stimulating ideas for future research directions.


Dr. Marti Hearst is a professor in the School of Information at UC Berkeley, with an affiliate appointment in the Computer Science Division. Her primary research interests are user interfaces for search engines, information visualization, natural language processing and, more recently, improving MOOCs. She was recently named a Fellow of the ACM, and has won four departmental Excellence in Teaching Awards. She is also known for the book Search User Interfaces and for the Flamenco project which advanced faceted navigation as a standard search technique, for lexico-syntactic patterns for ontology discovery (“Hearst patterns”), the TextTiling discourse segmentation technique, and the TileBars query term visualization technique.

She received her BA, MS, and PhD degrees in Computer Science from the University of California at Berkeley, and she was a Member of the Research Staff at Xerox PARC from 1994 to 1997.