Matthew Brehmer, Data Visualization Researcher

contact me:

mabrehme at microsoft.com

mattbrehmer at gmail.com

@mattbrehmer

linkedin

about.me

google scholar

github

bl.ocks

discogs

soundcloud

goodreads

personal site

microsoft profile

about me

I am a postdoctoral researcher at Microsoft Research in Redmond, Washington, where I specialize in information visualization for storytelling and journalism. I am a member of the EPIC Research Group, Project Steller, and the Microsoft Data Journalism Team.

Prior to joining Microsoft in 2016, I completed my PhD in Computer Science at the University of British Columbia, where I was a member of the InfoVis group. I completed my M.Sc in Human-Computer Interaction in 2011 (also at UBC), as well as a B.Comp in Cognitive Science from Queen's University in 2009.


My biographical timeline; click for hi-fi video version.

news


Oct. 2017: I will present the IEEE TVCG paper Timelines Revisited: A Design Space and Considerations for Expressive Storytelling at IEEE VIS 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona on Tuesday, October 3rd (during the Time and Space InfoVis session, 4:15pm in room 301-D).

Oct. 2017: I will present the poster Demonstrating the Value of Visualization: Highlights from the 2017 PacificVis Visual Data Storytelling Contest at IEEE VIS 2017 in Phoenix, Arizona between October 1st and 6th.

Aug. 2017: I spoke about Expressive Storytelling with Timelines at "A Journey Through Space and Time": An Uber Visualization Night Meetup in Seattle on August 31. slides

Aug. 2017: Timeline Storyteller is now available as a custom visual for Power BI. It was featured in the opening keynote of the Microsoft Data Insights Summit in June 2017. I also demonstrated Timeline Storyteller during the BI Power Hour. keynote video | demo video | tutorial video

Apr. 2017: I spoke at OpenVisConf 2017, Apr. 24 in Boston. My talk was called What story does your timeline tell? slides | video

expertise


visualization and interface design

I design visualization tools and techniques for data analysis and communication: I write code, I sketch, and I explore and transform data.

examples: Timeline Storyteller, SoundConsensus

human-centred quantitative evaluation

I conduct controlled experiments as a way to understand human capabilities with respect to perception and attention (and sometimes these results have actionable implications for human-computer interface design).

examples: CHI 2012, WorldHaptics 2011

human-centred qualitative evaluation

I evaluate current data analysis and communication processes, work-in-progress designs, and deployed visualization tools: I conduct work domain analyses, interview studies, chauffeured demos/walkthroughs, and field studies.

examples: InfoVis 2014, BELIV 2014

domains


data journalism and storytelling

In collaboration with the Overview Project, I conducted six case studies of journalists who used Overview to investigate and report on large text document collections. Our findings provided transferible lessons for document visualization design.

more info: InfoVis 2014

My goal is to provide journalists and storytellers with tools and techniques for presenting information to readers, such as ways to present visual timelines.

tools: Timeline Storyteller, TimeLineCurator

energy management and conservation

I have collaborated with a company that develops enterprise energy analysis and reporting software and designed visualizations for analyzing and monitoring energy usage in large portfolios of buildings. I consulted with various stakeholders and prospective users, envisioning ways to interactively locate patterns and anomalies.

more info: InfoVis 2015, Portfolio Sandbox

health and fitness

My M.Sc research pertained to the design and evaluation of C-TOC, a computerized cognitive assessment tool intended for early detection of dementia. I studied the use of C-TOC prototypes by healthy older adults and by adults with diagnosed mild cognitive impairments.

more info: ADAD 2014, CHI 2012, MSc 2011

Prior to my M.Sc, I worked in the area of exercise video games (aka active games): I studied the role of physical exertion on cognitive task performance. I also designed GAIM, an XNA/C# toolkit which allowed players with different input peripherals to play active games together.

more info: BComp 2009, FuturePlay 2010, ACE 2009

talks


Timelines Revisited: Considerations for Expressive Storytelling

Radcliffe Institute at Harvard University (Cambridge, USA)
December 8, 2016

slides

Why Visualization? Task Abstraction for Analysis and Design

Dissertation Defence (Vancouver, Canada)
March 23, 2016

slides

Why Visualization? Task Abstraction for Analysis and Design

Microsoft Research (Redmond, USA)
February 1, 2016

video | slides

The Future of Data and Design … In Visualization Research

Vancouver Data Visualization Meetup (Vancouver, Canada)
May 19, 2015

slides | keynote

Visualization Task Abstraction from Multiple Perspectives

IEEE VIS Doctoral Colloquium 2014 (Paris, France)
November 8, 2014

poster | slides | keynote

A Multi-Level Typology of Abstract Visualization Tasks

IEEE InfoVis 2013 (Atlanta, USA)
October 15, 2013

video | slides | keynote

publications


Evaluating Data-Driven Stories & Storytelling Tools

Fereshteh Amini*, Matthew Brehmer*, Gordon Bolduan, Christina Elmer, and Benjamin Wiederkehr ( * equal contribution )
Chapter to appear in Data-Driven Storytelling, a forthcoming book edited by Sheelagh Carpendale, Nicholas Diakopoulos, Christophe Hurter, and Nathalie Henry Riche, 2017.

book chapter abstract

Demonstrating the Value of Visualization: Highlights from the 2017 PacificVis Visual Data Storytelling Contest

Matthew Brehmer, Kyungwon Lee, Ivan Viola, Jinwook Seo, and Bongshin Lee.
Poster to appear at the 2017IEEE VIS Conference.

poster abstract

ChartAccent: Annotation for Data-Driven Storytelling

Donghao Ren, Matthew Brehmer, Bongshin Lee, Tobias Höllerer, and Eun Kyoung Choe
In proceedings of the 2017 IEEE PacificVis Symposium.

conference paper

Timelines Revisited: A Design Space and Considerations for Expressive Storytelling

Matthew Brehmer, Bongshin Lee, Benjamin Bach, Nathalie Henry Riche, and Tamara Munzner
In Volume 23, Issue 9 (Sept. 2017) of IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics.

journal paper | ieee library

Why Visualization? Task Abstraction for Analysis and Design

Matthew Brehmer
University of British Columbia PhD Dissertation (April, 2016).

dissertation (ubc library)

Matches, Mismatches, and Methods: Multiple-View Workflows for Energy Portfolio Analysis

Matthew Brehmer, Jocelyn Ng, Kevin Tate, and Tamara Munzner
In Volume 22, Issue 1 (Jan. 2016) of IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (InfoVis 2015).

journal paper | ieee library

TimeLineCurator: Interactive Authoring of Visual Timelines from Unstructured Text

Johanna Fulda, Matthew Brehmer, and Tamara Munzner
In Volume 22, Issue 1 (Jan. 2016) of IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (VAST 2015).

journal paper | ieee library

C-TOC (Cognitive Testing on Computer): Investigating the Usability and Validity of a Novel Self-administered Cognitive Assessment Tool in Aging and Early Dementia

Claudia Jacova, Joanna McGrenere, Hyunsoo S. Lee, William Wang, Sarah Le Huray, Emily F. Corenblith, Matthew Brehmer, Charlotte Tang, Sherri Hayden, B. Lynn Beattie, and Ging-Yuek R. Hsiung
In Volume 29, Issue 3 (July 2015) of Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders.

journal paper (wolters kluwer health library)

Overview: The Design, Adoption, and Analysis of a Visual Document Mining Tool For Investigative Journalists

Matthew Brehmer, Stephen Ingram, Jonathan Stray, and Tamara Munzner.
In Volume 20, Issue 12 (Dec. 2014) of IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (InfoVis 2014).

journal paper | ieee library

Visualizing Dimensionally-Reduced Data: Interviews with Analysts and a Characterization of Task Sequences

Matthew Brehmer, Michael Sedlmair, Stephen Ingram, and Tamara Munzner
In proceedings of the 2014 ACM BELIV Workshop (Beyond Time and Errors: Novel Evaluation Methods for Visualization).

workshop paper | acm library

Pre-Design Empiricism for Information Visualization: Scenarios, Methods, and Challenges

Matthew Brehmer, Sheelagh Carpendale, Bongshin Lee, and Melanie Tory.
In proceedings of the 2014 ACM BELIV Workshop (Beyond Time and Errors: Novel Evaluation Methods for Visualization).

workshop paper | acm library

A Multi-Level Typology of Abstract Visualization Tasks

Matthew Brehmer and Tamara Munzner
In Volume 19, Issue 12 (Dec. 2013) of IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics (InfoVis 2013).

journal paper | ieee library

Dimensionality Reduction in the Wild: Gaps and Guidance

Michael Sedlmair, Matthew Brehmer, Stephen Ingram, and Tamara Munzner
University of British Columbia Technical Report TR-2012-03 (2012).

technical report

Investigating Interruptions in the Context of Computerised Cognitive Testing for Older Adults

Matthew Brehmer, Joanna McGrenere, Charlotte Tang, and Claudia Jacova
In proceedings of the 2012 ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI).

conference paper | acm library

A Tale of Two Studies: Investigating the Impact of Interruptions on Task Performance in Older Adults

Matthew Brehmer, Charlotte Tang, Joanna McGrenere, and Claudia Jacova
In the work-in-progress proceedings of the the 2011 GRAND NCE AGM.

work-in-progress paper

The Haptic Crayola Effect: Exploring the Role of Naming in Learning Haptic Stimuli

Inwook Hwang, Karon MacLean, Matthew Brehmer, Jeff Hendy, Andreas Sotirkopoulos, and Seungmoon Choi
In proceedings of the 2011 IEEE World Haptics Conference.

conference paper | ieee library

Activate Your GAIM: A Toolkit for Input in Active Games

Matthew Brehmer, T.C. Nicholas Graham, and Tadeusz Stach
In proceedings of the 2010 ACM Future Play Conference.

conference paper | acm library | developer guide

Classifying Input for Active Games

Tadeusz Stach, T.C. Nicholas Graham, Matthew Brehmer, and Andreas Hollatz
In proceedings of the 2009 ACM Advances in Computer Entertainment Technology (ACE) Conference.

conference paper | acm library

service


Reviewer: IEEE InfoVis (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016), IEEE VAST (2015), IEEE PacificVis (2017), IEEE TVCG (2015, 2016, 2017), EuroVis (2014, 2015, 2017), ACM CHI (2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017), ACM TOCHI (2013), Sage Information Visualization Journal (2015, 2016), ACM SIGGRAPH Asia (2012), GRAND NCE ACM (2012)

Student Volunteer: ACM CHI Conference (2011, 2013, 2015, 2016)