Before immersing myself in my graduate studies at Oregon State University, I had a 15-year career as a graphic designer, and served as the Department Chair of the Communication Design Department at the Pacific Northwest College of Art. I had always been interested in maps as representations of space, but the proliferation of geospatial technology in the last decade began to draw my interest. This interest grew to become a fascination, and led me to enroll in the PhD program in Design and Human Environment at Oregon State. It also gave me the opportunity to dive deeply into Geospatial Information Systems and Remote Sensing technology, with an eye towards using those tools to help solve societal problems.
I study human behavior in the built environment with a particular focus on technologically mediated interaction, as well as seek ways that GIS tools can aid in the design process. I use multiple techniques in my research including GIS modeling and spatial analysis, terrestrial 3-D laser scanning, and Global Satellite Navigation Systems. In the photo above I am using a LiDAR system to scan a new building on OSU campus for isovist modeling. I am deeply interested in the ways that technology is changing how we interact with, and conceptualize, spatial phenomena. These technologies offer new ways of studying principles of environmental psychology.
My current research involves studying neurocognitive effects of wayfinding with optical head mounted displays such as Google Glass. As the pace of technological innovation increases, particularly in spatial technology, physiological effects are often poorly researched, and are even harder to predict. That is what makes it a fascinating time to be immersed in this field.
I am a relatively new EDRA member, having participated in my first conference last year. I have belonged to other professional organizations in the past, but only EDRA has been a perfect fit for my professional and academic interests. Members’ willingness to share ideas, or give guidance has been a great help. I am also co-chairing the Cyberspace and Digital Environments Knowledge Network, so if you are involved in that, I look forward to seeing you in LA!