The term “user” is quite pervasive in software engineering discussions and documents. However, it is rarely encountered in more traditional engineering disciplines. Thus, for example, automotive engineers distinguish between “drivers”, “mechanics”, and “passengers” but rarely, if ever, talk about “users” (of a vehicle). While this terminological discrepancy may appear trivial at first glance, in this talk I argue that this is a symptom of a serious and fundamental flaw in the culture of software engineering. And, even though there has lately been an increase in focus on user-centric features, such as usability and user experience, this is still far from sufficient, since much of it is focused on narrow technical issues such as ergonomics. In this talk I will first briefly discuss my personal experience – mostly from industry work – with how software developers typically approach what is rather amorphously referred to as “human factors” and what I see as the undesirable and sometimes disastrous consequences of that approach. In the second part of the talk, I will discuss some ideas on how this unfortunate state of affairs can be improved.
Bran Selić is President of Malina Software Corp., a Canadian company that provides consulting services to corporate clients and government institutions worldwide. He is also Director of Advanced Technology at Zeligsoft Limited in Canada and an Adjunct Professor of Software Engineering at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. He has close to 50 years of practical experience in designing and implementing large-scale industrial software systems. In the course of that work, Bran has pioneered the application of advanced model-based engineering methods and related technologies, primarily in real-time and embedded applications. In addition, he has led the definition of a number of international software engineering standards including the widely-used Unified Modeling Language (UML).
Gargi will share with audience the opportunities in front of us as part of the cloud and digital transformation, and the role of AI in enabling that transformation as well as enable new breed of applications on top. She will also share her thoughts on how fundamental breakthroughs in AI Research will be needed as we address some of the core problems of cloud computing. She will be talking about applying AI for application re-design, compliance management and operations management.
Gargi B. Dasgupta is the Director for IBM Research in India and the CTO for IBM India/South Asia. In her role as Director, Gargi is responsible for establishing and executing the technical agenda of IBM’s India Research Lab in collaboration with IBM’s worldwide research labs and business units. In her role as CTO, Gargi is responsible for representing and communicating IBM’s overall technical vision & strategy with key stakeholders across the India/South Asia ecosystem - from developers and start-ups to key clients, analysts, media, and industry experts.
Prior to this role Gargi was the Senior Manager at IBM Research-India leading the work in AI for Automation driving both deep technology innovations and real impact into IBM’s enterprise solutions. Gargi serves as a strategist for IBM Research, working closely with IBM’s Hybrid Cloud business and global services businesses to take innovative solutions to clients across the globe. She helped establish new research directions at the intersection of service science, text analytics, and AI.
Gargi has been with IBM since 2004 when she joined as a Research Staff Member. In 2019, Gargi was recognized as one of IBM’s Distinguished Engineer for her exemplary technological achievements.
Gargi is an ACM Distinguished Speaker and an alumnus of Jadavpur University, Kolkata and University of Maryland, Baltimore County.