I'm an Assistant Professor at the University of Michigan, where I created the Information Interaction Lab. We study the next generation of user interfaces, as well as the methods and tools to create them. Our current focus is on virtual, augmented, and mixed reality applications.

At U-M, I'm the XR Faculty Innovator-in-Residence advising the U-M wide XR Initiative, closely work with the Center for Academic Innovation on a new AR/VR MOOC specialization (my Teach-Out was just a first example), am faculty adviser for the student-led AR/VR initiative called ARI, am active in our HCI speaker seminar series called MISC, teach introductory and advanced AR/VR courses, and lead or contribute to several U-M and externally funded research projects.

My research contributes new techniques, tools, and technologies to make AR/VR interface development easier and faster. My vision is that anyone without 3D modeling, animation, or programming background can be an active participant in AR/VR design. I want AR/VR to become useful and effective interaction modes that bring real benefits to users taking into account their context, task, and preference. My earlier research established principles, methods, and tools for the design, development, and evaluation of multi-device and cross-device user interfaces. In a second thread of research, I demonstrated how to use crowdsourcing to create responsive web designs, to write a paper from a smartwatch, or to design gesture recognizers. My research has received eleven (11 :P) Best Paper Awards and Honorable Mentions at the premier HCI conferences. I regularly serve on the program committees of the ACM CHI and UIST conferences. I received a Disney Research Faculty Award and a Mozilla Research Award. I started my role as the XR Faculty Innovator-in-Residence with Academic Innovation's XR Initiative in 2019. I joined Michigan in 2016 after completing a postdoc in the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon University and a PhD in the Department of Computer Science at ETH Zurich.

Curriculum Vitae

Watch Prof Neb Live: PhD in technical HCI on Twitch
I'm always interested in talking to students about doing a PhD in technical HCI. Below is a video of my Twitch stream in 2019 to go over a list of crowdsourced questions that I received from prospective PhD students. I met a lot of great students this way, so I really enjoyed this. I will do it again in Fall 2020!

Research at the University of Michigan (2016-today)

Since starting the Michigan Information Interaction Lab in September 2016, I have taken my research on cross-device interfaces further and developed a new focus on AR/VR interfaces. Most notably, this work led to three papers at CHI 2018, two papers at CHI 2019, and three papers at CHI 2020. I am a key contributor to the XR Initiative (what started as AVMR Initiative), created an MR Teach-Out, developed two new courses focused on AR/VR design and development, and am working on a new XR MOOC specialization slated for launch in May 2020.

Selected AR/VR Research

  • 360proto (CHI'19 paper): a 360 paper prototyping tool to rapidly create AR/VR prototypes from paper and bring them to life on AR/VR devices based on a set of emerging paper prototyping templates specifically for AR/VR immersive environments, AR marker overlays and face masks, VR controller models and menus, and 2D screens and HUDs
  • ProtoAR (CHI'18 paper): a rapid physical-digital prototyping tool for mobile augmented reality apps that enables rapid transition from physical prototyping using paper wireframes and Play-doh models to digital prototyping based on multi-layer cross-device authoring and interactive capture tools
  • XD-AR (EICS'18 paper): an augmented reality platform that we are developing for multi-user multi-device augmented reality experiences that allow users to "edit" the physical world in realtime
  • 360Anywhere (EICS'18 paper): a platform enabling multi-user collaboration scenarios using augmented reality projections of 360 video streams

Please find out more on the Information Interaction Lab web site.

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Selected Publications

For the full list of publications, please check Google Scholar and DBLP.

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    Visit my research lab!


    You can reach me by email via nebeling@umich.edu.

    If you are interested in my work, please feel free to follow me on Twitter @michinebeling.

    Twitch AR/VR office hours

    A-Frame examples

    News and Events

    CHI 2020 Co-organized our workshop on ethics of mixed reality. Also published pages on our MRAT and XRDirector projects.

    April Attended XR Midwest and joined a talk with Jeremy Nelson on teaching and learning with XR at scale. Thanks to the organizers from ARI!

    March MRAT and a study on key barriers to entry for novice AR/VR creators I co-authored with friends from Canada both won a Best Paper Award at CHI. Now you're cooking!

    February Interviewed many great prospective PhD students. Made two offers. Can't wait to start working with them!

    January Started producing my XR MOOC slated for launch in May 2020. I'm very excited to share my experience from my four years of research and teaching in AR/VR at U-M.


    • Three papers conditionally accepted to CHI 2020: XRDirector (a role-based collaborative immersive authoring tool), MRAT (mixed reality analytics toolkit), and an interview study with 21 participants on key barriers for AR/VR creators. Aloha!
    • Selected as a finalist for MTRAC funding, Michigan's translational research grant, to take some of my AR/VR innovations and create an AR/VR design platform.

    Twitch Office Hours: Doing a PhD in technical HCI (ask your questions here)
    MIT HCI Seminar talk: "Prototyping Mixed Reality experiences."
    MUM conference keynote: "Making Mixed Reality a thing that designers do and users want."

    • Won't make it to UIST :-(
    • Participating as one of only eight selected teams for U-M's Celebrate Invention event, showcasing 360proto (will be released soon!) and other technologies created in my lab.
    • Won Best Paper Award at CHI Play for our iGYM project with Roland Graf.

    September Aloha, CHI 2020! Apart from a few paper submissions, I also community-sourced two Spotify playlists: one for authors, and one for reviewers. Check them out, they are really great!

    August Went kayaking with the lab! :-)

    • Attending SIGGRAPH 2019, my first! Happy to receive the Disney Research|Studios Award. Thanks to Markus Gross and Bob Sumner for the nice little ceremony!
    • Had a great time at the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit! Thanks to Jaime Teevan for inviting me.
    • Gave a talk at Adobe Research on Mixed Reality Prototyping. Got very useful feedback! Thanks to my host, Wilmot Li.

    iGYM paper accepted to CHI PLAY 2019, wohoo team!
    • Invited to give the opening keynote at MUM 2019.
    • Attended the UIST 2019 PC. That was a lot of fun! All my papers got rejected :P

    • Had a great trip to Seattle visiting friends at UW CSE, iSchool, and HCDE! Gave a DUB seminar on Prototyping Mixed Reality Experiences.
    • Also met UW Reality Lab folks.
    • Attended CHI 2019 in Glasgow! Held my CHI 2019 AR/VR prototyping course.

    April UIST submissions! Finished first time teaching my more technical AR/VR course. Had a lot of fun with A-Frame and Unity!

    January Got a Disney Research Faculty Award. This award will enable me to implement and test my XR workbench concept. I'm excited!

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    My work at Michigan is supported by the School of Information, the Office of Academic Innovation, and the Exercise & Sport Science Initiative. It is also externally sponsored by Microsoft, Google, Lenovo, Disney, Ford, and Masco.