Glassman Lab @ Harvard SEAS
augmenting human intelligence with computation
Maxwell-Dworkin Rm 241 & 242
Computer Science Department
John A. Paulson School of Engineering & Applied Sciences
Harvard University, Cambridge, MA

We design, build and evaluate systems for comprehending and interacting with population-level structure and trends in large code and data corpora. These systems augment human intelligence by giving users a “useful degree of comprehension in a situation that previously was too complex.” -D. C. Engelbart

Vision & Values

What success looks like
A vibrant, supportive community of undergraduates, masters, and PhD students who are creating new tools for thought and action that augment human intelligence and agency.

How we’re getting there

  • Finding the quickest way(s), e.g., interviews, observations, surveys, paper prototypes, simulations, minimal deployments, ..., to get the data we need for the riskiest risks (largest uncertainties) in our project
  • Frequent feedback from each other
  • Working to create, publish, and publicize research we’re proud of
    • at top-tier HCI research conferences, i.e., CHI, UIST, IUI, and CSCW, and journals, i.e., TOCHI
    • Replanning rather than submitting unfinished, poorly thought-out, and/or hastily written work
  • Reflecting on our personal and community practices
  • Getting enough sleep so we can bring our best selves to our work

Active Projects


Perception of & trust in AI
Zana Bucinca, Phoebe Lin, Prof. Krzysztof Gajos

Quantifying and Communicating Uncertainty in Machine Learning
Prof. Flavio Calmon, Madeleine Barowsky, Hayoun Oh, Berk Ustun

Helping Humans Understand and Give Feedback on Learned Robot Behaviors
Serena Booth (MIT), Ankit Shah (MIT), Zana Bucinca, Phoebe Lin, Tianyi Zhang, Prof. Julie Shah (MIT)

Case studies in augmenting human decision making: the AFST
Sam Oh

Intelligent creativity augmentation
Cole Bateman

Understanding Structured Documents at Scale

Text compression across multiple documents
Janet Sung, Jamie Lee, Yuri Vishnevsky, Kathy Qian, Prof. Amy Zhang (Stanford/UW)

Interfaces for exploring emergent structure in medical record corpora
Tianyi Zhang, Prof. Finale Doshi-Velez & collaborators

Software at scale
Tianyi Zhang, Prof. Björn Hartmann (Berkeley), Prof. Miryung Kim (UCLA), Litao Yan, Chenlu Wang

HCI for Programming Language Technologies

Peering into CEGIS
Jingmei Crystal Hu, Prof. Steve Chong

Describing current work and future possibilities in PL/HCI
Josh Sunshine (CMU), Prof. Sarah Chasins (Brown/Berkeley)

Programming linguistics
Rebecca Hao, Jake Cui

Planned Future Projects

Program synthesis for data at scale
London Lowmanstone

Selected Publications


  1. Proxy Tasks and Subjective Measures Can Be Misleading in Evaluating XAI Systems
    Zana Bucinca*, Phoebe Lin*, Krzysztof Gajos, Elena Glassman. IUI 2020.
    *indicates equal contributions

HCI + Software Engineering

  1. Enabling Data-Driven API Design with Community Usage Data: A Need-Finding Study
    Tianyi Zhang, Björn Hartmann, Miryung Kim, and Elena Glassman. CHI 2020.
  2. Visualizing API Usage Examples at Scale.
    Elena Glassman*, Tianyi Zhang*, Björn Hartmann, and Miryung Kim. CHI 2018.
    *indicates equal contributions (supplemental info)

HCI + Program Synthesis

  1. Characterizing Developer Use of Automatically Generated Patches.
    José Pablo Cambronero, Jiasi Shen, Jürgen Cito, Elena Glassman, and Martin Rinard. IEEE VL/HCC 2019.
  2. Writing Reusable Code Feedback at Scale with Mixed-Initiative Program Synthesis.
    Andrew Head*, Elena Glassman*, Gustavo Soares*, Ryo Suzuki, Lucas Figueredo, Loris D'Antoni and Björn Hartmann. ACM Learning @ Scale 2017.
    *indicates equal contributions

HCI + Programming Languages

  1. Approaching polyglot programming: what can we learn from bilingualism studies?
    Rebecca Hao and Elena Glassman. PLATEAU Workshop 2019.

HCI + Document Corpora

  1. Triangulating the News: Visualizing Commonality and Variation Across Many News Stories on the Same Event
    Elena L. Glassman, Janet Sung, Katherine Qian, Yuri Vishnevsky, Amy Zhang. Computation + Journalism Symposium 2020.
Related Courses
CS 179: Design of Useful and Usable Interactive Systems
Recent Invited Guests
Dan Russell
Google, author of The Joy of Search
Ehsan Hoque
Asaro-Biggar ('92) Family Assistant Professor of Computer Science, University of Rochester
Lab Members
Assistant Professor of Computer Science, SEAS
Stanley A. Marks and William H. Marks Assistant Professor at the Radcliffe Institute
specializing in human-computer interaction
Postdoctoral Scholar, UCLA PhD in Software Engineering '19
Yuri Vishnevsky
Visualization consultant
Phoebe Lin
Masters student, Graduate School of Design
Chenlu Wang
Masters student, Design Studies: Technology
Litao Yan
Masters student, Computational Science & Engineering
Cole Bateman
Undergraduate researcher,
CS & Art, Film, and Visual Studies
Kathy Qian
Undergraduate researcher, CS
Rebecca Hao
Undergraduate researcher,
CS & Linguistics
Jake Cui
Undergraduate researcher,
CS & Linguistics
Lab Alumni
Sam Oh
Undergraduate researcher, CS & Philosophy
Just graduated!
Janet Sung
Masters student, Masters of Design Engineering
Now at Twitter
Jamie Lee
Summer high school student researcher, South Korea
Applying to college!