justin d. weisz

ph.d. graduate

computer science department

carnegie mellon university


email: jweisz@cs


I am a graduate of the Ph.D. program in Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon. I also completed my B.S. and M.S. in Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon, which makes me a CMU lifer.

As of June 2010, I am a Research Staff Member at IBM T.J. Watson Research.

Research interests

My research interests are highly interdisciplinary. They broadly lie in Human Computer Interaction, Computer-Mediated Communication, Human Computation, and Social Computing. My thesis work focuses on the domain of Social and Interactive Television. I've also been known to dabble in applied Machine Learning and Computational Linguistics. In my early graduate school days, I dabbled in Networking research (and ultimately concluded that people were more interesting).

I am particularly interested in how people use the Internet to create and maintain social relationships through participation in shared activities online. My thesis focuses on the social aspects of collaborative online video watching, the activity of chatting with others while watching videos online. It focuses on understanding the distraction present in multitasking between watching videos and chatting, and it contains concrete design recommendations for large-scale broadcasts that attract audiences of millions of simultaneous viewers. My thesis demonstrates that chatting while watching is fun albeit distracting, that it improves momentary feelings of sociability, and that chat data can be used to learn information about video content, such as tags and ratings, which are of an equivalent quality to hand-labeled data.

Graduate school info

As a graduate student, I was co-advised by Sara Kiesler and Hui Zhang.

I participated in several research projects, including:

I once coordinated the NetTalk seminar and the Community Lab seminar. I was also a member of the CSD Speaker's Club and served on the CSD Graduate Admissions Committee.

I did two summer internships at IBM T.J. Watson Research. The first was in the Enhanced Web Experience Group and the second was in the Social Computing Group. I am proud to be a Bob!

As an undergraduate at CMU, I served as the Tournament Coordinator, Vice President, and President of the Online Gaming Society. Our club has supported the gaming community at CMU since 1999 by holding public tournaments and events at which gamers could meet and compete with each other.

Page last modified on Saturday, June 12, 2010.