Featured Researcher Dr. Ronald MetoyerRonald Metoyer is an Associate Professor in the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Oregon State University. Metoyer received his B.S. degree in Computer Engineering from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1994 and his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2002. Upon completing his Ph.D., Metoyer accepted a position with OSU and has been instrumental in building the Graphics and Imaging Technology group which currently consists of four faculty members and over 50 past and present students.

My Research

My research is currently focused on techniques that enable domain experts to fully utilize visual methods to achieve their analysis goals. While computer graphics technology continues to make leaps and bounds in terms of quality and quantity of visual images that can be created, this technology is often limited to use by professionals such as programmers, animators, and game designers. My goal is to bring visual methods to end-user domain experts who can exploit the benefits of the technology.

My current research projects look at enabling end-users to leverage simulation and 3D graphics or communication and teaching. For example, I’m exploring tools to enable domain experts, such as football coaches or military commanders, to simulate ‘game’ situations, visualize them, and ask 'what if’ questions to create teaching scenarios. More recently, I have become interested in the communication of exercise prescriptions. Together with Dr. Kathy Gunter, I am conducting a study to understand exercise prescription and build related software prototypes for domain experts (physicians, physical therapists, fitness trainers, etc.) to communicate exercise programs using 3D animated agents. This particular project focuses on the specific needs of individuals at risk for falls and fractures and is funded by the Center for Healthy Aging Research.

The exercise prescription project has fueled my interest in aging and how technology may be used help in the process of healthy aging. In forward-looking work, I’m most interested in using interaction and visualization to aid in decision making and sense making. In particular, it is becoming clear that sensor technology is going to play an important role in aging at home. I intend to explore ways of making use of the wealth of data collected by these sensors. I’m interested in helping care-takers and family members ‘make sense’ of large amounts of data and use that