Use data visualization to help clinicians and researchers spot patterns and identify warning signs for autism in order to intervene earlier for children at-risk for autism.


Research Assistant


John Lee, Sanny Lin, Karrie Karahalios. Visualizing Patterns of Social and Communicative Behavior in Children Using Plexlines. VAHC 2013. pdf

Poster presentation

Plexlines are graphical timelines that visualize a person's social and communicative behavior—categorized as gaze, gesture and speech—that are directed towards other people (as opposed to objects). My goal is to create a simple, legible fingerprint that captures the nuances of a child’s behavior that can be understood and compared at a glance.

Plexlines relies on a common visual language of lines and circles to reveal information about behavioral data that would otherwise be difficult to discover using raw data or traditional graphing techniques.

From Plexlines, we can begin to understand how people coordinate their behaviors in order to achieve a social or communicative goal (attention, comfort, play, etc.). In children, we can use it to track developmental growth and the effects of therapy.

In adults, we can use it to evaluate their communication skills—in dating, debating, public speaking, interviewing, and stand-up comedy to name a few—and point out specifically the areas for improvement. They may also be used as comparison for different methods and styles of communication.

Currently, the data for generating these Plexlines come from hand-annotated videos. With the advances in automating gaze, gesture, and speech categorization using computer vision and sensors, Plexlines can become infinitely adaptable to any social situation or video to reveal insights on social and communicative behavior.

Poster presentation for 2013 Expeditions meeting. See full size here.