Yu Zhong

Yu Zhong

Authored Publications
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    Preview abstract Building equitable and inclusive technologies demands paying attention to how social attitudes towards persons with disabilities are represented within technology. Representations perpetuated by NLP models often inadvertently encode undesirable social biases from the data on which they are trained. In this paper, first we present evidence of such undesirable biases towards mentions of disability in two different NLP models: toxicity prediction and sentiment analysis. Next, we demonstrate that neural embeddings that are critical first steps in most NLP pipelines also contain undesirable biases towards mentions of disabilities. We then expose the topical biases in the social discourse about some disabilities which may explain such biases in the models; for instance, terms related to gun violence, homelessness, and drug addiction are over-represented in discussions about mental illness. View details
    Preview abstract Persons with disabilities face many barriers to participation in society, and the rapid advancement of technology creates ever more. Achieving fair opportunity and justice for people with disabilities demands paying attention not just to accessibility, but also to the attitudes towards, and representations of, disability that are implicit in machine learning (ML) models that are pervasive in how one engages with the society. However such models often inadvertently learn to perpetuate undesirable social biases from the data on which they are trained. This can result, for example, in models for classifying text producing very different predictions for {\em I stand by a person with mental illness}, and {\em I stand by a tall person}. We present evidence of such social biases in existing ML models, along with an analysis of biases in a dataset used for model development. View details
    Investigating Cursor-based Interactions to Support Non-Visual Exploration in the Real World
    Anhong Guo
    Xu Wang
    Patrick Clary
    Ken Goldman
    Yang Li
    Jeffrey Bigham
    Proceedings of the 20th International ACM SIGACCESS Conference on Computers and Accessibility(2018)
    Preview abstract The human visual system processes complex scenes to focus attention on relevant items. However, blind people cannot visually skim for an area of interest. Instead, they use a combination of contextual information, knowledge of the spatial layout of their environment, and interactive scanning to find and attend to specific items. In this paper, we define and compare three cursor-based interactions to help blind people attend to items in a complex visual scene: window cursor (move their phone to scan), finger cursor (point their finger to read), and touch cursor (drag their finger on the touchscreen to explore). We conducted a user study with 12 participants to evaluate the three techniques on four tasks, and found that: window cursor worked well for locating objects on large surfaces, finger cursor worked well for accessing control panels, and touch cursor worked well for helping users understand spatial layouts. A combination of multiple techniques will likely be best for supporting a variety of everyday tasks for blind users. View details
    Preview abstract In this paper we introduce JustSpeak, a universal voice control solution for non-visual access to the Android operating system. JustSpeak offers two contributions as compared to existing systems. First, it enables system wide voice control on Android that can accommodate any application. JustSpeak constructs the set of available voice commands based on application context; these commands are directly synthesized from on-screen labels and accessibility metadata, and require no further intervention from the application developer. Second, it provides more efficient and natural interaction with support of multiple voice commands in the same utterance. We present the system design of JustSpeak and describe its utility in various use cases. We then discuss the system level supports required by a service like JustSpeak on other platforms. By eliminating the target locating and pointing tasks, JustSpeak can significantly improve experience of graphic interface interaction for blind and motion-impaired users. View details