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Magerko, Computer Science Alumnus, Win ACM Best Paper Award


Posted June 18, 2021

A paper co-authored by School of Literature, Media, and Communication Professor Brian Magerko and Mikhail Jacob, Ph.D. CS 2019, has won the Best Paper Award from the ACM Creativity and Cognition Conference 2021 for their work on creativity and artificial intelligence. 


The paper, “Empirically Evaluating Creative Arc Negotiation for Improvisational Decision-Making,” is the second work for which Magerko has won the exclusive award in four years. At most, 1% of submissions can receive a Best Paper Award. 


The paper explores how to mediate a collaboration between artificial intelligence (AI) and people so that the experience follows a creative trajectory, enabling computers to improvise more like humans in creative tasks.  


The research will likely be used in the development of an AI learning companion for Magerko’s award-winning EarSketch program, which teaches students to code through music. Magerko, who is also LMC’s director of graduate studies in Digital Media and director of the Expressive Machinery Lab, is co-PI on that project, along with School of Music Chair Jason Freeman. 


Jacob, who was the paper’s lead author, and Magerko will present their work at the virtual conference, which is scheduled for June 23–24, 2021. 


Magerko’s first Best Paper Award at the conference came in 2017, for the paper “Creative Sense-Making: Quantifying Interaction Dynamics in Co-Creation,” which was written in collaboration with a team of students.  


LMC is a unit of the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts.