Data Analytics and Visualization for Oil and Gas ePlan Brigade MRI Visualizer Active Story

Data Analytics and Visualization for Oil and Gas

Tool support for data analytics and visualization, allowing users to understand which wells are performing best and what factors lead to this performance


Multi-surface application supporting emergency response training simulations


A future retail environment that combines unique identifiers for each customer, creating a shopping experience unparalleled by any other

MRI Visualizer

A multi-surface application for exploring volumetric medical imagery

Active Story

A tool developed for the purpose of designing and performing usability testing on an application in a manner that is inline with Agile principles.


Agile Surface Engineering

The Agile Surface Engineering (ASE) group at the University of Calgary is headed by Dr. Frank Maurer and conducts industry-oriented research on application engineering for digital surfaces, agile methods, API design and SE for cloud-based applications.

Innovative Software Applications

By working with industrial partners, we are developing advanced prototypes of software applications. These serve as case studies into more fundamental software engineering questions like "What is good software design?" or "How can we build complex systems simply?". We are/were working on the following applications:

  • C4i (Partners: C4i)
  • MRI (Partners: NRC Institute for Biodiagnostics) : Control Interfaces for MRI Machines Using Surface Computing
  • TableNOC (Partners: TRLabs, ivrnet): Using tables and/or wall sized displays to monitor and control telephony networks
  • SkyHunter (Partners: NSERC, Sky Hunter, Foundation CMG):Visualizing Microseeps and Geological Information with Digital Tabletops and Multisurface Computing
  • Room Finder : An on-campus navigation system with mixed reality approach
  • eFarmer (Partners: Decisive Farming) : Utilizing Digital Tabletops in the High Process of High Precision Farming
  • eGrid (Partners: TRLabs, NSERC, DextrusPro, ENMAX): Using digital tables to support the control room operation of utility companies


APIs, Toolkits and Tools

APIs and toolkits embody the building blocks for constructing software systems. Tools are ready-to-go system prototypes that can be used as is without any programming necessary. The following list includes APIs, toolkits and tools that were recently developed by the ASE team:

  • MSE-API (Partners: NSERC, Foundation CMG): An API for Constructing Interactive Multi-Surface Systems
  • IntAirAct (Partners: NSERC): A Framework Enabling Device Interaction Using REST
  • AVIT (Partners: NSERC): An API for Visualizing and Interacting with Trees
  • Active Story Gesture (Partners: SurfNet): Interactive low-fi prototyping for surface applications
  • LEET (Partners: SurfNet. ivrnet, TRTech): LEET is a capture/replay tool based on the Windows Automation API. It can record interactions with many desktop applications - including surface-based applications running on Windows Vista or 7 - and replay them as regression tests.


Agile Methods, API Usability & SE for the Cloud

The ASE lab started to focus research effort on agile methods in the late 1990ies and is now one of the leading research groups in this area [Dingsøyr, Dyba, Moe: Agile Software Development: An Introduction and Overview in: Agile Software Development Current Research and Future Directions, Springer, 2010].

The line of research is driven by a simple question "(How) can we build complex systems simply?" [ J. Wing: Five Deep Questions in Computing, Communications of the ACM, Vol 51, No 1, Jan 2008]. We are investigating what constitutes good software design by developing APIs and study their usability.