Understanding people to improve technology

Skills summary

User Research

Deep expertise in the full range of standard qualitative and quantitative HCI methods
Ph.D. training in cognitive psychology, graduate course work in statistics and social science research methods
Pragmatism and nonstandard cost-effective research solutions
Effective early and late involvement decisions
Creativity, problem solving under tight deadlines and multiple business constraints
Adapting research methods and strategies to the needs of development teams
Keeping high research standards and objectivity while maintaining the spirit of collaboration with development teams

Leadership skills

Team building: hiring and mentoring researchers from diverse disciplines, building trust and collaboration within the team, maintaining balance of senior versus junior hires
Career development: assessing and understanding skills and strengths of individuals on the team, providing customized career guidance for them
Vision and strategy: educating the team about the company culture and priorities, setting long term goals together as a team
Guidelines and standards: establishing and maintaining high standards of objectivity and methodological excellence
Coaching and mentoring:  providing appropriate mentoring to individuals at different stages of their careers
Execution: maintaining flawless support for ongoing projects, meeting deadlines, timely strategic involvement, load balancing for the team, building infrastructure to support the team, etc.
Conflict resolution: effective strategies for reaching compromise within the team and with other project stakeholders
Cross-team communication: develop and maintain collaborative relationships with other teams focused on collecting user data and product management and business leaders--market research, search quality evaluation, product management, customer support, etc.


Education

Attended Moscow State University, Moscow, USSR major:  Psychology (1978-1979).

Attended University of Rochester, Rochester, NY major: Psychology (1981-1983).

B.S. SUNY College at Brockport, Brockport, NY majors: Psychology and Mathematics.
Summa Cum Laude, 1986.
Ph.D. University of California, Berkeley, CA area: Cognitive Psychology, 1992.

Workshop on Usability Engineering taught by Richard Andersen.  University of California, Berkeley, Extension  (Spring 2000).

HCI Professional Experience

Alta Vista, Inc.  1070 Arastradero Rd., Palo Alto, CA (2000-2001).   Usability Engineer/Senior Usability Engineer


As an individual contributor, I developed deep expertise in the full range of HCI methods.  I also developed an understanding of what it takes to apply these methods successfully to improve products.  Finally, I developed deep expertise of search technology. I worked on many projects, including homepage and results page redesigns for this search engine/portal, localization and internationalization projects, early prototype of a text ad system, and building a "search wizard"--a compilation of tools to help users be more effective searchers.

Google, Inc.  1600 Amphetheater Pkwy, Mountain View, CA (2001-2008).  Usability Analyst/User Experience Research Manager/Search Quality Analyst


Usability Analyst (2001-2005)


I was the first usability analyst Google hired.  I provided insights from user research and quantitative log analysis to support all Google products.  On several occasions, user research data led to changes with large economic impact for the company.  I established the first usability lab and made cost-effective decisions about the equipment to buy and the types of research methods to engage in.


A few examples of projects I worked on:

A redesign of Google site that initially introduced tabs (including iterative usability testing, online experiment analysis, and monitoring customer support e-mail after launch)

Advanced search and preferences improvement (log analysis)

Initial launch of groups (several rounds of usability testing, and log analysis to understand traffic)

Initial launch of gmail (two rounds of longitudinal usability tests)

AdWords redesign that introduced pay per click model (several rounds of usability tests)

Initial launch of Google local search (several rounds of usability tests)

Initial launch of desktop search (several rounds of longitudinal field studies)


User Experience Research Manager (2005-2008).


Lead a geographically distributed group of 40+ researchers to provide insights from user research to support and improve Google products world-wide.  Established philosophy of engagement and vision for the team.  Grew the team to 40+ world-wide.  Built the unique infrastructure that was very cost-effective and allowed for extremely quick turnaround by industry standards. 


Here some examples of leadership innovations in user experience research that I am particularly proud of:

Search:  Hired researchers who had technical knowledge of search technology, maintained close collaboration with search quality evaluation, developed in-house tools for eyetracking analysis, maintained the flow of information and ideas between user research and online experiment analysis.

Weekly testing format:  to allow for quick turnaround, we established weekly usability sessions in every product area, that allowed for last-minute prototype testing, and exposed product managers, designers, and engineers to typical user experience with their products

Infrastructure: developed in-house nonstandard low cost solutions to video recording, mobile testing, video clip generation.

When and how to do field studies: as field studies became popular in HCI, we worked on making sure that field studies are only done when and if they bring value

Internationalization and localization:  worked with international program management to establish a system for prioritizing international involvement to make it timely and effective

Use early engagement sparingly: with limited resources, we minimized early engagement to only strategically important projects, for which our engagement could add value

People management philosophy: work with each individual's strengths, and seek out opportunities for each researcher to be a unique contributor and to bring value to the company. Foster the spirit of collaboration and cooperation on the team and with other teams.

Maintain high research standards:  I put strong emphasis on maintaining objectivity, rather than adding more opinions to the mix.  My motto was we stand on the strength of the data we can collect, and we should provide decision support, not replace product management in their role as ultimate business decision makers.   I encouraged my researchers to think about converting qualitative observations into hypotheses that can be tested with quantitative methods
Lead by example:  I continued to do one project a quarter as an individual contributor.  My contributions to the UI for one of Google products were recognized with an Executive Management award in 2007.


Search Quality Analyst (2008).


Used human rater data and live traffic to support launch decisions for search quality improvements


Yahoo! Inc.  Santa Clara, CA

Principal Scientist, Search and Marketplace ( July 2008-present).


Develop online metrics for user search behavior in order to develop and improve next generation search products.



HCI Professional Accomplishments.

Conferences and conference presentations

Schiano, D., Stone, M., & Bectarte, R.  (2001).  Search and Subjective Web.  CHI meeting, Seattle, WA. 


Associate Program Committee Chair, CHI 2005.

Panels

 BayCHI panel "User Research Strategies:  What works, what doesn't work" October 11, 2005.
description here

SIGIR 2007.  Workshop "Web Information Seeking and Interaction", panel discussion.  July 27, 2007.
description here

Invited Talks, etc.

Berkeley Institute of Design.  University of California, Berkeley.  Invited talk: "Cool things engineers and designers should know about humans".  October, 2007.

User Experience Russia 2007.  Invited talk--"Google User Experience:  Goals, Challanges and Opportunities".  Guru Seminar: "Methods for studying information finding and interaction", interviews, press-conference.  November 6-8, 2007.  description in Russian

Interviews in Russian:
www.computerra.ru
www.dp.ru
www.romver.ru









***************other stuff I did before I became who I am now**************

Academic Professional Experience

Research Appointments

University of California, Berkeley. Department of Psychology. Graduate Student Researcher. Research assistant to Daniel Kahneman (1986-1991)
Responsibilities included design and programming of experiments on priming, categorization, perceptual comparisons; data collection and analysis; library research, contributing to grant proposals and technical reports for AFOSR and NSF.

Research Department, VA Medical Center, Martinez, CA. Research assistant to Dr. Ober (1992)
Research assistant working on a project investigating changes in semantic memory in Alzheimer's disease. Responsibilities included data collection, subject selection, data analysis, library research and general laboratory maintenance.

Department of Psychology, Stanford University and Rush Medical Center, Chicago, IL. Post-doctoral Researcher (1992-1993). Sponsor John Gabrieli.
Involved in several collaborative projects that examined attention, implicit memory, and working memory in Alzheimer's disease and schizophrenia.

Stanford University. NRSA Post-doctoral Fellow (1993-1996)
The projects examined deficits in selective attention associated with early Alzheimer's disease and the role of attention in implicit memory in Alzheimer's patients and normal subjects. In addition, collaboration on projects involving neuroimaging (functional MRI) and electrophysiology (ERP).

Stanford University, Stanford, CA and Rush Medical Center, Chicago, IL. Post-doctoral Researcher (1996-1997)
Involved in several collaborative projects that examined attention and implicit memory in young college undergraduates; involved in several projects that examined brain mechanisms of attention and metacognition using functional MRI.

NASA-Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA. Senior Research Fellow (1997-1999). Sponsor Roger Remington.
The project examines prospective memory in air traffic control.

Teaching Appointments

University of California, Berkeley. Department of Psychology. Graduate Student Instructor.
Under the supervision of the class instructor, conducted weekly discussion sessions, designed exams and other assignments, graded exams and papers, held office hours, helped with selection of reading materials for the course, gave guest lectures, conducted review sessions.

Human Memory. Instructor Anne Treisman (Fall'87)
Design and Analysis I. Instructor David Matsumoto (Fall'88)
Design and Analysis II. Instructor William Meredith (Spring'90)
Concepts and Categories. Instructor Eleanor Rosch (Fall'90)
Visual Perception. Instructor Stephen Palmer (Spring'91)

Stanford University. Department of Psychology. Lecturer.
This upper level course was team-taught together with Carol Seger. Had complete responsibility for this 8-week course, including developing a syllabus, selection of reading materials, design of assignments and exams, weekly lectures and all grading.

Scientific Study of Consciousness (Summer'96)

University of California, Santa Cruz. Visiting Lecturer.
Designed and taught the upper level perception and sensation course, that included both the lecture and the lab portion. Supervised teaching assistants, who conducted the labs and graded most of the exams and other assignments.

Sensory Perception with Lab (Spring'97)

San Jose State University.  Visiting Instructor.

Designed and taught introductory methods class with lab

Research Methods in Psychology with Lab (Fall’99)

Stanford University. Computer Science Department.  Guest Lecturer

Guest lecture on usability methods in Diane Schiano’s practical usability methods seminar. (Spring 2001).

University of California, Berkeley.  Computer Science Department.  Guest Lecturer.

Guest lecture in John Tang's Introduction to HCI Methods (Fall 2007).

 

Other Professional Experience

Harper Collins Publishing Company. Editorial Consultant for Zimbardo's Psychology and Life (1990).
Revised a section on Attention and a chapter on Perception for this introductory textbook.

Alta Vista, Inc.  1070 Arastradero Rd., Palo Alto, CA (2000-2001).   Usability Engineer/Senior Usability Engineer

Use a wide range of usability methods to improve usability of this major search engine/portal web site.

Google, Inc.  1600 Amphetheater Pkwy, Mountain View, CA (2001-present).  Usability Analyst (initially) to User Experience Research Manager (now).

Lead a geographically distributed group of 40+ researchers to provide insights from user research to support and improve Google products world-wide.

 

Research Interests

cognitive psychology

attention, awareness, and executive control in human memory and judgment; unintended processing; attention and priming; prospective memory.

cognitive neuropsychology

changes in memory and attention in neurodegenerative disease (Alzheimer's disease) and schizophrenia; neuroimaging (functional MRI)

applied cognitive psychology

human factors (memory and attention) in air traffic control and other complex dynamic environments;

web search strategies and subjective representations of the web

web site usability

 

Abstracts

Demb, J. B., Desmond, J. E., Wagner, A. D., Stone, M., Lee, A. T., Glover, G. H., and Gabrieli, J. D. E. (1994). A functional MRI (fMRI) study of semantic encoding and memory in the left inferior frontal gyrus. Society for Neuroscience Abstracts, 20, 1290.

Desmond, J. E., Gabrieli, J. D. E., Stone, M., Wagner, A. D., & Glover, G. H. (1997). An fMRI study of cerebellum and frontal cortex during a word stem completion task. Society for Neuroscience Abstracts, 23 .

Gabrieli, J. D. E., Stone, M., Galan, J. B., Seeley, W. W. (1995). Attention and implicit memory for words. Paper presented at the 36th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society, Los Angeles, CA, November 10-12.

Gabrieli, J. D. E., Stone, M., Vaidya, C. J., Askari, N., Zabinski, M. F., and Rabin, L. (1996). Neuropsychological and behavioral evidence for the role of attention in implicit memory. Paper presented at the 37th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society, Chicago, IL. October 31 - November 3.

Stone, M., Gabrieli, J. D. E. , Sullivan, E. V. and Singh, J. (1993). Working memory impairment in schizophrenia. Poster presented at the First Annual Cognitive Neuroscience Conference. San Francisco, CA. March 26-29.

Stone, M., Fleischman, D. A., Tinklenberg, J. R., Yesavage, J. A., Ingemanson, S., Grinnell, E., Vaidya, C. J., and Gabrieli, J. D. E. (1994). Attentive and preattentive visual search in Alzheimer's patients. Society for Neuroscience Abstracts, 20, 7362.

Stone, M., Gabrieli, J. D. E., Sullivan, E. V., Ingemanson, S., and Stebbins, G. T. (1995). Verbal working memory impairment in schizophrenia. Society for Neuroscience Abstracts, 21, 9051.

Stone, M., Joaquim, S. G. and Gabrieli, J. D. E. (1995). Anchoring effects in speed of word processing. Poster presented at the 36th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society, Los Angeles, CA. November 10-12.

Stone, M., Ladd, S. L., Vaidya, C. J., and Gabrieli, J. D. E. (1996). Perceptual and emotional priming for attended and unattended words. Poster presented at the 37th Annual Meeting of the Psychonomic Society, Chicago, IL. October 31 - November 3.

Stone, M., Seger, C. A., Prabakharan, V., Gabrieli, J. D. E., & Glover, G. H. (1997). Studying privileged access with functional MRI. Proceedings of the Cognitive Science Society Meeting , Stanford, CA.

Stone, M., Seger, C. A., Prabakharan, V., Gabrieli, J. D. E., & Glover, G. H. (1998). Studying privileged access with functional MRI. ASSC II meeting, Bremen, Germany.

Stone, M., Johnston, J. C., Remington, R., Gabrieli, J. D. E., & Stebbins, G. (1999).  fMRI study of bottlenecks of attention.  Society for Neuroscience Abstracts, 25.

Schiano, D., Stone, M., & Bectarte, R.  (2001).  Search and Subjective Web.  CHI meeting, Seattle, WA.

 

Publications

Illes, J., Gabrieli, J. D. E., Rumelhart, D., Stone, M. V., Thompson-Schill, S. L., and Glover, G. (1993). Use of a skip-echo Hadamard sequence for localizing cortical activation to visual words. Journal of Magnetic Resonance Imaging, 3, 142.

Gabrieli, J. D. E., Desmond, J. E., Demb, J. B., Wagner, A. D., Stone, M. V., Vaidya, C. J., and Glover, G. H. Functional magnetic resonance imaging of semantic memory processes in the frontal lobes. Psychological Science, 7, 278-282.

Gabrieli, J. D. E., Stone, M., Shackleton, K., Thompson-Schill, S. L., Galan, J. B., Sealey, W. W., & Chari, A. Attention and implicit memory for words (manuscript in review, Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition).

Gabrieli, J. D. E., Vaidya, C. J., Stone, M., Francis, W. S., Thompson-Schill, S. L., Fleischman, D. A., Tinklenberg, J. R., Yesavage, J. A., & Wilson, R. S.  (1998).  The role of attention in repetition priming: Convergent behavioral and neuropsychological evidence. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General .

Mulligan, N. W., & Stone, M. V.  (1999).  Attention and conceptual priming: Limits on the effects of divided attention in the category-exemplar production task.  Journal of Memory and Language, 41, 253-280.

Stone, M., Gabrieli, J. D. E., Stebbins, G. T., and Sullivan, E. V. (1997). Working and strategic memory deficits in schizophrenia. Neuropsychology, 11.

Stone, M., Ladd, S. L., & Gabrieli, J. D. E.  (2000).  The role of selective attention in perceptual and affective priming.  American Journal of Psychology, 113, 341-358

Stone, M., Ladd, S. L., Vaidya, C. J. and Gabrieli, J. D. E. (1998). Word identification priming for ignored and attended words. Consciousness and Cognition. 7, 238-258.

Stone, M., Dismukes, R. K., & Remington, R. (2001).  Prospective memory in dynamic environments:  Effects of Load and Delay.   Memory, 9, 165-176.

Seger, C. A., Stone, M. & Keenan, J. P. (2004).  Cortical activations during judgments about self and an other person.  Neuropsychologia, 42, 1168-1177.

 


Panels

BayCHI panel "User Research Strategies:  What works, what doesn't work" October 11, 2005.
description here

SIGIR 2007.  Workshop "Web Information Seeking and Interaction", panel discussion.  July 27, 2007.
description here

Invited Talks, etc.

Berkeley Institute of Design.  University of California, Berkeley.  Invited talk: "Cool things engineers and designers should know about humans".  October, 2007.

User Experience Russia 2007.  Invited talk--"Google User Experience:  Goals, Challanges and Opportunities".  Guru Seminar: "Methods for studying information finding and interaction", interviews, press-conference.  November 6-8, 2007.

Academic Honors and Awards

SUNY College at Brockport. Psychology department scholar (1986)

SUNY College at Brockport. Best undergraduate paper in mathematics (1986)

University of California, Berkeley. Distinction at qualifying examination (1990)

National Institute of Mental Health. National Research Service Award. Pre-Doctoral Traineeship (1986-1988)

National Institute of Aging. National Research Service Award. Post-Doctoral Fellowship (1993-1996)

National Academy of Sciences. National Research Council. Senior Research Fellowship (1997)

AdHoc Reviewer for Consciousness and Cognition, Memory & Cognition, Journal of Experimental Psychology:  Learning, Memory, and Cognition, TOCHI.

Associate Program Committee Chair, CHI 2005


Interesting Unpublished Manuscripts that I will never finish...

Stone, M., Seger, C. A., Hazeltine, E., Johnston, J. C., Remington, R. W., & Gabrieli, J. D. E.  FMRI evidence for two types of attention.

 

Stone, M.  Anchoring effects in word reading.

 

Stone, M.  The aftermath of Stroop:  Separable lexical and perceptual components of priming.

 

Stone, M., & Remington, R. W.  Complex unintended cognitive processing in briefly attended spatial locations.



Affiliations

Member, BayCHI (since 1999).

Member, ACM (since 2000).

Member, UPA (since 2001).

Associate Member, Psychonomic Society (1993-1999).

Member, CNS (1993-1999).


Academic References

Daniel Kahneman
Anne Treisman
John Gabrieli
Roger Remington