Bob Spence is Professor Emeritus of Information Engineering
at Imperial College London.
Bob Spence's research has ranged from engineering design to human-computer
interaction,and often with the manner in which the latter can enhance
the former. Notable contributions, usually in collaboration with colleagues,
include the powerful generalized form of Tellegen's Theorem; algorithms for
improving the manufacturing yield of mass-produced circuits; and, in
the field of Human-computer Interaction, the invention of the first
focus+context technique, the Bifocal Display (aka Fisheye lens). The novel
Attribute and Influence Explorers provide examples of novel information
visualization tools that have wide application, including engineering design.
Interactive computer graphics allows the electronic circuit designer to sketch
the familiar circuit diagram on a computer display. This potential was
pioneered by Bob and his colleagues in the late 1960s and eventually,
in 1985, led to the commercially available MINNIE system developed and
marketed by a company of which Bob was chairman and a founding director.
More recently, Bob's research has focused on the topic of Rapid Serial Visual
Presentation in which a collection of images is presented sequentially and
rapidly to a user who may be searching for a particular image. This activity
is similar to the riffling of a book's pages.