Book Chapter

Ming Tang wrote a section titled “Design and Development for Virtual Reality-based Driving Simulation” for Chapter 1 of the book Disruptive Emerging Transportation Technologies. Edited by Heng Wei, Yinhai Wang, and Jianming Ma. Published by American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE).  2022

Disruptive Emerging Transportation Technologies provides forward-looking overview of the relevant 4IR technologies and their potential impacts on the future disruptive emerging transportation. It is a valuable reference for relevant educators to re-imagine their roles, redesign their curricula, and adopt very different pedagogical strategies to address this inevitability, particularly when they are introducing emerging technologies into transportation planning and development, infrastructure design, and traffic management.

Topics include

4IR technologies impacting the future of transportation such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, edge computing, fog computing, cloud computing, fifth generation innovative communications technology, virtual reality, and the Internet of Things (IoT);
Surface transportation automation including connected vehicle (CV) and autonomous vehicle (AV) technologies, as well as other automation-based vehicles;
Testing methods and technologies for autonomous vehicles;
Emerging mobility services such as automated delivery and logistics, mobility as a service (MaaS), and mobility on demand (MOD);
Shared sustainable mobility such as shared bicycle services, shared vehicle services, and first mile/last mile solutions;
Cooperative and automated traffic control including self-organized intelligent adaptive control, eco-control and eco-ramp metering, and integrated ramp and corridor control; and
Major unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technologies and their possible impacts on the future of transportation.

paper @ CAADRIA Conference

Tian. J., Tang, M., Wang. J., The effect of path environment on pedestrian’s route selection: A case study of University of Cincinnati.27th International Conference of the Association for Computer-Aided Architectural Design Research in Asia (CAADRIA). Sydney, Australia. April. 2022. 

The present study on the influence of the path environment on pedestrians’ route selection is mostly concentrated on the urban level while rarely discussed from the architectural level. Taking the University of Cincinnati (Ohio, US) as an example, this study aims to investigate whether the difference in the environmental settings of the route will affect pedestrians’ walking experiences and future route selection, with the ultimate goal of ascertaining the underlying relationship between the route environments and the user behavior in the process of route selection and implementation. This study selected three routes from the Langsam library to the CEAS library. The research methods included data analytics, questionnaires, and comparative analysis. Firstly, through surveys and an E4 wristband, psychological and physiological data were collected. Secondly, Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) was used to examine whether there was a significant difference in pedestrians’ walking experience among the three routes. Thirdly, through the analysis of questionnaires, the factors that play an important role in pedestrians’ route selection were determined. It can be concluded that the three routes with different environmental settings bring a different experience to participants. More specifically, the level of comfort and openness of the route significantly affects the route selection of pedestrians, while the degree of fatigue during walking does not. To sum up, for the transition space from outdoor to indoor, the factors affecting pedestrian route selection include the route’s degree of comfort and openness.

The paper is based on Jing Tain’s MS Thesis. Please check out the full thesis here.

paper @ HCI Conference

Ming Tang’s paper Human and Machine Symbiosis. An experiment of human and robot co-creation of calligraphy-style drawing is accepted at the HCI INTERNATIONAL 2022, 24th International Conference on  Human-Computer Interaction.

Human and Machine Symbiosis. An experiment of human and robot co-creation of calligraphy-style drawing

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and robots impact creative jobs such as art-making. There have been many AI tools assisting average users in imitating the styles of renowned painters from the past. The Convolutional neural network (CNN) and generative adversarial network (GAN) emergence as a method to “hallucinate” and create expressions of styled drawings. This paper discussed an experiment to study how AI, Automation, and Robots (AAR) will interact with humans and form a unique symbiotic relationship in art-making. Our project, called “robot painter,” established a co-creation in calligraphy-style painting with the following steps:  (1) Use CNN tools to translate a raster image into a calligraphy-style image. (2) Develop an algorithm in Grasshopper and Rhino program for the Kuka robot. This generative tool allowed the artist to translate the image into a parametrically controlled 3D toolpath for a robotic arm. (3) A KUKA robot executed the art-making by holding a paintbrush and completing the painting with customized stoke, force, and angle on a canvas.

In conclusion, the paper discussed that AAR makes human intervention and co-creation possible. The ability of A. I and robots to mimic artists’ expressions have undoubtedly achieved a convincing level and will affect art-making in the years to come.

Project detail. Robotic Art


paper @ NCBDS

Paper “Interstitial Latency in Design-Build Architecture Education” by Ming Tang, Whitney Hamaker, Yingdong Hu is accepted in the NCBDS 2022 conference. April 1-2, 2022. Municie, Indiana.

National Conference on the Beginning Design Student 37 (NCBDS 37)

This paper presents two design-build projects that encapsulate a two-phase process broadly outlined as “design and build.” The collected work spanned multiple seminars and studio courses at the University of Cincinnati, Beijing Jiaotong University, and Nanchang University. Both projects progressed from client proposals, concept design, detail development, construction documents, scheduling, coordination and culminated in a series of completed constructions. The paper illustrates the latent discoveries and learning that occurred in these design-build projects through the more blatant lenses of the design process by serving as both architects and builders. The first project consists of six multi-level steel and wood structures, including three short-term residences, a tea house, a bathhouse, and an observation tower coupled with extensive landscape development. The second project is a public restroom. Both projects are sited in rural villages in China.

First, we describe the design stage, where the conceptual models were generated with the local context, community issues, and proposed architectural interventions. The concepts are represented through digital models. These designs were later developed into physical mockup models without a reference to the craftsmanship required of the onsite build process. As a result, the drawings and mockup models serve as the immaterial representation of form but do not fully define the materials and strategy necessary for full-scale making. The intangible form of the virtual model carries in the early the design information and intent from the conceptual design forward to the following phases.

In the build stage, students participated in the manifestation of the immaterial through onsite construction, experiencing first-hand the transformative potential of a series of diverse activity-based programmatic structures in a rural community. This phase emphasized the construction and exploration of craftsmanship with local resources and materials, producing an outcome that stimulated new activities in the village. By immersing students in the complete design-build cycle, the projects demonstrated the power and possibility of interstitial spaces between phases in the design process.

Students were empowered to consider the various responsibilities architects, engineers, and builders provided in practice. This pedagogical method actively questions where the latent effects of translation between immaterial and material can be learned from both architects and builders. Simultaneously, the projects engaged in a large-scale rural revitalization effort, providing an alternative paradigm for redevelopment. A downstream effect of the teaching methods contributes to the discourse surrounding revitalization and growth in rural communities by exploring a path to instigate positive change through a synthesis relationship of architects and builders.




Paper in CAAD Future Conference

Paper “Social Distancing and Behavior Modeling with Agent-Based Simulation” is presented at the CAAD Future 2021 conference and inclusion in the CAAD Futures 2021 Springer Proceedings.

Presentation. 16 – 18 JULY 2021.


The research discusses applying agent-based simulation (ABS) technology to analyze the social distancing in public space during the COVID-19 pandemic to facilitate design and planning decisions. The ABS is used to simulate pedestrian flow and construct the micro-level complexity within a simulated environment. This paper describes the various computational methods related to the ABS and design space under the new social distancing guidelines. We focus on the linear phases of agent activities, including (1) environmental query, (2) waiting in a zone, (3) waiting in a queue, and (4) tasks (E-Z-Q-T)  in response to design iterations related to crowd control and safety distance. The design project is extended to the agents’ interactions driven by a set of tasks in a simulated grocery store, restaurant, and public restroom.  We applied a quantitative analysis method and proximity analysis to evaluate architectural layouts and crowd control strategies. We discussed social distancing, pedestrian flow efficiency, public accessibility, and ways of reducing congestion through the intervention of the E-Z-Q-T phases.  

Keywords: agent-based simulation, social distancing, crowd control

Figure 3.  Agent density and space proximity map. ABS without social distancing vs. with social distancing rules. Each agent’s autonomous “action” lies in modifying its movement based on its rules and environment. Top. Floor plan and interior perspective of a check-in area of a restaurant. Middle: proximity map without social distancing. Bottom: proximity map with 2-meter social distancing with the same number of agents in the same given time. Notice the hot waiting areas’ issues are replaced with a larger waiting area, while some agents choose not to walk in the restaurant after EQ. Right. Compare the number of occupancies. Red: agents with social distancing. Blue: agents without social distancing.

This research was funded by UC Forward, as a part of the Price Hill project at UC.