What We Do

Here's a snapshot of our latest projects.


Betwixt - The Story of You

Human-Computer Interaction Mental Health

Strengthening Mental Resilience

Prof. Harmon presented the first results on how user experience design in the Betwixt app may help individuals strengthen their mental resilience at 2021 interactive narrative and human-computer interaction venues. Jigyasa Subedi ’22 studied this work as well as connections to upcoming research questions, gaining experience in state-of-the-art human-computer interaction and natural language processing techniques.

Virtual Reality Accessibility

Virtual Reality for All

Photo by Rebecca Goldfine

Our lab researchers have been busy - both in the real and virtual world! Dani Hove '20 worked on expanding VR resources for Bowdoin students, as well as making virtual environments more accessible for all.

Natural Language Processing Sentiment Analysis

Waka Waka, Make the Art (and Science!) Thing

What do computational creativity researchers look like, and what do they do all day? At NC State and UNC Charlotte, Prof. Harmon and Katie McDonough '19 shared insights they discovered using natural language processing techniques.

Interactive Narrative Educational Psychology

Formalizing Bloom's Taxonomy for Interactive Narrative

Photo by Mirjam P. Eladhari

Bloom's taxonomy of learning objectives is central to many teaching philosophies and helps instructors ensure a variety of skills are assessed in class. Seth Chatterton '19 and Dr. Harmon formalized these objectives into logical assertions, allowing for the generation of metaphorical links between learning objectives and narrative elements. Together, they traveled to Trinity College Dublin to present their work at the International Conference on Digital Storytelling, and joined discussions as members of the Association for Research into Digital Interactive Narratives.

Cognitive Cooking Machine Learning & Optimization

Smart Cookies for a Cause

We can use computational creativity techniques to tackle all kinds of problems...and even invent delicious solutions! Prof. Harmon and her student researchers (including Mackenzie Schafer '19!) designed computer algorithms that would generate cookie recipes, and shared their results with the community to celebrate computational creativity for the common good. The project helped raise over $200 in donations to support the Mid Coast Hunger Prevention Program. Read about the event in the Bowdoin Orient, or check out the official college video.

Selected Papers


  1. Harmon S, Gale H, Dermendzhiyska E. The Magic of the In-Between: Mental Resilience through Interactive Narrative. Proceedings of the International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling (ICIDS-21).
  2. Harmon S. Master of Two Worlds: Narrative Intelligence as the Next Step for Mental Health Chatbots. Realizing AI in Healthcare: Challlenges Appearing in the Wild Workshop, Proceedings of the 2021 ACM CHI Virtual Conference on Human Factors in Computing (CHI-21).
  3. Harmon S, Maxwell R, Jhala A. 2019. Operationalizing conflict strategies in a board game. Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on the Foundations of Digital Games (FDG-19), 96. ACM.
  4. Harmon S, MacDonough K. 2019. The Draw-A-Computational-Creativity-Researcher Test (DACCRT): Exploring Stereotypic Images and Descriptions of Computational Creativity. Proceedings of the Ninth International Conference on Computational Creativity (ICCC-19).
  5. Harmon S, Chatterton S. 2018. Exploring Bloom's Taxonomy as a Basis for Interactive Storytelling. Proceedings of the International Conference on Computational Creativity (ICIDS-18), 171-175. Springer, Cham.
  6. Harmon S. 2017. Narrative-inspired Generation of Ambient Music. Proceedings of the Eighth International Conference on Computational Creativity (ICCC-17).
  7. Harmon S. 2016. An expressive dilemma generation model for players and artificial agents. Proceedings of the Twelfth AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Interactive Digital Entertainment (AIIDE-16), 176-182.
  8. Harmon S, Jhala A. 2015. Toward an automated measure of narrative complexity. Proceedings of the Eleventh AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence and Interactive Digital Entertainment (AIIDE-15), 38-41.
  9. Harmon S, Jhala A. 2015. Revisiting computational models of creative storytelling based on imaginative recall. Interactive Storytelling, Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 9445, 170-178.
  10. Harmon S, Jhala A. 2015. Imaginative recall with Story Intention Graphs. OASIcs-OpenAccess Series in Informatics, 45, Schloss Dagstuhl-Leibniz-Zentrum fuer Informatik, 72-81.
  11. Harmon S. 2015. FIGURE8: a novel system for generating and evaluating figurative language. Proceedings of the International Conference on Computational Creativity (ICIDS-15), 71-77.