Scott MacLean

PhD. Candidate, University of Waterloo
Office:DC 2302D
Phone:+1 519 888 4567 x35435
Mail Address:Scott MacLean
David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science
University of Waterloo
200 University Ave. W.
Waterloo, ON, Canada N2L 3G1

Welcome to my website! I am a doctoral student in the Symbolic Computation Group at the University of Waterloo. My supervisor is George Labahn.


I am a member of the MathBrush project, which researches approaches to building applications allowing intuitive input and manipulation of hand-drawn mathematics on PC tablets. I wrote the symbol recognition component of our prototype application, MathBrush, as a co-op student.

My Master's thesis work was a preliminary investigation into a new approach to semantic analysis, the phase of recognition that attaches semantic meaning to symbol arrangements. In particular, I investigated the view that mathematical handwriting is structured but uncertain, in the sense that we know it possesses a certain amount of structure, but it is not clear what all the small pieces are and how they fit together. I developed a preliminary parser that used fuzzy set theory to model recognition uncertainty and relational context-free grammars to model the formal structure of two-dimensional math syntax. The formal model captures all valid semantic interpretations of a users' writing, while the fuzzy sets allow for differing confidence for each interpretation.

Another aspect of my Master's work, which I wrote my thesis on, deals with issues related to recognition accuracy and sketch corpus creation. I analysed the requirements and practicalities of corpus creation, and offered a standard methodology to follow when creating ground-truthed corpora so that they may be maximally useful for training and evaluating recognition systems.

My doctoral research expands on the themes touched on in my Master's work. I am currently working on the following problems:


Refereed publications

Unrefereed publications

Other talks

Posters presented at local meetings

Last modified in November, 2013.