IGS2011 Report by Emily Will, AFDE President

Hans-Leo Teulings

IGS Website Manager (2007-2017)
AFDE members Patricia Fisher, Bonnie Schwid and Emily Will attended, participated, networked and awarded the Prize that AFDE gives for the best student research paper. IGS 2011 was held in Cancun, Mexico in mid-June. If you are thinking, “Oh wow, Cancun!” you are exactly right. The venue was the beautiful, exotic and all-inclusive Live Aqua Hotel right on the beach. Despite the tug of the ocean currents and 8 glorious pools, we did attend all of the sessions and soaked up a lot more knowledge than sun.

FULL REPORT: AFDE President’s Report - 13 July2011 http://www.afde.org View attachment AFDE-PresRpt.pdf

As you know, the IGS presentations are not only about handwriting forensics. Member interests also include human-machine interfaces, computer recognition of handwriting, the neurological and developmental basis of human performance and other related research. The range of topics included and the international composition of the IGS membership offer a great opportunity for learning and networking. Special challenges are the need to learn new vocabulary and concepts, and the diverse languages and accents of the participants.

The proceedings of the conference are available at the IGS website http://www.graphonomics.org. Other IGS publications are also available.

AFDE past-president, Bonnie Schwid, presented a Poster Session entitled, “Forensic examination of the writing of a man with multiple personalities.” There was a lot of interest in this poster, and Bonnie made some connections that will help her as she continues to study this topic.


Patti Fisher, Journal Editor, met with IGS members who are on the Editorial Board, and to discuss the plans for the 2012 and beyond issues of the Journal. The Journal of Forensic Document Examination is very proud to be able to bring the work of many IGS researchers to the attention of the forensic document examination community through the Journal.

Emily Will, AFDE President, gave a presentation entitled “Validating Features for Inferring Handwriting Speed from Static Trace.” This presentation built on the research project presented at the 2010 AFDE Symposium and many AFDE members participated as subjects in this project. Some important questions were raised relating to whether the length of pen stops should be removed from “total duration” when determining the length of time taken in writing a word. This will be investigated, and an update to the project will be issued.

IGS 2013 will be held in Tokyo, Japan. If you start thinking now about a research topic, you have time to do the work, make a submission when the Call for Papers is issued in late 2012 [NOTE: Has been issued on www.i-g-s.org] and plan a business trip to visit Japan in 2013.

AFDE Best Student Paper Prize

The 2011 award went to Avni Pepe for his work on the paper, “A Cognitive Look into Simulations of High and Low Complexity Signatures,” coauthored with Douglas K. Rogers and Jodi C. Sita - all from the Handwriting Analysis and Research Laboratory, School of Human Biosciences, La Trobe University. In this paper, the authors tracked and studied eye movements and handwriting dynamics of subjects as they simulated two model signatures of different complexity. Subjects’ eyes fixated more often on the model signatures than on the simulated signatures in both high and low complexity conditions. Furthermore, subjects fixated more often on the model signature and for longer duration when looking at the high complexity model signature than the low complexity model signature. For the simulated signatures, there was no significant difference in the duration of eye fixations.

An interesting result of this research is the suggestion to consider additional factors in the analysis of complexity of handwriting.

This is one of the first papers to read after downloading the proceedings from http://graphonomics.org.

(Excerpts, full report with permission from the AFDE Board via email from Emily Will on 7/26/2011)
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