2012-present Ph.D. candidate in Technology and Social Behavior
Toronto, Ontario, Canada,
2007-2010 Master of Journalism
Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
1998-2002 B.Sc. in Physics, with a concentration in Science Writing, Minor in Creative Writing
Awards and Honors
Cognitive Science Graduate Fellowship, 2014-2015
CIHR Health Research Communications Award, 2008-2009
Ryerson Graduate Award, 2007-2008
Todd Anderson Experimental Studies Group Teaching Award, 2002
Peter and Sharon Fiekowsky ESG Community Award, 2001
Online public discourse as peer production of public goods.
Leveraging technology to enable more productive public discourse.
Improving the flow and expression of information in the public sphere.
Developing experimental prototypes to streamline the journalistic process and
Refereed Publications and Conference Presentations
Gomez-Zara, D., M. L. Boon, and L. Birnbaum“Who is the Hero, the Villain, and the Victim? Detection of Roles in News Articles using Natural Language Techniques”IUI 2018(forthcoming).
Boon, M. L.“It's all news to me: The remix.”Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences(2018).
Boon, M. L.“Augmenting Media Literacy with Automatic Characterization of News along Pragmatic Dimensions”Companion of the 2017 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work(2017). Doctoral Colloquium.
Birnbaum, L., M. L. Boon, S. Bradley, and J. Wilson.“Putting news in context, automatically.”Computation+Journalism Symposium 2015(October 2-3, 2015). Paper, non-archival.
Birnbaum, L., M. L. Boon, S. Bradley, and J. Wilson.“The News Context Project.”IUI Companion 2015: 5-8.
Boon, M. L. and L. Birnbaum.“Automatic detection of themes used as narrative frames in news articles. [Work in Progress].”Computation+Journalism Symposium 2014(October 24-25, 2014). Demo, non-archival.
Boon, M. L.“Information Density, Heaps’ Law, and Perception of Factiness in News.”Proceedings of the ACL 2014 Workshop on Language Technologies and Computational Social Science(2014): 33–37.
Unrefereed Presentations, Posters, and Panels
Birnbaum, L., M. L. Boon, S. Bradley, and J. Wilson.“A Preview of the News Context Project.”2015 International Conference on Collaboration Technologies and Systems.
Boon, M. L.“The Essence of Online Science Journalism.”Canadian Science Writers' Association’s Annual Conference.(June 5-8, 2010).
Teaching Assistant: An Intro to Computer Science for Everyone, Fall 2014 Responsible for several lectures, one out-of-class tutorial, office hours, formalized design of assignments, development of grading rubrics, and grading.
Teaching Assistant: Introduction to Semantic Information Processing, Winter 2014, 2015 Responsible for several lectures, one out-of-class tutorial, office hours, formalized design of assignments, development of grading rubrics, and grading.
High School Teacher: Hebrew Academy of San Francisco, January-November 2004 Taught algebra, physics, and chemistry. Responsible for curriculum design, lesson plans, test and homework design, and grading.
Undergraduate Instructor and Mentor: Experimental Study Group, MIT, 1999-2002 Teaching assistant and later instructor for freshman physics classes. Designed and co-taught a creative writing seminar. Provided tutoring at weekly study sessions. Mentored first and second year students.
Online Editor, Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, July 2009-June 2012.
Worked as part of an international collaboration to produce a weekly online publication about scientific computing. Duties included content curation, editing, writing, reporting, and promoting the publication. Served as editorial project lead for a website redesign and migration to a Drupal-based system. Beginning in July 2011, also serving as head of communications for the Open Science Grid. Responsible for both internal and external communications.
Freelance Writer and Editor, June 2002-July 2009.
Research, writing, and editing for magazines, websites, blogs, and books, including Discover, Technology Review, Gizmodo, Digital Hub, The Toronto Star, and Xtra.ca.
Editorial Intern, BBC Focus Magazine, April-May 2008
Researching and writing content for the website, magazine, and podcast.
Online Editor, Canadian Office Products Association, 2005-2007.
Researched, wrote, edited, and oversaw editorial direction including story
conception and execution for weekly newsletter.
Editorial Products Intern, WIRED Magazine, July-December 2003.
Filtered slushpile of press releases and freelance pitches. Conceived, pitched, and wrote stories. Found, requested, tested, and reviewed products for the weekly Gadget Lab e-newsletter. Interacted with public relations and marketing professionals on a daily basis.
Editorial Intern, Palo Alto Weekly, March-May 2003.
Wrote obituaries, police log, building permits, and one or more article weekly.
Communications Intern, Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, June-October 2002
Science writing at a wide range of reading levels for a variety of publications about SLAC events and research.
Editorial Intern, Technology Review, February-June 2002
Research, writing, and fact-checking about technology and community events.