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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Keywords in the mist: Automated keyword extraction for very large documents and back of the book indexing.
This research addresses the problem of automatic keyphrase extraction from large documents and back of the book indexing. The potential benefits of automating this process are far reaching, from improving information retrieval in digital libraries, to saving countless man-hours by helping professional indexers creating back of the book indexes. The dissertation introduces a new methodology to evaluate automated systems, which allows for a detailed, comparative analysis of several techniques for keyphrase extraction. We introduce and evaluate both supervised and unsupervised techniques, designed to balance the resource requirements of an automated system and the best achievable performance. Additionally, a number of novel features are proposed, including a statistical informativeness measure based on chi statistics; an encyclopedic feature that taps into the vast knowledge base of Wikipedia to establish the likelihood of a phrase referring to an informative concept; and a linguistic feature based on sophisticated semantic analysis of the text using current theories of discourse comprehension. The resulting keyphrase extraction system is shown to outperform the current state of the art in supervised keyphrase extraction by a large margin. Moreover, a fully automated back of the book indexing system based on the keyphrase extraction system was shown to lead to back of the book indexes closely resembling those created by human experts. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc6118/
The Value of Everything: Ranking and Association with Encyclopedic Knowledge
This dissertation describes WikiRank, an unsupervised method of assigning relative values to elements of a broad coverage encyclopedic information source in order to identify those entries that may be relevant to a given piece of text. The valuation given to an entry is based not on textual similarity but instead on the links that associate entries, and an estimation of the expected frequency of visitation that would be given to each entry based on those associations in context. This estimation of relative frequency of visitation is embodied in modifications to the random walk interpretation of the PageRank algorithm. WikiRank is an effective algorithm to support natural language processing applications. It is shown to exceed the performance of previous machine learning algorithms for the task of automatic topic identification, providing results comparable to that of human annotators. Second, WikiRank is found useful for the task of recognizing text-based paraphrases on a semantic level, by comparing the distribution of attention generated by two pieces of text using the encyclopedic resource as a common reference. Finally, WikiRank is shown to have the ability to use its base of encyclopedic knowledge to recognize terms from different ontologies as describing the same thing, and thus allowing for the automatic generation of mapping links between ontologies. The conclusion of this thesis is that the "knowledge access heuristic" is valuable and that a ranking process based on a large encyclopedic resource can form the basis for an extendable general purpose mechanism capable of identifying relevant concepts by association, which in turn can be effectively utilized for enumeration and comparison at a semantic level. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12108/
XML-Based Agent Scripts and Inference Mechanisms
Natural language understanding has been a persistent challenge to researchers in various computer science fields, in a number of applications ranging from user support systems to entertainment and online teaching. A long term goal of the Artificial Intelligence field is to implement mechanisms that enable computers to emulate human dialogue. The recently developed ALICEbots, virtual agents with underlying AIML scripts, by A.L.I.C.E. foundation, use AIML scripts - a subset of XML - as the underlying pattern database for question answering. Their goal is to enable pattern-based, stimulus-response knowledge content to be served, received and processed over the Web, or offline, in the manner similar to HTML and XML. In this thesis, we describe a system that converts the AIML scripts to Prolog clauses and reuses them as part of a knowledge processor. The inference mechanism developed in this thesis is able to successfully match the input pattern with our clauses database even if words are missing. We also emulate the pattern deduction algorithm of the original logic deduction mechanism. Our rules, compatible with Semantic Web standards, bring structure to the meaningful content of Web pages and support interactive content retrieval using natural language. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4288/
A Framework for Analyzing and Optimizing Regional Bio-Emergency Response Plans
The presence of naturally occurring and man-made public health threats necessitate the design and implementation of mitigation strategies, such that adequate response is provided in a timely manner. Since multiple variables, such as geographic properties, resource constraints, and government mandated time-frames must be accounted for, computational methods provide the necessary tools to develop contingency response plans while respecting underlying data and assumptions. A typical response scenario involves the placement of points of dispensing (PODs) in the affected geographic region to supply vaccines or medications to the general public. Computational tools aid in the analysis of such response plans, as well as in the strategic placement of PODs, such that feasible response scenarios can be developed. Due to the sensitivity of bio-emergency response plans, geographic information, such as POD locations, must be kept confidential. The generation of synthetic geographic regions allows for the development of emergency response plans on non-sensitive data, as well as for the study of the effects of single geographic parameters. Further, synthetic representations of geographic regions allow for results to be published and evaluated by the scientific community. This dissertation presents methodology for the analysis of bio-emergency response plans, methods for plan optimization, as well as methodology for the generation of synthetic geographic regions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33200/
A Framework of Automatic Subject Term Assignment: An Indexing Conception-Based Approach
The purpose of dissertation is to examine whether the understandings of subject indexing processes conducted by human indexers have a positive impact on the effectiveness of automatic subject term assignment through text categorization (TC). More specifically, human indexers' subject indexing approaches or conceptions in conjunction with semantic sources were explored in the context of a typical scientific journal article data set. Based on the premise that subject indexing approaches or conceptions with semantic sources are important for automatic subject term assignment through TC, this study proposed an indexing conception-based framework. For the purpose of this study, three hypotheses were tested: 1) the effectiveness of semantic sources, 2) the effectiveness of an indexing conception-based framework, and 3) the effectiveness of each of three indexing conception-based approaches (the content-oriented, the document-oriented, and the domain-oriented approaches). The experiments were conducted using a support vector machine implementation in WEKA (Witten, & Frank, 2000). The experiment results pointed out that cited works, source title, and title were as effective as the full text, while keyword was found more effective than the full text. In addition, the findings showed that an indexing conception-based framework was more effective than the full text. Especially, the content-oriented and the document-oriented indexing approaches were found more effective than the full text. Among three indexing conception-based approaches, the content-oriented approach and the document-oriented approach were more effective than the domain-oriented approach. In other words, in the context of a typical scientific journal article data set, the objective contents and authors' intentions were more focused that the possible users' needs. The research findings of this study support that incorporation of human indexers' indexing approaches or conception in conjunction with semantic sources has a positive impact on the effectiveness of automatic subject term assignment. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5473/
Graph-Based Keyphrase Extraction Using Wikipedia
Keyphrases describe a document in a coherent and simple way, giving the prospective reader a way to quickly determine whether the document satisfies their information needs. The pervasion of huge amount of information on Web, with only a small amount of documents have keyphrases extracted, there is a definite need to discover automatic keyphrase extraction systems. Typically, a document written by human develops around one or more general concepts or sub-concepts. These concepts or sub-concepts should be structured and semantically related with each other, so that they can form the meaningful representation of a document. Considering the fact, the phrases or concepts in a document are related to each other, a new approach for keyphrase extraction is introduced that exploits the semantic relations in the document. For measuring the semantic relations between concepts or sub-concepts in the document, I present a comprehensive study aimed at using collaboratively constructed semantic resources like Wikipedia and its link structure. In particular, I introduce a graph-based keyphrase extraction system that exploits the semantic relations in the document and features such as term frequency. I evaluated the proposed system using novel measures and the results obtained compare favorably with previously published results on established benchmarks. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc67939/
Human concept cognition and semantic relations in the unified medical language system: A coherence analysis.
There is almost a universal agreement among scholars in information retrieval (IR) research that knowledge representation needs improvement. As core component of an IR system, improvement of the knowledge representation system has so far involved manipulation of this component based on principles such as vector space, probabilistic approach, inference network, and language modeling, yet the required improvement is still far from fruition. One promising approach that is highly touted to offer a potential solution exists in the cognitive paradigm, where knowledge representation practice should involve, or start from, modeling the human conceptual system. This study based on two related cognitive theories: the theory-based approach to concept representation and the psychological theory of semantic relations, ventured to explore the connection between the human conceptual model and the knowledge representation model (represented by samples of concepts and relations from the unified medical language system, UMLS). Guided by these cognitive theories and based on related and appropriate data-analytic tools, such as nonmetric multidimensional scaling, hierarchical clustering, and content analysis, this study aimed to conduct an exploratory investigation to answer four related questions. Divided into two groups, a total of 89 research participants took part in two sets of cognitive tasks. The first group (49 participants) sorted 60 food names into categories followed by simultaneous description of the derived categories to explain the rationale for category judgment. The second group (40 participants) performed sorting 47 semantic relations (the nonhierarchical associative types) into 5 categories known a priori. Three datasets resulted as a result of the cognitive tasks: food-sorting data, relation-sorting data, and free and unstructured text of category descriptions. Using the data analytic tools mentioned, data analysis was carried out and important results and findings were obtained that offer plausible explanations to the 4 research questions. Major results include the following: (a) through discriminant analysis category members were predicted consistently in 70% of the time; (b) the categorization bases are largely simplified rules, naïve explanations, and feature-based; (c) individuals theoretical explanation remains valid and stays stable across category members; (d) the human conceptual model can be fairly reconstructed in a low-dimensional space where 93% of the variance in the dimensional space is accounted for by the subjects performance; (e) participants consistently classify 29 of the 47 semantic relations; and, (f) individuals perform better in the functional and spatial dimensions of the semantic relations classification task and perform poorly in the conceptual dimension. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4008/
A Minimally Supervised Word Sense Disambiguation Algorithm Using Syntactic Dependencies and Semantic Generalizations
Natural language is inherently ambiguous. For example, the word "bank" can mean a financial institution or a river shore. Finding the correct meaning of a word in a particular context is a task known as word sense disambiguation (WSD), which is essential for many natural language processing applications such as machine translation, information retrieval, and others. While most current WSD methods try to disambiguate a small number of words for which enough annotated examples are available, the method proposed in this thesis attempts to address all words in unrestricted text. The method is based on constraints imposed by syntactic dependencies and concept generalizations drawn from an external dictionary. The method was tested on standard benchmarks as used during the SENSEVAL-2 and SENSEVAL-3 WSD international evaluation exercises, and was found to be competitive. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4969/
An exploration of the diffusion of a new technology from communities of practice perspective: Web services technologies in digital libraries.
This study explored and described decision factors related to technology adoption. The research used diffusion of innovations and communities of practice (CoP) theoretical frameworks and a case study of Web services technology in the digital library (DL) environment to develop an understanding of the decision-making process. A qualitative case study approach was used to investigate the research problems and data were collected through semi-structured interviews, documentary evidence (e.g., meeting minutes), and a comprehensive member check. The research conducted face-to-face and phone interviews with seven respondents with different job titles (administraive vs. technical) from five different DL programs selected based on distinctive characteristics such as size of the DL program. Findings of the research suggested that the decision-making process is a complex process in which a number of factors are considered when making technology adoption decisions. These factors are categorized as organizational, individual, and technology specific factors. Further, data showed that DL CoPs played an important role in enabling staff members of a DL program to access up-to-date and experienced-based knowledge, provided a distributed problem solving and learning environment, facilitating informal communication and collaborative activities, and informing the decision-making process. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3930/
Factors Affecting Police Officers' Acceptance of GIS Technologies: A study of the Turkish National Police
The situations and problems that police officers face are more complex in today’s society, due in part to the increase of technology and growing complexity of globalization. Accordingly, to solve these problems and deal with the complexities, law enforcement organizations develop and apply new techniques and methods such as geographic information systems (GIS). However, the successful implementation of a new technology does not just depend on providing perfect technical support, but effective and active interaction between the user and system. For this reason, research examining user acceptance of GIS technologies provides a valuable source to investors and designers to predict whether the results of the technology will meet user expectations; understanding the factors that influence user acceptance is vitally important to make the system more usable and preferable. This study attempts to explain Turkish National Police officers’ beliefs about and behaviors toward GIS applications by using the technology acceptance models. It contributes to the technology acceptance literature by testing the proposed model in a rarely studied organization: law enforcement. Regarding methodology, I distributed a survey questionnaire in Turkey; the unit of analysis was the law enforcement officers in the Turkish National Police (TNP). In order to analyze the data derived from the survey instrument, structural equation modeling (SEM), a multivariate statistical technique, was used to analyze the quantitative data by utilizing the AMOS 16.0 software. The analysis resulted in good model fit, and 6 of the 7 hypotheses were supported. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84182/
Graph-based Centrality Algorithms for Unsupervised Word Sense Disambiguation
This thesis introduces an innovative methodology of combining some traditional dictionary based approaches to word sense disambiguation (semantic similarity measures and overlap of word glosses, both based on WordNet) with some graph-based centrality methods, namely the degree of the vertices, Pagerank, closeness, and betweenness. The approach is completely unsupervised, and is based on creating graphs for the words to be disambiguated. We experiment with several possible combinations of the semantic similarity measures as the first stage in our experiments. The next stage attempts to score individual vertices in the graphs previously created based on several graph connectivity measures. During the final stage, several voting schemes are applied on the results obtained from the different centrality algorithms. The most important contributions of this work are not only that it is a novel approach and it works well, but also that it has great potential in overcoming the new-knowledge-acquisition bottleneck which has apparently brought research in supervised WSD as an explicit application to a plateau. The type of research reported in this thesis, which does not require manually annotated data, holds promise of a lot of new and interesting things, and our work is one of the first steps, despite being a small one, in this direction. The complete system is built and tested on standard benchmarks, and is comparable with work done on graph-based word sense disambiguation as well as lexical chains. The evaluation indicates that the right combination of the above mentioned metrics can be used to develop an unsupervised disambiguation engine as powerful as the state-of-the-art in WSD. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9736/
Knowledge management in times of change: Tacit and explicit knowledge transfers.
This study proposed a look at the importance and challenges of knowledge management in times of great change. In order to understand the information phenomena of interest, impacts on knowledge workers and knowledge documents in times of great organizational change, the study is positioned in a major consolidation of state agencies in Texas. It pays special attention to how the changes were perceived by the knowledge workers by interviewing those that were impacted by the changes resulting from the reorganization. The overall goal is to assess knowledge management in times of great organizational change by analyzing the impact of consolidation on knowledge management in Texas's Health and Human Services agencies. The overarching research question is what happened to the knowledge management structure during this time of great change? The first research question was what was the knowledge worker environment during the time of change? The second research question was what was the knowledge management environment of the agencies during the time of change? The last research question was did consolidation of the HHS agencies diminish the ability to transition from tacit to explicit knowledge? Additionally, the study investigates how the bill that mandated the consolidation was covered in the local media as well as the actual budget and employee loss impact of the consolidation in order to better understand the impacts on knowledge workers and knowledge documents as a result of major organizational restructuring. The findings have both theoretical and practical implications for information science, knowledge management and project management. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4963/
Knowledge-sharing Practices Among Turkish Peacekeeping Officers
The Turkish National Police (TNP) peacekeeping officers experience poor knowledge-sharing practices before, during, and after their tours of duty at the United Nations (UN) field missions, thus causing knowledge loss. The study aims to reveal the current knowledge-sharing practices of the TNP peacekeeping officers and proposes a knowledge-sharing system to share knowledge effectively. It also examines how applicable the knowledge management models are for their knowledge-sharing practices. In order to gain a better understanding about the knowledge-sharing practices of TNP officers, the researcher used a qualitative research method in this study. The researcher used semi-structured interviews in data collection. The participants were selected based on the non-probability and purposive sampling method. Content analysis and constant comparison was performed in the data analysis process. The most important knowledge sources of the peacekeeping officers are their colleagues, the Internet, and email groups. The peacekeepers recommend writing reports, organizing training programs, conducting exit interviews, adopting best practices, and creating a knowledge depository. The study uncovers that organizational culture, hierarchy, and physical proximity are significant factors that have a vital impact on knowledge sharing. Knowledge Conversion Model is substantially applicable for the knowledge-sharing practices of the TNP peacekeeping officer. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149588/
Respect for human rights and the rise of democratic policing in Turkey: Adoption and diffusion of the European Union acquis in the Turkish National Police.
This study is an exploration of the European Union acquis adoption in the Turkish National Police. The research employed the Diffusion of Innovations, Democratic Policing, and historical background check theoretical frameworks to study the decision-making of the TNP regarding reforms after 2003 as a qualitative case study which triangulated the methodology with less-dominant survey and several other analyzing methods. The data were collected from several sources including semi-structured interviews, archival records, documentary evidences and the European Commission Regular Reports on Turkey. The research interest was about the decision mechanisms of the TNP towards reforms and the rise of democratic policing in Turkey. During the study, internationally recognized human rights standards were given attention. As the data suggested, the police forces are shaped according to their ruling governments and societies. It is impossible to find a totally democratic police in a violent society and a totally violent police in a democratic society. The study findings suggested that reforming police agencies should not be a significant problem for determined governments. Human rights violations should not be directly related with the police in any country. The data suggested that democratic policing applications find common application when the democracy gets powerful and police brutality increases when authoritarian governments stays in power. Democratic policing on the other hand is an excellent tool to improve notion of democracy and to provide legitimacy to governments. However, democratic policing is not a tool to bring the democracy, but a support mechanism for it. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3945/
Web Content Authorship: Academic Librarians in Web Content Management
An increasing number of libraries and information centers are using content management (CM) applications to develop, redesign, and maintain their websites. the purpose of this research was to provide understanding of attitudes of academic librarians about how their utilization of CM technology influences the information services they provide at the academic library’s website and to examine their perceptions of how using CM affects the creation of the web content. This research applied a qualitative research design (electronic survey and in-depth semi-structured interviews of academic subject librarians) with elements of a quantitative approach. the study discussed the concept of web authorship and supplied fundamentals for future theoretical research about authorship in web content development at academic libraries. the study provided an overview of CM at academic libraries and explored characteristics of dynamic content and semantic web applications at their websites. It discussed librarians’ opinions about issues of migration to the new content management system (CMS), factors affecting its efficient employment, and roles of librarians in web content management. Results of this study will serve to future research on management behavior of academic librarians authoring web content with the help of CM. the findings about the difficulties observed in the use of CMS and solutions, influence of training and learning, importance of cooperation and communication, adjustment of the CMS to the users’ needs, qualifications and skills needed in application of CM, distribution of responsibilities in the use of CMS, features of the CMS, and requirements to its functionality will have implications for academic and other libraries applying CM. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115175/
Students' criteria for course selection: Towards a metadata standard for distributed higher education
By 2007, one half of higher education students are expected to enroll in distributed learning courses. Higher education institutions need to attract students searching the Internet for courses and need to provide students with enough information to select courses. Internet resource discovery tools are readily available, however, users have difficulty selecting relevant resources. In part this is due to the lack of a standard for representation of Internet resources. An emerging solution is metadata. In the educational domain, the IEEE Learning Technology Standards Committee (LTSC) has specified a Learning Object Metadata (LOM) standard. This exploratory study (a) determined criteria students think are important for selecting higher education courses, (b) discovered relationships between these criteria and students' demographic characteristics, educational status, and Internet experience, and (c) evaluated these criteria vis-à-vis the IEEE LTSC LOM standard. Web-based questionnaires (N=209) measured (a) the criteria students think are important in the selection of higher education courses and (b) three factors that might influence students' selections. Respondents were principally female (66%), employed full time (57%), and located in the U.S. (89%). The chi square goodness-of-fit test determined 40 criteria students think are important and exploratory factor analysis determined five common factors among the top 21 criteria, three evaluative factors and two descriptive. Results indicated evaluation criteria are very important in course selection. Spearman correlation coefficients and chi-square tests of independence determined the relationships between the importance of selection criteria and demographic characteristics, educational status, and Internet experience. Four profiles emerged representing groups of students with unique concerns. Side by side analysis determined if the IEEE LTSC LOM standard included the criteria of importance to students. The IEEE LOM by itself is not enough to meet students course selection needs. Recommendations include development of a metadata standard for course evaluation and accommodation of group differences in information retrieval systems. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2619/
A study of on-line use and perceived effectiveness of compliance-gaining in health-related banner advertisements for senior citizens.
This research investigated banner ads on the World Wide Web, specifically the types of messages used in those ads and the effectiveness of the ads as seen by their intended audience. The focus was on health-related banner advertisements targeting senior citizens. The study first sought to determine the frequency of appearance of those ads when classified into categories of compliance-gaining tactics provided by research scholars. Second, the study explored the relative perceived effectiveness among those categories. Two graduate students from a Central Texas university sorted text messages into predetermined compliance-gaining categories. Chi square tests looked for significant differences in the frequencies of banner ads in each category. Forty-five senior citizens from the Central Texas area completed surveys regarding the perceived effectiveness of a randomly ordered, randomly selected set of categorized banner ads. A repeated measures test attempted to determine whether some compliance-gaining strategies used in health-related banner ads were perceived as more effective than others. The hypothesis stated that there would be differences in frequencies of compliance-gaining strategies used among the compliance-gaining categories in health-related banner ads for senior citizens. The hypothesis was supported. The research question asked if some categories of compliance-gaining strategies used in health-related banner ads were perceived as more effective than others by senior citizens. There was no evidence that senior citizens perceived any compliance-gaining category as being more effective than any other. However, post hoc analyses revealed trends in the types of compliance-gaining messages senior citizens perceived as more effective. These trends provide a basis for directional predictions in future studies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5800/
User Acceptance of North Central Texas Fusion Center System by Law Enforcement Officers
The September 11 terrorist attacks pointed out the lack of information sharing between law enforcement agencies as a potential threat to sound law enforcement in the United States. Therefore, many law enforcement agencies as well as the federal government have been initiating information sharing systems among law enforcement agencies to eradicate the information sharing problem. One of the systems established by Homeland Security is the North Central Texas Fusion Center (NCTFC). This study evaluates the NCTFC by utilizing user acceptance methodology. The unified theory of acceptance and the use of technology is used as a theoretical framework for this study. Within the study, user acceptance literature is examined and various models and theories are discussed. Furthermore, a brief information regarding the intelligence work done by law enforcement agencies are explained. In addition to the NCTFC, several major law enforcement information systems are introduced. The data for this study comes from the users of the NCTFC across the north central Texas region. Surveys and interviews are used to triangulate data. It is found in this study that performance expectancy and effort expectancy are important indicators of system use. Furthermore, outreach and needs assessment are important factors in establishing systems. The results of the study offer valuable input for NCTFC administrators, law enforcement officials, and future researchers. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33191/
Terrorism as a social information entity: A model for early intervention.
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This dissertation studies different social aspects of terrorists and terrorist organizations in an effort to better deal with terrorism, especially in the long run. The researcher, who also worked as a Police Captain at Turkish National Police Anti-Terrorism Department, seeks solutions to today's global problem by studying both literature and a Delphi examination of a survey of 1070 imprisoned terrorists. The research questions include questions such as "What are the reasons behind terrorism?", "Why does terrorism occur?", "What ideologies provide the framework for terrorist violence?, "Why do some individuals become terrorists and others do not?" and "Under what conditions will terrorists end their violence?" The results of the study presents the complexity of the terrorism problem as a social experience and impossibility of a single solution or remedy for the global problem of terrorism. The researcher through his examination of the findings of the data, presented that terrorism is a social phenomenon with criminal consequences that needs to be dealt by means of two dimensional approaches. The first is the social dimension of terrorism and the second is the criminal dimension of terrorism. Based on this, the researcher constructed a conceptual model which addresses both of these dimensions under the titles of long-term solutions and short-term solutions. The long-term solutions deal with the social aspects of terrorism under the title of Proactive Approach to Terrorism and the short-term solutions deal with the criminal aspects of terrorism under the title of The Immediate Fight against Terrorism. The researcher constructed this model because there seems to be a tendency of not asking the question of "Why does terrorism occur?" Instead, the focus is usually on dealing with the consequences of terrorism and future terrorist threats. While it is essential that the governments need to provide the finest security measures for their societies, at the same time they need to address the reasons behind terrorism. This research, from stated perspective, offered a conceptual model to address both aspects of terrorism for a more complete fight against today's most painful problem. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4800/
Testing a model of the relationships among organizational performance, IT-business alignment and IT governance.
Information Technology (IT) is often viewed as a resource that is capable of enhancing organizational performance. However, it is difficult for organizations to measure the actual contribution of IT investments. Despite an abundance of literature, there is an insufficiency of generally applicable frameworks and instruments to help organizations definitively assess the relationship among organizational performance, IT-business alignment, and IT governance. Previous studies have emphasized IT-business alignment as an important enabler of organizational effectiveness; however, the direct and indirect effects of IT governance have not been incorporated into these studies. The purpose of this study was (1) to propose a new model that defines the relationships among IT governance, IT-business alignment, and organizational performance, (2) to develop and validate measures for the IT governance and IT-business alignment constructs, and (3) to test this IT Governance-Alignment-Performance or "IT GAP" model. This study made some novel contributions to the understanding of the factors affecting organizational performance. The quest for IT-business alignment in the MIS literature has been based on the presumption that IT contributes directly to organizational performance. However, this study found that although IT-business alignment does contribute to organizational performance, IT governance is an important antecedent of both IT-business alignment and organizational performance. The major contributions of this work are the development and validation of uni-dimensional scales for both IT-business alignment and IT governance, and the confirmation of the validity of the IT GAP model to explain the hypothesized relationships among the three constructs. Future studies may improve upon this research by using different organizations settings, industries, and stakeholders. This study indicates that in order for organizations to improve the value, contribution, and alignment of IT investments they first need to improve the ways in which they govern their IT activities and the processes and mechanisms by which IT decisions are made. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4393/
Widening the lens: An interdisciplinary approach to examining the effect of exposure therapy on public speaking state anxiety.
This study used an interdisciplinary approach to examine an intervention for reducing public speaking state anxiety. A quasi-experiment was conducted to determine if a multiple-exposure treatment technique (TRIPLESPEAK) would help to attenuate public speaking anxiety. The treatment group reported experiencing significantly less state anxiety during their post-test presentation than did the control group. This lead to the conclusion that exposure therapy can be used to help students enrolled in basic communication classes begin to overcome their fear of speaking in front of an audience. Follow-up analysis of the treatment group's reported anxiety levels during all five presentations (pre-test, Treatment Presentation 1, Treatment Presentation 2, Treatment Presentation 3, and post-test) revealed an increase in anxiety from the last treatment presentation to the post-test presentation. In order to explore this issue, Shannon's entropy was utilized to calculate the amount of information in each speaking environment. Anderson's functional ontology construction approach served as a model to explain the role of the environment in shaping speakers' current and future behaviors and reports of anxiety. The exploratory analysis revealed a functional relationship between information and anxiety. In addition, a qualitative study was conducted to determine which environmental stimuli speakers perceived contributed to their anxiety levels. Students reported experiencing anxiety based on four categories, which included speaker concerns, audience characteristics, contextual factors and assignment criteria. Students' reports of anxiety were dependent upon their previous speaking experiences, and students suggested differences existed between the traditional presentations and the treatment presentations. Pedagogical and theoretical implications are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3975/
Usability of a Keyphrase Browsing Tool Based on a Semantic Cloud Model
The goal of this research was to facilitate the scrutiny and utilization of Web search engine retrieval results. I used a graphical keyphrase browsing interface to visualize the conceptual information space of the results, presenting document characteristics that make document relevance determinations easier. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5320/
A Thousand Miles Out of My Mind
The dissertation is a collection of creative and non-fiction work, including a novel with critical introduction, four short stories, and three essays. The novel is a modern day Grail quest that takes place primarily in the Southwestern United States. The short stories are mostly set in the southwest as well, and take for their topic what Paul Fussel refers to as "hope abridged." The essays are non-fiction. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2552/
Thresholds in avian communities at multiple scales: Relationships between birds, forests, habitats, and landscapes in the Ray Roberts greenbelt, Denton
Environmental management agencies make efforts to reduce pollution loading in streams and rivers by promoting vegetated buffer zones between human activity and water. Most of these efforts do not mesh water quality-based buffer zone width requirements with conservation and wildlife values, specifically, the use of these riparian forest corridors for wildlife dispersal between habitats in highly fragmented landscapes. Forest interior birds are of the most concern to management in riparian forests due to their population declines across much of their breeding range. This dissertation investigates the role that landscape-level and habitat-level factors play on the presence of breeding birds in riparian forests, particularly the landscape and habitat factors that are influenced by human-caused fragmentation. This study describes research at the Ray Roberts Greenbelt, Denton, Texas, that explores the relationships between the landscape and forest habitats of the Greenbelt with its breeding bird community. The major findings of this study are that bird communities in the corridor forests are associated with a greater array of factors than are bird communities in patches, suggesting that the birds of patch forests are somewhat insulated from landscape-scale effects. Also, habitat values can be maintained in corridors, but there does not seem to be a significant relationship between the bird communities and the habitat. Forest factors are the primary influences (as inferred from the number of associations and the relative strength of these associations) on the bird communities of the Ray Roberts Greenbelt. Thresholds of richness or abundance in the amount of forest as compared with the forest interior bird community suggest that patches are better than corridors to support this community, and that the more interior forest available, the better for forest interior birds. The suggested minimum amount of forest derived from these thresholds is 35% of the amount of forest within 1 kilometer of any given part of the Greenbelt. Thresholds in forest width for avian communities suggest a minimum width of 200 m for any corridor. Thresholds in distance from interior forest suggest that the forest interior bird community can be best supported by shorter corridors that connect larger patches, with a suggested maximum corridor length of 125 m. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2735/
Happiness Is a By-Product of Function: William Burroughs and the American Pragmatist Tradition
This dissertation examines the techniques and themes of William Burroughs by placing him in the American Pragmatist tradition. Chapter One presents a pragmatic critical approach to literature based on Richard Rorty and John Dewey, focusing on the primacy of narration over argumentation, redescription and dialectic, the importance of texts as experiences, the end-products of textual experiences, and the role of critic as guide to experience rather than judge. Chapter Two uses this pragmatic critical lens to focus on the writing techniques of William Burroughs as a part of the American Pragmatist tradition, with most of the focus on his controversial cut-up technique. Burroughs is a writer who upsets many of the traditional expectations of the literary writing community, just as Rorty challenges the conventions of the philosophical discourse community. Chapter Three places Burroughs within a liberal democratic tradition with respect to Rorty and John Stuart Mill. Burroughs is a champion of individual liberty; this chapter shows how Burroughs' works are meant to edify readers about the social, political, biological, and technological systems which work to control individuals and limit their liberties and understandings. The chapter also shows how Burroughs' works help liberate readers from all control systems, and examines the alternative societies he envisions which work to uphold, rather than subvert, the freedom of human beings. Chapter Four concludes by suggesting some of the implications of Burroughs' work in literature, society, and politics, and by showing the value and importance of Pragmatism to the study of American literature and culture. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2719/
Effectiveness of the Undergraduate Curriculum in Teacher Education in Developing Desired Teaching Competencies
The purpose of this study is to identify and evaluate the competencies that a person who desires to teach should possess in order to be an effective classroom teacher. Identification of these competencies will be made from evidence obtained through a consensus of student's opinions, these opinions to be solicited from students currently enrolled in courses required for a major in elementary education, and from the consensus of faculty members who ware currently teaching these courses. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc164115/
"Is She Going to Die or Survive with Her Baby?": The Aftermath of Illegitimate Pregnancies in the Twentieth Century American Novels
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This dissertation is mainly based on the reading of three American novels to explore how female characters deal with their illegitimate pregnancies and how their solutions re-shape their futures and affect their inner growth. Chapter 1 discusses Dorinda Oakley's premarital pregnancy in Ellen Glasgow's Barren Ground and draws the circle of limits from Barbara Welter's "four cardinal virtues" (purity, submissiveness, domesticity, and piety) which connect to the analogous female roles (daughter, sister, wife, and mother). Dorinda's childless survival reconstructs a typical household from her domination and absence of maternity. Chapter 2 examines Ántonia Shimerda's struggles and endurance in My Ántonia by Willa Cather before and after Ántonia gives birth to a premarital daughter. Ántonia devotes herself to being a caring mother and to looking after a big family although her marriage is also friendship-centered. Chapter 3 adopts a different approach to analyze Charlotte Rittenmeyer's extramarital pregnancy in The Wild Palms by William Faulkner. As opposed to Dorinda and Ántonia who re-enter domesticity to survive, Charlotte runs out on her family and dies of a botched abortion. To help explain the aftermath of illicit pregnancies, I extend or shorten John Duvall's formula of female role mutations: "virgin>sexually active (called whore)>wife" to examine the riddles of female survival and demise. The overall argument suggests that one way or another, nature, society, and family are involved in illegitimately pregnant women's lives, and the more socially compliant a pregnant woman becomes after her transgression, the better chance she can survive with her baby. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5316/
She "Too much of water hast": Drownings and Near-Drownings in Twentieth-Century American Literature by Women
Drowning is a frequent mode of death for female literary characters because of the strong symbolic relationship between female sexuality and water. Drowning has long been a punishment for sexually transgressive women in literature. In the introduction, Chapter 1, I describe the drowning paradigm and analyze drowning scenes in several pre-twentieth century works to establish the tradition which twentieth-century women writers begin to transcend. In Chapter 2, I discuss three of Kate Chopin's works which include drownings, demonstrating her transition from traditional drowning themes in At Fault and “Desiree's Baby” to the drowning in The Awakening, which prefigures the survival of protagonists in later works. I discuss one of these in Chapter 3: Zora Neale Hurston's Their Eyes Were Watching God. Although Janie must rely on her husband to save her from the flood, she survives, though her husband does not. In Chapter 4, I discuss two stories by Eudora Welty, “Moon Lake” and “The Wide Net.” In “Moon Lake,” Easter nearly drowns as a corollary to her adolescent sexual awakening. Although her resuscitation is a brutal simulation of a rape, Easter survives. “The Wide Net” is a comic story that winks at the drowning woman tradition, showing a young bride who pretends to drown in order to recapture the affections of her husband. Chapter 5 analyzes a set of works by Margaret Atwood. Lady Oracle includes another faked drowning, while “The Whirlpool Rapids” and “Walking on Water” feature a protagonist who feels invulnerable after her near-drowning. The Blind Assassin includes substantial drowning imagery. Chapter 6 discusses current trends in near-drowning fiction, focusing on the river rafting adventure stories of Pam Houston. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3059/
A New Literary Realism: Artistic Renderings of Ethnicity, Identity, and Sexuality in the Narratives of Philip Roth
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This dissertation explores Goodbye, Columbus and Five Short Stories (1959), the Ghost Writer (1979), the Counterlife (1986), the Facts (1988), Operation Shylock (1993), Sabbath's Theater (1995),and the Human Stain (2000), arguing that Roth relishes the telling of the story and the search for self within that telling. with attention to narrative technique and its relation to issues surrounding reality and identity, Roth's narratives stress unreliability, causing Roth to create characters searching for a more complex interpretation of self. Chapter I examines Roth’s negotiation of dual identities as Neil Klugman in Goodbye, Columbus feels alienated and displaced from Christianized America. the search for identity and the merging of American Christianity and Judaism remain a focus in Chapter II, which explores the implications of how, in the Ghost Writer, a young Nathan Zuckerman visits his mentor E.I. Lonoff to find him living in what he believes to be a non-Jewish environment—the American wilderness. Chapter II also examines the difficulties of cultural assimilation in "Eli, the Fanatic," in which Eli must shed outward appearances of Judaism to fit into the mostly Protestant community of Woodenton. Relative to the negotiation of multiple identities, Chapter III considers Sabbath’s attempt, in Sabbath’s Theater, to reconcile his spiritual and physical self when seeking to avoid his inevitable death. Exploring a further dimension of the search for self, Chapter IV traces the legacy of stereotyped notions of identity, considering ways in which Roth subverts stereotypes in the Human Stain. the search for identity and its particular truths remains a focus of Chapter V, which explores Roth's creation of an unstable reality through the Counterlife, the Facts, Operation Shylock, and the Human Stain, suggesting that the literary imagination matters more than truth in fiction. in its attention to Roth's focus on identity, race, and narrative technique, this dissertation contributes to the evolution of criticism addressing the social significance of the major works of Philip Roth. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115092/
An Original Poem: As Tho Until Now Such a Music Impossible, with a Comparison of Browning's "Abt Vogler" and Allen Ginsberg's "Transcription of Organ Music"
This thesis presents an original long poem, followed by a short study of two other poems: "Abt Vogler" by Robert Browning, and "Transcription of Organ Music" by Allen Ginsberg. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131581/
Toward a philosophy of water: Politics of the pollution and damming along the Ganges River.
This thesis sets out to develop a beginning of a philosophy of water by considering philosophical implications of ecological crises currently happening along the waters of the Ganges River. In my first chapter, I give a historical account of a philosophy of water. In my second chapter, I describe various natural and cultural representations of the Ganges, accounting for physical features of the river, Hindu myths and rituals involving the river, and ecological crises characterized by the pollution and damming of the river. In my third and final chapter, I look into the philosophical implications of these crises in terms of the works of the contemporary philosopher Bruno Latour. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3643/
Toward an Ecofeminist Environmental Jurisprudence: Nature, Law, and Gender
This thesis develops a legal theory reflecting the insights of feminism and environmental philosophy. I argue that human beings are not ontologically separate, but embedded in webs of relationality with natural others. My primary purposes are to 1) delineate ways in which institutions of modernity (such as law and science) have precipitated ecosocial crisis through the attempt to dialectically enforce mastery and control over nature and women; and 2) explore alternate political forms and ontologies which challenge the classical liberalist view of the (human) individual as a radically isolated, discrete, autonomous being. My overarching theme is that law functions as a narrative that can both hinder and enhance the promotion of ecological ideas, and how ecofeminism can contribute to transformative projects of environmental philosophy and feminist law. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2219/
Molecular systematics of Baird's pocket gopher (Geomys breviceps)
Baird's pocket gopher (Geomys breviceps) is found in eastern Texas, eastern Oklahoma, central and western Arkansas, and western Louisiana. The cytochrome-b gene was sequenced and analyzed for 16 pocket gophers from throughout the range of the species. Similar phylogenetic trees were obtained using maximum-parsimony, maximum-likelihood, neighbor-joining, and Bayesian analyses. Two major clades were formed with northern individuals belonging to clade I and southern individuals belonging to clade II. G. b. sagittalis was paraphyletic in relation to G. b. breviceps in all analyses. Based on inconsistencies between the taxonomic classification and systematic relationships within Baird's pocket gopher, a taxonomic restructuring appears warranted. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30438/
Wilderness Women: Embodiment in Nature
Virginia Woolf makes clear in her book A Room of One's Own that "[A] woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write…." This statement extends to all endeavors by women, including sport. The gap between men and women's sports is not bridged by monetary compensation. The domination of women exists in conceptual ideals and how those are expressed through our roles in this world. I use Val Plumwood's ecological feminist theory to expose the blatant masculinity imposed upon sport. I shall argue that sport is an arena of constant struggle over basic social conceptions of men and women. My endeavor is to implore traditionally masculine territory, and show sport as the domain of no single gender, but a field of simplicity and cooperation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2649/
The Missionary Work of Samuel A. Worcester Among the Cheroke, 1825-1840
Worcester made two major contributions to the Cherokee before his death at Park Hill in 1859. First was his faith and the propagation of Christianity among them. However, this was done by other missionaries both before and after him. But his truly unique accomplishment was his work with the Cherokee language. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131307/
War and Social Revolution in Afro-American Poetry Since 1960
The problem with which this study is concerned is that of determining the role of war and social revolution in Afro-American poetry of the 1960's. For this study, four major poets were selected: Gwendolyn Brooks, Nikki Giovanni, LeRoi Jones, and Don L. Lee. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc131647/
Accessing Information on the World Wide Web: Predicting Usage Based on Involvement
Advice for Web designers often includes an admonition to use short, scannable, bullet-pointed text, reflecting the common belief that browsing the Web most often involves scanning rather than reading. Literature from several disciplines focuses on the myriad combinations of factors related to online reading but studies of the users' interests and motivations appear to offer a more promising avenue for understanding how users utilize information on Web pages. This study utilized the modified Personal Involvement Inventory (PII), a ten-item instrument used primarily in the marketing and advertising fields, to measure interest and motivation toward a topic presented on the Web. Two sites were constructed from Reader's Digest Association, Inc. online articles and a program written to track students' use of the site. Behavior was measured by the initial choice of short versus longer versions of the main page, the number of pages visited and the amount of time spent on the site. Data were gathered from students at a small, private university in the southwest part of the United States to answer six hypotheses which posited that subjects with higher involvement in a topic presented on the Web and a more positive attitude toward the Web would tend to select the longer text version, visit more pages, and spend more time on the site. While attitude toward the Web did not correlate significantly with any of the behavioral factors, the level of involvement was associated with the use of the sites in two of three hypotheses, but only partially in the manner hypothesized. Increased involvement with a Web topic did correlate with the choice of a longer, more detailed initial Web page, but was inversely related to the number of pages viewed so that the higher the involvement, the fewer pages visited. An additional indicator of usage, the average amount of time spent on each page, was measured and revealed that more involved users spent more time on each page. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4198/
Affordances of external representations in instructional design: The effect of narrative and imagery in learning.
Consisting of both theoretical and empirical inquires, this study examines the primary functions of narrative and the relationship between narrative and mental imagery. The study proposes a new framework to interpret semiotic resources. Combining this with the linguistic functional theory of Halliday (1978), a functional method to empirically investigate semiotic representations was also developed. In the empirical inquiry, the study developed a latent construct method to empirically test the effects of narrative in a real learning situation. This study is the first to investigate the functional relationship between narrative and mental imagery, and among the first to suggest a theory and empirically investigate representations of a multimodal nature. The study is also among the first to use latent constructs to investigate the learning experience in a real educational setting. Data were collected from 190 library professionals who enrolled in three sections (two in narrative and one in plain text) of an online course administered through Vista 4.0 and who completed the course and responded to several instruments. Essay data (n = 82 x 2) were analyzed using content analysis based on the narrative analysis framework developed. Quantitative data analysis methods include univariate data analysis, factor analysis, and structural equation modeling that tests the proposed model and verifies the relationships between the latent variables. Overall, the findings support the hypotheses about the functional effects of narrative identified, and narrative is found to provide a favorable and positive learning context which is tested by the proposed model of learning experience measured by several latent constructs (X2 = 31.67, df = 47, p = .9577, RMSEA = .00, SRMR = .047, NNFI = 1.05, CFI = 1.00, and GFI = .94). The results indicate that participants who enrolled in the narrative sections of the course gained higher creative scores and showed better results in performance-based and attribution-based experiences. The model testing results indicate that even though more time spent during learning led to better outcome and performance in both groups, more time spent means more satisfaction for the individuals in the narrative group, but led to less satisfaction for the individuals in the non-narrative group. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc9718/
In Pursuit of Image: How We Think About Photographs We Seek
The user perspective of image search remains poorly understood. the purpose of this study is to identify and investigate the key issues relevant to a user’s interaction with images and the user’s approach to image search. a deeper understanding of these issues will serve to inform the design of image retrieval systems and in turn better serve the user. Previous research explores areas of information seeking behavior, representation in information science, query formulation, and image retrieval. the theoretical framework for this study includes an articulation of image search scenarios as adapted from Yoon and O’Connor’s taxonomy of image query types, Copeland’s Engineering Design Approach for rigorous qualitative research, and Anderson’s Functional Ontology Construction Model for building robust models of human behavior. a series of semi-structured interviews were conducted with expert-level image users. Interviewees discussed their motivations for image search, types of image searches they pursue, and varied approaches to image search, as well as how they decide that an information need has been met and which factors influence their experience of search. a content analysis revealed themes repeated across responses, including a collection of 23 emergent concepts and 6 emergent categories. a functional analysis revealed further insight into these themes. Results from both analyses may be used as a framework for future exploration of this topic. Implications are discussed and future research directions are indicated. Among possibilities for future research are investigations into collaborative search and ubiquitous image search. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115133/
Information Censorship: A Comparative Analysis of Newspaper Coverage of the Jyllands-Posten Editorial Caricatures in Cross-Cultural Settings
The identification and examination of cultural information strategies and censorship patterns used to propagate the controversial issue of the caricatures in two separate cultural contexts was the aim of this dissertation. It explored discourse used for the coverage of this topic by one newspaper in a restrictive information context and two newspapers in a liberal information context. Message propagation in a restrictive information environment was analyzed using the English daily Kuwait Times from the Middle East; the liberal information environment of the US was analyzed using two major dailies, the New York Times and the Philadelphia Inquirer. The study also concurrently identifies and elaborates on the themes and frames through which discourse was presented exposing the cultural ideologies and premises they represent. The topic was approached with an interdisciplinary position with the support and applicability testing of Chatman's insider-outsider theory within information science and Noelle-Neumann's spiral of silence theory and Herman and Chomsky's propaganda model based in the area of mass communication. The study has also presented a new model of information censorship - circle of information censorship, emphasizing conceptual issues that influence the selection and censorship of information. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc31550/
Officer attitudes toward organizational change in the Turkish National Police.
This dissertation emphasizes the importance of the human factor in the organizational change process. Change - the only constant - is inevitable for organizations and no change program can be achieved without the support and acceptance of organization members. In this context, this study identifies officer attitudes toward organizational change in the Turkish National Police (TNP) and the factors affecting those attitudes. The Officer Attitude Model created by the researcher includes six main factors (receptivity to change, readiness for change, trust in management, commitment to organization, communication of change, and training for change) and five background factors (gender, age, rank, level of education, and work experience) to explain officer attitudes toward change. In order to test this model, an officer attitude survey was administered in Turkey among TNP members and the results of the gathered data validated this model. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3977/
The Online and the Onsite Holocaust Museum Exhibition as an Informational Resource
Museums today provide learning-rich experiences and quality informational resources through both physical and virtual environments. This study examined a Holocaust Museum traveling exhibition, Life in Shadows: Hidden Children and the Holocaust that was on display at the Art Center of Battle Creek, Michigan in fall 2005. The purpose of this mixed methods study was to assess the informational value of a Holocaust Museum exhibition in its onsite vs. online format by converging quantitative and qualitative data. Participants in the study included six eighth grade language arts classes who viewed various combinations or scenarios of the onsite and online Life in Shadows. Using student responses to questions in an online exhibition survey, an analysis of variance was performed to determine which scenario visit promotes the greatest content learning. Using student responses to additional questions on the same survey, data were analyzed qualitatively to discover the impact on students of each scenario visit. By means of an emotional empathy test, data were analyzed to determine differences among student response according to scenario visit. A principal finding of the study (supporting Falk and Dierking's contextual model of learning) was that the use of the online exhibition provided a source of prior orientation and functioned as an advanced organizer for students who subsequently viewed the onsite exhibition. Students who viewed the online exhibition received higher topic assessment scores. Students in each scenario visit gave positive exhibition feedback and evidence of emotional empathy. Further longitudinal studies in museum informatics and Holocaust education involving a more diverse population are needed. Of particular importance would be research focusing on using museum exhibitions and Web-based technology in a compelling manner so that students can continue to hear the words of survivors who themselves bear witness and give voice to silenced victims. When perpetuity of access to informational resources is assured, future generations will continue to be connected to the primary documents of history and cultural heritage. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5407/
A multi-dimensional entropy model of jazz improvisation for music information retrieval.
Jazz improvisation provides a case context for examining information in music; entropy provides a means for representing music for retrieval. Entropy measures are shown to distinguish between different improvisations on the same theme, thus demonstrating their potential for representing jazz information for analysis and retrieval. The calculated entropy measures are calibrated against human representation by means of a case study of an advanced jazz improvisation course, in which synonyms for "entropy" are frequently used by the instructor. The data sets are examined for insights in music information retrieval, music information behavior, and music representation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4929/
Measuring the accuracy of four attributes of sound for conveying changes in a large data set.
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Human auditory perception is suited to receiving and interpreting information from the environment but this knowledge has not been used extensively in designing computer-based information exploration tools. It is not known which aspects of sound are useful for accurately conveying information in an auditory display. An auditory display was created using PD, a graphical programming language used primarily to manipulate digital sound. The interface for the auditory display was a blank window. When the cursor is moved around in this window, the sound generated would changed based on the underlying data value at any given point. An experiment was conducted to determine which attribute of sound most accurately represents data values in an auditory display. The four attributes of sound tested were frequency-sine waveform, frequency-sawtooth waveform, loudness and tempo. 24 subjects were given the task of finding the highest data point using sound alone using each of the four sound treatments. Three dependent variables were measured: distance accuracy, numeric accuracy, and time on task. Repeated measures ANOVA procedures conducted on these variables did not rise to the level of statistical significance (α=.05). None of the sound treatments was more accurate than the other as representing the underlying data values. 52% of the trials were accurate within 50 pixels of the highest data point (target). An interesting finding was the tendency for the frequency-sin waveform to be used in the least accurate trial attempts (38%). Loudness, on the other hand, accounted for very few (12.5%) of the least accurate trial attempts. In completing the experimental task, four different search techniques were employed by the subjects: perimeter, parallel sweep, sector, and quadrant. The perimeter technique was the most commonly used. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4154/
Modeling the role of blogging in librarianship
This phenomenological study examines the motivations and experiences of librarians who author professionally-focused Weblogs. I constructed a model of librarianship based on Wilson and Buckland. The results show a close fit between librarian bloggers and the ideals of the field as expressed by two primary library and information science philosophers. A Web survey generated 239 responses to demographic and open-ended questions. Using the results of the survey, I analyzed demographic data and performed a phenomenological analysis of the open-ended questions. A list of category responses was generated from each set of answers via the coding of descriptive words and phrases. Results indicated the motivations of librarian bloggers are based around themes of sharing, participation in community, and enhanced professional development. Respondents reported feeling more connected to the profession and to colleagues across the world because of blogging. Respondents perceived the librarian blogosphere as a community with both positive aspects - feedback, discussion, and support - and negative aspects - insular voices, divides between technologists and librarians, and generational rifts. Respondents also reported an increased ability to keep current, improved writing skills, and opportunities to speak and contribute to professional journals. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc3915/
The Environmental is Political: Exploring the Geography of Environmental Justice
The dissertation is a philosophical approach to politicizing place and space, or environments broadly construed, that is motivated by three questions. How can geography be employed to analyze the spatialities of environmental justice? How do spatial concepts inform understandings of environmentalism? And, how can geography help overcome social/political philosophy's redistribution-recognition debate in a way that accounts for the multiscalar dimensions of environmental justice? Accordingly, the dissertation's objective is threefold. First, I develop a critical geography framework that explores the spatialities of environmental injustices as they pertain to economic marginalization across spaces of inequitable distribution, cultural subordination in places of misrecognition, and political exclusion from public places of deliberation and policy. Place and space are relationally constituted by intricate networks of social relations, cultural practices, socioecological flows, and political-economic processes, and I contend that urban and natural environments are best represented as "places-in-space." Second, I argue that spatial frameworks and environmental discourses interlock because conceptualizations of place and space affect how environments are perceived, serve as framing devices to identify environmental issues, and entail different solutions to problems. In the midst of demonstrating how the racialization of place upholds inequitable distributions of pollution burdens, I introduce notions of "social location" and "white privilege" to account for the conflicting agendas of the mainstream environmental movement and the environmental justice movement, and consequent accusations of discriminatory environmentalism. Third, I outline a bivalent environmental justice theory that deals with the spatialities of environmental injustices. The theory synergizes distributive justice and the politics of social equality with recognition justice and the politics of identity and difference, therefore connecting cultural issues to a broader materialist analysis concerned with economic issues that extend across space. In doing so, I provide a justice framework that assesses critically the particularities of place and concurrently identifies commonalities to diverse social struggles, thus spatializing the geography of place-based political praxis. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30497/
Ethics Naturally: An Environmental Ethic Based on Naturalness
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In this thesis I attempt to base an environmental ethic on a quality called naturalness. I examine it in terms of quantification, namely, as to whether it can quantified? I then apply the concept to specific areas such as restoration and conservation to create an environmental ethic and to show how such an ethic would be beneficial in general, and especially to policy issues concerning the environment. The thesis consists of three chapters: (1) the definition of nature and natural by way of a historical approach; (2) the place of humans in this scheme; and (3) the place of value and the discussion concerning quantification. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4458/
The Evolution of AIDS as Subject Matter in Select American Dramas
Dramatic works from America with AIDS as subject matter have evolved over the past twenty years. In the early 1980s, dramas like Larry Kramer's The Normal Heart, William Hoffman's As Is, and Robert Chesley's Night Sweat educated primarily homosexual men about AIDS, its causes, and its effects on the gay community while combating the dominant discourse promoted by the media, government, and medical establishments that AIDS was either unimportant because it affected primarily the homosexual population or because it was attributed to lack of personal responsibility. By the mid-eighties and early nineties, playwrights Terrence McNally (Love! Valour! Compassion!)and Paul Rudnick (Jeffrey)concentrated on relationships between sero-discordant homosexual couples. McNally's "Andre's Mother" and Lips Together, Teeth Apart explored how families and friends face the loss of a loved one to AIDS. Tony Kushner's Pulitzer Prize-winning Angels in America epic represents living beyond AIDS as a powerful force. Without change and progress, Angels warns, life stagnates. Angels also introduces the powerful drugs that help alleviate the symptoms of AIDS. AIDS is the centerpiece of the epic, and AIDS and homosexuality are inextricably blended in the play. Rent, the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical by Jonathan Larson, features characters from an assortment of ethnic and social backgrounds - including heterosexuals, homosexuals, bi-sexuals, some with AIDS, some AIDS-free, some drug users - all living through the diverse troubles visited upon them at the turn of the millennium in the East Village of New York City. AIDS is not treated as "special," nor are people with AIDS pandered to. Instead, the characters take what life gives them, and they live fully, because there is "no day but today" ("Finale"). Rent's audiences are as varied as the American population, because it portrays metaphorically what so many Americans face daily - not AIDS per se, but other difficult life problems, including self-alienation. As such, Rent defies the dominant discourse because the community portrayed in Rent is the American community. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc2600/
Joy Harjo's Poetics of Transformation
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For Muscogee Creek poet Joy Harjo, poetry is a real world force that can empower the reader by utilizing mythic memory, recovery of history, and a spiral journey to regain communal identity. Her poetic career transforms from early lyric poems to a hybridized form of prosody, prose, and myth to accommodate and to reflect Harjo's concerns as they progress from personal, to tribal, and then to global. She often employs a witnessing strategy to combat the trauma caused by racism in order to create the possibility for renewal and healing. Furthermore, Harjo's poetry combats forces that seek to define Native American existence negatively. To date, Harjo's poetic works create a myth that will refocus humanity's attention on the way in which historical meaning is produced and the way difference is encountered. In an effort to revise the dominant stories told about Indians, Harjo privileges the idea that Native Americans are present and human, and it is this sense of humanity that pervades her poetry. Sequentially, Joy Harjo's volumes of poetry-She Had Some Horses (1983), In Mad Love and War (1990), and The Woman Who Fell from the Sky (1994)-create a regenerative cycle that combats the effects of oppressive history and racism. Through her poetry, violent and tragic events are transformed into moments of hope and renewal. Her collections are powerful testimonies of endurance and survival. They directly defy the stereotype of the "vanishing" or "stoic" Indian, but more importantly, they offer regeneration and grace to all peoples. The poems create a map to help navigate the multiple simultaneous realms of existence, to find a way to travel through the barriers that separate existence. In this dissertation, I employ various reading strategies to support my contentions. Blending a postcolonial standpoint with feminism, I believe Harjo uses a feminist ethnic bildungsroman to explain how a woman of color achieves maturation of self-identity given the many layers of restrictions that act to muffle her voice. Utilizing mediational theory, I study the way in which Harjo's poetry addresses multiple audiences in an attempt to achieve renewal. Furthermore, I posit that Harjo questions the validity of history, and through her retelling of the historical narrative, she impacts the collective consciousness of a nation in an attempt to combat the ill effects of historical trauma. Finally, Joseph Campbell's ideas about the sustaining power of myth, an idea shared by many Native Americans, shapes my arguments regarding Harjo's use of myth as a source of renewal and strength. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4358/
Literature in the Age of Science: Technology and Scientists in the Mid-Twentieth Century Works of Isaac Asimov, John Barth, Arthur C. Clarke, Thomas Pynchon, and Kurt Vonnegut
This study explores the depictions of technology and scientists in the literature of five writers during the 1960s. Scientists and technology associated with nuclear, computer, and space science are examined, focusing on their respective treatments by the following writers: John Barth, Kurt Vonnegut, Thomas Pynchon, Isaac Asimov, and Arthur C. Clarke. Despite the close connections between the abovementioned sciences, space science is largely spared from negative critiques during the sixties. Through an analysis of Barth's Giles Goat-boy, Vonnegut's Cat's Cradle, Pynchon's The Crying of Lot 49, Asimov's short stories "Key Item," "The Last Question," "The Machine That Won the War," "My Son, the Physicist," and Clarke's 2001: A Space Odyssey, it is argued that altruistic goals of space science during the 1960s protect it from the satirical treatments that surround the other sciences. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30511/