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An Analysis of Motivational Cues in Virtual Environments.

Description: Guiding navigation in virtual environments (VEs) is a challenging task. A key issue in the navigation of a virtual environment is to be able to strike a balance between the user's need to explore the environment freely and the designer's need to ensure that the user experiences all the important events in the VE. This thesis reports on a study aimed at comparing the effectiveness of various navigation cues that are used to motivate users towards a specific target location. The results of this study indicate some significant differences in how users responded to the various cues.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Voruganti, Lavanya

Bounded Dynamic Source Routing in Mobile Ad Hoc Networks

Description: A mobile ad hoc network (MANET) is a collection of mobile platforms or nodes that come together to form a network capable of communicating with each other, without the help of a central controller. To avail the maximum potential of a MANET, it is of great importance to devise a routing scheme, which will optimize upon the performance of a MANET, given the high rate of random mobility of the nodes. In a MANET individual nodes perform the routing functions like route discovery, route maintenance and delivery of packets from one node to the other. Existing routing protocols flood the network with broadcasts of route discovery messages, while attempting to establish a route. This characteristic is instrumental in deteriorating the performance of a MANET, as resource overhead triggered by broadcasts is directly proportional to the size of the network. Bounded-dynamic source routing (B-DSR), is proposed to curb this multitude of superfluous broadcasts, thus enabling to reserve valuable resources like bandwidth and battery power. B-DSR establishes a bounded region in the network, only within which, transmissions of route discovery messages are processed and validated for establishing a route. All route discovery messages reaching outside of this bounded region are dropped, thus preventing the network from being flooded. In addition B-DSR also guarantees loop-free routing and is robust for a rapid recovery when routes in the network change.
Date: August 2003
Creator: George, Glyco

Hopfield Networks as an Error Correcting Technique for Speech Recognition

Description: I experimented with Hopfield networks in the context of a voice-based, query-answering system. Hopfield networks are used to store and retrieve patterns. I used this technique to store queries represented as natural language sentences and I evaluated the accuracy of the technique for error correction in a spoken question-answering dialog between a computer and a user. I show that the use of an auto-associative Hopfield network helps make the speech recognition system more fault tolerant. I also looked at the available encoding schemes to convert a natural language sentence into a pattern of zeroes and ones that can be stored in the Hopfield network reliably, and I suggest scalable data representations which allow storing a large number of queries.
Date: May 2004
Creator: Bireddy, Chakradhar

Improved Approximation Algorithms for Geometric Packing Problems With Experimental Evaluation

Description: Geometric packing problems are NP-complete problems that arise in VLSI design. In this thesis, we present two novel algorithms using dynamic programming to compute exactly the maximum number of k x k squares of unit size that can be packed without overlap into a given n x m grid. The first algorithm was implemented and ran successfully on problems of large input up to 1,000,000 nodes for different values. A heuristic based on the second algorithm is implemented. This heuristic is fast in practice, but may not always be giving optimal times in theory. However, over a wide range of random data this version of the algorithm is giving very good solutions very fast and runs on problems of up to 100,000,000 nodes in a grid and different ranges for the variables. It is also shown that this version of algorithm is clearly superior to the first algorithm and has shown to be very efficient in practice.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Song, Yongqiang

Multi-Agent Architecture for Internet Information Extraction and Visualization

Description: The World Wide Web is one of the largest sources of information; more and more applications are being developed daily to make use of this information. This thesis presents a multi-agent architecture that deals with some of the issues related to Internet data extraction. The primary issue addresses the reliable, efficient and quick extraction of data through the use of HTTP performance monitoring agents. A second issue focuses on how to make use of available data to take decisions and alert the user when there is change in data; this is done with the help of user agents that are equipped with a Defeasible reasoning interpreter. An additional issue is the visualization of extracted data; this is done with the aid of VRML visualization agents. The cited issues are discussed using stock portfolio management as an example application.
Date: August 2000
Creator: Gollapally, Devender R.

Performance Evaluation of Data Integrity Mechanisms for Mobile Agents

Description: With the growing popularity of e-commerce applications that use software agents, the protection of mobile agent data has become imperative. To that end, the performance of four methods that protect the data integrity of mobile agents is evaluated. The methods investigated include existing approaches known as the Partial Result Authentication Codes, Hash Chaining, and Set Authentication Code methods, and a technique of our own design, called the Modified Set Authentication Code method, which addresses the limitations of the Set Authentication Code method. The experiments were run using the DADS agent system (developed at the Network Research Laboratory at UNT), for which a Data Integrity Module was designed. The experimental results show that our Modified Set Authentication Code technique performed comparably to the Set Authentication Code method.
Date: December 2003
Creator: Gunupudi, Vandana

Resource Allocation in Mobile and Wireless Networks

Description: The resources (memory, power and bandwidth) are limited in wireless and mobile networks. Previous research has shown that the quality of service (QoS) of the mobile client can be improved through efficient resources management. This thesis contains two areas of research that are strongly interrelated. In the first area of research, we extended the MoSync Algorithm, a network application layer media synchronization algorithm, to allow play-out of multimedia packets by the base station upon the mobile client in a First-In-First-Out (FIFO), Highest-Priority-First (PQ), Weighted Fair-Queuing (WFQ) and Round-Robin (RR) order. In the second area of research, we make modifications to the DSR and TORA routing algorithms to make them energy aware routing protocols. Our research shows that the QoS of the mobile client can be drastically improved through effective resource allocation.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Owens II, Harold

Routing Optimization in Wireless Ad Hoc and Wireless Sensor Networks

Description: Wireless ad hoc networks are expected to play an important role in civilian and military settings where wireless access to wired backbone is either ineffective or impossible. Wireless sensor networks are effective in remote data acquisition. Congestion control and power consumption in wireless ad hoc networks have received a lot of attention in recent research. Several algorithms have been proposed to reduce congestion and power consumption in wireless ad hoc and sensor networks. In this thesis, we focus upon two schemes, which deal with congestion control and power consumption issues. This thesis consists of two parts. In the first part, we describe a randomization scheme for congestion control in dynamic source routing protocol, which we refer to as RDSR. We also study a randomization scheme for GDSR protocol, a GPS optimized variant of DSR. We discuss RDSR and RGDSR implementations and present extensive simulation experiments to study their performance. Our results indicate that both RGDSR and RDSR protocols outperform their non-randomized counterparts by decreasing the number of route query packets. Furthermore, a probabilistic congestion control scheme based on local tuning of routing protocol parameters is shown to be feasible. In the second part we present a simulation based performance study of energy aware data centric routing protocol, EAD, proposed by X. Cheng and A. Boukerche. EAD reduces power consumption by requiring only a small percentage of the network to stay awake. Our experiments show that EAD outperforms the well-known LEACH scheme.
Date: August 2003
Creator: Joseph, Linus

A Study of Perceptually Tuned, Wavelet Based, Rate Scalable, Image and Video Compression

Description: In this dissertation, first, we have proposed and implemented a new perceptually tuned wavelet based, rate scalable, and color image encoding/decoding system based on the human perceptual model. It is based on state-of-the-art research on embedded wavelet image compression technique, Contrast Sensitivity Function (CSF) for Human Visual System (HVS) and extends this scheme to handle optimal bit allocation among multiple bands, such as Y, Cb, and Cr. Our experimental image codec shows very exciting results in compression performance and visual quality comparing to the new wavelet based international still image compression standard - JPEG 2000. On the other hand, our codec also shows significant better speed performance and comparable visual quality in comparison to the best codec available in rate scalable color image compression - CSPIHT that is based on Set Partition In Hierarchical Tree (SPIHT) and Karhunen-Loeve Transform (KLT). Secondly, a novel wavelet based interframe compression scheme has been developed and put into practice. It is based on the Flexible Block Wavelet Transform (FBWT) that we have developed. FBWT based interframe compression is very efficient in both compression and speed performance. The compression performance of our video codec is compared with H263+. At the same bit rate, our encoder, being comparable to the H263+ scheme, with a slightly lower (Peak Signal Noise Ratio (PSNR) value, produces a more visually pleasing result. This implementation also preserves scalability of wavelet embedded coding technique. Thirdly, the scheme to handle optimal bit allocation among color bands for still imagery has been modified and extended to accommodate the spatial-temporal sensitivity of the HVS model. The bit allocation among color bands based on Kelly's spatio-temporal CSF model is designed to achieve the perceptual optimum for human eyes. A perceptually tuned, wavelet based, rate scalable video encoding/decoding system has been designed and implemented based on this ...
Date: May 2002
Creator: Wei, Ming

Temporally Correct Algorithms for Transaction Concurrency Control in Distributed Databases

Description: Many activities are comprised of temporally dependent events that must be executed in a specific chronological order. Supportive software applications must preserve these temporal dependencies. Whenever the processing of this type of an application includes transactions submitted to a database that is shared with other such applications, the transaction concurrency control mechanisms within the database must also preserve the temporal dependencies. A basis for preserving temporal dependencies is established by using (within the applications and databases) real-time timestamps to identify and order events and transactions. The use of optimistic approaches to transaction concurrency control can be undesirable in such situations, as they allow incorrect results for database read operations. Although the incorrectness is detected prior to transaction committal and the corresponding transaction(s) restarted, the impact on the application or entity that submitted the transaction can be too costly. Three transaction concurrency control algorithms are proposed in this dissertation. These algorithms are based on timestamp ordering, and are designed to preserve temporal dependencies existing among data-dependent transactions. The algorithms produce execution schedules that are equivalent to temporally ordered serial schedules, where the temporal order is established by the transactions' start times. The algorithms provide this equivalence while supporting currency to the extent out-of-order commits and reads. With respect to the stated concern with optimistic approaches, two of the proposed algorithms are risk-free and return to read operations only committed data-item values. Risk with the third algorithm is greatly reduced by its conservative bias. All three algorithms avoid deadlock while providing risk-free or reduced-risk operation. The performance of the algorithms is determined analytically and with experimentation. Experiments are performed using functional database management system models that implement the proposed algorithms and the well-known Conservative Multiversion Timestamp Ordering algorithm.
Date: May 2001
Creator: Tuck, Terry W.