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Force-Directed Graph Drawing and Aesthetics Measurement in a Non-Strict Pure Functional Programming Language

Description: Non-strict pure functional programming often requires redesigning algorithms and data structures to work more effectively under new constraints of non-strict evaluation and immutable state. Graph drawing algorithms, while numerous and broadly studied, have no presence in the non-strict pure functional programming model. Additionally, there is currently no freely licensed standalone toolkit used to quantitatively analyze aesthetics of graph drawings. This thesis addresses two previously unexplored questions. Can a force-directed graph drawing algorithm be implemented in a non-strict functional language, such as Haskell, and still be practically usable? Can an easily extensible aesthetic measuring tool be implemented in a language such as Haskell and still be practically usable? The focus of the thesis is on implementing one of the simplest force-directed algorithms, that of Fruchterman and Reingold, and comparing its resulting aesthetics to those of a well-known C++ implementation of the same algorithm.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Gaconnet, Christopher James

Survey of Approximation Algorithms for Set Cover Problem

Description: In this thesis, I survey 11 approximation algorithms for unweighted set cover problem. I have also implemented the three algorithms and created a software library that stores the code I have written. The algorithms I survey are: 1. Johnson's standard greedy; 2. f-frequency greedy; 3. Goldsmidt, Hochbaum and Yu's modified greedy; 4. Halldorsson's local optimization; 5. Dur and Furer semi local optimization; 6. Asaf Levin's improvement to Dur and Furer; 7. Simple rounding; 8. Randomized rounding; 9. LP duality; 10. Primal-dual schema; and 11. Network flow technique. Most of the algorithms surveyed are refinements of standard greedy algorithm.
Date: December 2009
Creator: Dutta, Himanshu Shekhar

Urban surface characterization using LiDAR and aerial imagery.

Description: Many calamities in history like hurricanes, tornado and flooding are proof to the large scale impact they cause to the life and economy. Computer simulation and GIS helps in modeling a real world scenario, which assists in evacuation planning, damage assessment, assistance and reconstruction. For achieving computer simulation and modeling there is a need for accurate classification of ground objects. One of the most significant aspects of this research is that it achieves improved classification for regions within which light detection and ranging (LiDAR) has low spatial resolution. This thesis describes a method for accurate classification of bare ground, water body, roads, vegetation, and structures using LiDAR data and aerial Infrared imagery. The most basic step for any terrain modeling application is filtering which is classification of ground and non-ground points. We present an integrated systematic method that makes classification of terrain and non-terrain points effective. Our filtering method uses the geometric feature of the triangle meshes created from LiDAR samples and calculate the confidence for every point. Geometric homogenous blocks and confidence are derived from TIN model and gridded LiDAR samples. The results from two representations are used in a classifier to determine if the block belongs ground or otherwise. Another important step is detection of water body, which is based on the LiDAR sample density of the region. Objects like tress and bare ground are characterized by the geometric features present in the LiDAR and the color features in the infrared imagery. These features are fed into a SVM classifier which detects bare-ground in the given region. Similarly trees are extracted using another trained SVM classifier. Once we obtain bare-grounds and trees, roads are extracted by removing the bare grounds. Structures are identified by the properties of non-ground segments. Experiments were conducted using LiDAR samples and Infrared imagery ...
Date: December 2009
Creator: Sarma, Vaibhav

Computational Epidemiology - Analyzing Exposure Risk: A Deterministic, Agent-Based Approach

Description: Many infectious diseases are spread through interactions between susceptible and infectious individuals. Keeping track of where each exposure to the disease took place, when it took place, and which individuals were involved in the exposure can give public health officials important information that they may use to formulate their interventions. Further, knowing which individuals in the population are at the highest risk of becoming infected with the disease may prove to be a useful tool for public health officials trying to curtail the spread of the disease. Epidemiological models are needed to allow epidemiologists to study the population dynamics of transmission of infectious agents and the potential impact of infectious disease control programs. While many agent-based computational epidemiological models exist in the literature, they focus on the spread of disease rather than exposure risk. These models are designed to simulate very large populations, representing individuals as agents, and using random experiments and probabilities in an attempt to more realistically guide the course of the modeled disease outbreak. The work presented in this thesis focuses on tracking exposure risk to chickenpox in an elementary school setting. This setting is chosen due to the high level of detailed information realistically available to school administrators regarding individuals' schedules and movements. Using an agent-based approach, contacts between individuals are tracked and analyzed with respect to both individuals and locations. The results are then analyzed using a combination of tools from computer science and geographic information science.
Date: August 2009
Creator: O'Neill II, Martin Joseph

End of Insertion Detection in Colonoscopy Videos

Description: Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths behind lung cancer in the United States. Colonoscopy is the preferred screening method for detection of diseases like Colorectal Cancer. In the year 2006, American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy (ASGE) and American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) issued guidelines for quality colonoscopy. The guidelines suggest that on average the withdrawal phase during a screening colonoscopy should last a minimum of 6 minutes. My aim is to classify the colonoscopy video into insertion and withdrawal phase. The problem is that currently existing shot detection techniques cannot be applied because colonoscopy is a single camera shot from start to end. An algorithm to detect phase boundary has already been developed by the MIGLAB team. Existing method has acceptable levels of accuracy but the main issue is dependency on MPEG (Moving Pictures Expert Group) 1/2. I implemented exhaustive search for motion estimation to reduce the execution time and improve the accuracy. I took advantages of the C/C++ programming languages with multithreading which helped us get even better performances in terms of execution time. I propose a method for improving the current method of colonoscopy video analysis and also an extension for the same to make it usable for real time videos. The real time version we implemented is capable of handling streams coming directly from the camera in the form of uncompressed bitmap frames. Existing implementation could not be applied to real time scenario because of its dependency on MPEG 1/2. Future direction of this research includes improved motion search and GPU parallel computing techniques.
Date: August 2009
Creator: Malik, Avnish Rajbal

Cross Language Information Retrieval for Languages with Scarce Resources

Description: Our generation has experienced one of the most dramatic changes in how society communicates. Today, we have online information on almost any imaginable topic. However, most of this information is available in only a few dozen languages. In this thesis, I explore the use of parallel texts to enable cross-language information retrieval (CLIR) for languages with scarce resources. To build the parallel text I use the Bible. I evaluate different variables and their impact on the resulting CLIR system, specifically: (1) the CLIR results when using different amounts of parallel text; (2) the role of paraphrasing on the quality of the CLIR output; (3) the impact on accuracy when translating the query versus translating the collection of documents; and finally (4) how the results are affected by the use of different dialects. The results show that all these variables have a direct impact on the quality of the CLIR system.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Loza, Christian

Development, Implementation, and Analysis of a Contact Model for an Infectious Disease

Description: With a growing concern of an infectious diseases spreading in a population, epidemiology is becoming more important for the future of public health. In the past epidemiologist used existing data of an outbreak to help them determine how an infectious disease might spread in the future. Now with computational models, they able to analysis data produced by these models to help with prevention and intervention plans. This paper looks at the design, implementation, and analysis of a computational model based on the interactions of the population between individuals. The design of the working contact model looks closely at the SEIR model used as the foundation and the two timelines of a disease. The implementation of the contact model is reviewed while looking closely at data structures. The analysis of the experiments provide evidence this contact model can be used to help epidemiologist study the spread of an infectious disease based on the contact rate of individuals.
Date: May 2009
Creator: Thompson, Brett Morinaga

Direct Online/Offline Digital Signature Schemes.

Description: Online/offline signature schemes are useful in many situations, and two such scenarios are considered in this dissertation: bursty server authentication and embedded device authentication. In this dissertation, new techniques for online/offline signing are introduced, those are applied in a variety of ways for creating online/offline signature schemes, and five different online/offline signature schemes that are proved secure under a variety of models and assumptions are proposed. Two of the proposed five schemes have the best offline or best online performance of any currently known technique, and are particularly well-suited for the scenarios that are considered in this dissertation. To determine if the proposed schemes provide the expected practical improvements, a series of experiments were conducted comparing the proposed schemes with each other and with other state-of-the-art schemes in this area, both on a desktop class computer, and under AVR Studio, a simulation platform for an 8-bit processor that is popular for embedded systems. Under AVR Studio, the proposed SGE scheme using a typical key size for the embedded device authentication scenario, can complete the offline phase in about 24 seconds and then produce a signature (the online phase) in 15 milliseconds, which is the best offline performance of any known signature scheme that has been proven secure in the standard model. In the tests on a desktop class computer, the proposed SGS scheme, which has the best online performance and is designed for the bursty server authentication scenario, generated 469,109 signatures per second, and the Schnorr scheme (the next best scheme in terms of online performance) generated only 223,548 signatures. The experimental results demonstrate that the SGE and SGS schemes are the most efficient techniques for embedded device authentication and bursty server authentication, respectively.
Date: December 2008
Creator: Yu, Ping

Graph-based Centrality Algorithms for Unsupervised Word Sense Disambiguation

Description: 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.
Date: December 2008
Creator: Sinha, Ravi Som

Exploring Trusted Platform Module Capabilities: A Theoretical and Experimental Study

Description: Trusted platform modules (TPMs) are hardware modules that are bound to a computer's motherboard, that are being included in many desktops and laptops. Augmenting computers with these hardware modules adds powerful functionality in distributed settings, allowing us to reason about the security of these systems in new ways. In this dissertation, I study the functionality of TPMs from a theoretical as well as an experimental perspective. On the theoretical front, I leverage various features of TPMs to construct applications like random oracles that are impossible to implement in a standard model of computation. Apart from random oracles, I construct a new cryptographic primitive which is basically a non-interactive form of the standard cryptographic primitive of oblivious transfer. I apply this new primitive to secure mobile agent computations, where interaction between various entities is typically required to ensure security. I prove these constructions are secure using standard cryptographic techniques and assumptions. To test the practicability of these constructions and their applications, I performed an experimental study, both on an actual TPM and a software TPM simulator which has been enhanced to make it reflect timings from a real TPM. This allowed me to benchmark the performance of the applications and test the feasibility of the proposed extensions to standard TPMs. My tests also show that these constructions are practical.
Date: May 2008
Creator: Gunupudi, Vandana

General Purpose Programming on Modern Graphics Hardware

Description: I start with a brief introduction to the graphics processing unit (GPU) as well as general-purpose computation on modern graphics hardware (GPGPU). Next, I explore the motivations for GPGPU programming, and the capabilities of modern GPUs (including advantages and disadvantages). Also, I give the background required for further exploring GPU programming, including the terminology used and the resources available. Finally, I include a comprehensive survey of previous and current GPGPU work, and end with a look at the future of GPU programming.
Date: May 2008
Creator: Fleming, Robert

Keywords in the mist: Automated keyword extraction for very large documents and back of the book indexing.

Description: 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.
Date: May 2008
Creator: Csomai, Andras

Automated Syndromic Surveillance using Intelligent Mobile Agents

Description: Current syndromic surveillance systems utilize centralized databases that are neither scalable in storage space nor in computing power. Such systems are limited in the amount of syndromic data that may be collected and analyzed for the early detection of infectious disease outbreaks. However, with the increased prevalence of international travel, public health monitoring must extend beyond the borders of municipalities or states which will require the ability to store vasts amount of data and significant computing power for analyzing the data. Intelligent mobile agents may be used to create a distributed surveillance system that will utilize the hard drives and computer processing unit (CPU) power of the hosts on the agent network where the syndromic information is located. This thesis proposes the design of a mobile agent-based syndromic surveillance system and an agent decision model for outbreak detection. Simulation results indicate that mobile agents are capable of detecting an outbreak that occurs at all hosts the agent is monitoring. Further study of agent decision models is required to account for localized epidemics and variable agent movement rates.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Miller, Paul

The enhancement of machine translation for low-density languages using Web-gathered parallel texts.

Description: The majority of the world's languages are poorly represented in informational media like radio, television, newspapers, and the Internet. Translation into and out of these languages may offer a way for speakers of these languages to interact with the wider world, but current statistical machine translation models are only effective with a large corpus of parallel texts - texts in two languages that are translations of one another - which most languages lack. This thesis describes the Babylon project which attempts to alleviate this shortage by supplementing existing parallel texts with texts gathered automatically from the Web -- specifically targeting pages that contain text in a pair of languages. Results indicate that parallel texts gathered from the Web can be effectively used as a source of training data for machine translation and can significantly improve the translation quality for text in a similar domain. However, the small quantity of high-quality low-density language parallel texts on the Web remains a significant obstacle.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Mohler, Michael Augustine Gaylord

High Performance Architecture using Speculative Threads and Dynamic Memory Management Hardware

Description: With the advances in very large scale integration (VLSI) technology, hundreds of billions of transistors can be packed into a single chip. With the increased hardware budget, how to take advantage of available hardware resources becomes an important research area. Some researchers have shifted from control flow Von-Neumann architecture back to dataflow architecture again in order to explore scalable architectures leading to multi-core systems with several hundreds of processing elements. In this dissertation, I address how the performance of modern processing systems can be improved, while attempting to reduce hardware complexity and energy consumptions. My research described here tackles both central processing unit (CPU) performance and memory subsystem performance. More specifically I will describe my research related to the design of an innovative decoupled multithreaded architecture that can be used in multi-core processor implementations. I also address how memory management functions can be off-loaded from processing pipelines to further improve system performance and eliminate cache pollution caused by runtime management functions.
Date: December 2007
Creator: Li, Wentong

System and Methods for Detecting Unwanted Voice Calls

Description: Voice over IP (VoIP) is a key enabling technology for the migration of circuit-switched PSTN architectures to packet-based IP networks. However, this migration is successful only if the present problems in IP networks are addressed before deploying VoIP infrastructure on a large scale. One of the important issues that the present VoIP networks face is the problem of unwanted calls commonly referred to as SPIT (spam over Internet telephony). Mostly, these SPIT calls are from unknown callers who broadcast unwanted calls. There may be unwanted calls from legitimate and known people too. In this case, the unwantedness depends on social proximity of the communicating parties. For detecting these unwanted calls, I propose a framework that analyzes incoming calls for unwanted behavior. The framework includes a VoIP spam detector (VSD) that analyzes incoming VoIP calls for spam behavior using trust and reputation techniques. The framework also includes a nuisance detector (ND) that proactively infers the nuisance (or reluctance of the end user) to receive incoming calls. This inference is based on past mutual behavior between the calling and the called party (i.e., caller and callee), the callee's presence (mood or state of mind) and tolerance in receiving voice calls from the caller, and the social closeness between the caller and the callee. The VSD and ND learn the behavior of callers over time and estimate the possibility of the call to be unwanted based on predetermined thresholds configured by the callee (or the filter administrators). These threshold values have to be automatically updated for integrating dynamic behavioral changes of the communicating parties. For updating these threshold values, I propose an automatic calibration mechanism using receiver operating characteristics curves (ROC). The VSD and ND use this mechanism for dynamically updating thresholds for optimizing their accuracy of detection. In addition to unwanted calls ...
Date: December 2007
Creator: Kolan, Prakash

Split array and scalar data cache: A comprehensive study of data cache organization.

Description: Existing cache organization suffers from the inability to distinguish different types of localities, and non-selectively cache all data rather than making any attempt to take special advantage of the locality type. This causes unnecessary movement of data among the levels of the memory hierarchy and increases in miss ratio. In this dissertation I propose a split data cache architecture that will group memory accesses as scalar or array references according to their inherent locality and will subsequently map each group to a dedicated cache partition. In this system, because scalar and array references will no longer negatively affect each other, cache-interference is diminished, delivering better performance. Further improvement is achieved by the introduction of victim cache, prefetching, data flattening and reconfigurability to tune the array and scalar caches for specific application. The most significant contribution of my work is the introduction of novel cache architecture for embedded microprocessor platforms. My proposed cache architecture uses reconfigurability coupled with split data caches to reduce area and power consumed by cache memories while retaining performance gains. My results show excellent reductions in both memory size and memory access times, translating into reduced power consumption. Since there was a huge reduction in miss rates at L-1 caches, further power reduction is achieved by partially or completely shutting down L-2 data or L-2 instruction caches. The saving in cache sizes resulting from these designs can be used for other processor activities including instruction and data prefetching, branch-prediction buffers. The potential benefits of such techniques for embedded applications have been evaluated in my work. I also explore how my cache organization performs for non-numeric data structures. I propose a novel idea called "Data flattening" which is a profile based memory allocation technique to compress sparsely scattered pointer data into regular contiguous memory locations and explore the ...
Date: August 2007
Creator: Naz, Afrin

An Approach Towards Self-Supervised Classification Using Cyc

Description: Due to the long duration required to perform manual knowledge entry by human knowledge engineers it is desirable to find methods to automatically acquire knowledge about the world by accessing online information. In this work I examine using the Cyc ontology to guide the creation of Naïve Bayes classifiers to provide knowledge about items described in Wikipedia articles. Given an initial set of Wikipedia articles the system uses the ontology to create positive and negative training sets for the classifiers in each category. The order in which classifiers are generated and used to test articles is also guided by the ontology. The research conducted shows that a system can be created that utilizes statistical text classification methods to extract information from an ad-hoc generated information source like Wikipedia for use in a formal semantic ontology like Cyc. Benefits and limitations of the system are discussed along with future work.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Coursey, Kino High

CLUE: A Cluster Evaluation Tool

Description: Modern high performance computing is dependent on parallel processing systems. Most current benchmarks reveal only the high level computational throughput metrics, which may be sufficient for single processor systems, but can lead to a misrepresentation of true system capability for parallel systems. A new benchmark is therefore proposed. CLUE (Cluster Evaluator) uses a cellular automata algorithm to evaluate the scalability of parallel processing machines. The benchmark also uses algorithmic variations to evaluate individual system components' impact on the overall serial fraction and efficiency. CLUE is not a replacement for other performance-centric benchmarks, but rather shows the scalability of a system and provides metrics to reveal where one can improve overall performance. CLUE is a new benchmark which demonstrates a better comparison among different parallel systems than existing benchmarks and can diagnose where a particular parallel system can be optimized.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Parker, Brandon S.

Grid-based Coordinated Routing in Wireless Sensor Networks

Description: Wireless sensor networks are battery-powered ad-hoc networks in which sensor nodes that are scattered over a region connect to each other and form multi-hop networks. These nodes are equipped with sensors such as temperature sensors, pressure sensors, and light sensors and can be queried to get the corresponding values for analysis. However, since they are battery operated, care has to be taken so that these nodes use energy efficiently. One of the areas in sensor networks where an energy analysis can be done is routing. This work explores grid-based coordinated routing in wireless sensor networks and compares the energy available in the network over time for different grid sizes.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Sawant, Uttara

A Language and Visual Interface to Specify Complex Spatial Pattern Mining

Description: The emerging interests in spatial pattern mining leads to the demand for a flexible spatial pattern mining language, on which easy to use and understand visual pattern language could be built. It is worthwhile to define a pattern mining language called LCSPM to allow users to specify complex spatial patterns. I describe a proposed pattern mining language in this paper. A visual interface which allows users to specify the patterns visually is developed. Visual pattern queries are translated into the LCSPM language by a parser and data mining process can be triggered afterwards. The visual language is based on and goes beyond the visual language proposed in literature. I implemented a prototype system based on the open source JUMP framework.
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Date: December 2006
Creator: Li, Xiaohui

Mediation on XQuery Views

Description: The major goal of information integration is to provide efficient and easy-to-use access to multiple heterogeneous data sources with a single query. At the same time, one of the current trends is to use standard technologies for implementing solutions to complex software problems. In this dissertation, I used XML and XQuery as the standard technologies and have developed an extended projection algorithm to provide a solution to the information integration problem. In order to demonstrate my solution, I implemented a prototype mediation system called Omphalos based on XML related technologies. The dissertation describes the architecture of the system, its metadata, and the process it uses to answer queries. The system uses XQuery expressions (termed metaqueries) to capture complex mappings between global schemas and data source schemas. The system then applies these metaqueries in order to rewrite a user query on a virtual global database (representing the integrated view of the heterogeneous data sources) to a query (termed an outsourced query) on the real data sources. An extended XML document projection algorithm was developed to increase the efficiency of selecting the relevant subset of data from an individual data source to answer the user query. The system applies the projection algorithm to decompose an outsourced query into atomic queries which are each executed on a single data source. I also developed an algorithm to generate integrating queries, which the system uses to compose the answers from the atomic queries into a single answer to the original user query. I present a proof of both the extended XML document projection algorithm and the query integration algorithm. An analysis of the efficiency of the new extended algorithm is also presented. Finally I describe a collaborative schema-matching tool that was implemented to facilitate maintaining metadata.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Peng, Xiaobo

A Multi-Variate Analysis of SMTP Paths and Relays to Restrict Spam and Phishing Attacks in Emails

Description: The classifier discussed in this thesis considers the path traversed by an email (instead of its content) and reputation of the relays, features inaccessible to spammers. Groups of spammers and individual behaviors of a spammer in a given domain were analyzed to yield association patterns, which were then used to identify similar spammers. Unsolicited and phishing emails were successfully isolated from legitimate emails, using analysis results. Spammers and phishers are also categorized into serial spammers/phishers, recent spammers/phishers, prospective spammers/phishers, and suspects. Legitimate emails and trusted domains are classified into socially close (family members, friends), socially distinct (strangers etc), and opt-outs (resolved false positives and false negatives). Overall this classifier resulted in far less false positives when compared to current filters like SpamAssassin, achieving a 98.65% precision, which is well comparable to the precisions achieved by SPF, DNSRBL blacklists.
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Date: December 2006
Creator: Palla, Srikanth

Natural Language Interfaces to Databases

Description: Natural language interfaces to databases (NLIDB) are systems that aim to bridge the gap between the languages used by humans and computers, and automatically translate natural language sentences to database queries. This thesis proposes a novel approach to NLIDB, using graph-based models. The system starts by collecting as much information as possible from existing databases and sentences, and transforms this information into a knowledge base for the system. Given a new question, the system will use this knowledge to analyze and translate the sentence into its corresponding database query statement. The graph-based NLIDB system uses English as the natural language, a relational database model, and SQL as the formal query language. In experiments performed with natural language questions ran against a large database containing information about U.S. geography, the system showed good performance compared to the state-of-the-art in the field.
Date: December 2006
Creator: Chandra, Yohan