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Rapid Prototyping and Design of a Fast Random Number Generator

Description: Information in the form of online multimedia, bank accounts, or password usage for diverse applications needs some form of security. the core feature of many security systems is the generation of true random or pseudorandom numbers. Hence reliable generators of such numbers are indispensable. the fundamental hurdle is that digital computers cannot generate truly random numbers because the states and transitions of digital systems are well understood and predictable. Nothing in a digital computer happens truly randomly. Digital computers are sequential machines that perform a current state and move to the next state in a deterministic fashion. to generate any secure hash or encrypted word a random number is needed. But since computers are not random, random sequences are commonly used. Random sequences are algorithms that generate a pattern of values that appear to be random but after some time start repeating. This thesis implements a digital random number generator using MATLAB, FGPA prototyping, and custom silicon design. This random number generator is able to use a truly random CMOS source to generate the random number. Statistical benchmarks are used to test the results and to show that the design works. Thus the proposed random number generator will be useful for online encryption and security.
Date: December 2011
Creator: Franco, Juan
Partner: UNT Libraries

GPS CaPPture: a System for GPS Trajectory Collection, Processing, and Destination Prediction

Description: In the United States, smartphone ownership surpassed 69.5 million in February 2011 with a large portion of those users (20%) downloading applications (apps) that enhance the usability of a device by adding additional functionality. a large percentage of apps are written specifically to utilize the geographical position of a mobile device. One of the prime factors in developing location prediction models is the use of historical data to train such a model. with larger sets of training data, prediction algorithms become more accurate; however, the use of historical data can quickly become a downfall if the GPS stream is not collected or processed correctly. Inaccurate or incomplete or even improperly interpreted historical data can lead to the inability to develop accurately performing prediction algorithms. As GPS chipsets become the standard in the ever increasing number of mobile devices, the opportunity for the collection of GPS data increases remarkably. the goal of this study is to build a comprehensive system that addresses the following challenges: (1) collection of GPS data streams in a manner such that the data is highly usable and has a reduction in errors; (2) processing and reduction of the collected data in order to prepare it and make it highly usable for the creation of prediction algorithms; (3) creation of prediction/labeling algorithms at such a level that they are viable for commercial use. This study identifies the key research problems toward building the CaPPture (collection, processing, prediction) system.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Griffin, Terry W.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Cuff-less Blood Pressure Measurement Using a Smart Phone

Description: Blood pressure is vital sign information that physicians often need as preliminary data for immediate intervention during emergency situations or for regular monitoring of people with cardiovascular diseases. Despite the availability of portable blood pressure meters in the market, they are not regularly carried by people, creating a need for an ultra-portable measurement platform or device that can be easily carried and used at all times. One such device is the smartphone which, according to comScore survey is used by 26.2% of the US adult population. the mass production of these phones with built-in sensors and high computation power has created numerous possibilities for application development in different domains including biomedical. Motivated by this capability and their extensive usage, this thesis focuses on developing a blood pressure measurement platform on smartphones. Specifically, I developed a blood pressure measurement system on a smart phone using the built-in camera and a customized external microphone. the system consists of first obtaining heart beats using the microphone and finger pulse with the camera, and finally calculating the blood pressure using the recorded data. I developed techniques for finding the best location for obtaining the data, making the system usable by all categories of people. the proposed system resulted in accuracies between 90-100%, when compared to traditional blood pressure meters. the second part of this thesis presents a new system for remote heart beat monitoring using the smart phone. with the proposed system, heart beats can be transferred live by patients and monitored by physicians remotely for diagnosis. the proposed blood pressure measurement and remote monitoring systems will be able to facilitate information acquisition and decision making by the 9-1-1 operators.
Date: May 2012
Creator: Jonnada, Srikanth
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

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
Partner: UNT Libraries

Multi-perspective, Multi-modal Image Registration and Fusion

Description: Multi-modal image fusion is an active research area with many civilian and military applications. Fusion is defined as strategic combination of information collected by various sensors from different locations or different types in order to obtain a better understanding of an observed scene or situation. Fusion of multi-modal images cannot be completed unless these two modalities are spatially aligned. In this research, I consider two important problems. Multi-modal, multi-perspective image registration and decision level fusion of multi-modal images. In particular, LiDAR and visual imagery. Multi-modal image registration is a difficult task due to the different semantic interpretation of features extracted from each modality. This problem is decoupled into three sub-problems. The first step is identification and extraction of common features. The second step is the determination of corresponding points. The third step consists of determining the registration transformation parameters. Traditional registration methods use low level features such as lines and corners. Using these features require an extensive optimization search in order to determine the corresponding points. Many methods use global positioning systems (GPS), and a calibrated camera in order to obtain an initial estimate of the camera parameters. The advantages of our work over the previous works are the following. First, I used high level-features, which significantly reduce the search space for the optimization process. Second, the determination of corresponding points is modeled as an assignment problem between a small numbers of objects. On the other side, fusing LiDAR and visual images is beneficial, due to the different and rich characteristics of both modalities. LiDAR data contain 3D information, while images contain visual information. Developing a fusion technique that uses the characteristics of both modalities is very important. I establish a decision-level fusion technique using manifold models.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Belkhouche, Mohammed Yassine
Partner: UNT Libraries

Automatic Tagging of Communication Data

Description: Globally distributed software teams are widespread throughout industry. But finding reliable methods that can properly assess a team's activities is a real challenge. Methods such as surveys and manual coding of activities are too time consuming and are often unreliable. Recent advances in information retrieval and linguistics, however, suggest that automated and/or semi-automated text classification algorithms could be an effective way of finding differences in the communication patterns among individuals and groups. Communication among group members is frequent and generates a significant amount of data. Thus having a web-based tool that can automatically analyze the communication patterns among global software teams could lead to a better understanding of group performance. The goal of this thesis, therefore, is to compare automatic and semi-automatic measures of communication and evaluate their effectiveness in classifying different types of group activities that occur within a global software development project. In order to achieve this goal, we developed a web-based component that can be used to help clean and classify communication activities. The component was then used to compare different automated text classification techniques on various group activities to determine their effectiveness in correctly classifying data from a global software development team project.
Date: August 2012
Creator: Hoyt, Matthew Ray
Partner: UNT Libraries

A Smooth-turn Mobility Model for Airborne Networks

Description: In this article, I introduce a novel airborne network mobility model, called the Smooth Turn Mobility Model, that captures the correlation of acceleration for airborne vehicles across time and spatial coordinates. E?ective routing in airborne networks (ANs) relies on suitable mobility models that capture the random movement pattern of airborne vehicles. As airborne vehicles cannot make sharp turns as easily as ground vehicles do, the widely used mobility models for Mobile Ad Hoc Networks such as Random Waypoint and Random Direction models fail. Our model is realistic in capturing the tendency of airborne vehicles toward making straight trajectory and smooth turns with large radius, and whereas is simple enough for tractable connectivity analysis and routing design.
Date: August 2012
Creator: He, Dayin
Partner: UNT Libraries

Rhythms of Interaction in Global Software Development Teams

Description: Researchers have speculated that global software teams have activity patterns that are dictated by work-place schedules or a client's need. Similar patterns have been suggested for individuals enrolled in distant learning projects that require students to post feedback in response to questions or assignments. Researchers tend to accept the notion that students' temporal patterns adjust to academic or social calendars and are a result of choices made within these constraints. Although there is some evidence that culture do have an impact on communication activity behavior, there is not a clear how each of these factors may relate to work done in online groups. This particular study represents a new approach to studying student-group communication activities and also pursues an alternative approach by using activity data from students participating in a global software development project to generate a variety of complex measures that capture patterns about when students work. Students work habits are also often determined by where they live and what they are working on. Moreover, students tend to work on group projects in cycles, which correspond to a start, middle, and end time period. Knowledge obtained from this study should provide insight into current empirical research on global software development by defining the different time variables that can also be used to compare temporal patterns found in real-world teams. It should also inform studies about student team projects by helping instructors schedule group activities.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Kesavan Nair Meena, Suneetha Nair
Partner: UNT Libraries

Extracting Temporally-Anchored Knowledge from Tweets

Description: Twitter has quickly become one of the most popular social media sites. It has 313 million monthly active users, and 500 million tweets are published daily. With the massive number of tweets, Twitter users share information about a location along with the temporal awareness. In this work, I focus on tweets where author of the tweets exclusively mentions a location in the tweet. Natural language processing systems can leverage wide range of information from the tweets to build applications like recommender systems that predict the location of the author. This kind of system can be used to increase the visibility of the targeted audience and can also provide recommendations interesting places to visit, hotels to stay, restaurants to eat, targeted on-line advertising, and co-traveler matching based on the temporal information extracted from a tweet. In this work I determine if the author of the tweet is present in the mentioned location of the tweet. I also determine if the author is present in the location before tweeting, while tweeting, or after tweeting. I introduce 5 temporal tags (before the tweet but > 24 hours; before the tweet but < 24 hours; during the tweet is posted; after the tweet is posted but < 24 hours; and after the tweet is posted but > 24 hours). The major contributions of this paper are: (1) creation of a corpus of 1062 tweets containing 1200 location named entities, containing annotations whether author of a tweet is or is not located in the location he tweets about with respect to 5 temporal tags; (2) detailed corpus analysis including real annotation examples and label distributions per temporal tag; (3) detailed inter-annotator agreements, including Cohen's kappa, Krippendorff's alpha and confusion matrices per temporal tag; (4) label distributions and analysis; and (5) supervised learning experiments, along with ...
Date: May 2018
Creator: Doudagiri, Vivek Reddy
Partner: UNT Libraries

Detecting Component Failures and Critical Components in Safety Critical Embedded Systems using Fault Tree Analysis

Description: Component failures can result in catastrophic behaviors in safety critical embedded systems, sometimes resulting in loss of life. Component failures can be treated as off nominal behaviors (ONBs) with respect to the components and sub systems involved in an embedded system. A lot of research is being carried out to tackle the problem of ONBs. These approaches are mainly focused on the states (i.e., desired and undesired states of a system at a given point of time to detect ONBs). In this paper, an approach is discussed to detect component failures and critical components of an embedded system. The approach is based on fault tree analysis (FTA), applied to the requirements specification of embedded systems at design time to find out the relationship between individual component failures and overall system failure. FTA helps in determining both qualitative and quantitative relationship between component failures and system failure. Analyzing the system at design time helps in detecting component failures and critical components and helps in devising strategies to mitigate component failures at design time and improve overall safety and reliability of a system.
Date: May 2018
Creator: Bhandaram, Abhinav
Partner: UNT Libraries

Design and Implementation of Large-Scale Wireless Sensor Networks for Environmental Monitoring Applications

Description: Environmental monitoring represents a major application domain for wireless sensor networks (WSN). However, despite significant advances in recent years, there are still many challenging issues to be addressed to exploit the full potential of the emerging WSN technology. In this dissertation, we introduce the design and implementation of low-power wireless sensor networks for long-term, autonomous, and near-real-time environmental monitoring applications. We have developed an out-of-box solution consisting of a suite of software, protocols and algorithms to provide reliable data collection with extremely low power consumption. Two wireless sensor networks based on the proposed solution have been deployed in remote field stations to monitor soil moisture along with other environmental parameters. As parts of the ever-growing environmental monitoring cyberinfrastructure, these networks have been integrated into the Texas Environmental Observatory system for long-term operation. Environmental measurement and network performance results are presented to demonstrate the capability, reliability and energy-efficiency of the network.
Date: May 2010
Creator: Yang, Jue
Partner: UNT Libraries

Elicitation of Protein-Protein Interactions from Biomedical Literature Using Association Rule Discovery

Description: Extracting information from a stack of data is a tedious task and the scenario is no different in proteomics. Volumes of research papers are published about study of various proteins in several species, their interactions with other proteins and identification of protein(s) as possible biomarker in causing diseases. It is a challenging task for biologists to keep track of these developments manually by reading through the literatures. Several tools have been developed by computer linguists to assist identification, extraction and hypotheses generation of proteins and protein-protein interactions from biomedical publications and protein databases. However, they are confronted with the challenges of term variation, term ambiguity, access only to abstracts and inconsistencies in time-consuming manual curation of protein and protein-protein interaction repositories. This work attempts to attenuate the challenges by extracting protein-protein interactions in humans and elicit possible interactions using associative rule mining on full text, abstracts and captions from figures available from publicly available biomedical literature databases. Two such databases are used in our study: Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) and PubMed Central (PMC). A corpus is built using articles based on search terms. A dataset of more than 38,000 protein-protein interactions from the Human Protein Reference Database (HPRD) is cross-referenced to validate discovered interactive pairs. A set of an optimal size of possible binary protein-protein interactions is generated to be made available for clinician or biological validation. A significant change in the number of new associations was found by altering the thresholds for support and confidence metrics. This study narrows down the limitations for biologists in keeping pace with discovery of protein-protein interactions via manually reading the literature and their needs to validate each and every possible interaction.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Samuel, Jarvie John
Partner: UNT Libraries

Socioscope: Human Relationship and Behavior Analysis in Mobile Social Networks

Description: The widely used mobile phone, as well as its related technologies had opened opportunities for a complete change on how people interact and build relationship across geographic and time considerations. The convenience of instant communication by mobile phones that broke the barrier of space and time is evidently the key motivational point on why such technologies so important in people's life and daily activities. Mobile phones have become the most popular communication tools. Mobile phone technology is apparently changing our relationship to each other in our work and lives. The impact of new technologies on people's lives in social spaces gives us the chance to rethink the possibilities of technologies in social interaction. Accordingly, mobile phones are basically changing social relations in ways that are intricate to measure with any precision. In this dissertation I propose a socioscope model for social network, relationship and human behavior analysis based on mobile phone call detail records. Because of the diversities and complexities of human social behavior, one technique cannot detect different features of human social behaviors. Therefore I use multiple probability and statistical methods for quantifying social groups, relationships and communication patterns, for predicting social tie strengths and for detecting human behavior changes and unusual consumption events. I propose a new reciprocity index to measure the level of reciprocity between users and their communication partners. The experimental results show that this approach is effective. Among other applications, this work is useful for homeland security, detection of unwanted calls (e.g., spam), telecommunication presence, and marketing. In my future work I plan to analyze and study the social network dynamics and evolution.
Date: August 2010
Creator: Zhang, Huiqi
Partner: UNT Libraries

Privacy Management for Online Social Networks

Description: One in seven people in the world use online social networking for a variety of purposes -- to keep in touch with friends and family, to share special occasions, to broadcast announcements, and more. The majority of society has been bought into this new era of communication technology, which allows everyone on the internet to share information with friends. Since social networking has rapidly become a main form of communication, holes in privacy have become apparent. It has come to the point that the whole concept of sharing information requires restructuring. No longer are online social networks simply technology available for a niche market; they are in use by all of society. Thus it is important to not forget that a sense of privacy is inherent as an evolutionary by-product of social intelligence. In any context of society, privacy needs to be a part of the system in order to help users protect themselves from others. This dissertation attempts to address the lack of privacy management in online social networks by designing models which understand the social science behind how we form social groups and share information with each other. Social relationship strength was modeled using activity patterns, vocabulary usage, and behavioral patterns. In addition, automatic configuration for default privacy settings was proposed to help prevent new users from leaking personal information. This dissertation aims to mobilize a new era of social networking that understands social aspects of human network, and uses that knowledge to honor users' privacy.
Date: August 2013
Creator: Baatarjav, Enkh-Amgalan
Partner: UNT Libraries

Memory Management and Garbage Collection Algorithms for Java-Based Prolog

Description: Implementing a Prolog Runtime System in a language like Java which provides its own automatic memory management and safety features such as built--in index checking and array initialization requires a consistent approach to memory management based on a simple ultimate goal: minimizing total memory management time and extra space involved. The total memory management time for Jinni is made up of garbage collection time both for Java and Jinni itself. Extra space is usually requested at Jinni's garbage collection. This goal motivates us to find a simple and practical garbage collection algorithm and implementation for our Prolog engine. In this thesis we survey various algorithms already proposed and offer our own contribution to the study of garbage collection by improvements and optimizations for some classic algorithms. We implemented these algorithms based on the dynamic array algorithm for an all--dynamic Prolog engine (JINNI 2000). The comparisons of our implementations versus the originally proposed algorithm allow us to draw informative conclusions on their theoretical complexity model and their empirical effectiveness.
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Date: August 2001
Creator: Zhou, Qinan
Partner: UNT Libraries

Dynamic Resource Management in RSVP- Controlled Unicast Networks

Description: Resources are said to be fragmented in the network when they are available in non-contiguous blocks, and calls are dropped as they may not end sufficient resources. Hence, available resources may remain unutilized. In this thesis, the effect of resource fragmentation (RF) on RSVP-controlled networks was studied and new algorithms were proposed to reduce the effect of RF. In order to minimize the effect of RF, resources in the network are dynamically redistributed on different paths to make them available in contiguous blocks. Extra protocol messages are introduced to facilitate resource redistribution in the network. The Dynamic Resource Redistribution (DRR) algorithm when used in conjunction with RSVP, not only increased the number of calls accommodated into the network but also increased the overall resource utilization of the network. Issues such as how many resources need to be redistributed and of which call(s), and how these choices affect the redistribution process were investigated. Further, various simulation experiments were conducted to study the performance of the DRR algorithm on different network topologies with varying traffic characteristics.
Date: December 2001
Creator: Iyengar Prasanna, Venkatesan
Partner: UNT Libraries

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.
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Date: May 2001
Creator: Tuck, Terry W.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Optimizing Non-pharmaceutical Interventions Using Multi-coaffiliation Networks

Description: Computational modeling is of fundamental significance in mapping possible disease spread, and designing strategies for its mitigation. Conventional contact networks implement the simulation of interactions as random occurrences, presenting public health bodies with a difficult trade off between a realistic model granularity and robust design of intervention strategies. Recently, researchers have been investigating the use of agent-based models (ABMs) to embrace the complexity of real world interactions. At the same time, theoretical approaches provide epidemiologists with general optimization models in which demographics are intrinsically simplified. The emerging study of affiliation networks and co-affiliation networks provide an alternative to such trade off. Co-affiliation networks maintain the realism innate to ABMs while reducing the complexity of contact networks into distinctively smaller k-partite graphs, were each partition represent a dimension of the social model. This dissertation studies the optimization of intervention strategies for infectious diseases, mainly distributed in school systems. First, concepts of synthetic populations and affiliation networks are extended to propose a modified algorithm for the synthetic reconstruction of populations. Second, the definition of multi-coaffiliation networks is presented as the main social model in which risk is quantified and evaluated, thereby obtaining vulnerability indications for each school in the system. Finally, maximization of the mitigation coverage and minimization of the overall cost of intervention strategies are proposed and compared, based on centrality measures.
Date: May 2013
Creator: Loza, Olivia G.
Partner: UNT Libraries

Modeling Alcohol Consumption Using Blog Data

Description: How do the content and writing style of people who drink alcohol beverages stand out from non-drinkers? How much information can we learn about a person's alcohol consumption behavior by reading text that they have authored? This thesis attempts to extend the methods deployed in authorship attribution and authorship profiling research into the domain of automatically identifying the human action of drinking alcohol beverages. I examine how a psycholinguistics dictionary (the Linguistics Inquiry and Word Count lexicon, developed by James Pennebaker), together with Kenneth Burke's concept of words as symbols of human action, and James Wertsch's concept of mediated action provide a framework for analyzing meaningful data patterns from the content of blogs written by consumers of alcohol beverages. The contributions of this thesis to the research field are twofold. First, I show that it is possible to automatically identify blog posts that have content related to the consumption of alcohol beverages. And second, I provide a framework and tools to model human behavior through text analysis of blog data.
Date: May 2013
Creator: Koh, Kok Chuan
Partner: UNT Libraries

Practical Cursive Script Recognition

Description: This research focused on the off-line cursive script recognition application. The problem is very large and difficult and there is much room for improvement in every aspect of the problem. Many different aspects of this problem were explored in pursuit of solutions to create a more practical and usable off-line cursive script recognizer than is currently available.
Date: August 1995
Creator: Carroll, Johnny Glen, 1953-
Partner: UNT Libraries