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Comparative Analysis in Acquisition of Coding Skills

Description

Students learn in various ways \u2014 visualization, auditory, memorizing, or making analogies. Traditional lecturing in engineering courses and the learning styles of engineering students are inharmonious causing students to be at a disadvantage based on their learning style (Felder &

Students learn in various ways \u2014 visualization, auditory, memorizing, or making analogies. Traditional lecturing in engineering courses and the learning styles of engineering students are inharmonious causing students to be at a disadvantage based on their learning style (Felder & Silverman, 1988). My study analyzes the traditional approach to learning coding skills which is unnatural to engineering students with no previous exposure and examining if visual learning enhances introductory computer science education. Visual and text-based learning are evaluated to determine how students learn introductory coding skills and associated problem solving skills. My study was conducted to observe how the two types of learning aid the students in learning how to problem solve as well as how much knowledge can be obtained in a short period of time. The application used for visual learning was Scratch and Repl.it was used for text-based learning. Two exams were made to measure the progress made by each student. The topics covered by the exam were initialization, variable reassignment, output, if statements, if else statements, nested if statements, logical operators, arrays/lists, while loop, type casting, functions, object orientation, and sorting. Analysis of the data collected in the study allow us to observe whether the traditional method of teaching programming or block-based programming is more beneficial and in what topics of introductory computer science concepts.

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2018-05

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Computationally Efficient Object Detection Strategy from Water Surfaces with Specularity Removal

Description

Floating trash objects are very commonly seen on water bodies such as lakes, canals and rivers. With the increase of plastic goods and human activities near the water bodies, these trash objects can pile up and cause great harm to

Floating trash objects are very commonly seen on water bodies such as lakes, canals and rivers. With the increase of plastic goods and human activities near the water bodies, these trash objects can pile up and cause great harm to the surrounding environment. Using human workers to clear out these trash is a hazardous and time-consuming task. Employing autonomous robots for these tasks is a better approach since it is more efficient and faster than humans. However, for a robot to clean the trash objects, a good detection algorithm is required. Real-time object detection on water surfaces is a challenging issue due to nature of the environment and the volatility of the water surface. In addition to this, running an object detection algorithm on an on-board processor of a robot limits the amount of CPU consumption that the algorithm can utilize. In this thesis, a computationally low cost object detection approach for robust detection of trash objects that was run on an on-board processor of a multirotor is presented. To account for specular reflections on the water surface, we use a polarization filter and integrate a specularity removal algorithm on our approach as well. The challenges faced during testing and the means taken to eliminate those challenges are also discussed. The algorithm was compared with two other object detectors using 4 different metrics. The testing was carried out using videos of 5 different objects collected at different illumination conditions over a lake using a multirotor. The results indicate that our algorithm is much suitable to be employed in real-time since it had the highest processing speed of 21 FPS, the lowest CPU consumption of 37.5\% and considerably high precision and recall values in detecting the object.

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Date Created
2021

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Perturbation Robust Representations of Topological Persistence Diagrams

Description

Topological methods for data analysis present opportunities for enforcing certain invariances of broad interest in computer vision: including view-point in activity analysis, articulation in shape analysis, and measurement invariance in non-linear dynamical modeling. The increasing success of these methods is

Topological methods for data analysis present opportunities for enforcing certain invariances of broad interest in computer vision: including view-point in activity analysis, articulation in shape analysis, and measurement invariance in non-linear dynamical modeling. The increasing success of these methods is attributed to the complementary information that topology provides, as well as availability of tools for computing topological summaries such as persistence diagrams. However, persistence diagrams are multi-sets of points and hence it is not straightforward to fuse them with features used for contemporary machine learning tools like deep-nets. In this paper theoretically well-grounded approaches to develop novel perturbation robust topological representations are presented, with the long-term view of making them amenable to fusion with contemporary learning architectures. The proposed representation lives on a Grassmann manifold and hence can be efficiently used in machine learning pipelines.

The proposed representation.The efficacy of the proposed descriptor was explored on three applications: view-invariant activity analysis, 3D shape analysis, and non-linear dynamical modeling. Favorable results in both high-level recognition performance and improved performance in reduction of time-complexity when compared to other baseline methods are obtained.

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Agent

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Date Created
2017

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Computer Vision: Improving Detection and Tracking for Occluded and Blurry Settings

Description

Computer vision and tracking has become an area of great interest for many reasons, including self-driving cars, identification of vehicles and drivers on roads, and security camera monitoring, all of which are expanding in the modern digital era. When working

Computer vision and tracking has become an area of great interest for many reasons, including self-driving cars, identification of vehicles and drivers on roads, and security camera monitoring, all of which are expanding in the modern digital era. When working with practical systems that are constrained in multiple ways, such as video quality or viewing angle, algorithms that work well theoretically can have a high error rate in practice. This thesis studies several ways in which that error can be minimized.This thesis describes an application in a practical system. This project is to detect, track and count people entering different lanes at an airport security checkpoint, using CCTV videos as a primary source. This thesis improves an existing algorithm that is not optimized for this particular problem and has a high error rate when comparing the algorithm counts with the true volume of users.
The high error rate is caused by many people crowding into security lanes at the same time. The camera from which footage was captured is located at a poor angle, and thus many of the people occlude each other and cause the existing algorithm to miss people. One solution is to count only heads; since heads are smaller than a full body, they will occlude less, and in addition, since the camera is angled from above, the heads in back will appear higher and will not be occluded by people in front. One of the primary improvements to the algorithm is to combine both person detections and head detections to improve the accuracy.
The proposed algorithm also improves the accuracy of detections. The existing algorithm used the COCO training dataset, which works well in scenarios where people are visible and not occluded. However, the available video quality in this project was not very good, with people often blocking each other from the camera’s view. Thus, a different training set was needed that could detect people even in poor-quality frames and with occlusion. The new training set is the first algorithmic improvement, and although occasionally performing worse, corrected the error by 7.25% on average.

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Date Created
2021

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Monocular depth estimation with edge-based constraints and active learning

Description

The ubiquity of single camera systems in society has made improving monocular depth estimation a topic of increasing interest in the broader computer vision community. Inspired by recent work in sparse-to-dense depth estimation, this thesis focuses on sparse patterns generated

The ubiquity of single camera systems in society has made improving monocular depth estimation a topic of increasing interest in the broader computer vision community. Inspired by recent work in sparse-to-dense depth estimation, this thesis focuses on sparse patterns generated from feature detection based algorithms as opposed to regular grid sparse patterns used by previous work. This work focuses on using these feature-based sparse patterns to generate additional depth information by interpolating regions between clusters of samples that are in close proximity to each other. These interpolated sparse depths are used to enforce additional constraints on the network’s predictions. In addition to the improved depth prediction performance observed from incorporating the sparse sample information in the network compared to pure RGB-based methods, the experiments show that actively retraining a network on a small number of samples that deviate most from the interpolated sparse depths leads to better depth prediction overall.

This thesis also introduces a new metric, titled Edge, to quantify model performance in regions of an image that show the highest change in ground truth depth values along either the x-axis or the y-axis. Existing metrics in depth estimation like Root Mean Square Error(RMSE) and Mean Absolute Error(MAE) quantify model performance across the entire image and don’t focus on specific regions of an image that are hard to predict. To this end, the proposed Edge metric focuses specifically on these hard to classify regions. The experiments also show that using the Edge metric as a small addition to existing loss functions like L1 loss in current state-of-the-art methods leads to vastly improved performance in these hard to classify regions, while also improving performance across the board in every other metric.

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Created

Date Created
2019

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Towards Robust Machine Learning Models for Data Scarcity

Description

Recently, a well-designed and well-trained neural network can yield state-of-the-art results across many domains, including data mining, computer vision, and medical image analysis. But progress has been limited for tasks where labels are difficult or impossible to obtain. This reliance

Recently, a well-designed and well-trained neural network can yield state-of-the-art results across many domains, including data mining, computer vision, and medical image analysis. But progress has been limited for tasks where labels are difficult or impossible to obtain. This reliance on exhaustive labeling is a critical limitation in the rapid deployment of neural networks. Besides, the current research scales poorly to a large number of unseen concepts and is passively spoon-fed with data and supervision.

To overcome the above data scarcity and generalization issues, in my dissertation, I first propose two unsupervised conventional machine learning algorithms, hyperbolic stochastic coding, and multi-resemble multi-target low-rank coding, to solve the incomplete data and missing label problem. I further introduce a deep multi-domain adaptation network to leverage the power of deep learning by transferring the rich knowledge from a large-amount labeled source dataset. I also invent a novel time-sequence dynamically hierarchical network that adaptively simplifies the network to cope with the scarce data.

To learn a large number of unseen concepts, lifelong machine learning enjoys many advantages, including abstracting knowledge from prior learning and using the experience to help future learning, regardless of how much data is currently available. Incorporating this capability and making it versatile, I propose deep multi-task weight consolidation to accumulate knowledge continuously and significantly reduce data requirements in a variety of domains. Inspired by the recent breakthroughs in automatically learning suitable neural network architectures (AutoML), I develop a nonexpansive AutoML framework to train an online model without the abundance of labeled data. This work automatically expands the network to increase model capability when necessary, then compresses the model to maintain the model efficiency.

In my current ongoing work, I propose an alternative method of supervised learning that does not require direct labels. This could utilize various supervision from an image/object as a target value for supervising the target tasks without labels, and it turns out to be surprisingly effective. The proposed method only requires few-shot labeled data to train, and can self-supervised learn the information it needs and generalize to datasets not seen during training.

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Date Created
2020

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Towards Building an Intelligent Tutor for Gestural Languages using Concept Level Explainable AI

Description

Languages, specially gestural and sign languages, are best learned in immersive environments with rich feedback. Computer-Aided Language Learning (CALL) solu- tions for spoken languages have successfully incorporated some feedback mechanisms, but no such solution exists for signed languages. Computer Aided

Languages, specially gestural and sign languages, are best learned in immersive environments with rich feedback. Computer-Aided Language Learning (CALL) solu- tions for spoken languages have successfully incorporated some feedback mechanisms, but no such solution exists for signed languages. Computer Aided Sign Language Learning (CASLL) is a recent and promising field of research which is made feasible by advances in Computer Vision and Sign Language Recognition(SLR). Leveraging existing SLR systems for feedback based learning is not feasible because their decision processes are not human interpretable and do not facilitate conceptual feedback to learners. Thus, fundamental research is needed towards designing systems that are modular and explainable. The explanations from these systems can then be used to produce feedback to aid in the learning process.

In this work, I present novel approaches for the recognition of location, movement and handshape that are components of American Sign Language (ASL) using both wrist-worn sensors as well as webcams. Finally, I present Learn2Sign(L2S), a chat- bot based AI tutor that can provide fine-grained conceptual feedback to learners of ASL using the modular recognition approaches. L2S is designed to provide feedback directly relating to the fundamental concepts of ASL using an explainable AI. I present the system performance results in terms of Precision, Recall and F-1 scores as well as validation results towards the learning outcomes of users. Both retention and execution tests for 26 participants for 14 different ASL words learned using learn2sign is presented. Finally, I also present the results of a post-usage usability survey for all the participants. In this work, I found that learners who received live feedback on their executions improved their execution as well as retention performances. The average increase in execution performance was 28% points and that for retention was 4% points.

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Date Created
2020

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Context Integration for Reliable Anomaly Detection from Imagery Data for Supporting Civil Infrastructure Operation and Maintenance

Description

Imagery data has become important for civil infrastructure operation and

maintenance because imagery data can capture detailed visual information with high

frequencies. Computer vision can be useful for acquiring spatiotemporal details to

support the timely maintenance of critical civil infrastructures that serve society.

Imagery data has become important for civil infrastructure operation and

maintenance because imagery data can capture detailed visual information with high

frequencies. Computer vision can be useful for acquiring spatiotemporal details to

support the timely maintenance of critical civil infrastructures that serve society. Some

examples include: irrigation canals need to maintain the leaking sections to avoid water

loss; project engineers need to identify the deviating parts of the workflow to have the

project finished on time and within budget; detecting abnormal behaviors of air traffic

controllers is necessary to reduce operational errors and avoid air traffic accidents.

Identifying the outliers of the civil infrastructure can help engineers focus on targeted

areas. However, large amounts of imagery data bring the difficulty of information

overloading. Anomaly detection combined with contextual knowledge could help address

such information overloading to support the operation and maintenance of civil

infrastructures.

Some challenges make such identification of anomalies difficult. The first challenge is

that diverse large civil infrastructures span among various geospatial environments so

that previous algorithms cannot handle anomaly detection of civil infrastructures in

different environments. The second challenge is that the crowded and rapidly changing

workspaces can cause difficulties for the reliable detection of deviating parts of the

workflow. The third challenge is that limited studies examined how to detect abnormal

behaviors for diverse people in a real-time and non-intrusive manner. Using video andii

relevant data sources (e.g., biometric and communication data) could be promising but

still need a baseline of normal behaviors for outlier detection.

This dissertation presents an anomaly detection framework that uses contextual

knowledge, contextual information, and contextual data for filtering visual information

extracted by computer vision techniques (ADCV) to address the challenges described

above. The framework categorizes the anomaly detection of civil infrastructures into two

categories: with and without a baseline of normal events. The author uses three case

studies to illustrate how the developed approaches can address ADCV challenges in

different categories of anomaly detection. Detailed data collection and experiments

validate the developed ADCV approaches.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2020

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irRotate - Automatic Screen Rotation Based on Face Orientation using Infrared Cameras

Description

This work solves the problem of incorrect rotations while using handheld devices.Two new methods which improve upon previous works are explored. The first method
uses an infrared camera to capture and detect the user’s face position and orient the
display

This work solves the problem of incorrect rotations while using handheld devices.Two new methods which improve upon previous works are explored. The first method
uses an infrared camera to capture and detect the user’s face position and orient the
display accordingly. The second method utilizes gyroscopic and accelerometer data
as input to a machine learning model to classify correct and incorrect rotations.
Experiments show that these new methods achieve an overall success rate of 67%
for the first and 92% for the second which reaches a new high for this performance
category. The paper also discusses logistical and legal reasons for implementing this
feature into an end-user product from a business perspective. Lastly, the monetary
incentive behind a feature like irRotate in a consumer device and explore related
patents is discussed.

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Agent

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Date Created
2020

Physically Realizable Targeted Adversarial Attacks on Autonomous Driving

Description

Autonomous Driving (AD) systems are being researched and developed actively in recent days to solve the task of controlling the vehicles safely without human intervention. One method to solve such task is through deep Reinforcement Learning (RL) approach. In dee

Autonomous Driving (AD) systems are being researched and developed actively in recent days to solve the task of controlling the vehicles safely without human intervention. One method to solve such task is through deep Reinforcement Learning (RL) approach. In deep RL, the main objective is to find an optimal control behavior, often called policy performed by an agent, which is AD system in this case. This policy is usually learned through Deep Neural Networks (DNNs) based on the observations that the agent perceives along with rewards feedback received from environment.However, recent studies demonstrated the vulnerability of such control policies learned through deep RL against adversarial attacks. This raises concerns about the application of such policies to risk-sensitive tasks like AD. Previous adversarial attacks assume that the threats can be broadly realized in two ways: First one is targeted attacks through manipu- lation of the agent’s complete observation in real time and the other is untargeted attacks through manipulation of objects in environment. The former assumes full access to the agent’s observations at almost all time, while the latter has no control over outcomes of attack. This research investigates the feasibility of targeted attacks through physical adver- sarial objects in the environment, a threat that combines the effectiveness and practicality.
Through simulations on one of the popular AD systems, it is demonstrated that a fixed optimal policy can be malfunctioned over time by an attacker e.g., performing an unintended self-parking, when an adversarial object is present. The proposed approach is formulated in such a way that the attacker can learn a dynamics of the environment and also utilizes common knowledge of agent’s dynamics to realize the attack. Further, several experiments are conducted to show the effectiveness of the proposed attack on different driving scenarios empirically. Lastly, this work also studies robustness of object location, and trade-off between the attack strength and attack length based on proposed evaluation metrics.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
2021