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RAProp: ranking tweets by exploiting the tweet/user/web ecosystem

Description

The increasing popularity of Twitter renders improved trustworthiness and relevance assessment of tweets much more important for search. However, given the limitations on the size of tweets, it is hard to extract measures for ranking from the tweet's content alone.

The increasing popularity of Twitter renders improved trustworthiness and relevance assessment of tweets much more important for search. However, given the limitations on the size of tweets, it is hard to extract measures for ranking from the tweet's content alone. I propose a method of ranking tweets by generating a reputation score for each tweet that is based not just on content, but also additional information from the Twitter ecosystem that consists of users, tweets, and the web pages that tweets link to. This information is obtained by modeling the Twitter ecosystem as a three-layer graph. The reputation score is used to power two novel methods of ranking tweets by propagating the reputation over an agreement graph based on tweets' content similarity. Additionally, I show how the agreement graph helps counter tweet spam. An evaluation of my method on 16~million tweets from the TREC 2011 Microblog Dataset shows that it doubles the precision over baseline Twitter Search and achieves higher precision than current state of the art method. I present a detailed internal empirical evaluation of RAProp in comparison to several alternative approaches proposed by me, as well as external evaluation in comparison to the current state of the art method.

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Date Created
2013

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We built this town: raising activity awareness through the workplace using gamification

Description

The wide adoption and continued advancement of information and communications technologies (ICT) have made it easier than ever for individuals and groups to stay connected over long distances. These advances have greatly contributed in dramatically changing the dynamics of the

The wide adoption and continued advancement of information and communications technologies (ICT) have made it easier than ever for individuals and groups to stay connected over long distances. These advances have greatly contributed in dramatically changing the dynamics of the modern day workplace to the point where it is now commonplace to see large, distributed multidisciplinary teams working together on a daily basis. However, in this environment, motivating, understanding, and valuing the diverse contributions of individual workers in collaborative enterprises becomes challenging. To address these issues, this thesis presents the goals, design, and implementation of Taskville, a distributed workplace game played by teams on large, public displays. Taskville uses a city building metaphor to represent the completion of individual and group tasks within an organization. Promising results from two usability studies and two longitudinal studies at a multidisciplinary school demonstrate that Taskville supports personal reflection and improves team awareness through an engaging workplace activity.

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Date Created
2013

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A cloud based continuous delivery software developing system on Vlab platform

Description

Continuous Delivery, as one of the youngest and most popular member of agile model family, has become a popular concept and method in software development industry recently. Instead of the traditional software development method, which requirements and solutions must be

Continuous Delivery, as one of the youngest and most popular member of agile model family, has become a popular concept and method in software development industry recently. Instead of the traditional software development method, which requirements and solutions must be fixed before starting software developing, it promotes adaptive planning, evolutionary development and delivery, and encourages rapid and flexible response to change. However, several problems prevent Continuous Delivery to be introduced into education world. Taking into the consideration of the barriers, we propose a new Cloud based Continuous Delivery Software Developing System. This system is designed to fully utilize the whole life circle of software developing according to Continuous Delivery concepts in a virtualized environment in Vlab platform.

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Date Created
2013

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Decentralized information search

Description

Our research focuses on finding answers through decentralized search, for complex, imprecise queries (such as "Which is the best hair salon nearby?") in situations where there is a spatiotemporal constraint (say answer needs to be found within 15 minutes) associated

Our research focuses on finding answers through decentralized search, for complex, imprecise queries (such as "Which is the best hair salon nearby?") in situations where there is a spatiotemporal constraint (say answer needs to be found within 15 minutes) associated with the query. In general, human networks are good in answering imprecise queries. We try to use the social network of a person to answer his query. Our research aims at designing a framework that exploits the user's social network in order to maximize the answers for a given query. Exploiting an user's social network has several challenges. The major challenge is that the user's immediate social circle may not possess the answer for the given query, and hence the framework designed needs to carry out the query diffusion process across the network. The next challenge involves in finding the right set of seeds to pass the query to in the user's social circle. One other challenge is to incentivize people in the social network to respond to the query and thereby maximize the quality and quantity of replies. Our proposed framework is a mobile application where an individual can either respond to the query or forward it to his friends. We simulated the query diffusion process in three types of graphs: Small World, Random and Preferential Attachment. Given a type of network and a particular query, we carried out the query diffusion by selecting seeds based on attributes of the seed. The main attributes are Topic relevance, Replying or Forwarding probability and Time to Respond. We found that there is a considerable increase in the number of replies attained, even without saturating the user's network, if we adopt an optimal seed selection process. We found the output of the optimal algorithm to be satisfactory as the number of replies received at the interrogator's end was close to three times the number of neighbors an interrogator has. We addressed the challenge of incentivizing people to respond by associating a particular amount of points for each query asked, and awarding the same to people involved in answering the query. Thus, we aim to design a mobile application based on our proposed framework so that it helps in maximizing the replies for the interrogator's query by diffusing the query across his/her social network.

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Date Created
2013

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Study of an epidemic multiple behavior diffusion model in a resource constrained social network

Description

In contemporary society, sustainability and public well-being have been pressing challenges. Some of the important questions are:how can sustainable practices, such as reducing carbon emission, be encouraged? , How can a healthy lifestyle be maintained?Even though individuals are interested, they

In contemporary society, sustainability and public well-being have been pressing challenges. Some of the important questions are:how can sustainable practices, such as reducing carbon emission, be encouraged? , How can a healthy lifestyle be maintained?Even though individuals are interested, they are unable to adopt these behaviors due to resource constraints. Developing a framework to enable cooperative behavior adoption and to sustain it for a long period of time is a major challenge. As a part of developing this framework, I am focusing on methods to understand behavior diffusion over time. Facilitating behavior diffusion with resource constraints in a large population is qualitatively different from promoting cooperation in small groups. Previous work in social sciences has derived conditions for sustainable cooperative behavior in small homogeneous groups. However, how groups of individuals having resource constraint co-operate over extended periods of time is not well understood, and is the focus of my thesis. I develop models to analyze behavior diffusion over time through the lens of epidemic models with the condition that individuals have resource constraint. I introduce an epidemic model SVRS ( Susceptible-Volatile-Recovered-Susceptible) to accommodate multiple behavior adoption. I investigate the longitudinal effects of behavior diffusion by varying different properties of an individual such as resources,threshold and cost of behavior adoption. I also consider how behavior adoption of an individual varies with her knowledge of global adoption. I evaluate my models on several synthetic topologies like complete regular graph, preferential attachment and small-world and make some interesting observations. Periodic injection of early adopters can help in boosting the spread of behaviors and sustain it for a longer period of time. Also, behavior propagation for the classical epidemic model SIRS (Susceptible-Infected-Recovered-Susceptible) does not continue for an infinite period of time as per conventional wisdom. One interesting future direction is to investigate how behavior adoption is affected when number of individuals in a network changes. The affects on behavior adoption when availability of behavior changes with time can also be examined.

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Date Created
2013

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IISS a framework to influence individuals through social signals on a social network

Description

Contemporary online social platforms present individuals with social signals in the form of news feed on their peers' activities. On networks such as Facebook, Quora, network operator decides how that information is shown to an individual. Then the user, with

Contemporary online social platforms present individuals with social signals in the form of news feed on their peers' activities. On networks such as Facebook, Quora, network operator decides how that information is shown to an individual. Then the user, with her own interests and resource constraints selectively acts on a subset of items presented to her. The network operator again, shows that activity to a selection of peers, and thus creating a behavioral loop. That mechanism of interaction and information flow raises some very interesting questions such as: can network operator design social signals to promote a particular activity like sustainability, public health care awareness, or to promote a specific product? The focus of my thesis is to answer that question. In this thesis, I develop a framework to personalize social signals for users to guide their activities on an online platform. As the result, we gradually nudge the activity distribution on the platform from the initial distribution p to the target distribution q. My work is particularly applicable to guiding collaborations, guiding collective actions, and online advertising. In particular, I first propose a probabilistic model on how users behave and how information flows on the platform. The main part of this thesis after that discusses the Influence Individuals through Social Signals (IISS) framework. IISS consists of four main components: (1) Learner: it learns users' interests and characteristics from their historical activities using Bayesian model, (2) Calculator: it uses gradient descent method to compute the intermediate activity distributions, (3) Selector: it selects users who can be influenced to adopt or drop specific activities, (4) Designer: it personalizes social signals for each user. I evaluate the performance of IISS framework by simulation on several network topologies such as preferential attachment, small world, and random. I show that the framework gradually nudges users' activities to approach the target distribution. I use both simulation and mathematical method to analyse convergence properties such as how fast and how close we can approach the target distribution. When the number of activities is 3, I show that for about 45% of target distributions, we can achieve KL-divergence as low as 0.05. But for some other distributions KL-divergence can be as large as 0.5.

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Date Created
2014

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Online ET-LDA - joint modeling of events and their related tweets with online streaming data

Description

Micro-blogging platforms like Twitter have become some of the most popular sites for people to share and express their views and opinions about public events like debates, sports events or other news articles. These social updates by people complement the

Micro-blogging platforms like Twitter have become some of the most popular sites for people to share and express their views and opinions about public events like debates, sports events or other news articles. These social updates by people complement the written news articles or transcripts of events in giving the popular public opinion about these events. So it would be useful to annotate the transcript with tweets. The technical challenge is to align the tweets with the correct segment of the transcript. ET-LDA by Hu et al [9] addresses this issue by modeling the whole process with an LDA-based graphical model. The system segments the transcript into coherent and meaningful parts and also determines if a tweet is a general tweet about the event or it refers to a particular segment of the transcript. One characteristic of the Hu et al’s model is that it expects all the data to be available upfront and uses batch inference procedure. But in many cases we find that data is not available beforehand, and it is often streaming. In such cases it is infeasible to repeatedly run the batch inference algorithm. My thesis presents an online inference algorithm for the ET-LDA model, with a continuous stream of tweet data and compare their runtime and performance to existing algorithms.

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Date Created
2015

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Secure Mobile SDN

Description

The increasing usage of smart-phones and mobile devices in work environment and IT

industry has brought about unique set of challenges and opportunities. ARM architecture

in particular has evolved to a point where it supports implementations across wide spectrum

of performance points and

The increasing usage of smart-phones and mobile devices in work environment and IT

industry has brought about unique set of challenges and opportunities. ARM architecture

in particular has evolved to a point where it supports implementations across wide spectrum

of performance points and ARM based tablets and smart-phones are in demand. The

enhancements to basic ARM RISC architecture allow ARM to have high performance,

small code size, low power consumption and small silicon area. Users want their devices to

perform many tasks such as read email, play games, and run other online applications and

organizations no longer desire to provision and maintain individual’s IT equipment. The

term BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) has come into being from demand of such a work

setup and is one of the motivation of this research work. It brings many opportunities such

as increased productivity and reduced costs and challenges such as secured data access,

data leakage and amount of control by the organization.

To provision such a framework we need to bridge the gap from both organizations side

and individuals point of view. Mobile device users face issue of application delivery on

multiple platforms. For instance having purchased many applications from one proprietary

application store, individuals may want to move them to a different platform/device but

currently this is not possible. Organizations face security issues in providing such a solution

as there are many potential threats from allowing BYOD work-style such as unauthorized

access to data, attacks from the devices within and outside the network.

ARM based Secure Mobile SDN framework will resolve these issues and enable employees

to consolidate both personal and business calls and mobile data access on a single device.

To address application delivery issue we are introducing KVM based virtualization that

will allow host OS to run multiple guest OS. To address the security problem we introduce

SDN environment where host would be running bridged network of guest OS using Open

vSwitch . This would allow a remote controller to monitor the state of guest OS for making

important control and traffic flow decisions based on the situation.

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Created

Date Created
2015

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Improved, scalable, and personalized context recovery system: E-TweetSense

Description

Browsing Twitter users, or browsers, often find it increasingly cumbersome to attach meaning to tweets that are displayed on their timeline as they follow more and more users or pages. The tweets being browsed are created by Twitter users called

Browsing Twitter users, or browsers, often find it increasingly cumbersome to attach meaning to tweets that are displayed on their timeline as they follow more and more users or pages. The tweets being browsed are created by Twitter users called originators, and are of some significance to the browser who has chosen to subscribe to the tweets from the originator by following the originator. Although, hashtags are used to tag tweets in an effort to attach context to the tweets, many tweets do not have a hashtag. Such tweets are called orphan tweets and they adversely affect the experience of a browser.

A hashtag is a type of label or meta-data tag used in social networks and micro-blogging services which makes it easier for users to find messages with a specific theme or content. The context of a tweet can be defined as a set of one or more hashtags. Users often do not use hashtags to tag their tweets. This leads to the problem of missing context for tweets. To address the problem of missing hashtags, a statistical method was proposed which predicts most likely hashtags based on the social circle of an originator.

In this thesis, we propose to improve on the existing context recovery system by selectively limiting the candidate set of hashtags to be derived from the intimate circle of the originator rather than from every user in the social network of the originator. This helps in reducing the computation, increasing speed of prediction, scaling the system to originators with large social networks while still preserving most of the accuracy of the predictions. We also propose to not only derive the candidate hashtags from the social network of the originator but also derive the candidate hashtags based on the content of the tweet. We further propose to learn personalized statistical models according to the adoption patterns of different originators. This helps in not only identifying the personalized candidate set of hashtags based on the social circle and content of the tweets but also in customizing the hashtag adoption pattern to the originator of the tweet.

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Date Created
2015

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Sentimental bi-partite graph of political blogs

Description

Analysis of political texts, which contains a huge amount of personal political opinions, sentiments, and emotions towards powerful individuals, leaders, organizations, and a large number of people, is an interesting task, which can lead to discover interesting interactions between the

Analysis of political texts, which contains a huge amount of personal political opinions, sentiments, and emotions towards powerful individuals, leaders, organizations, and a large number of people, is an interesting task, which can lead to discover interesting interactions between the political parties and people. Recently, political blogosphere plays an increasingly important role in politics, as a forum for debating political issues. Most of the political weblogs are biased towards their political parties, and they generally express their sentiments towards their issues (i.e. leaders, topics etc.,) and also towards issues of the opposing parties. In this thesis, I have modeled the above interactions/debate as a sentimental bi-partite graph, a bi-partite graph with Blogs forming vertices of a disjoint set, and the issues (i.e. leaders, topics etc.,) forming the other disjoint set,and the edges between the two sets representing the sentiment of the blogs towards the issues. I have used American Political blog data to model the sentimental bi- partite graph, in particular, a set of popular political liberal and conservative blogs that have clearly declared positions. These blogs contain discussion about social, political, economic issues and related key individuals in their conservative/liberal view. To be more focused and more polarized, 22 most popular liberal/conservative blogs of a particular time period, May 2008 - October 2008(because of high intensity of debate and discussions), just before the presidential elections, was considered, involving around 23,800 articles. This thesis involves solving the questions: a) which is the most liberal/conservative blogs on the web? b) Who is on which side of debate and what are the issues? c) Who are the important leaders? d) How do you model the relationship between the participants of the debate and the underlying issues?

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Date Created
2012