Open Science Research Excellence

Open Science Index

Commenced in January 2007 Frequency: Monthly Edition: International Paper Count: 792

Dental Students’ Attitude towards Problem-Based Learning before and after Implementing 3D Electronic Dental Models

Objectives: In recent years, the Faculty of Dentistry of the University of Hong Kong have extended the implementation of 3D electronic models (e-models) into problem-based learning (PBL) of the Bachelor of Dental Surgery (BDS) curriculum, aiming at mutual enhancement of PBL teaching quality and the students’ skills in using e-models. This study focuses on the effectiveness of e-models serving as a tool to enhance the students’ skills and competences in PBL. Methods: The questionnaire surveys are conducted to measure 50 fourth-year BDS students’ attitude change between beginning and end of blended PBL tutorials. The response rate of this survey is 100%. Results: The results of this study show the students’ agreement on enhancement of their learning experience after e-model implementation and their expectation to have more blended PBL courses in the future. The potential of e-models in cultivating students’ self-learning skills reduces their dependence on others, while improving their communication skills to argue about pros and cons of different treatment options. The students’ independent thinking ability and problem solving skills are promoted by e-model implementation, resulting in better decision making in treatment planning. Conclusion: It is important for future dental education curriculum planning to cope with the students’ needs, and offer support in the form of software, hardware and facilitators’ assistance for better e-model implementation.

The Impact of Gamification on Self-Assessment for English Language Learners in Saudi Arabia
Continuous self-assessment becomes crucial in self-paced online learning environments. Students often depend on themselves to assess their progress; which is considered an essential requirement for any successful learning process. Today’s education institutions face major problems around student motivation and engagement. Thus, personalized e-learning systems aim to help and guide the students. Gamification provides an opportunity to help students for self-assessment and social comparison with other students through attempting to harness the motivational power of games and apply it to the learning environment. Furthermore, Open Social Student Modeling (OSSM) as considered as the latest user modeling technologies is believed to improve students’ self-assessment and to allow them to social comparison with other students. This research integrates OSSM approach and gamification concepts in order to provide self-assessment for English language learners at King Abdulaziz University (KAU). This is achieved through an interactive visual representation of their learning progress.
Project Management at University: Towards an Evaluation Process around Cooperative Learning

The enrollment in current Master's degree programs usually pursues gaining the expertise required in real-life workplaces. The experience we present here concerns the learning process of "Project Management Methodology (PMM)", around a cooperative/collaborative mechanism aimed at affording students measurable learning goals and providing the teacher with the ability of focusing on the weaknesses detected. We have designed a mixed summative/formative evaluation, which assures curriculum engage while enriches the comprehension of PMM key concepts. In this experience we converted the students into active actors in the evaluation process itself and we endowed ourselves as teachers with a flexible process in which along with qualifications (score), other attitudinal feedback arises. Despite the high level of self-affirmation on their discussion within the interactive assessment sessions, they ultimately have exhibited a great ability to review and correct the wrong reasoning when that was the case.

Multi-Level Air Quality Classification in China Using Information Gain and Support Vector Machine

Machine Learning and Data Mining are the two important tools for extracting useful information and knowledge from large datasets. In machine learning, classification is a wildly used technique to predict qualitative variables and is generally preferred over regression from an operational point of view. Due to the enormous increase in air pollution in various countries especially China, Air Quality Classification has become one of the most important topics in air quality research and modelling. This study aims at introducing a hybrid classification model based on information theory and Support Vector Machine (SVM) using the air quality data of four cities in China namely Beijing, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Tianjin from Jan 1, 2014 to April 30, 2016. China's Ministry of Environmental Protection has classified the daily air quality into 6 levels namely Serious Pollution, Severe Pollution, Moderate Pollution, Light Pollution, Good and Excellent based on their respective Air Quality Index (AQI) values. Using the information theory, information gain (IG) is calculated and feature selection is done for both categorical features and continuous numeric features. Then SVM Machine Learning algorithm is implemented on the selected features with cross-validation. The final evaluation reveals that the IG and SVM hybrid model performs better than SVM (alone), Artificial Neural Network (ANN) and K-Nearest Neighbours (KNN) models in terms of accuracy as well as complexity.

Classification of Computer Generated Images from Photographic Images Using Convolutional Neural Networks
This paper presents a deep-learning mechanism for classifying computer generated images and photographic images. The proposed method accounts for a convolutional layer capable of automatically learning correlation between neighbouring pixels. In the current form, Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) will learn features based on an image's content instead of the structural features of the image. The layer is particularly designed to subdue an image's content and robustly learn the sensor pattern noise features (usually inherited from image processing in a camera) as well as the statistical properties of images. The paper was assessed on latest natural and computer generated images, and it was concluded that it performs better than the current state of the art methods.
Improving Students’ Participation in Group Tasks: Case Study of Adama Science and Technology University

Group task is one method to create the conducive environment for the active teaching-learning process. Performing group task with active involvement of students will benefit the students in many ways. However, in most cases all students do not participate actively in the group task, and hence the intended benefits are not acquired. This paper presents the improvements of students’ participation in the group task and learning from the group task by introducing different techniques to enhance students’ participation. For the purpose of this research Carpentry and Joinery II (WT-392) course from Wood Technology Department at Adama Science and Technology University was selected, and five groups were formed. Ten group tasks were prepared and the first five group tasks were distributed to the five groups in the first day without introducing the techniques that are used to enhance participation of students in the group task. On another day, the other five group tasks were distributed to the same groups and various techniques were introduced to enhance students’ participation in the group task. The improvements of students’ learning from the group task after the implementation of the techniques. After implementing the techniques the evaluation showed that significant improvements were obtained in the students’ participation and learning from the group task.

Semi-Supervised Outlier Detection Using a Generative and Adversary Framework
In many outlier detection tasks, only training data belonging to one class, i.e., the positive class, is available. The task is then to predict a new data point as belonging either to the positive class or to the negative class, in which case the data point is considered an outlier. For this task, we propose a novel corrupted Generative Adversarial Network (CorGAN). In the adversarial process of training CorGAN, the Generator generates outlier samples for the negative class, and the Discriminator is trained to distinguish the positive training data from the generated negative data. The proposed framework is evaluated using an image dataset and a real-world network intrusion dataset. Our outlier-detection method achieves state-of-the-art performance on both tasks.
Availability, Accessibility and Utilization of Information and Communication Technology in Teaching and Learning Islamic Studies in Colleges of Education, North-Eastern, Nigeria

The use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT) in tertiary institutions by lecturers and students has become a necessity for the enhancement of quality teaching and learning. This study examined availability, accessibility and utilization of ICT in Teaching-Learning Islamic Studies in Colleges of Education, North-East, Nigeria. The study adopted multi-stage sampling technique, in which, five out of the eleven Colleges of Education (both Federal and State owned) were purposively selected for the study. Primary data was drawn from the respondents by the use of questionnaire, interviews and observations. The results of the study, generally, indicate that the availability and accessibility to ICT facilities in Colleges of Education in North-East, Nigeria, especially in teaching/learning delivery of Islamic studies were relatively inadequate and rare to lecturers and students. The study further reveals that the respondents’ level of utilization of ICT is low and only few computer packages and internet services were involved in the ICT utilization, which is yet to reach the real expected situation of the globalization and advancement in the application of ICT if compared to other parts of the world, as far as the teaching and learning of Islamic studies is concerned. Observations and conclusion were drawn from the findings and finally, recommendations on how to improve on ICT availability, accessibility and utilization in teaching/ learning were suggested.

Integrating Microcontroller-Based Projects in a Human-Computer Interaction Course

This paper describes the design and application of a short in-class project conducted in Algoma University’s Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) course taught at the Bachelor of Computer Science. The project was based on the Maker Movement (people using and reusing electronic components and everyday materials to tinker with technology and make interactive applications), where students applied low-cost and easy-to-use electronic components, the Arduino Uno microcontroller board, software tools, and everyday objects. Students collaborated in small teams by completing hands-on activities with them, making an interactive walking cane for blind people. At the end of the course, students filled out a Technology Acceptance Model version 2 (TAM2) questionnaire where they evaluated microcontroller boards’ applications in HCI classes. We also asked them about applying the Maker Movement in HCI classes. Results showed overall students’ positive opinions and response about using microcontroller boards in HCI classes. We strongly suggest that every HCI course should include practical activities related to tinkering with technology such as applying microcontroller boards, where students actively and constructively participate in teams for achieving learning objectives.

MITOS-RCNN: Mitotic Figure Detection in Breast Cancer Histopathology Images Using Region Based Convolutional Neural Networks
Studies estimate that there will be 266,120 new cases of invasive breast cancer and 40,920 breast cancer induced deaths in the year of 2018 alone. Despite the pervasiveness of this affliction, the current process to obtain an accurate breast cancer prognosis is tedious and time consuming. It usually requires a trained pathologist to manually examine histopathological images and identify the features that characterize various cancer severity levels. We propose MITOS-RCNN: a region based convolutional neural network (RCNN) geared for small object detection to accurately grade one of the three factors that characterize tumor belligerence described by the Nottingham Grading System: mitotic count. Other computational approaches to mitotic figure counting and detection do not demonstrate ample recall or precision to be clinically viable. Our models outperformed all previous participants in the ICPR 2012 challenge, the AMIDA 2013 challenge and the MITOS-ATYPIA-14 challenge along with recently published works. Our model achieved an F- measure score of 0.955, a 6.11% improvement in accuracy from the most accurate of the previously proposed models.
A Holistic Conceptual Measurement Framework for Assessing the Effectiveness and Viability of an Academic Program
In today’s very competitive higher education industry (HEI), HEIs are faced with the primary concern of developing, deploying, and sustaining high quality academic programs. Today, the HEI has well-established accreditation systems endorsed by a country’s legislation and institutions. The accreditation system is an educational pathway focused on the criteria and processes for evaluating educational programs. Although many aspects of the accreditation process highlight both the past and the present (prove), the “program review” assessment is "forward-looking assessment" (improve) and thus transforms the process into a continuing assessment activity rather than a periodic event. The purpose of this study is to propose a conceptual measurement framework for program review to be used by HEIs to undertake a robust and targeted approach to proactively and continuously review their academic programs to evaluate its practicality and effectiveness as well as to improve the education of the students. The proposed framework consists of two main components: program review principles and the program review measurement matrix.
The Creative Unfolding of “Reduced Descriptive Structures” in Musical Cognition: Technical and Theoretical Insights Based on the OpenMusic and PWGL Long-Term Feedback

We here describe the theoretical and philosophical understanding of a long term use and development of algorithmic computer-based tools applied to music composition. The findings of our research lead us to interrogate some specific processes and systems of communication engaged in the discovery of specific cultural artworks: artistic creation in the sono-musical domain. Our hypothesis is that the patterns of auditory learning cannot be only understood in terms of social transmission but would gain to be questioned in the way they rely on various ranges of acoustic stimuli modes of consciousness and how the different types of memories engaged in the percept-action expressive systems of our cultural communities also relies on these shadowy conscious entities we named “Reduced Descriptive Structures”.

Analysis of Cooperative Learning Behavior Based on the Data of Students' Movement
The purpose of this paper is to analyze the cooperative learning behavior pattern based on the data of students' movement. The study firstly reviewed the cooperative learning theory and its research status, and briefly introduced the k-means clustering algorithm. Then, it used clustering algorithm and mathematical statistics theory to analyze the activity rhythm of individual student and groups in different functional areas, according to the movement data provided by 10 first-year graduate students. It also focused on the analysis of students' behavior in the learning area and explored the law of cooperative learning behavior. The research result showed that the cooperative learning behavior analysis method based on movement data proposed in this paper is feasible. From the results of data analysis, the characteristics of behavior of students and their cooperative learning behavior patterns could be found.
Role-Governed Categorization and Category Learning as a Result from Structural Alignment: The RoleMap Model

The paper presents a symbolic model for category learning and categorization (called RoleMap). Unlike the other models which implement learning in a separate working mode, role-governed category learning and categorization emerge in RoleMap while it does its usual reasoning. The model is based on several basic mechanisms known as reflecting the sub-processes of analogy-making. It steps on the assumption that in their everyday life people constantly compare what they experience and what they know. Various commonalities between the incoming information (current experience) and the stored one (long-term memory) emerge from those comparisons. Some of those commonalities are considered to be highly important, and they are transformed into concepts for further use. This process denotes the category learning. When there is missing knowledge in the incoming information (i.e. the perceived object is still not recognized), the model makes anticipations about what is missing, based on the similar episodes from its long-term memory. Various such anticipations may emerge for different reasons. However, with time only one of them wins and is transformed into a category member. This process denotes the act of categorization.

Discovering the Dimension of Abstractness: Structure-Based Model that Learns New Categories and Categorizes on Different Levels of Abstraction

A structure-based model of category learning and categorization at different levels of abstraction is presented. The model compares different structures and expresses their similarity implicitly in the forms of mappings. Based on this similarity, the model can categorize different targets either as members of categories that it already has or creates new categories. The model is novel using two threshold parameters to evaluate the structural correspondence. If the similarity between two structures exceeds the higher threshold, a new sub-ordinate category is created. Vice versa, if the similarity does not exceed the higher threshold but does the lower one, the model creates a new category on higher level of abstraction.

Automated Heart Sound Classification from Unsegmented Phonocardiogram Signals Using Time Frequency Features
Cardiologists perform cardiac auscultation to detect abnormalities in heart sounds. Since accurate auscultation is a crucial first step in screening patients with heart diseases, there is a need to develop computer-aided detection/diagnosis (CAD) systems to assist cardiologists in interpreting heart sounds and provide second opinions. In this paper different algorithms are implemented for automated heart sound classification using unsegmented phonocardiogram (PCG) signals. Support vector machine (SVM), artificial neural network (ANN) and cartesian genetic programming evolved artificial neural network (CGPANN) without the application of any segmentation algorithm has been explored in this study. The signals are first pre-processed to remove any unwanted frequencies. Both time and frequency domain features are then extracted for training the different models. The different algorithms are tested in multiple scenarios and their strengths and weaknesses are discussed. Results indicate that SVM outperforms the rest with an accuracy of 73.64%.
Understanding the Programming Techniques Using a Complex Case Study to Teach Advanced Object-Oriented Programming

Teaching Object-Oriented Programming (OOP) as part of a Computing-related university degree is a very difficult task; the road to ensuring that students are actually learning object oriented concepts is unclear, as students often find it difficult to understand the concept of objects and their behavior. This problem is especially obvious in advanced programming modules where Design Pattern and advanced programming features such as Multi-threading and animated GUI are introduced. Looking at the students’ performance at their final year on a university course, it was obvious that the level of students’ understanding of OOP varies to a high degree from one student to another. Students who aim at the production of Games do very well in the advanced programming module. However, the students’ assessment results of the last few years were relatively low; for example, in 2016-2017, the first quartile of marks were as low as 24.5 and the third quartile was 63.5. It is obvious that many students were not confident or competent enough in their programming skills. In this paper, the reasons behind poor performance in Advanced OOP modules are investigated, and a suggested practice for teaching OOP based on a complex case study is described and evaluated.

User-Based Cannibalization Mitigation in an Online Marketplace

Online marketplaces are not only digital places where consumers buy and sell merchandise, and they are also destinations for brands to connect with real consumers at the moment when customers are in the shopping mindset. For many marketplaces, brands have been important partners through advertising. There can be, however, a risk of advertising impacting a consumer’s shopping journey if it hurts the use experience or takes the user away from the site. Both could lead to the loss of transaction revenue for the marketplace. In this paper, we present user-based methods for cannibalization control by selectively turning off ads to users who are likely to be cannibalized by ads subject to business objectives. We present ways of measuring cannibalization of advertising in the context of an online marketplace and propose novel ways of measuring cannibalization through purchase propensity and uplift modeling. A/B testing has shown that our methods can significantly improve user purchase and engagement metrics while operating within business objectives. To our knowledge, this is the first paper that addresses cannibalization mitigation at the user-level in the context of advertising.

Quantum Markov Modeling for Healthcare
A Markov model defines a system of states, composed by the feasible transition paths between those states, and the parameters of those transitions. The paths and parameters may be a representative way to address healthcare issues, such as to identify the most likely sequence of patient health states given the sequence of observations. Furthermore estimating the length of stay (LoS) of patients in hospitalization is one of the challenges that Markov models allow us to solve. However, finding the maximum probability of any path that gets to state at time t, can have high computational cost. A quantum approach allows us to take advantage of quantum computation since the calculated probabilities can be in several states, ending up to outperform classical computing due to the possible superposition of states when handling large amounts of data. The aid of quantum physics-based architectures and machine learning techniques are therefore appropriated to address the complexity of healthcare.
Adaptive E-Learning System Using Fuzzy Logic and Concept Map

This paper proposes an effective adaptive e-learning system that uses a coloured concept map to show the learner's knowledge level for each concept in the chosen subject area. A Fuzzy logic system is used to evaluate the learner's knowledge level for each concept in the domain, and produce a ranked concept list of learning materials to address weaknesses in the learner’s understanding. This system obtains information on the learner's understanding of concepts by an initial pre-test before the system is used for learning and a post-test after using the learning system. A Fuzzy logic system is used to produce a weighted concept map during the learning process. The aim of this research is to prove that such a proposed novel adapted e-learning system will enhance learner's performance and understanding. In addition, this research aims to increase participants' overall understanding of their learning level by providing a coloured concept map of understanding followed by a ranked concepts list of learning materials.

Teaching Turn-Taking Rules and Pragmatic Principles to Empower EFL Students and Enhance Their Learning in Speaking Modules

Teaching and learning EFL speaking modules is one of the most challenging productive modules for both instructors and learners. In a student-centered interactive communicative language teaching approach, learners and instructors should be aware of the fact that the target language must be taught as/for communication. The student must be empowered by tools that will work on more than one level of their communicative competence. Communicative learning will need a teaching and learning methodology that will address the goal. Teaching turn-taking rules, pragmatic principles and speech acts will enhance students' sociolinguistic competence, strategic competence together with discourse competence. Sociolinguistic competence entails the mastering of speech act conventions and illocutionary acts of refusing, agreeing/disagreeing; emotive acts like, thanking, apologizing, inviting, offering; directives like, ordering, requesting, advising, and hinting, among others. Strategic competence includes enlightening students’ consciousness of the various particular turn-taking systemic rules of organizing techniques of opening and closing conversation, adjacency pairs, interrupting, back-channeling, asking for/giving opinion, agreeing/disagreeing, using natural fillers for pauses, gaps, speaker select, self-select, and silence among others. Students will have the tools to manage a conversation. Students are engaged in opportunities of experiencing the natural language not as a mere extra student talking time but rather an empowerment of knowing and using the strategies. They will have the component items they need to use as well as the opportunity to communicate in the target language using topics of their interest and choice. This enhances students' communicative abilities. Available websites and textbooks now use one or more of these tools of turn-taking or pragmatics. These will be students' support in self-study in their independent learning study hours. This will be their reinforcement practice on e-Learning interactive activities. The students' target is to be able to communicate the intended meaning to an addressee that is in turn able to infer that intended meaning. The combination of these tools will be assertive and encouraging to the student to beat the struggle with what to say, how to say it, and when to say it. Teaching the rules, principles and techniques is an act of awareness raising method engaging students in activities that will lead to their pragmatic discourse competence. The aim of the paper is to show how the suggested pragmatic model will empower students with tools and systems that would support their learning. Supporting students with turn taking rules, speech act theory, applying both to texts and practical analysis and using it in speaking classes empowers students’ pragmatic discourse competence and assists them to understand language and its context. They become more spontaneous and ready to learn the discourse pragmatic dimension of the speaking techniques and suitable content. Students showed a better performance and a good motivation to learn. The model is therefore suggested for speaking modules in EFL classes.

A Book Review of Inside the Battle of Algiers, by Zohra Drif: A Thematic Analysis on Women’s Agency

This paper explores Zohra Drif’s memoir, Inside the Battle of Algiers, which narrates her desires as a student to become a revolutionary activist. She exemplified, in her narrative, the different roles, she and her fellows performed as combatants in the Casbah during the Algerian Revolution 1954-1962. This book review aims to evaluate the concept of women’s agency through education and language learning, and its impact on empowering women’s desires. Close-reading method and thematic analysis are used to explore the text. The analysis identified themes that refine the meaning of agency which are social and cultural supports, education, and language proficiency. These themes aim to contribute to the representation in Inside the Battle of Algiers of a woman guerrilla who engaged herself to perform national acts of resistance.

Metabolic Predictive Model for PMV Control Based on Deep Learning

In this study, a predictive model for estimating the metabolism (MET) of human body was developed for the optimal control of indoor thermal environment. Human body images for indoor activities and human body joint coordinated values were collected as data sets, which are used in predictive model. A deep learning algorithm was used in an initial model, and its number of hidden layers and hidden neurons were optimized. Lastly, the model prediction performance was analyzed after the model being trained through collected data. In conclusion, the possibility of MET prediction was confirmed, and the direction of the future study was proposed as developing various data and the predictive model.

Improving Similarity Search Using Clustered Data

This paper presents a method for improving object search accuracy using a deep learning model. A major limitation to provide accurate similarity with deep learning is the requirement of huge amount of data for training pairwise similarity scores (metrics), which is impractical to collect. Thus, similarity scores are usually trained with a relatively small dataset, which comes from a different domain, causing limited accuracy on measuring similarity. For this reason, this paper proposes a deep learning model that can be trained with a significantly small amount of data, a clustered data which of each cluster contains a set of visually similar images. In order to measure similarity distance with the proposed method, visual features of two images are extracted from intermediate layers of a convolutional neural network with various pooling methods, and the network is trained with pairwise similarity scores which is defined zero for images in identical cluster. The proposed method outperforms the state-of-the-art object similarity scoring techniques on evaluation for finding exact items. The proposed method achieves 86.5% of accuracy compared to the accuracy of the state-of-the-art technique, which is 59.9%. That is, an exact item can be found among four retrieved images with an accuracy of 86.5%, and the rest can possibly be similar products more than the accuracy. Therefore, the proposed method can greatly reduce the amount of training data with an order of magnitude as well as providing a reliable similarity metric.

Psychometric Examination of the QUEST-25: An Online Assessment of Intellectual Curiosity and Scientific Epistemology

The current study reports an examination of the QUEST-25 (Q-Assessment of Undergraduate Epistemology and Scientific Thinking) online version for assessing the dispositional attitudes toward scientific thinking and intellectual curiosity among undergraduate students. The QUEST-25 consists of scientific thinking (SIQ-25) and intellectual curiosity (ICIQ-25), which were correlated in hypothesized directions with the Religious Commitment Inventory, Curiosity and Exploration Inventory, Belief in Science scale, and measures of academic self-efficacy. Additionally, concurrent validity was established by the resulting significant differences between those identifying the centrality of religious belief in their lives and those who do not self-identify as being guided daily by religious beliefs. This study demonstrates the utility of the QUEST-25 for research, evaluation, and theory development.

Meta-Learning for Hierarchical Classification and Applications in Bioinformatics
Hierarchical classification is a special type of classification task where the class labels are organised into a hierarchy, with more generic class labels being ancestors of more specific ones. Meta-learning for classification-algorithm recommendation consists of recommending to the user a classification algorithm, from a pool of candidate algorithms, for a dataset, based on the past performance of the candidate algorithms in other datasets. Meta-learning is normally used in conventional, non-hierarchical classification. By contrast, this paper proposes a meta-learning approach for more challenging task of hierarchical classification, and evaluates it in a large number of bioinformatics datasets. Hierarchical classification is especially relevant for bioinformatics problems, as protein and gene functions tend to be organised into a hierarchy of class labels. This work proposes meta-learning approach for recommending the best hierarchical classification algorithm to a hierarchical classification dataset. This work’s contributions are: 1) proposing an algorithm for splitting hierarchical datasets into new datasets to increase the number of meta-instances, 2) proposing meta-features for hierarchical classification, and 3) interpreting decision-tree meta-models for hierarchical classification algorithm recommendation.
Embodied Cognition and Its Implications in Education: An Overview of Recent Literature

Embodied Cognition (EC) as a learning paradigm is based on the idea of an inseparable link between body, mind, and environment. In recent years, the advent of theoretical learning approaches around EC theory has resulted in a number of empirical studies exploring the implementation of the theory in education. This systematic literature overview identifies the mainstream of EC research and emphasizes on the implementation of the theory across learning environments. Based on a corpus of 43 manuscripts, published between 2013 and 2017, it sets out to describe the range of topics covered under the umbrella of EC and provides a holistic view of the field. The aim of the present review is to investigate the main issues in EC research related to the various learning contexts. Particularly, the study addresses the research methods and technologies that are utilized, and it also explores the integration of body into the learning context. An important finding from the overview is the potential of the theory in different educational environments and disciplines. However, there is a lack of an explicit pedagogical framework from an educational perspective for a successful implementation in various learning contexts.

Hand Gesture Detection via EmguCV Canny Pruning

Hand gesture recognition is a technique used to locate, detect, and recognize a hand gesture. Detection and recognition are concepts of Artificial Intelligence (AI). AI concepts are applicable in Human Computer Interaction (HCI), Expert systems (ES), etc. Hand gesture recognition can be used in sign language interpretation. Sign language is a visual communication tool. This tool is used mostly by deaf societies and those with speech disorder. Communication barriers exist when societies with speech disorder interact with others. This research aims to build a hand recognition system for Lesotho’s Sesotho and English language interpretation. The system will help to bridge the communication problems encountered by the mentioned societies. The system has various processing modules. The modules consist of a hand detection engine, image processing engine, feature extraction, and sign recognition. Detection is a process of identifying an object. The proposed system uses Canny pruning Haar and Haarcascade detection algorithms. Canny pruning implements the Canny edge detection. This is an optimal image processing algorithm. It is used to detect edges of an object. The system employs a skin detection algorithm. The skin detection performs background subtraction, computes the convex hull, and the centroid to assist in the detection process. Recognition is a process of gesture classification. Template matching classifies each hand gesture in real-time. The system was tested using various experiments. The results obtained show that time, distance, and light are factors that affect the rate of detection and ultimately recognition. Detection rate is directly proportional to the distance of the hand from the camera. Different lighting conditions were considered. The more the light intensity, the faster the detection rate. Based on the results obtained from this research, the applied methodologies are efficient and provide a plausible solution towards a light-weight, inexpensive system which can be used for sign language interpretation.

Adaption Model for Building Agile Pronunciation Dictionaries Using Phonemic Distance Measurements
Where human beings can easily learn and adopt pronunciation variations, machines need training before put into use. Also humans keep minimum vocabulary and their pronunciation variations are stored in front-end of their memory for ready reference, while machines keep the entire pronunciation dictionary for ready reference. Supervised methods are used for preparation of pronunciation dictionaries which take large amounts of manual effort, cost, time and are not suitable for real time use. This paper presents an unsupervised adaptation model for building agile and dynamic pronunciation dictionaries online. These methods mimic human approach in learning the new pronunciations in real time. A new algorithm for measuring sound distances called Dynamic Phone Warping is presented and tested. Performance of the system is measured using an adaptation model and the precision metrics is found to be better than 86 percent.
A Comprehensive Evaluation of Supervised Machine Learning for the Phase Identification Problem
Power distribution circuits undergo frequent network topology changes that are often left undocumented. As a result, the documentation of a circuit’s connectivity becomes inaccurate with time. The lack of reliable circuit connectivity information is one of the biggest obstacles to model, monitor, and control modern distribution systems. To enhance the reliability and efficiency of electric power distribution systems, the circuit’s connectivity information must be updated periodically. This paper focuses on one critical component of a distribution circuit’s topology - the secondary transformer to phase association. This topology component describes the set of phase lines that feed power to a given secondary transformer (and therefore a given group of power consumers). Finding the documentation of this component is call Phase Identification, and is typically performed with physical measurements. These measurements can take time lengths on the order of several months, but with supervised learning, the time length can be reduced significantly. This paper compares several such methods applied to Phase Identification for a large range of real distribution circuits, describes a method of training data selection, describes preprocessing steps unique to the Phase Identification problem, and ultimately describes a method which obtains high accuracy (> 96% in most cases, > 92% in the worst case) using only 5% of the measurements typically used for Phase Identification.
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Vol:2 No:12 2008Vol:2 No:11 2008Vol:2 No:10 2008Vol:2 No:09 2008Vol:2 No:08 2008Vol:2 No:07 2008Vol:2 No:06 2008Vol:2 No:05 2008Vol:2 No:04 2008Vol:2 No:03 2008Vol:2 No:02 2008Vol:2 No:01 2008
Vol:1 No:12 2007Vol:1 No:11 2007Vol:1 No:10 2007Vol:1 No:09 2007Vol:1 No:08 2007Vol:1 No:07 2007Vol:1 No:06 2007Vol:1 No:05 2007Vol:1 No:04 2007Vol:1 No:03 2007Vol:1 No:02 2007Vol:1 No:01 2007