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Seminar: Extracting Geographic Knowledge from Flickr - Dr Steven Schockaert, Cardiff University, UK

Presenter: Dr Steven Schockaert, Cardiff University, UK (invited by A/Prof Sanjiang Li)

Abstract:  Flickr now contains almost 200 million photos that have geographic coordinates attached to them. For many of these photos, users have also provided textual descriptions in the form of tags, making Flickr one of the richest sources of information for analysing how people refer to places. In this talk, I will give an overview of work that we have carried out in the last few years to exploit this information. First, I will report on our efforts to use Flickr for geotagging (i.e. adding geographical coordinates to) textual resources. Most of our work in this area has focused on geotagging Flickr photos, motivated by the observation that the vast majority of photos on Flickr still does not carry any geographic coordinates. More recently, we have also investigated how statistical models trained on Flickr can be used to geotag other resources, such as Wikipedia pages. Second, I will report on ongoing work to use Flickr to discover places-of-interests of particular semantic types. This can be useful to automatically augment and improve place databases, such as Google Places, Foursquare, or linkedgeodata.

Bio:  After secondary school, I studied computer science at Ghent University, where I obtained a MSc degree in 2004. From October 2004 to September 2008 I worked as a research assistant at the Research Foundation – Flanders (FWO) in the Computational Web Intelligence team at Ghent University. In April 2008, I defended my PhD thesis on “Reasoning about fuzzy temporal and spatial information from the web.” For this work, I received the 2008 ECCAI Artificial Intelligence Dissertation Award and the IBM Belgium Prize for Computer Science. My thesis was subsequently published by World Scientific in 2010. From October 2008 to August 2011, I was funded as a Postdoctoral Fellow of the Research Foundation – Flanders. During this period I also spent six months as a visiting scholar at the IRIT lab in Toulouse. Since September 2011, I have been a lecturer at Cardiff University, UK in the School of Computer Science & Informatics.

My current research interests are largely centred around three areas: multi-valued logics, common-sense reasoning, and geographic information retrieval. In the area of multi-valued logics, I am mainly working on ukasiewicz logic (eg automated reasoning and complexity) and on extensions of answer set programming, a form of logic programming based on the notion of stable models. I am involved in a research project funded by the FWO on this latter topic, together with Dirk Vermeir and Martine De Cock. In the area of common-sense reasoning, I am interested in qualitative techniques for managing inconsistency and uncertainty, including possibilistic logic and qualitative approaches to similarity-based reasoning. Finally, in the area of geographic information retrieval, my main focus is on acquiring geographic information from semi-structured web resources. Among others, I have participated twice in the MediaEval Placing Task, which is a benchmark initiative for systems that try to find out where a video of photo on Flickr has been captured.

I am a member of the editorial board of Fuzzy Sets and Systems and on the board of reviewers of the International Journal of Knowledge Based and Intelligent Engineering Systems and I am/was a member of the program committees for GIR 2008, GIIW 2009, GIR 2010, KES 2010, NMR 2010, ICFC 2010, KES 2011, IJCAI 2011, FCTA 2011, BASR 2011, NMR 2012, RR 2012, JELIA 2012, ECAI 2012, SUM 2012, FCTA 2012, SAMAI 2012, WL4AI 2012.


6 November 2012
14:00 - 15:00
City - Broadway CB10 Level 4, Room 460
All Welcome
Barbara Munday

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