Past Projects

International Short Visit – Early risk prediction on the Internet: an evaluation corpus
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The project focuses on evaluation, which is the key to making progress in building better search and classification solutions. It involves the study of the adequacy of different types of Internet repositories as data sources to create test collections for research on early risk prediction and the design and construction of a new such collection. The collection will be made available to the research community, together with a suitable evaluation methodology.

Funding Agency: Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Starting date: June 2015 
Duration: 6 months

SERI-Detecting and Tracking Emotion Expressions in Comparative Opinions
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This project aims at advancing research on opinion mining by looking at sentences expressing comparative opinions. The project objectives are: 1) develop a model for identifying comparative opinions; 2) implement a demonstration system of the above model in a realistic application scenario; 
3) develop a proper evaluation framework for detecting and tracking emotion expressions implying 
comparative opinions over time; 4) finally, evaluate the proposed models with the evaluation framework developed in point 3. This will involve a close collaboration between the two teams of USI (Prof. Fabio Crestani) and the University of Malaya (Dr. Kasturi Dewi Varathan).

Funding Agency: Scientific & Technological Cooperation Programme
Starting date: June 2015 
Duration: 6 months

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The objective of query-rewriting is to rewrite the original query submitted by the user to better fit it to the perceived user information need. In this project we will design a set of algorithms for the personalisation and geo-contextualisation of query suggestion and rewriting. The expected results will be measured in terms of the correctness of the rewriting model, where we expect a substantial increase in performance compared with other personalisation (without contextualisation) models. 

Funding Agency:Yahoo!
Starting date: Feb 2015
Duration:18 months

HASS: Harnessing and Advancing Social Search
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In this project we investigate searching and browsing in social sites and determine where the one-shot and one-size-fits-all paradigm of search is failing users and does not sufficiently assist them with their information gathering task. We use modern statistical learning techniques to develop models that are able to utilise personalisation, temporal task-based knowledge and topical information derived from the corpus to improve search. The proposed work significantly extend earlier work in personalisation of social media search and latent topic models carried out by the applicant.

Funding Agency: 
Secretariat d'Etat a l'Education et a la Researche (SER)
Starting date: 
Jan 2013
Duration: 
24 months
MUMIA: Multilingual and Multifaceted Interactive Information Access
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This COST Action explores innovative frameworks to empower the synergies from the disparate research fields of Machine Translation, Information Retrieval and Multifaceted Interactive Information Access within the specific context of patent search and other next generation Web applications. See here for more information.

Funding Agency: 
 Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) Action IC1002
Starting date: 
 Nov 2010
Duration: 
 48 months
HEBE: Highly Engaging e-Book Experiences
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HEBE -Highly Engaging e-Book Experiences- aims at producing novel interfaces for playing, interacting and reading e-books for children. We propose in this study to involve children in exploring different type of technology, hardware and software, in order to produce more engaging, usable and fun e-book interfaces for them. The main hypothesis of the study is that in order to make e-reading a fun experience for children new innovative interfaces are needed and children should take an active role in their design.

Funding Agency: 
 Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Starting date: 
 Sep 2010
Duration: 
 36 months
Ambient and Context-Aware Multimedia Information Retrieval
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This collaborative project with AT&T Labs deals with designing, implementing and evaluation new mobile interfaces for information retrieval. In particular, in this project we are developing a Just-in-Time Mobile Information Retrieval (JIT-MobIR) system. The system is able to predict user actions and needs and generate appropriate queries to find the information before the user actually knows he needs it.

Funding Agency: 
 AT&T Labs, Middletown, NJ, USA
Starting date: 
 Jun 2010
Duration: 
 36 months
IPS: Interactive Patent Search
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The project has two different but integrated objectives. The first is to study how selected categories of users search for patents in relation to specific information needs and tasks. This will result in a set of guidelines to drive the design of innovative and more usable interactive systems for patent search. The second objective is to use these guidelines for the design and implementation of a new interactive patent search system that will then be evaluated with real users in the context of real search tasks, using a user and task oriented evaluation methodology. The emphasis in both objectives is on interactivity.

Funding Agency: 
 Information Retrieval Facility
Starting date: 
 Mar 2010
Duration: 
 36 months
C-MS-TDT: Robust Incremental Clustering for Multi-Stream Topic Detection and Tracking
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The vast majority of current TDT research makes two important assumptions about the nature of news: a) every news story discusses only one topic (in order to place a story to exactly one cluster); b) any hierarchical relationships between events should be ignored (to avoid the problem of events within events). The aim of this project is to devise some clustering technique that will allow us to remove (or significantly simplify) these two assumptions, as they limit considerably the power of TDT models.

Funding Agency: 
 Scientific & Technological Cooperation Programme: Switzerland-Russia
Starting date: 
 May 2010
Duration: 
 8 months
ChatMiner: Mining Conversational Content for Topic Modelling and Author Identification
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In this project we will extend the latest models of statistical content analysis, that are proving successful in the areas of text mining and information retrieval, for the mining of conversational content for topic identification (what is the conversation about?) and author identification (who are the people involved in the conversation?).

Funding Agency: 
 Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Starting date: 
 Apr 2010
Duration: 
 36 months
MS-TDT: Multi-Stream Topic Detection and Tracking
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The main objective of the project is to investigate multi-stream Topic Detection and Tracking by designing new algorithms for robust Story Link Detection in noisy streams that will work across several heterogeneous text streams. In addition, the project will study multi/cross-stream dependency, centrality, and authoritativeness, applying to streams work currently being carried out in stream segmentation and stream data mining.

Funding Agency: 
 Hasler Stiftung
Starting date: 
 Aug 2009
Duration: 
 12 months
OpiSoft: Combining Soft Computing and Statistics for Opinion Finding and Polarity Detection in Blogs
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In this project we investigate the combination of Soft Computing and statistical techniques for feature selection for the tasks of opinion finding and opinion polarity detection, in order to create automatically a weighted dictionary of opinion-bearing terms that will be used to determine, in a query independent way, the topical-opinion of a blog post. The project is closely connected to the IR group participation in the COST Action IC0702.

Funding Agency: 
 Secretariat d'Etat a l'Education et a la Researche (SER)
Starting date: 
 Apr 2009
Duration: 
 36 months
SoftStat: Combining Soft Computing Techniques and Statistical Methods to Improve Data Analysis Solutions
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The main objective of the COST action IC0702 "Combining Soft Computing Techniques and Statistical Methods to Improve Data Analysis Solutions" is to strengthen the dialogue between the statistics and soft computing research communities in order to cross-pollinate both fields and generate mutual improvement activities. Here for more information.

Funding Agency: 
 European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) program
Starting date: 
 Jan 2008
Duration: 
 48 months
ADIR+ : Extending Adaptive Distributed Information Retrieval
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The project extends and complements the work carried out in the SNSF project ADIR (Adaptive Information Retrieval), by designing, implementing and testing personalised and adaptive resource selection methods to be used for Distributed Information Retrieval with un-cooperative resources.

Funding Agency: 
 Hasler Stiftung
Starting date: 
 Aug 2008
Duration: 
 12 months
DEDUCE: Design of new tools to express Emotions During User Centred Evaluation
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The project aims at designing, implementing and evaluating new tools for allowing easier interactions with users when measuring usability of interactive systems. In particular, the project will concentrate on tangible tool for children.

Funding Agency: 
 Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Starting date: 
 Dec 2008
Duration: 
 36 months
iMOV: Interactive Modus Operandi Visualisation System
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The project aims at the design, implementation, and evaluation of an interactive modus operandi mining and visualisation system, integrating behavioural and geographical information. The system it to be used by the police for suspect prioritisation and investigation Management. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde. More information here.

Funding Agency: 
UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Puppy IR: Open Source Environment to construct Information Services for Children
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This FP7 STREP project will develop new interaction paradigms to allow children to easily express their information need, to have results presented in an intuitive way and to engage children in system interaction. It will also propose novel child-centered evaluation methodologies. The project is based at the University of Strathclyde.

Funding Agency: 
 European ICT 7th Framework Program
Starting date: 
 Apr 2009
Duration: 
 30 months
ADIR: Adaptive Distributed Information Retrieval
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The project is concerned withe the design, implementation and evaluation of personalised and adaptive resource description methods for un-cooperative resources. The produced resource descriptions will be used by advance resource selections methods for Distributed Information Retrieval.

Funding Agency: 
Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Starting date: 
Aug 2007
Duration: 
12 months
NEMO: Personalised Federated Search of the Deep Web
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The project is concerned with the design, implementation and testing of advanced resource description, resource selection and results fusions methods for Distributed Information Retrieval. These methods can be automatically personalised to the user task and user needs and are specifically designed to access information held in the Deep Web (i.e. in non-cooperative and heterogeneous resources). The project is based at the University of Strathclyde. Here for more information.

Funding Agency: 
 UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Starting date: 
 Apr 2008
Duration: 
 24 months
XMI: Cross-media Indexing
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This project aims at investigating different mathematical models of cross-media and cross-modal indexing. In particular, it will develop models of heterogeneous evidence combination that will also be useful for other applications, like for example blog search and topic distillation.

Funding Agency: 
 Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF)
Starting date: 
 Jun 2008
Duration: 
 36 months
PENG: Personalised News Content Programming
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The PENG project aims at defining a flexible, personalised and context-aware system for the gathering, filtering, retrieval and presentation of multimedia news for news professionals (e.g. journalists and editors), with a view of making the system also available later for general users. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde.Project website.

REVEAL-THIS: Retrieval of Video and Language for The Home user in an Information Society
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REVEAL-THIS addresses a basic need underlying content organisation, filtering, consumption and enjoyment by developing content programming systems that will help European citizens keep up with the explosion of digital content scattered over different platforms, media and different languages. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde. Project website

DILIGENT: A Digital Library Infrastructure on Grid Enabled Technology
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The objective of DILIGENT is to create an advanced test-bed that will allow members of dynamic virtual e-Science organisations to access shared knowledge and to collaborate in a secure, coordinated, dynamic and cost-effective way. This test-bed will be built by integrating Grid and Digital Library technologies. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde. Project website.

NED 4 PENG: New Event Detection for Personalised News Content Programming
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The project investigated a formalisation of the New Event Detection problem that fits into the PENG (Personalised News Content Programming) framework. This formalisation allows for a personal definition of what a new event is, obtained from user feedback. This enables for the definition of models of NED that are adaptive to the user changing interests and changing perception of what constitutes a new event. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde and funded a 6 months collaboration with Xerox Parc, in Paolo Alto, CA, USA. More info here.

Funding Agency: 
UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
Geo-Temp IR: Geo-temporal Information Retrieval
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The project investigated new algorithms for topic detection and tracking of news stories that enable to detect and take into account geographical and temporal references present in the news stories and in the user requests. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde and funded a 2-months visit to the University of California at Berkeley, CA, USA.

Size-It: Automatic Textual Database Size Detection
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This project aims at designing new models for automatically detecting the size of a textual database or a digital library by query-sampling its content via its public query interface. The database size is an important parameter for resource selection algorithms used in Distributed Information Retrieval. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde.

MIND: Resource Selection and Data Fusion for Multimedia International Digital Libraries
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The objective of MIND is to design models and to build sets of tools and associated test-beds to improve the effectiveness of resource selection, multimedia information access, retrieval and fusion of the retrieved data from non-cooperative distributed and heterogeneous multimedia digital libraries. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde. Project website.

WEBKIT: Intuitive physical interfaces to the WWW
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WEBKIT utilises a Tangible User Interface for navigating sources of information (e.g. the WWW) that places priority on physical manipulation by the users. Essentially users control the system and navigate, manipulate and utilise data and information by selecting and positioning physical objects. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde. More information here.

DIOGENE: A Training Web Broker for ICT Professionals
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DIOGENE aims at designing, implementing and evaluating an innovative training Web brokering environment for ICT individual training. This environment will be able to support learners during the whole cycle of the training, from the definition of objectives to the assessment of results. The project was based at the University of Strathclyde.More information here.