Fuzzy database for medical diagnosis.
A challenge of working with traditional database systems with large amounts of data is that decision making requires numerous comparisons. Health-related database systems are examples of such databases, which contain millions of data entries and require fast data processing to examine related information to make complex decisions. In this thesis, a fuzzy database system is developed by integration of fuzzy inference system (FIS) and fuzzy schema design, and implementing it by SQL in three different health-care contexts; the assessments of heart disease, diabetes mellitus, and liver disorders. The fuzzy database system is implemented with the potential of having any form of data and tested with different types of data value, including crisp, linguistic, and null (i.e., missing) data. The developed system can explore crisp and linguistic data with loosely defined boundary conditions for decision-making. FIS and neural network-based solutions are implemented in MATLAB for the mentioned contexts for the comparison and validation with the dataset used in published works.
Hands off my data! A comparison of privacy representations and expectations on Facebook
This MRP examines user expectations of online privacy in relation to how Facebook represents privacy in their Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. The prevalence and ubiquity of online social networking sites like Facebook have caused academics and individuals alike to reexamine their understandings and expectations of privacy in relation to online settings. As such, the specific purpose of this study is to better understand how the concept of privacy may be understood differently by social network users and the social networks themselves. In this paper I use the Fair Information Principles (FIPs) set out in the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA) to analyze user comments made in relation to proposed changes to Facebook’s Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. I find that both Facebook and users share a focus on concerns regarding limiting the use/disclosure/retention of personal information, and consent to have this information collected, and that users pay particular attention to Section 2.3 of the Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. I show that Facebook represents privacy conceptually in the Statement of Rights and Responsibility as in/accessibility, while users expect privacy to be enforced as data-control.
Learning from experience: exposure to, attention to, discrimination of, and brain response to faces at 3, 6, and 9 months
Infants learn and develop immensely in the first year of life. They show substantial learning in their ability to use the information provided by faces. Faces are important stimuli in infants‘ world and infants reliably prefer faces over other visual stimuli (Fantz, 1963). While experience likely plays a role in infants‘ early face processing, little is known about how infants‘ natural exposure to faces shapes attention and learning. We use head-mounted infant-perspective cameras to capture infants‘ natural experience with faces. We also measured infants‘ attentional preference for, ability to discriminate between, and electrical brain response to familiar (i.e., female, own-race) and unfamiliar (i.e., male, other-race) face types. Infants‘ face experience was highly homogenous: their primary caregiver‘s face represents the 57% of infants‘ experience and was present in all locations and nearly all contexts. Infants‘ other caregiver represented only 11% of their face experience, but was also highly consistent across location and context. Infants showed greater visual attention to female faces of familiar race at 3 months, but not later. They showed no race preference at any age. At 3 months, infants discriminated all face types except for male own-race faces. At 6 months, infants discriminated all face types. At 9 months infants discriminated all face types except for male other-race faces. Electrical brain response only differentiated male from female faces at 6 months, not at 3 or 9 months; there was no effect of race at any age. This may be due to the immaturity of the early face processing system or differential processing being indexed at later attentional components. Infants‘ overall face exposure, mom face exposure, and attentional preference for female faces predicted female own-race face discrimination at 3 months, accounting for 62% of the variance. Exposure to male faces correlated with attention to male faces and attention to male faces predicted discrimination of male faces at 3 months, accounting for 11% of the variance. At 6 months dad face exposure predicted discrimination of male faces, accounting for 17% of the variance. Infants‘ early experience, particularly to caregivers‘ faces, tunes infants‘ attention to faces, which in turn predicts discrimination.
Massive media: theories and practices of large-scale projections and public data visualizations
This dissertation describes, historicizes, theorizes, and deploys “massive media,” an
emerging subset of technical assemblages that include large outdoor projections,
programmable architectural façades, and urban screens. Massive media are massive in their
size and subsequent visibility, but are also an agglomeration of media in their expressive
screen and cinema-like qualities and their associated audio, interactive, and network
capabilities. This dissertation finds that massive media enable and necessitate the
development of new practices of expanded cinema, public data visualization, and new
media art and curation that blend the logics of urban space, monumentality, and the
public sphere with the aesthetics and affordances of digital information and the moving
image to support a more participatory public culture in which we identify and engage with
collective presence, memory, and action through information, architecture, and the
moving image. Through historical research, case studies, conversations with cultural
producers, participant observation, and creation-as-research projects, large-scale public
projections are shown to represent a new monumentality that can be better understood
and evaluated using analytical tools from cinema studies, namely superimposition,
montage, and apparatus/dispositif. Low-resolution LED façades, while sharing some of the
functional and theoretical characteristics of projection, are shown to uniquely support an
emerging practice of public data visualization and represent a more consistent embodiment
of a hybrid and relational public sphere through a tighter coupling of information,
architecture, and context. Programmable architectural façades, more than projections,
embody the development of supermodernism in architecture where data-rich public spaces
of identity, congregation, and contestation seek and find appropriate and consistent outlets
in highly visible spatial assemblages of architecture and media. Finally, a curatorial
approach to massive media is crucial in order to create suitable spaces and opportunities
for the development of massive media as a legitimate art form. This requires the sustained
provision of technical support and coordination as well as an ongoing negotiation with
corporate, institutional, and civic owners and operators. While massive media exists
primarily as a highly commercialized phenomenon, it can also be pressed into service,
through coordinated curatorial and artistic efforts, to critique or co-opt commercialization,
and to re-envision the role of urban media environments in shaping collective identity,
historical consciousness, and public display culture.
Multidisciplinary constraints within a two-dimensional aerodynamic optimization method
This research demonstrates the importance of including multi-disciplinary constraints within a two-dimensional aerodynamic optimization method. These constraints increase the methods flexibility and versatility by providing the aerodynamic designer with the latitude to expand the design envelope. The additional constraints include a global minimum thickness, a maximum point thickness, an area, two curvature functions and a stowability constraint. The global minimum thickness constraint is used to prevent airfoil surface crossovers. The maximum point thickness and area constraint address airfoil structural requirements. The curvature function constraints deal with the airfoils manufacturability. Finally, the stowability constraints combines flap trajectory, including the flap mechanics, together with the final airfoil shape, to ensure high-lift stowability
Retrieving histories: a case study of Cyril J. Brown’s family album
This thesis examines the visual construction of family in the previously unknown personal album of Cyril J. Brown in the Royal Ontario Museum’s South Asian photography collection. Beginning with retrieving the object’s personal history and tracing its links to the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA), the crossover in photographic content between Brown’s personal album and the Kautz Family YMCA Archive at the University of Minnesota is examined. In doing so, I argue that family photography and institutional forms of image making are interconnected through the use of familial photographic tropes and pictorialist techniques which are common to both collections. Finally, concluding with a reflection on the significance of Brown’s album for the genre of family photography.
Robust and fault tolerant control of modular and reconfigurable robots
Modular and reconfigurable robot has been one of the main areas of robotics
research in recent years due to its wide range of applications, especially in aerospace
sector. Dynamic control of manipulators can be performed using joint torque sensing
with little information of the link dynamics. From the modular robot perspective, this
advantage offered by the torque sensor can be taken to enhance the modularity of the
control system. Known modular robots though boast novel and diverse mechanical
design on joint modules in one way or another, they still require the whole robot
dynamic model for motion control, and modularity offered in the mechanical side does
not offer any advantage in the control design.
In this work, a modular distributed control technique is formulated for modular
and reconfigurable robots that can instantly adapt to robot reconfigurations. Under this
control methodology, a modular and reconfigurable robot is stabilized joint by joint, and
modules can be added or removed without the need of re-tuning the controller. Model
uncertainties associated with load and links are compensated by the use of joint torque
sensors. Other model uncertainties at each joint module are compensated by a
decomposition based robust controller for each module. The proposed distributed control technique offers a ‘modular’ approach, featuring a unique joint-by-joint control synthesis
of the joint modules.
Fault tolerance and fault detection are formulated as a decentralized control problem
for modular and reconfigurable robots in this thesis work. The modularity of the system
is exploited to derive a strategy dependent only on a single joint module, while
eliminating the need for the motion states of other joint modules. While the traditional
fault tolerant and detection schemes are suitable for robots with the whole dynamic
model, this proposed technique is ideal for modular and reconfigurable robots because of
its modular nature. The proposed methods have been investigated with simulations and
experimentally tested using a 3-DOF modular and reconfigurable robot.
Selective memory: an analysis of albums compiled at the return of the 1904 Younghusband mission into Tibet
Focusing on a collection of albums at the Archive of Modern Conflict related to the Younghusband Mission in Tibet (1903-1904), this thesis explores the the analysis of personal albums and their contribution to the history of the Mission. The first chapter, a literature survey, outlines the existing textual histories of the invasion, highlighting the absence of photographic analysis in the works, while also highlighting Tibet’s absence from contemporary criticisms of colonial photography. The second chapter is an overview of the visual conventions ascribed to Tibetans in British India’s photography prior to the Younghusband Mission, and the third chapter provides provenance information and detailed descriptions of the AMC’s albums. Finally, the fourth chapter discusses the objects, revealing their contribution to the perpetuation of Tibetan tropes, implicit visual documentation of British superiority, and the development of constructed narratives favouring the British colonizers. Each analysis acts as an example of how photographs should be used to articulate the colonial history of not only the Younghusband Mission, but of Tibet’s greater history with the West.
Serving immigrant families: using knowledge translation to inform a family approach in the settlement sector
Research studies show that the family is an integral dimension of newcomers’ immigration and settlement experiences. Findings from a recent project on the integration trajectories of immigrant families shed light on the ways families support each other and the social factors of immigration. Still, immigration policy, federal data collection and measures, as well as settlement services rely on an individualistic conceptualization of newcomers with insufficient regard for their social realities. Preliminary consultations with partner settlement agencies in the Greater Toronto Area reveal there is a need to incorporate the family/social dimension in their services. Using the Knowledge Translation method, academic knowledge was transferred into a practical position paper for Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada settlement policy-makers. Through ongoing collaboration with the partners, the pillars of a Family Approach for the settlement sector were developed. Five key practical recommendations for its implementation are presented to policy-makers in the paper.
Short chain fatty acids modulate flagella expression in enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli
During passage through the human gastrointestinal tract, enterohemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) encounters numerous stresses. EHEC utilizes various strategies to combat and survive these host assaults and possibly employs them as cues about the local microenvironment to enhance infection. This investigation looks at how exposure to changing concentrations of short chain fatty acid mixtures (SCFA) associated with passage through the human small (SI) and large intestines (LI) affects EHEC flagella expression and motility. In addition, the study also examines several two component systems for their involvement with SCFA-induced flagella regulation.
The results indicate that SCFA mixture typical of SI may cue increased EHEC flagellar expression and function while SCFA mixture typical of LI, the site of EHEC colonization, may promote diminished flagella expression and function. Overall, this study contributes to our knowledge on how EHEC sense and respond to host environmental signals in a way that may promote to infection.
Social justice and cultural holiday celebrations in the early childhood curriculum: perceptions of early childhood educators
This qualitative study focuses on the celebration of cultural holidays in Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) settings. There is little Canadian literature exploring how Early Childhood Educators (ECEs) perceive cultural holidays, social justice, and multiculturalism. In- depth interviews were conducted with five ECEs representing a range of professional experience in the Greater Toronto Area. Thematic analysis of the data yielded three themes: belonging, curriculum approaches, and systemic barriers. Participants identified gaps in training and professional development and made recommendations for future work in this area. There is substantial literature support for the participants’ views on the importance of social justice, the need to support and respect families, and increased knowledge about cultural holidays. The study suggests that ECEs need additional knowledge and resources in order to successfully implement socially just cultural holidays.
Social listening Integrating Facebook into Business-to-Business (B2B) Communications
This study builds on the motivation to integrate social media into corporate communications and attempts to understand analytically what works and does not work in terms of the corporate engagement of new communications technologies. The purpose of this study is to better understand the ways in which an organization integrates social media into their communication efforts with an emphasis on feedback within these settings. Of particular importance to this concept of feedback is not just how an organization speaks to their audience within a social media setting, but how they manage listening within the same context; how does audience/stakeholder response filter back through corporate channels when received through social media networks?
The specific purpose of this MRP is to observe social listening, that is, how information and communication flows between social media and corporation, with an emphasis on message transmission, processing, and feedback and feed-forward processes through the theoretical lens of autopoiesis, a micro-theory within the larger communications theory of cybernetics. Facebook, in particular, is understood as an autopoietic system. This investigation was undertaken in the form of a case study involving the corporate Facebook page of EMC Corporation, a Fortune200 company. All observation for this study occurred on the Internet and data was collected by taking screenshots of EMC’s official Facebook page. These screenshots were analyzed through the lens of autopoiesis and by using methods from discourse analysis.