Supervisors for groups

All groups have now been assigned a supervisor, see under “Messages/groups” on TeleTOP. The deadline for the project plan is 30 October. Make sure you have talked with your supervisor at least twice before you submit your plan. Send him an email to make an appointment.

Guest lecture: Thijs Westerveld of TeezIR

Opinion Mining and Multimedia Information Retrieval

Who: Thijs Westerveld (TeezIR)
When: Wednesday, October 1, 2008, 13.45-15.30 h., room HO-3136
What: Opinion Mining and Multimedia Information Retrieval

Thijs Westerveld has over 10 years of experience in various areas of information retrieval, mostly in an academic setting. He received a PhD in Computer Science from the Human Media Interaction group at the University of Twente in 2004, on the use of generative probabilistic models for multimedia retrieval. Thijs has worked on numerous national and European projects in the areas of information retrieval and multimedia retrieval, and published in international journals and conferences in the field. Thijs currently works at TeezIR Search Solutions in Utrecht.

DB colloquium: Suzan Verberne of Radboud University

Using Structural Information for Improving Why-Question Answering

Who: Suzan Verberne (Radboud University Nijmegen)
When: Tuesday September 30, 2008
Where: ZI-3126

My PhD research project “In Search of the Why” aims at developing a system for answering why-questions. Today I will present my recent work on extending a simple passage retrieval approach with structural information. The starting point is Lemur's TFIDF, which retrieves a relevant answer in the top 150 for 79% of the test questions. However, only 45% of the questions is answered in the top 10. We aim to improve the ranking by adding a reranking module. For re-ranking we consider a set of 31 features representing structural information of the question and answer candidate: syntactic structure as well as document structure. We find a significant improvement over the baseline for both MRR and Success@10, which is now 55%. The most important features for re-ranking are TFIDF (the baseline score), the presence of cue words, the question's main verb, and the relation between question focus and document title.

Dutch-Belgian Database Day 2008

The Dutch Belgian Database Day (DBDBD) is a yearly one-day workshop organized in a Belgian or Dutch university, whose general topic is database research. DBDBD invites submissions (1 page abstract) on a broad range of database and database-related topics, including but not limited to data storage and management, theoretical database issues, database performance, data mining, information retrieval, data semantics, querying, ontologies etc. Based on the submissions, the workshop will be organized in different sessions each covering a particular topic.

At the DBDBD, junior researchers from the Netherlands and Belgium can present their recent results. It is an excellent opportunity to meet up with your Belgian/Dutch colleagues, and to get informed about the (recent) database-related research performed in Belgian/Dutch universities. The workshop is also open to non-Belgian/Dutch participants (presentations are in English).

The DBDBD 2008 is organized under auspices of SIKS, the Dutch research school for information and knowledge systems and the Belgian Graduate School in Computing Science (GRASCOMP). This year, DBDBD will be held at the Arsenal, located at the heart of the charming city of Namur (Belgium), on Friday October 10th, 2008.

DBDB 2008 home page

SIKS-day 2008 in Utrecht

On October 2, 2008, the School for Information and Knowledge Systems (SIKS) organizes its annual SIKS-day. The location will be City Castle Oudaen in Utrecht.

The main aim of the event is to give SIKS-members, participating in research groups all over the country, the opportunity to meet each other in an informal setting and to inform them about current developments and some new activities and plans for the coming year. This year a small scientific symposium will be organized at the SIKS-day as well. Four invited speakers have agreed to perform:

  • Wil van der Aalst (TUE), “Creating Better Information Systems with Process Mining”
  • Rafael Bordini (Durham, UK), “The State of Multi-Agent Programming”
  • Tom Heskes (RUN), “Bayesian machine learning: theory and applications”
  • Maarten de Rijke (UVA), “Retrieving Entities”

By inviting these researchers we hope to have selected the right ingredients for a memorable day. All members of our research school(research fellows, associated members and Ph.D.-students) as well as the members of SIKS' Advisory Board and our alumni are invited to participate.

More info

Example reports for the course Information Retrieval

We have collected three examples of reports submitted for the course Information Retrieval in earlier years. These are reports we found particularly good. To wet your appetite, we have collected here versions that have been further developed into papers for workshops/conferences. Yes, that's possible in this course! All links point to the faculty's ePrints-service and are clickable, certainly if you approach them from a machine in the UT-domain (please report if they don't work).

  1. Bockting, S. and Ooms, M.J. and Hiemstra, D. and van der Vet, P.E. and Huibers, T.W.C. (2008) Evaluating Relevance Feedback: An Image Retrieval Interface for Children. In: Proceedings of the Dutch-Belgian Information Retrieval Workshop, 14-15 Apr 2008, Maastricht. pp. 15-20. University of Maastricht. ISBN 978-90-5681-282-9
  2. Ben Moussa, M. and Pasch, M. and Hiemstra, D. and van der Vet, P.E. and Huibers, T.W.C. (2007) The Potential of User Feedback Through the Iterative Refining of Queries in an Image Retrieval System. In: Adaptive Multimedia Retrieval: User, Context and Feedback, 27-28 July 2006, Geneva, Switzerland. pp. 258-268. Lecture Notes in Computer Science 4398. Springer Verlag. ISSN 0302-9743 ISBN 978-3-540-71544-3
  3. Hoekstra, A.H. and Hiemstra, D. and van der Vet, P.E. and Huibers, T.W.C. (2006) Question Answering for Dutch: Simple does it. In: Proceedings of the 18th BeNeLux Conference on Artificial Intelligence (BNAIC), 5-6 Oct 2006, Namur, Belgium. BNVKI. ISSN 1568-7805

More info on TeleTOP.