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Fall 2015

Inquiry Magazine Archive

  • Spring 2016

    Spring 2016: Premium Blend

    Found in everything from space shuttles to dental fillings, composite materials have thoroughly infiltrated modern society. But their potential is still greatly untapped, offering researchers ample opportunity for discovery.

  • Fall 2015

    Fall 2015: Collision Course

    Within the particle showers created at the Large Hadron Collider, answers to some of the universe’s mysteries are waiting.

  • Spring 2015

    Spring 2015: Almost Human

    Model systems like pigeons can help illuminate our own evolutionary and genomic history.

  • Fall 2014

    Fall 2014: Small Wonder

    UT Arlington's tiny windmills are bringing renewable energy to a whole new scale.

  • Winter 2014

    Winter 2014: Overdue for an Overhaul

    The stability of our highways, pipelines, and even manholes is reaching a breaking point.

  • 2012

    2012: Mystery solved?

    Scientists believe they have discovered a subatomic particle that is crucial to understanding the universe.

  • 2011

    2011: Boosting brain power

    UT Arlington researchers unlock clues to the human body’s most mysterious and complex organ.

  • 2010

    2010: Powered by genetics

    UT Arlington researchers probe the hidden world of microbes in search of renewable energy sources.

  • 2009

    2009: Winning the battle against pain

    Wounded soldiers are benefiting from Robert Gatchel’s program that combines physical rehabilitation with treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder.

  • 2009

    2007: Sensing a solution

    Tiny sensors implanted in the body show promise in combating acid reflux disease, pain and other health problems.

  • 2006

    2006:Semiconductors: The next generation

    Nanotechnology researchers pursue hybrid silicon chips with life-saving potential.

  • 2005

    2005: Imaging is everything

    Biomedical engineers combat diseases with procedures that are painless to patients.


Connect the Online Dots

Links among social networking data could uncover critical safety information 

illustration of connected emoticons

An innovative examination of Facebook, Twitter, and other social media websites could help combat terrorism, improve e-commerce, and even identify pharmaceutical side effects.

Computer science and engineering Professor Gautam Das received a $450,000 Army Research Office grant to develop efficient analytic techniques for combining and understanding the data stored in online social networks. He is searching for implicit edges, which connect two seemingly unrelated occurrences on a social media platform. (Explicit edges, in contrast, represent more obvious relationships, such as a user’s friends, followers, and contacts.)

“We are trying to determine which are the more promising directions to pursue when seeking hidden data,” explains Dr. Das, director of UT Arlington’s Database Exploration Laboratory. “We’ll look at who is acquainted or are followers of one person or another across a broad spectrum of social networks.”

Das is collaborating with Professor Nan Zhang of George Washington University. The hidden-access model they are creating enables the researchers to construct and understand virtual social networks built upon multiple Web data sources.

For example, from the view of an Army intelligence agency, a real-world social network formed by a group of suspected terrorists can be considered a virtual social network. This network does not reside on any single website, but instead leaves traces on a variety of Web data sources, like forums, exchanges on social media sites, and even comments on certain online articles.

According to College of Engineering Dean Khosrow Behbehani, the team’s work will also help expand UTA’s increasing expertise in the field of “big data.”

Illustration by john hersey

More articles from this issue

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