BDSS - IGERT Speaker Series (co-sponsored Geography Coffee Hour) -- Charles Twardy (Sotera)

"Data Science for Search and Rescue"
When Feb 24, 2017
from 04:00 PM to 05:00 PM
Where 112 Walker (John J. Cahir Auditorium)
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About the talk

Lost-person search is a mystery with a deadline. After 24 hours lost in the wilderness, your survivability drops by 20%. Searches happen one at a time, but nationally they consume thousands of hours and millions of dollars per year. Most of the expense is borne by ~5% the searches. These massive, extended searches would benefit from proper application of Bayesian search theory, developed in WW2 and used successfully by the Navy and Coast Guard for the past 70 years. I will discuss the unique challenges in wilderness search, and the progress made since 2000 due to the worldwide collection of lost-person data. I’ll discuss spatial probability maps for lost-person behavior, survival curves lost persons, and empirical and theoretical detection profiles, and the prospects for Bayesian search management.

About the speaker

Charles Twardy

Charles R. Twardy led the George Mason team in the IARPA ACE and ForeST forecasting programs from 2011-2015, beating the baseline by about 35 percent and creating a new kind of large-scale combinatorial prediction market. From 2015 to 2016 he worked as Senior Data Scientist for NTVI Federal in support of the Defense Suicide Prevention Office. In late 2016 he joined Sotera where he works on the DARPA MEMEX and IARPA CREATE programs. Twardy’s research focuses on evidence and inference with a special interest in causal models, Bayesian networks, and Bayesian search theory, especially the analysis and prediction of lost person behavior. He also has worked on argument mapping, information-theoretic trajectory clustering an sensor-selection, and Bayesian models for counter-IED work, source credibility, image recognition, environmental decision-making, and epidemiology. He received a Dual Ph.D. in Cognitive Science and History & Philosophy of Science from Indiana University, and a B.A. from the Interdisciplinary Majors program at the University of Virginia.


About Coffee Hour

Coffee Hour is a weekly lecture hosted by the Department of Geography celebrating interdisciplinary scholarship and collegiality. Topics range from innovations in GIScience, to food security, to land use and justice issues, among others. All members of the Geography, Penn State, and Centre County community are invited to attend.

Days and Times

  • 3:30 p.m.  Refreshments are offered  in the  E. Willard Miller seminar room, 319 Walker Building
  • 4:00 p.m.  The lecture begins in the John J. Cahir Auditorium, 112 Walker Building

Coffee Hour To Go

If you cannot attend the weekly coffee hour in person, the department offers Coffee Hour To Go as a webcast. The link for each Coffee Hour To Go is included with each talk's specific event information. Select "Current Season" of Coffee Hour To Go on Mediasite

Please see the Coffee Hour Website for more information.

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