Evolving spatially aggregated features from satellite imagery for regional modeling
International Conference on Parallel Problem Solving from Nature, , 707-716, 2016
Abstract: Satellite imagery and remote sensing provide explanatory variables at relatively high resolutions for modeling geospatial phenomena, yet regional summaries are often desirable for analysis and actionable insight. In this paper, we propose a novel method of inducing spatial aggregations as a component of the machine learning process, yielding regional model features whose construction is driven by model prediction performance rather than prior assumptions. Our results demonstrate that Genetic Programming is particularly well suited to this type of feature construction because it can automatically synthesize appropriate aggregations, as well as better incorporate them into predictive models compared to other regression methods we tested. In our experiments we consider a specific problem instance and real-world dataset relevant to predicting snow properties in high-mountain Asia.
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Bongard's work focuses on understanding the general nature of cognition, regardless of whether it is found in humans, animals or robots. This unique approach focuses on the role that morphology and evolution plays in cognition. Addressing these questions has taken him into the fields of biology, psychology, engineering and computer science.
Danforth is an applied mathematician interested in modeling a variety of physical, biological, and social phenomenon. He has applied principles of chaos theory to improve weather forecasts as a member of the Mathematics and Climate Research Network, and developed a real-time remote sensor of global happiness using messages from Twitter: the Hedonometer. Danforth co-runs the Computational Story Lab with Peter Dodds, and helps run UVM's reading group on complexity.
Laurent studies the interaction of structure and dynamics. His research involves network theory, statistical physics and nonlinear dynamics along with their applications in epidemiology, ecology, biology, and sociology. Recent projects include comparing complex networks of different nature, the coevolution of human behavior and infectious diseases, understanding the role of forest shape in determining stability of tropical forests, as well as the impact of echo chambers in political discussions.
Hines' work broadly focuses on finding ways to make electric energy more reliable, more affordable, with less environmental impact. Particular topics of interest include understanding the mechanisms by which small problems in the power grid become large blackouts, identifying and mitigating the stresses caused by large amounts of electric vehicle charging, and quantifying the impact of high penetrations of wind/solar on electricity systems.
Bagrow's interests include: Complex Networks (community detection, social modeling and human dynamics, statistical phenomena, graph similarity and isomorphism), Statistical Physics (non-equilibrium methods, phase transitions, percolation, interacting particle systems, spin glasses), and Optimization(glassy techniques such as simulated/quantum annealing, (non-gradient) minimization of noisy objective functions).