07.11.2012 | IRML, Ankündigung, Termin

Urban*: Crowdsourcing for the good of London

Talk by Daniele Quercia from Cambridge, Room TEL 1414, Date: 07.11.2012, 16.00

For the last year or so, some of us have been working on studying social media in the context of London. By combining what Twitter users in a variety of London neighborhoods talk about with census data, we showed that certain topics are correlated (positively and negatively) with neighborhood deprivation. Users in more deprived neighborhoods tweet about wedding parties, matters expressed in Spanish/Portuguese, and celebrity gossips. By contrast, those in less deprived neighborhoods tweet about vacations, professional use of social media, environmental issues, sports, and health issues. More recently, we launched two crowdsourcing websites. First, we launched urbanopticon.org, which extracts Londoners' mental images of the city. By testing which places are remarkable and unmistakable and which places represent faceless sprawl, we are able to draw the recognizability map of London (http://bit.ly/HgvqZ7). The site has attracted tens of thousands of players, and I will show you few preliminary results. Second, a couple of weeks ago, we launched urbangems.org, which crowdsources quiet, beauty and happiness in the context of a city. The aim is  to identify the visual cues that are generally associated with concepts difficult to define such beauty, happiness, quietness, or even deprivation (http://bit.ly/QWo40z). Few days ago the site has been awarded the A.T. Kearney Scholarship and will be shortly featured in falling-walls.com 2012 in Berlin.

Daniele is passionate about mining data to answer multidisciplinary research questions. From urban informatics to personality studies, he is exploring the complex relationship between our offline and online worlds. As Horizon Senior Researcher at the Computer Laboratory of the University of Cambridge, he works on a grand challenge that aims to transform our digital footprints into real-world services. His research lies at the intersection of data mining, social computing, urban informatics, and computational social science. He writes about mobile 2.0 research and industry on the group's blog. He also speaks at top-tier conferences (such as ICDM, Ubicomp, CSCW, WSDM) about how our digital footprints will help us address big societal issues.  Before starting to work in Cambridge (UK), he lived in Cambridge (USA) where he was Postdoctoral Associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and worked on social networks in a city context. Before joining MIT, Daniele received his PhD from University College London, and his thesis was nominated for BCS Best British PhD dissertation in Computer Science. During his PhD, he was a Microsoft Research PhD Scholar and MBA Technology Fellow of London Business School. To understand the meaning of being a computer scientist in today's global society, he interned at the National Research Council in Barcelona and at National Institute of Informatics in Tokyo and, before that, he studied at Politecnico di Torino (Italy), Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany), and University of Illinois (USA).

For questions send an e-mail to alan.said@dai-labor.de