Free Newsletters - Space - Defense - Environment - Energy - Solar - Nuclear
..
. Earth Science News .




DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Researchers use Twitter to predict crime
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) April 20, 2014


Hidden in the Twittersphere are nuggets of information that could prove useful to crime fighters -- even before a crime has been committed.

Researchers at the University of Virginia demonstrated tweets could predict certain kinds of crimes if the correct analysis is applied.

A research paper published in the scientific journal Decision Support Systems last month said the analysis of geo-tagged tweets can be useful in predicting 19 to 25 kinds of crimes, especially for offenses such as stalking, thefts and certain kinds of assault.

The results are surprising, especially when one considers that people rarely tweet about crimes directly, said lead researcher Matthew Gerber of the university's Predictive Technology Lab.

Gerber said even tweets that have no direct link to crimes may contain information about activities often associated with them.

"What people are tweeting about are their routine activities," Gerber told AFP. "Those routine activities take them into environments where crime is likely to happen.

"So if I tweet about getting drunk tonight, and a lot of people are talking about getting drunk, we know there are certain crimes associated with those things that produce crimes. It's indirect."

For the study, Gerber and his colleagues analyzed tweets from the city of Chicago tagged to certain neighborhoods -- measured by individual square kilometers -- and the city's crime database.

They then looked forward and were able to make useful predictions about areas where certain crimes were likely to occur -- something which could be helpful in deployment of police resources.

"This approach allows the analyst to rapidly visualize and identify areas with historically high crime concentrations," said the study.

"Future crimes often occur in the vicinity of past crimes, making hot-spot maps a valuable crime prediction tool."

In recent years, the idea of "predictive policing" has gained momentum, with police departments relying on "big data" analytics from companies such as IBM.

This research comes on the heels of other studies showing how tweets can be analyzed to predict elections, disease outbreaks and other important events.

- 'I send our algorithms' -

Gerber said Twitter data can be relatively easy to use because tweets are publicly available, and many of them are tagged with location information.

In addition, researchers, themselves, do not need to go into the high-crime areas to study the information.

Instead, "I send our algorithms to these locations and see what people are talking about," Gerber said.

"The computer algorithm learns the pattern and produces a prediction."

The study was funded by the US Army, which Gerber said uses similar techniques to determine threats in places such as Iraq and Afghanistan.

There are limitations, Gerber notes. Adequate historical data is needed, and some kinds of crimes, such as kidnapping and arson, may not fall into the same patterns of predictability, for reasons the researchers could not explain.

Still, he said the New York police department has already contacted him, and he has begun to review data from that city to determine if the results from Chicago can be replicated.

He hopes to be able to draw on information from other social media to see if they can help improve the predictions.

An important goal, ultimately, is to figure out if the technique can be used in a very practical way.

"We did not address whether this reduces crime," he said. "That's one of the next steps."

rl/nss

TWITTER

.


Related Links
Bringing Order To A World Of Disasters
A world of storm and tempest
When the Earth Quakes






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





DISASTER MANAGEMENT
MH370 search to be most costly ever at $100 mln: analysts
Sydney (AFP) April 18, 2014
The search for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 is set to be the most expensive in aviation history, analysts say, as efforts to find the aircraft deep under the Indian Ocean show no signs of slowing. The Boeing 777 vanished on March 8 with 239 people on board, after veering dramatically off course en route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing and is believed to have crashed in the sea off Aus ... read more


DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Everest avalanche death toll reaches 13

12 Nepalese guides killed in worst-ever Everest accident

Two dead, 293 missing in S. Korea ferry capsize

MH370 search to be most costly ever at $100 mln: analysts

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Deep sea rocks may be future source for rare earth metals

Glasses strong as steel: A fast way to find the best

Tiny Step Edges, Big Step for Surface Science

Quantum superconductor-metal to glass transition observed

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Changes in processing, handling could reduce commercial fishing injuries

Sub dives deeper in hunt for missing MH370

Researchers describe four new species of "killer sponges" from the deep sea

Water users can reduce the risk of spreading invasive species

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Air temperature influenced African glacial movements

Study provides crucial new information about how the ice ages came about

Preglacial landscape found deep under Greenland ice

Canada boycotts Arctic Council meeting in Moscow

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
New study reveals more about our relationship to food

Pioneering findings on the dual role of carbon dioxide in photosynthesis

Building Better Soybeans for a Hot, Dry, Hungry World

China says massive area of its soil polluted

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Magnitude 7.5 quake strikes off Papua New Guinea: USGS

Strong quake rattles Mexico

Preparing for the next Sandy

Thousands evacuated near Peru volcano

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Shot DR Congo park director evacuated to Nairobi

Campaigning conservationist shot in DR Congo

Obama to meet Djibouti President on May 5

US Marines headed to Chad park to fight poaching

DISASTER MANAGEMENT
Evolution explains facial hair trends

New method confirms humans and Neandertals interbred

Indigenous societies' 'first contact' typically brings collapse, but rebounds are possible

Technofossils are an unprecedented legacy left behind by humans




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.