July 6, 2020 — Zachary Tschirhart, a recent graduate from the Oden Institute’s Computational Science, Engineering, and Mathematics (CSEM) Masters program, has been awarded Best Student Paper at the Practice and Experience in Advanced Research Computing (PEARC) Conference 2020, held virtually this year due to the novel Covid-19 pandemic. His study was co-authored by Dr. Karl Schulz, research associate professor at Oden Institute and Dell Medical School’s Department of Women’s Health at UT Austin.
Entitled, Evaluation of Clustering Techniques for GPS Phenotyping Using Mobile Sensor Data, the researchers’ work focuses on the analysis of GPS data collected over two months in support of a larger study to develop a digital set of characteristics for pregnancy using smart phone data. The techniques used to evaluate the GPS clusters not only assessed the physical coordinates, but also the accumulated time spent at frequented locations with the intention to build a partial phenotype based on the user movement patterns. Creating a profile of based on information such as time spent at home, driving, or traveling abroad will be combined and corelated with the data gathered from physician assessments for each user over the course of their pregnancy.
Tschirhart’s paper was entered in the track “Trending now – machine learning and artificial intelligence”. The central research theme for PEARC20, “Catch the Wave” was about staying ahead of new trends in technology, analytics and in workforce diversity.
Zachary Tschirhart is currently in the workforce leading a team of ML/AI developers to advance embedded biometric research and development, while maintaining his commitment to High Performance Computing through the study of digital phenotyping with Dr. Schulz.
His study was considered both relevant and creative by the PEARC judges in his application of machine learning and artificial intelligence tools – two topics only recently included in the conference – in researching the central thesis.
The PEARC Conferences bring together a community of students and professionals interested in areas of advanced research computing and cyberinfrastructure. Experts from academia, government and industry all attend, making it a lively and productive event for those interested in exchanging ideas and discussing the challenges, opportunities, and solutions to major global issues both now and into the future.
About Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences
The Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences is an organized research unit created to foster the development of interdisciplinary programs in computational sciences and engineering (CSE), mathematical modeling, applied mathematics, software engineering, and computational visualization. The Institute currently supports 12 research centers and alliances and nine research groups, and with additional units still in the planning stages.
Source: Akiko Barreras, Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences