Sample records for intratheater support tool

  1. System administrator's manual (SAM) for the enhanced logistics intratheater support tool (ELIST) database instance segment version for solaris 7.; TOPICAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dritz, K.


    This document is the System Administrator's Manual (SAM) for the Enhanced Logistics Intratheater Support Tool (ELIST) Database Instance Segment. It covers errors that can arise during the segment's installation and deinstallation, and it outlines appropriate recovery actions. It also tells how to change the password for the SYSTEM account of the database instance after the instance is created, and it discusses the creation of a suitable database instance for ELIST by means other than the installation of the segment. The latter subject is covered in more depth than its introductory discussion in the Installation Procedures (IP) for the Enhanced Logistics Intratheater Support Tool (ELIST) Global Data Segment, Database Instance Segment, Database Fill Segment, Database Segment, Database Utility Segment, Software Segment, and Reference Data Segment (referred to in portions of this document as the ELIST IP). The information in this document is expected to be of use only rarely. Other than errors arising from the failure to follow instructions, difficulties are not expected to be encountered during the installation or deinstallation of the segment. By the same token, the need to create a database instance for ELIST by means other than the installation of the segment is expected to be the exception, rather than the rule. Most administrators will only need to be aware of the help that is provided in this document and will probably not actually need to read and make use of it

  2. System administrator's manual (SAM) for the enhanced logistics intratheater support tool (ELIST) database segment version for solaris 7.; TOPICAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dritz, K.


    This document is the System Administrator's Manual (SAM) for the Enhanced Logistics Intratheater Support Tool (ELIST) Database Segment. It covers errors that can arise during the segment's installation and deinstallation, and it outlines appropriate recovery actions. It also tells how to extend the database storage available to Oracle if a datastore becomes filled during the use of ELIST. The latter subject builds on some of the actions that must be performed when installing this segment, as documented in the Installation Procedures (IP) for the Enhanced Logistics Intratheater Support Tool (ELIST) Global Data Segment, Database Instance Segment, Database Fill Segment, Database Segment, Database Utility Segment, Software Segment, and Reference Data Segment (referred to in portions of this document as the ELIST IP). The information in this document is expected to be of use only rarely. Other than errors arising from the failure to follow instructions, difficulties are not expected to be encountered during the installation or deinstallation of the segment. The need to extend database storage likewise typically arises infrequently. Most administrators will only need to be aware of the help that is provided in this document and will probably not actually need to read and make use of it

  3. Software test plan/description/report (STP/STD/STR) for the enhanced logistics intratheater support tool (ELIST) global data segment. Version, Database Instance Segment Version, ...[elided] and Reference Data Segment Version for Solaris 7; TOPICAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dritz, K.; Absil-Mills, M.; Jacobs, K.


    This document is the Software Test Plan/Description/Report (STP/STD/STR) for the DII COE Enhanced Logistics Intratheater Support Tool (ELIST) mission application. It combines in one document the information normally presented separately in a Software Test Plan, a Software Test Description, and a Software Test Report; it also presents this information in one place for all the segments of the ELIST mission application. The primary purpose of this document is to show that ELIST has been tested by the developer and found, by that testing, to install, deinstall, and work properly. The information presented here is detailed enough to allow the reader to repeat the testing independently. The remainder of this document is organized as follows. Section 1.1 identifies the ELIST mission application. Section 2 is the list of all documents referenced in this document. Section 3, the Software Test Plan, outlines the testing methodology and scope-the latter by way of a concise summary of the tests performed. Section 4 presents detailed descriptions of the tests, along with the expected and observed results; that section therefore combines the information normally found in a Software Test Description and a Software Test Report. The remaining small sections present supplementary information. Throughout this document, the phrase ELIST IP refers to the Installation Procedures (IP) for the Enhanced Logistics Intratheater Support Tool (ELIST) Global Data Segment, Database Instance Segment, Database Fill Segment, Database Segment, Database Utility Segment, Software Segment, and Reference Data Segment

  4. Introduction to the enhanced logistics intratheater support tool (ELIST) mission application and its segments : global data segment version, database instance segment version, ...[elided] and reference data segment version for solaris 7.; TOPICAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dritz, K.


    The ELIST mission application simulates and evaluates the feasibility of intratheater transportation logistics primarily for the theater portion of a course of action. It performs a discrete event simulation of a series of movement requirements over a constrained infrastructure network using specified transportation assets. ELIST addresses the question of whether transportation infrastructures and lift allocations are adequate to support the movements of specific force structures and supplies to their destinations on time

  5. Installation procedures (IP) for the enhanced logistics intratheater support tool (ELIST) global data segment version, database instance segment version, ...[elided] and reference data segment version for solaris 7.; TOPICAL

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dritz, K.


    This document is the Installation Procedures (IP) for the DII COE Enhanced Logistics Intraheater Support Tool (ELIST) mission application. It tells how to install and deinstall the seven segments of the mission application

  6. Defense Science Board 1998 Summer Study. Joint Operations Superiority in the 21st Century: Integrating Capabilities Underwriting Joint Vision 2010 and Beyond. Volume 2: Supporting Reports

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library


    .... These supporting challenges include assured knowledge superiority, responsive global targeting, exploitation of the littoral battlespace, inter- and intra-theater mobility, coalition warfare, force...

  7. Decision Support Tool

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Ritsema van Eck, Gerard; Ceross, Aaron

    The decision support tool is part of the toolkit for policy makers which came out of the FP7 RESPECT project, which dealt with privacy and surveillance. It's aim is to support decision makers at all levels of government who face difficult decisions regarding the implementation of surveillance

  8. Case and Administrative Support Tools (United States)

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency — Case and Administrative Support Tools (CAST) is the secure portion of the Office of General Counsel (OGC) Dashboard business process automation tool used to help...

  9. Harnessing Theories for Tool Support

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Zhiming; Mencl, Vladimir; Ravn, Anders Peter


    Software development tools need to support more and more phases of the entire development process, because applications must be developed more correctly and efficiently. The tools therefore need to integrate sophisticated checkers, generators and transformations. A feasible approach to ensure high...... quality of such add-ins is to base them on sound formal foundations. In order to know where such add-ins will fit, we investigate the use of an existing successful commercial tool and identify suitable places for adding formally supported checking, transformation and generation modules. The paper...

  10. Harnessing Theories for Tool Support

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Liu, Zhiming; Mencl, Vladimir; Ravn, Anders Peter


    quality of such add-ins is to base them on sound formal foundations. In order to know where such add-ins will fit, we investigate the use of an existing successful commercial tool and identify suitable places for adding formally supported checking, transformation and generation modules. The paper...

  11. Visual Decision Support Tool for Supporting Asset ... (United States)

    Abstract:Managing urban water infrastructures faces the challenge of jointly dealing with assets of diverse types, useful life, cost, ages and condition. Service quality and sustainability require sound long-term planning, well aligned with tactical and operational planning and management. In summary, the objective of an integrated approach to infrastructure asset management is to assist utilities answer the following questions:•Who are we at present?•What service do we deliver?•What do we own?•Where do we want to be in the long-term?•How do we get there?The AWARE-P approach ( offers a coherent methodological framework and a valuable portfolio of software tools. It is designed to assist water supply and wastewater utility decision-makers in their analyses and planning processes. It is based on a Plan-Do-Check-Act process and is in accordance with the key principles of the International Standards Organization (ISO) 55000 standards on asset management. It is compatible with, and complementary to WERF’s SIMPLE framework. The software assists in strategic, tactical, and operational planning, through a non-intrusive, web-based, collaborative environment where objectives and metrics drive IAM planning. It is aimed at industry professionals and managers, as well as at the consultants and technical experts that support them. It is easy to use and maximizes the value of information from multiple existing data sources, both in da


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    Effective contaminated land management requires a number of decisions addressing a suite of technical, economic, and social concerns. These concerns include human health risks, ecological risks, economic costs, technical feasibility of proposed remedial actions, and the value society places on clean-up and re-use of formerly contaminated lands. Decision making, in the face of uncertainty and multiple and often conflicting objectives, is a vital and challenging role in environmental management that affects a significant economic activity. Although each environmental remediation problem is unique and requires a site-specific analysis, many of the key decisions are similar in structure. This has led many to attempt to develop standard approaches. As part of the standardization process, attempts have been made to codify specialist expertise into decision support tools. This activity is intended to facilitate reproducible and transparent decision making. The process of codifying procedures has also been found to be a useful activity for establishing and rationalizing management processes. This study will have two primary objectives. The first is to develop taxonomy for Decision Support Tools (DST) to provide a framework for understanding the different tools and what they are designed to address in the context of environmental remediation problems. The taxonomy will have a series of subject areas for the DST. From these subjects, a few key areas will be selected for further study and software in these areas will be identified. The second objective, will be to review the existing DST in the selected areas and develop a screening matrix for each software product.

  13. Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool v3 (United States)

    The Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) is a decision support tool that facilitates integrated water management at the local or small watershed scale. WMOST models the environmental effects and costs of management decisions in a watershed context that is, accou...

  14. Integrating Joint Intratheater Airlift Command and Control with the Needs of the Modular Army: A Perspective of Current and Past Nonlinear Operations (United States)


    INTEGRATING JOINT INTRATHEATER AIRLIFT COMMAND AND CONTROL WITH THE NEEDS OF THE MODULAR ARMY: A PERSPECTIVE OF CURRENT AND PAST NONLINEAR...Intratheater Airlift Command and Control with the Needs of the Modular Army: A Perspective of Current and Past Nonlinear Operation 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT...with the Needs of the Modular Army: A Perspective of Current and Past Nonlinear Operations Approved by: , Thesis Committee Chair Patrick C

  15. Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) ... (United States)

    EPA's Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) version 2 is a decision support tool designed to facilitate integrated water management by communities at the small watershed scale. WMOST allows users to look across management options in stormwater (including green infrastructure), wastewater, drinking water, and land conservation programs to find the least cost solutions. The pdf version of these presentations accompany the recorded webinar with closed captions to be posted on the WMOST web page. The webinar was recorded at the time a training workshop took place for EPA's Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST, v2).

  16. Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) Webinar (United States)

    EPA’s WMOST is a publicly available tool that can be used by state and local managers to screen a wide-range of options for cost-effective management of water resources, and it supports a broader integrated watershed management approach.

  17. Decision support frameworks and tools for conservation (United States)

    Schwartz, Mark W.; Cook, Carly N.; Pressey, Robert L.; Pullin, Andrew S.; Runge, Michael C.; Salafsky, Nick; Sutherland, William J.; Williamson, Matthew A.


    The practice of conservation occurs within complex socioecological systems fraught with challenges that require transparent, defensible, and often socially engaged project planning and management. Planning and decision support frameworks are designed to help conservation practitioners increase planning rigor, project accountability, stakeholder participation, transparency in decisions, and learning. We describe and contrast five common frameworks within the context of six fundamental questions (why, who, what, where, when, how) at each of three planning stages of adaptive management (project scoping, operational planning, learning). We demonstrate that decision support frameworks provide varied and extensive tools for conservation planning and management. However, using any framework in isolation risks diminishing potential benefits since no one framework covers the full spectrum of potential conservation planning and decision challenges. We describe two case studies that have effectively deployed tools from across conservation frameworks to improve conservation actions and outcomes. Attention to the critical questions for conservation project planning should allow practitioners to operate within any framework and adapt tools to suit their specific management context. We call on conservation researchers and practitioners to regularly use decision support tools as standard practice for framing both practice and research.

  18. Tool Supported Analysis of Web Services Protocols

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Marques, Abinoam P.; Ravn, Anders Peter; Srba, Jiri


    We describe an abstract protocol model suitable for modelling of web services and other protocols communicating via unreliable, asynchronous communication channels. The model is supported by a tool chain where the first step translates tables with state/transition protocol descriptions, often used...... e.g. in the design of web services protocols, into an intermediate XML format. We further translate this format into a network of communicating state machines directly suitable for verification in the model checking tool UPPAAL. We introduce two types of communication media abstractions in order...

  19. Coaching as a Tool Supporting Trainers’ Talents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Joanna Mesjasz


    Full Text Available Coaching is a well-known term both in sport and business. The purpose of this article is to present coaching as a useful tool for improving the competence of the trainer. The article presents not only theoretical justification but also discusses the results of a pilot project which aim was to support the talents of the national team coaches. The above mentioned project was conducted in 2012 on behalf of the Ministry of Sport.

  20. Performance Support Tools for Space Medical Operations (United States)

    Byrne, Vicky E.; Schmidt, Josef; Barshi, Immanuel


    The early Constellation space missions are expected to have medical capabilities very similar to those currently on the Space Shuttle and International Space Station (ISS). For Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) missions to ISS, medical equipment will be located on ISS, and carried into CEV in the event of an emergency. Flight Surgeons (FS) on the ground in Mission Control will be expected to direct the Crew Medical Officer (CMO) during medical situations. If there is a loss of signal and the crew is unable to communicate with the ground, a CMO would be expected to carry out medical procedures without the aid of a FS. In these situations, performance support tools can be used to reduce errors and time to perform emergency medical tasks. Human factors personnel at Johnson Space Center have recently investigated medical performance support tools for CMOs on-orbit, and FSs on the ground. This area of research involved the feasibility of Just-in-time (JIT) training techniques and concepts for real-time medical procedures. In Phase 1, preliminary feasibility data was gathered for two types of prototype display technologies: a hand-held PDA, and a Head Mounted Display (HMD). The PDA and HMD were compared while performing a simulated medical procedure using ISS flight-like medical equipment. Based on the outcome of Phase 1, including data on user preferences, further testing was completed using the PDA only. Phase 2 explored a wrist-mounted PDA, and compared it to a paper cue card. For each phase, time to complete procedures, errors, and user satisfaction were captured. Information needed by the FS during ISS mission support, especially for an emergency situation (e.g. fire onboard ISS), may be located in many different places around the FS s console. A performance support tool prototype is being developed to address this issue by bringing all of the relevant information together in one place. The tool is designed to include procedures and other information needed by a FS

  1. International Nuclear Safeguards Inspection Support Tool (INSIST)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    St. Pierre, D.E.; Steinmaus, K.L.; Moon, B.D.


    DOE is committed to providing technologies to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to meet escalating monitoring and inspection requirements associated with the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). One example of technology provided to the IAEA is the information management and remote monitoring capabilities being customized for the IAEA by the International Safeguards Division of the Office of Non-Proliferation and National Security. The ongoing Safeguards Information Management Systems (SIMS) program is an interlaboratory effort providing the IAEA with a range of information management capabilities designed to enhance the effectiveness of their nuclear inspection activities. The initial commitment involved the customization of computer capabilities to provide IAEA with the basic capability to geographically organize, store, and retrieve the large quantity of information involved in their nuclear on site inspection activities in Iraq. This initial system, the International Nuclear Safeguards Inspection Support Tool (INSIST), was developed by DOE's Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL). To date, two INSIST workstations have been deployed at the IAEA. The first has been used to support the IAEA Action Team in the inspection of Iraqi nuclear facilities since August 1993. A second, and similar, workstation has been deployed to support environmental monitoring under the IAEA 93+2 Programme. Both INSIST workstations geographically integrate analog (video) and digital data to provide an easy to use and effective tool for storing retrieving and displaying multimedia site and facility information including world-wide maps, satellite and aerial imagery, on site photography, live inspection videos, and treaty and inspection textual information. The interactive, UNIX-based workstations have a variety of peripheral devices for information input and output. INSIST software includes commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) modules and application-specific code developed at PNL

  2. Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) v3: Theoretical Documentation (United States)

    The Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) is a decision support tool that facilitates integrated water management at the local or small watershed scale. WMOST models the environmental effects and costs of management decisions in a watershed context, accounting fo...

  3. Tools for Supporting Distributed Agile Project Planning (United States)

    Wang, Xin; Maurer, Frank; Morgan, Robert; Oliveira, Josyleuda

    Agile project planning plays an important part in agile software development. In distributed settings, project planning is severely impacted by the lack of face-to-face communication and the inability to share paper index cards amongst all meeting participants. To address these issues, several distributed agile planning tools were developed. The tools vary in features, functions and running platforms. In this chapter, we first summarize the requirements for distributed agile planning. Then we give an overview on existing agile planning tools. We also evaluate existing tools based on tool requirements. Finally, we present some practical advices for both designers and users of distributed agile planning tools.

  4. Decision support tool for accidental pollution management. (United States)

    Ciolofan, Sorin N; Draghia, Aurelian; Drobot, Radu; Mocanu, Mariana; Cristea, Valentin


    Accidental river pollution can cause damage to the environment, put at risk the health of people that use the water for domestic purposes, and, not lastly, compromise dependent economic activities (e.g., agriculture). The reduction of the concentration of pollutant on any river following an accidental pollution can be achieved using dilution, by opening for certain duration the bottom gates of the reservoirs placed on the river's tributaries and releasing a significant volume of clean water in the main river. The hydraulic simulation and the pollutant transport are executed, firstly considering there is no dilution and secondly for the dilution scenario (bottom gates of the reservoirs open). A database was created, containing the results of simulations of pollutant transport for various values of the pollution characteristics in both diluted/undiluted scenarios. The database served for the implementation of a web decision support tool that presents an intuitive and easy to use GUI that allows the user to input details of the accidental pollution. Straightforward actions to be taken are presented to the end-user (e.g., "Open the bottom gates of the reservoir X at time T1 and close it at time T2") and synchronized charts show the effect of the dilution in respect to the concentration of pollutant at certain locations on the river. Using the described approach, a reduction of pollutant concentration in the river with up to 90% can be obtained.

  5. Simulation as a hospital management support tool

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nemesio Rodrigues Capocci


    Full Text Available This study aims to demonstrate the use of the discrete event simulation technique as a hospital management support tool, as well as all complex processes existing in a health unit. There must be an analysis of the system as a whole from the perspective of service level provided to patients regarding waiting times. The role of this technique is to show the behavior of a given system. Data were collected from employees of a public Polyclinic, located in a city of the greater São Paulo, by means of interviews which questions were prepared to determine the time spent in the processes of the service system. Such data were inserted in the software Arena in flowchart format for analysis and identification of the problem. Since the person responsible for the screening process was overloaded, thus causing longer waiting times for patients submitted for screening, some changes were made in the model in order to propose an improvement, to balance the occupancy levels of the health unit’s staff and, at the same time, reach a shorter withdrawal period of patients throughout the system. Results showed a significant improvement in the performance of the Polyclinic’s system, as well as a subsequent improvement in the level of service provided to patients. Based on this study, one can note that simulation allows for evaluating scenarios and projecting changes that will impact the behavior of a certain system with no physical changes, thus preventing the lack of scientific basis when making management decisions and allowing for improvements.

  6. "Research Tools": Tools for supporting research and publications


    Ebrahim, Nader Ale


    “Research Tools” can be defined as vehicles that broadly facilitate research and related activities. “Research Tools” enable researchers to collect, organize, analyze, visualize and publicized research outputs. Dr. Nader has collected over 700 tools that enable students to follow the correct path in research and to ultimately produce high-quality research outputs with more accuracy and efficiency. It is assembled as an interactive Web-based mind map, titled “Research Tools”, which is updated ...

  7. Clinical Decision Support Tools: The Evolution of a Revolution

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Mould, D. R.; D'Haens, G.; Upton, R. N.


    Dashboard systems for clinical decision support integrate data from multiple sources. These systems, the newest in a long line of dose calculators and other decision support tools, utilize Bayesian approaches to fully individualize dosing using information gathered through therapeutic drug

  8. Graphite fiber reinforced structure for supporting machine tools (United States)

    Knight, Jr., Charles E.; Kovach, Louis; Hurst, John S.


    Machine tools utilized in precision machine operations require tool support structures which exhibit minimal deflection, thermal expansion and vibration characteristics. The tool support structure of the present invention is a graphite fiber reinforced composite in which layers of the graphite fibers or yarn are disposed in a 0/ pattern and bonded together with an epoxy resin. The finished composite possesses a low coefficient of thermal expansion and a substantially greater elastic modulus, stiffness-to-weight ratio, and damping factor than a conventional steel tool support utilized in similar machining operations.

  9. Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) v3: User Guide (United States)

    The Watershed Management Optimization Support Tool (WMOST) is a decision support tool that facilitates integrated water management at the local or small watershed scale. WMOST models the environmental effects and costs of management decisions in a watershed context that is, accou...

  10. Decision-support tools for climate change mitigation planning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Puig, Daniel; Aparcana Robles, Sandra Roxana

    options) against a particular evaluation criterion or set of criteria. Most often decision-support tools are applied with the help of purpose-designed software packages and drawing on specialised databases.The evaluation criteria alluded to above define and characterise each decision-support tool...

  11. Tool support for software lookup table optimization. (United States)

    Wilcox, Chris; Strout, Michelle Mills; Bieman, James M


    A number of scientific applications are performance-limited by expressions that repeatedly call costly elementary functions. Lookup table (LUT) optimization accelerates the evaluation of such functions by reusing previously computed results. LUT methods can speed up applications that tolerate an approximation of function results, thereby achieving a high level of fuzzy reuse . One problem with LUT optimization is the difficulty of controlling the tradeoff between performance and accuracy. The current practice of manual LUT optimization adds programming effort by requiring extensive experimentation to make this tradeoff, and such hand tuning can obfuscate algorithms. In this paper we describe a methodology and tool implementation to improve the application of software LUT optimization. Our Mesa tool implements source-to-source transformations for C or C++ code to automate the tedious and error-prone aspects of LUT generation such as domain profiling, error analysis, and code generation. We evaluate Mesa with five scientific applications. Our results show a performance improvement of 3.0 × and 6.9 × for two molecular biology algorithms, 1.4 × for a molecular dynamics program, 2.1 × to 2.8 × for a neural network application, and 4.6 × for a hydrology calculation. We find that Mesa enables LUT optimization with more control over accuracy and less effort than manual approaches.

  12. Tool Support for Software Lookup Table Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chris Wilcox


    Full Text Available A number of scientific applications are performance-limited by expressions that repeatedly call costly elementary functions. Lookup table (LUT optimization accelerates the evaluation of such functions by reusing previously computed results. LUT methods can speed up applications that tolerate an approximation of function results, thereby achieving a high level of fuzzy reuse. One problem with LUT optimization is the difficulty of controlling the tradeoff between performance and accuracy. The current practice of manual LUT optimization adds programming effort by requiring extensive experimentation to make this tradeoff, and such hand tuning can obfuscate algorithms. In this paper we describe a methodology and tool implementation to improve the application of software LUT optimization. Our Mesa tool implements source-to-source transformations for C or C++ code to automate the tedious and error-prone aspects of LUT generation such as domain profiling, error analysis, and code generation. We evaluate Mesa with five scientific applications. Our results show a performance improvement of 3.0× and 6.9× for two molecular biology algorithms, 1.4× for a molecular dynamics program, 2.1× to 2.8× for a neural network application, and 4.6× for a hydrology calculation. We find that Mesa enables LUT optimization with more control over accuracy and less effort than manual approaches.

  13. [Support and tools for preparing for birth]. (United States)

    Bouychou, Mathilde; Sallez, Hélène; de Brito, Gina; Mouilti, Yamina; Piquée, Nathalie; Boyé, Hélène

    There are a thousand and one ways of preparing to be a parent. Specific support is offered to pregnant women or the couple in order to take the time to prepare for this personal transformation. Haptonomy, sophrology, shiatsu and massage, acupuncture or gestalt therapy are some of the methods helping parents to prepare to welcome their future child with peace of mind. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Erik Dahl


    Full Text Available This article explores the use of epistemic scaffolds embedded in a digital highlighter tool that was used to support students’ readings and discussions of research articles. The use of annotation technologies in education is increasing, and annotations can play a wide variety of epistemic roles; e.g., they can facilitate a deeper level of engagement, support critical thinking, develop cognitive and metacognitive skills and introduce practices that can support knowledge building and independent learning. However, research has shown that the actual tool use often deviates from the underlying knowledge model in the tools. Hence, the situated and mediated nature of these tools is still poorly understood. Research also tends to study the tools as a passed on resource rather than being co-constructed between students and teachers. The researcher argues that approaching these resources as co-constructed can be more productive and can create new spaces for teacher–student dialogues, students’ agency and self-scaffolding.

  15. Developing Tool Support for Problem Diagrams with CPN and VDM++

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tjell, Simon; Lassen, Kristian Bisgaard


    In this paper, we describe ongoing work on the development of tool support for formal description of domains found in Problem Diagrams. The purpose of the tool is to handle the generation of a CPN model based on a collection of Problem Diagrams. The Problem Diagrams are used for representing the ...

  16. Enhancing Formal Modelling Tool Support with Increased Automation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lausdahl, Kenneth

    Progress report for the qualification exam report for PhD Student Kenneth Lausdahl. Initial work on enhancing tool support for the formal method VDM and the concept of unifying a abstract syntax tree with the ability for isolated extensions is described. The tool support includes a connection...... to UML and a test automation principle based on traces written as a kind of regular expressions....

  17. Designing decision support tools for targeted N-regulation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Andreas Aagaard; Piil, Kristoffer; Andersen, Peter Stubkjær


    in Denmark to develop and improve a functioning decision support tool for landscape scale N-management. The aim of the study is to evaluate how a decision support tool can best be designed in order to enable landscape scale strategic N-management practices. Methods: A prototype GIS-tool for capturing......: (1) The formulation of an inclusive, socially acceptable common understanding of current land use patterns, conditions for production and effects on the environment among the stakeholders present; (2) Successful and appropriate handling of errors and imprecisions in the data being presented through...

  18. Combining Tools to Design and Develop Software Support for Capabilities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Henkel


    Full Text Available Analyzing, designing and implementing software systems based on the concept of capabilities have several benefits, such as the ability to design efficient monitoring of capabilities and their execution context. Today, there exist new model-driven methods and development tools that support capability-based analysis, design, and implementation. However, there are also a plethora of existing efficient development tools that are currently in use by organizations. In this article, we examine how a new set of capability based tools, the Capability Driven Development (CDD environment, can be combined with model-driven development tools to leverage both novel capability-based functionality and the proven functionality of existing tools. We base the examination on a case study where an existing model-driven tool is combined with the CDD environment.

  19. A Digital Tool Supporting Goal-Oriented Teaching in Classrooms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Misfeldt, Morten; Bundsgaard, Jeppe; Slot, Marie Falkesgaard


    transformed the national curriculum into a number of competences that were further divided into pairs of knowledge and skills. Together with this curriculum reform, there is a government initiative to promote goal-oriented teaching and a complementary need to support teachers’ more concrete plans...... and objectives for their teaching; these form a challenge and a basis for developing a digital tool for mediating between curriculum and pedagogical practice. The motivation for revising the national curriculum and developing digital tools that support teaching is partly based on evidence that the previous...


    Cheung, Kei Long; Hiligsmann, Mickaël; Präger, Maximilian; Jones, Teresa; Józwiak-Hagymásy, Judit; Muñoz, Celia; Lester-George, Adam; Pokhrel, Subhash; López-Nicolás, Ángel; Trapero-Bertran, Marta; Evers, Silvia M A A; de Vries, Hein


    Economic decision-support tools can provide valuable information for tobacco control stakeholders, but their usability may impact the adoption of such tools. This study aims to illustrate a mixed-method usability evaluation of an economic decision-support tool for tobacco control, using the EQUIPT ROI tool prototype as a case study. A cross-sectional mixed methods design was used, including a heuristic evaluation, a thinking aloud approach, and a questionnaire testing and exploring the usability of the Return of Investment tool. A total of sixty-six users evaluated the tool (thinking aloud) and completed the questionnaire. For the heuristic evaluation, four experts evaluated the interface. In total twenty-one percent of the respondents perceived good usability. A total of 118 usability problems were identified, from which twenty-six problems were categorized as most severe, indicating high priority to fix them before implementation. Combining user-based and expert-based evaluation methods is recommended as these were shown to identify unique usability problems. The evaluation provides input to optimize usability of a decision-support tool, and may serve as a vantage point for other developers to conduct usability evaluations to refine similar tools before wide-scale implementation. Such studies could reduce implementation gaps by optimizing usability, enhancing in turn the research impact of such interventions.

  1. ICT tools as support fort he management of human talent

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Cristina Riascos Erazo


    Full Text Available The use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT within the organizational context has revolutionized management and administrative thought; this is evidenced through various aspects, one is how human talent is managed. This article seeks to show the results of research related to the evaluation of ICT used as support to human talent management and its essential objective was to characterize the main ICT tools used in the operational processes involved in managing human talent. The research was developed in two phases; first, identification of ICT tools that support human management processes, and second, determination of software used for human talent management in 60 companies in the Industrial, Commercial, and Service sectors in the city of Santiago de Cali. The research results indicate that diverse tools are available that facilitate the activities in the area of human talent management and which are mostly used in the commercial and service sectors

  2. Request for Support: A Tool for Strengthening Network Capacity (United States)

    Bain, Jamie; Harden, Noelle; Heim, Stephanie


    A request for support (RFS) is a tool that is used to strengthen network capacity by prioritizing needs and optimizing learning opportunities. Within University of Minnesota Extension, we implemented an RFS process through an online survey designed to help leaders of food networks identify and rank learning and capacity-building needs and indicate…

  3. Computer-based tools to support curriculum developers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nieveen, N.M.; Gustafson, Kent


    Since the start of the early 90’s, an increasing number of people are interested in supporting the complex tasks of the curriculum development process with computer-based tools. ‘Curriculum development’ refers to an intentional process or activity directed at (re) designing, developing and

  4. BProVe: Tool support for business process verification

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Corradini, Flavio; Fornari, Fabrizio; Polini, Andrea


    This demo introduces BProVe, a tool supporting automated verification of Business Process models. BProVe analysis is based on a formal operational semantics defined for the BPMN 2.0 modelling language, and is provided as a freely accessible service that uses open standard formats as input data...

  5. Telematic Tools to Support Group Projects in Higher Education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Veen, Johan (CTIT); Collis, Betty

    We describe ongoing evaluations and new research on the use of telematic tools to support project work in higher education. Practical experience at our University has shown that project work can be implemented using the World Wide Web for many aspects of the project activities. The possibilities

  6. Telematic tools to support group projects in higher education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Veen, Johan (CTIT); Collis, Betty; Muldner, T.; Reeves, T.C.


    We describe ongoing evaluations and new research on the use of telematic tools to support project work in higher education. Practical experience at our University has shown that project work can be implemented using the World Wide Web for many aspects of the project activities. The possibilities

  7. Mindfully implementing simulation tools for supporting pragmatic design inquiries

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hartmann, Timo; olde Scholtenhuis, Léon Luc; Zerjav, Vedran; Champlin, Carissa J


    Based upon a conceptualization of the engineering design process as pragmatic inquiry, this paper introduces a framework for supporting designers and design managers with a better understanding of the trade-offs required for a successful implementation of simulation tools. This framework contributes

  8. Prediction of Machine Tool Condition Using Support Vector Machine (United States)

    Wang, Peigong; Meng, Qingfeng; Zhao, Jian; Li, Junjie; Wang, Xiufeng


    Condition monitoring and predicting of CNC machine tools are investigated in this paper. Considering the CNC machine tools are often small numbers of samples, a condition predicting method for CNC machine tools based on support vector machines (SVMs) is proposed, then one-step and multi-step condition prediction models are constructed. The support vector machines prediction models are used to predict the trends of working condition of a certain type of CNC worm wheel and gear grinding machine by applying sequence data of vibration signal, which is collected during machine processing. And the relationship between different eigenvalue in CNC vibration signal and machining quality is discussed. The test result shows that the trend of vibration signal Peak-to-peak value in surface normal direction is most relevant to the trend of surface roughness value. In trends prediction of working condition, support vector machine has higher prediction accuracy both in the short term ('One-step') and long term (multi-step) prediction compared to autoregressive (AR) model and the RBF neural network. Experimental results show that it is feasible to apply support vector machine to CNC machine tool condition prediction.

  9. Decision support tool for diagnosing the source of variation (United States)

    Masood, Ibrahim; Azrul Azhad Haizan, Mohamad; Norbaya Jumali, Siti; Ghazali, Farah Najihah Mohd; Razali, Hazlin Syafinaz Md; Shahir Yahya, Mohd; Azlan, Mohd Azwir bin


    Identifying the source of unnatural variation (SOV) in manufacturing process is essential for quality control. The Shewhart control chart patterns (CCPs) are commonly used to monitor the SOV. However, a proper interpretation of CCPs associated to its SOV requires a high skill industrial practitioner. Lack of knowledge in process engineering will lead to erroneous corrective action. The objective of this study is to design the operating procedures of computerized decision support tool (DST) for process diagnosis. The DST is an embedded tool in CCPs recognition scheme. Design methodology involves analysis of relationship between geometrical features, manufacturing process and CCPs. The DST contents information about CCPs and its possible root cause error and description on SOV phenomenon such as process deterioration in tool bluntness, offsetting tool, loading error, and changes in materials hardness. The DST will be useful for an industrial practitioner in making effective troubleshooting.

  10. Standard guide for hot cell specialized support equipment and tools

    CERN Document Server

    American Society for Testing and Materials. Philadelphia


    1.1 Intent: 1.1.1 This guide presents practices and guidelines for the design and implementation of equipment and tools to assist assembly, disassembly, alignment, fastening, maintenance, or general handling of equipment in a hot cell. Operating in a remote hot cell environment significantly increases the difficulty and time required to perform a task compared to completing a similar task directly by hand. Successful specialized support equipment and tools minimize the required effort, reduce risks, and increase operating efficiencies. 1.2 Applicability: 1.2.1 This guide may apply to the design of specialized support equipment and tools anywhere it is remotely operated, maintained, and viewed through shielding windows or by other remote viewing systems. 1.2.2 Consideration should be given to the need for specialized support equipment and tools early in the design process. 1.2.3 The values stated in inch-pound units are to be regarded as standard. The values given in parentheses are mathematical conv...

  11. A computer tool to support in design of industrial Ethernet. (United States)

    Lugli, Alexandre Baratella; Santos, Max Mauro Dias; Franco, Lucia Regina Horta Rodrigues


    This paper presents a computer tool to support in the project and development of an industrial Ethernet network, verifying the physical layer (cables-resistance and capacitance, scan time, network power supply-POE's concept "Power Over Ethernet" and wireless), and occupation rate (amount of information transmitted to the network versus the controller network scan time). These functions are accomplished without a single physical element installed in the network, using only simulation. The computer tool has a software that presents a detailed vision of the network to the user, besides showing some possible problems in the network, and having an extremely friendly environment.

  12. Software Tools to Support the Assessment of System Health (United States)

    Melcher, Kevin J.


    This presentation provides an overview of three software tools that were developed by the NASA Glenn Research Center to support the assessment of system health: the Propulsion Diagnostic Method Evaluation Strategy (ProDIMES), the Systematic Sensor Selection Strategy (S4), and the Extended Testability Analysis (ETA) tool. Originally developed to support specific NASA projects in aeronautics and space, these software tools are currently available to U.S. citizens through the NASA Glenn Software Catalog. The ProDiMES software tool was developed to support a uniform comparison of propulsion gas path diagnostic methods. Methods published in the open literature are typically applied to dissimilar platforms with different levels of complexity. They often address different diagnostic problems and use inconsistent metrics for evaluating performance. As a result, it is difficult to perform a one ]to ]one comparison of the various diagnostic methods. ProDIMES solves this problem by serving as a theme problem to aid in propulsion gas path diagnostic technology development and evaluation. The overall goal is to provide a tool that will serve as an industry standard, and will truly facilitate the development and evaluation of significant Engine Health Management (EHM) capabilities. ProDiMES has been developed under a collaborative project of The Technical Cooperation Program (TTCP) based on feedback provided by individuals within the aircraft engine health management community. The S4 software tool provides a framework that supports the optimal selection of sensors for health management assessments. S4 is structured to accommodate user ]defined applications, diagnostic systems, search techniques, and system requirements/constraints. One or more sensor suites that maximize this performance while meeting other user ]defined system requirements that are presumed to exist. S4 provides a systematic approach for evaluating combinations of sensors to determine the set or sets of

  13. Timbre Brownfield Prioritization Tool to support effective brownfield\

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pizol, L.; Zabeo, A.; Klusáček, Petr; Giubilato, E.; Critto, A.; Frantál, Bohumil; Martinát, Stanislav; Kunc, Josef; Osman, Robert; Bartke, S.


    Roč. 166, č. 166 (2016), s. 178-192 ISSN 0301-4797 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) 7E11035 Institutional support: RVO:68145535 Keywords : brownfields * prioritisation * Web-based tool Subject RIV: DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography Impact factor: 4.010, year: 2016 http://dx. doi . org /10.1016/j.jenvman.2015.09.030

  14. Timbre Brownfield Prioritization Tool to support effective brownfield\

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Pizol, L.; Zabeo, A.; Klusáček, Petr; Giubilato, E.; Critto, A.; Frantál, Bohumil; Martinát, Stanislav; Kunc, Josef; Osman, Robert; Bartke, S.


    Roč. 166, č. 166 (2016), s. 178-192 ISSN 0301-4797 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) 7E11035 Institutional support: RVO:68145535 Keywords : brownfields * prioritisation * Web-based tool Subject RIV: DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography Impact factor: 4.010, year: 2016

  15. A Automated Tool for Supporting FMEAs of Digital Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Yue,M.; Chu, T.-L.; Martinez-Guridi, G.; Lehner, J.


    Although designs of digital systems can be very different from each other, they typically use many of the same types of generic digital components. Determining the impacts of the failure modes of these generic components on a digital system can be used to support development of a reliability model of the system. A novel approach was proposed for such a purpose by decomposing the system into a level of the generic digital components and propagating failure modes to the system level, which generally is time-consuming and difficult to implement. To overcome the associated issues of implementing the proposed FMEA approach, an automated tool for a digital feedwater control system (DFWCS) has been developed in this study. The automated FMEA tool is in nature a simulation platform developed by using or recreating the original source code of the different module software interfaced by input and output variables that represent physical signals exchanged between modules, the system, and the controlled process. For any given failure mode, its impacts on associated signals are determined first and the variables that correspond to these signals are modified accordingly by the simulation. Criteria are also developed, as part of the simulation platform, to determine whether the system has lost its automatic control function, which is defined as a system failure in this study. The conceptual development of the automated FMEA support tool can be generalized and applied to support FMEAs for reliability assessment of complex digital systems.

  16. Trajectory Calculation as Forecasting Support Tool for Dust Storms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sultan Al-Yahyai


    Full Text Available In arid and semiarid regions, dust storms are common during windy seasons. Strong wind can blow loose sand from the dry surface. The rising sand and dust is then transported to other places depending on the wind conditions (speed and direction at different levels of the atmosphere. Considering dust as a moving object in space and time, trajectory calculation then can be used to determine the path it will follow. Trajectory calculation is used as a forecast supporting tool for both operational and research activities. Predefined dust sources can be identified and the trajectories can be precalculated from the Numerical Weather Prediction (NWP forecast. In case of long distance transported dust, the tool should allow the operational forecaster to perform online trajectory calculation. This paper presents a case study for using trajectory calculation based on NWP models as a forecast supporting tool in Oman Meteorological Service during some dust storm events. Case study validation results showed a good agreement between the calculated trajectories and the real transport path of the dust storms and hence trajectory calculation can be used at operational centers for warning purposes.

  17. Integrated environmental decision support tool based on GIS technology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Doctor, P.G.; O'Neil, T.K.; Sackschewsky, M.R.; Becker, J.M.; Rykiel, E.J.; Walters, T.B.; Brandt, C.A.; Hall, J.A.


    Environmental restoration and management decisions facing the US Department of Energy require balancing trade-offs between diverse land uses and impacts over multiple spatial and temporal scales. Many types of environmental data have been collected for the Hanford Site and the Columbia River in Washington State over the past fifty years. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is integrating these data into a Geographic Information System (GIS) based computer decision support tool. This tool provides a comprehensive and concise description of the current environmental landscape that can be used to evaluate the ecological and monetary trade-offs between future land use, restoration and remediation options before action is taken. Ecological impacts evaluated include effects to individual species of concern and habitat loss and fragmentation. Monetary impacts include those associated with habitat mitigation. The tool is organized as both a browsing tool for educational purposes, and as a framework that leads a project manager through the steps needed to be in compliance with environmental requirements

  18. A Decision Support Tool for Transient Stability Preventive Control

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pertl, Michael; Weckesser, Johannes Tilman Gabriel; Rezkalla, Michel M.N.


    The paper presents a decision support tool for transient stability preventive control contributing to increased situation awareness of control room operators by providing additional information about the state of the power system in terms of transient stability. A time-domain approach is used...... a predefined minimum critical clearing time for faults at all buses is proposed, while costs are minimized. The results of the assessment are presented to the control room operator, who decides to accept the suggested dispatch or to repeat the assessment considering additional user-specific constraints...


    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)



    The emphasis of the session was on the use of decision support tools for actual remediation decisions. It considered two perspectives: site-specific decision making for example choosing a particular remediation system; and remediation in terms of a risk management/risk reduction process as part of a wider process of site management. These were addressed both as general topics and as case studies. Case studies were included to provide information on decision support techniques for specific contamination problems such as remedy selection. In the case studies, the authors present the general process to provide decision support and then discuss the application to a specific problem. The intent of this approach is to provide the interested reader with enough knowledge to determine if the process could be used on their specific set of problems. The general topics included broader issues that are not directly tied to a specific problem. The general topics included papers on the role of stakeholders in the decision process and decision support approaches for sustainable development

  20. EVA Swab Tool to Support Planetary Protection and Astrobiology Evaluations (United States)

    Rucker, Michelle A.; Hood, Drew; Walker, Mary; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri J.; Schuerger, Andrew C.


    various pressure environments. To further minimize cost, the design team acquired extensive ground test experience in a relevant flight environment by piggy-backing onto suited crew training runs. These training runs allowed the project to validate tool interfaces with pressurized EVA gloves and collect user feedback on the tool design and function, as well as characterize baseline microbial data for different types of spacesuits. In general, test subjects found the EVA Swab Kit relatively straightforward to operate, but identified a number of design improvements that will be incorporated into the final design. Although originally intended to help characterize human forward contaminants, this tool has other potential applications, such as for collecting and preserving space-exposed materials to support astrobiology experiments.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arzu Ekoç


    Full Text Available This paper attempts to present a review of Facebook group pages as an educational tool for language learning. One of the primary needs of foreign language learners is to gain the opportunity to use the target language outside the classroom practice. Social media communication provides occasions for learners to receive input and produce output while engaging in negotiation of meaning. In line with this point, teachers can instigate class group pages in the social media in an attempt to provide a space for practice and communication free of the traditional pedagogic concerns of a typical classroom. The distinctive discursive behaviour of Facebook group pages helps one to achieve that attempt. In light of these views, the researcher, in this study, formed a group page to understand the dynamics of social media environment as a supporting tool for language classrooms. This paper addresses various features which make social media a unique place to contribute to the sense of class community and collaboration outside the classroom. The face-to face classroom is a controlled communication event, that is, teachers and students are required to be in the classroom at the same time but a teacher’s use of Facebook is an attempt to communicate with students outside of that controlled environment where teachers can meet students in their territory. When compared to its disadvantages, the advantages of setting a class group page on the social media outweigh. Students can feel motivated to contribute to an online community if they subsequently receive support or help. It also leads students to feel that they are being supported by a whole portion of their class community and promotes students’ desire to maintain a valued relationship with others. Students continue developing and strengthening relationships with others.

  2. Numerical Model Metrics Tools in Support of Navy Operations (United States)

    Dykes, J. D.; Fanguy, P.


    Increasing demands of accurate ocean forecasts that are relevant to the Navy mission decision makers demand tools that quickly provide relevant numerical model metrics to the forecasters. Increasing modelling capabilities with ever-higher resolution domains including coupled and ensemble systems as well as the increasing volume of observations and other data sources to which to compare the model output requires more tools for the forecaster to enable doing more with less. These data can be appropriately handled in a geographic information system (GIS) fused together to provide useful information and analyses, and ultimately a better understanding how the pertinent model performs based on ground truth.. Oceanographic measurements like surface elevation, profiles of temperature and salinity, and wave height can all be incorporated into a set of layers correlated to geographic information such as bathymetry and topography. In addition, an automated system that runs concurrently with the models on high performance machines matches routinely available observations to modelled values to form a database of matchups with which statistics can be calculated and displayed, to facilitate validation of forecast state and derived variables. ArcMAP, developed by Environmental Systems Research Institute, is a GIS application used by the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and naval operational meteorological and oceanographic centers to analyse the environment in support of a range of Navy missions. For example, acoustic propagation in the ocean is described with a three-dimensional analysis of sound speed that depends on profiles of temperature, pressure and salinity predicted by the Navy Coastal Ocean Model. The data and model output must include geo-referencing information suitable for accurately placing the data within the ArcMAP framework. NRL has developed tools that facilitate merging these geophysical data and their analyses, including intercomparisons between model

  3. Demonstration of Decision Support Tools for Sustainable Development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shropshire, David Earl; Jacobson, Jacob Jordan; Berrett, Sharon; Cobb, D. A.; Worhach, P.


    The Demonstration of Decision Support Tools for Sustainable Development project integrated the Bechtel/Nexant Industrial Materials Exchange Planner and the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory System Dynamic models, demonstrating their capabilities on alternative fuel applications in the Greater Yellowstone-Teton Park system. The combined model, called the Dynamic Industrial Material Exchange, was used on selected test cases in the Greater Yellow Teton Parks region to evaluate economic, environmental, and social implications of alternative fuel applications, and identifying primary and secondary industries. The test cases included looking at compressed natural gas applications in Teton National Park and Jackson, Wyoming, and studying ethanol use in Yellowstone National Park and gateway cities in Montana. With further development, the system could be used to assist decision-makers (local government, planners, vehicle purchasers, and fuel suppliers) in selecting alternative fuels, vehicles, and developing AF infrastructures. The system could become a regional AF market assessment tool that could help decision-makers understand the behavior of the AF market and conditions in which the market would grow. Based on this high level market assessment, investors and decision-makers would become more knowledgeable of the AF market opportunity before developing detailed plans and preparing financial analysis.

  4. A customizable mobile tool for supporting health behavior interventions. (United States)

    Koskinen, Esa; Salminen, Jukka


    Recorded self-observations on a regular basis is an important component in many health behavior interventions. Using information and communication technologies (ICT) and especially mobile eHealth applications is a promising way of improving user-friendliness and possibly the overall effectiveness of self-monitoring. Mobility as such brings the added value of continuous availability and timely information access. One additional benefit of ICT based solutions is the possibility for various types of customization, allowing support for a wider set of application requirements than was originally planned, and meeting changing needs and targets of individuals, groups or larger user segments. In this paper, we present a customizable mobile application for recording and managing health related self-observations, Wellness Diary, and the ideas and technical solutions for supporting tailoring of the application. The main idea is to allow end-users to freely change the data model in the application, and customize related data presentations. This work has been done in Nuadu ITEA project, as well as further work where the effectiveness of the mobile tool and other ICT technologies will be investigated in a controlled trial in Finland. We'll also present shortly a counterpart for the mobile application, a web service that should bring some added value for the end user.

  5. A Customized Drought Decision Support Tool for Hsinchu Science Park (United States)

    Huang, Jung; Tien, Yu-Chuan; Lin, Hsuan-Te; Liu, Tzu-Ming; Tung, Ching-Pin


    Climate change creates more challenges for water resources management. Due to the lack of sufficient precipitation in Taiwan in fall of 2014, many cities and counties suffered from water shortage during early 2015. Many companies in Hsinchu Science Park were significantly influenced and realized that they need a decision support tool to help them managing water resources. Therefore, a customized computer program was developed, which is capable of predicting the future status of public water supply system and water storage of factories when the water rationing is announced by the government. This program presented in this study for drought decision support (DDSS) is a customized model for a semiconductor company in the Hsinchu Science Park. The DDSS is programmed in Java which is a platform-independent language. System requirements are any PC with the operating system above Windows XP and an installed Java SE Runtime Environment 7. The DDSS serves two main functions. First function is to predict the future storage of Baoshan Reservoir and Second Baoshan Reservoir, so to determine the time point of water use restriction in Hsinchu Science Park. Second function is to use the results to help the company to make decisions to trigger their response plans. The DDSS can conduct real-time scenario simulations calculating the possible storage of water tank for each factory with pre-implementation and post-implementation of those response plans. In addition, DDSS can create reports in Excel to help decision makers to compare results between different scenarios.

  6. Timbre Brownfield Prioritization Tool to support effective brownfield regeneration. (United States)

    Pizzol, Lisa; Zabeo, Alex; Klusáček, Petr; Giubilato, Elisa; Critto, Andrea; Frantál, Bohumil; Martinát, Standa; Kunc, Josef; Osman, Robert; Bartke, Stephan


    In the last decade, the regeneration of derelict or underused sites, fully or partly located in urban areas (or so called "brownfields"), has become more common, since free developable land (or so called "greenfields") has more and more become a scare and, hence, more expensive resource, especially in densely populated areas. Although the regeneration of brownfield sites can offer development potentials, the complexity of these sites requires considerable efforts to successfully complete their revitalization projects and the proper selection of promising sites is a pre-requisite to efficiently allocate the limited financial resources. The identification and analysis of success factors for brownfield sites regeneration can support investors and decision makers in selecting those sites which are the most advantageous for successful regeneration. The objective of this paper is to present the Timbre Brownfield Prioritization Tool (TBPT), developed as a web-based solution to assist stakeholders responsible for wider territories or clusters of brownfield sites (portfolios) to identify which brownfield sites should be preferably considered for redevelopment or further investigation. The prioritization approach is based on a set of success factors properly identified through a systematic stakeholder engagement procedure. Within the TBPT these success factors are integrated by means of a Multi Criteria Decision Analysis (MCDA) methodology, which includes stakeholders' requalification objectives and perspectives related to the brownfield regeneration process and takes into account the three pillars of sustainability (economic, social and environmental dimensions). The tool has been applied to the South Moravia case study (Czech Republic), considering two different requalification objectives identified by local stakeholders, namely the selection of suitable locations for the development of a shopping centre and a solar power plant, respectively. The application of the TBPT to

  7. Decision Support Tool for Prioritization of Surveillance and Maintenance Investment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Velez, L.Y.; Conley, T.B.


    The Department of Energy (DOE) currently faces a difficult task in the disposition of the numerous excess or to-be excessed facilities owned by the Department. Many of these facilities are in various physical conditions and contain potentially hazardous nuclear, chemical, radiological or industrial materials left behind as a byproduct of nuclear weapons production, nuclear powered naval vessels and commercial nuclear energy production. During the last period of a facility's life cycle, it is important that surveillance and maintenance (S and M) be adequate to maintain the facility within an appropriate safety envelope. Inadequate investment in maintenance can cause facilities to deteriorate to the point they are unsafe for human entry. Too often this can mean tremendous increases to cost during deactivation and decommissioning (D and D). However, experiences often show that once buildings have been declared excess and enter the transition phase (as defined in DOE G 430.1-5 Transition Implementation Guide), maintenance budgets are drastically reduced. This is justified by the desire to not spend money 'on a building that is being torn down'. The objective of this study was to provide the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Environmental Management (EM) federal project directors and their contractors with a decision support tool to aid in prioritizing S and M investment across a site's excess facilities so that the limited budget available can be used most effectively. The analytical hierarchy process (AHP), a multi-criteria decision making method developed by Dr. Thomas Saaty in the 1970's, was used to derive the weight of importance of a defined list of risk-based criteria and typical S and M activities. A total of 10 facilities at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) varying in perceived hazards and conditions were chosen to test the tool by evaluating them with respect to each risk criterion and combining these results with the weight of importance of the S and M

  8. Testing an Irrigation Decision Support Tool for California Specialty Crops (United States)

    Johnson, L.; Cahn, M.; Benzen, S.; Zaragoza, I.; Murphy, L.; Melton, F. S.; Martin, F.; Quackenbush, A.; Lockhart, T.


    Estimation of crop evapotranspiration supports efficiency of irrigation water management, which in turn can mitigate nitrate leaching, groundwater depletion, and provide energy savings. Past research in California and elsewhere has revealed strong relationships between photosynthetically active vegetation fraction (Fc) and crop evapotranspiration (ETc). Additional research has shown the potential of monitoring Fc by satellite remote sensing. The U.C. Cooperative Extension developed and operates CropManage (CM) as on-line database irrigation (and nitrogen) scheduling tool. CM accounts for the rapid growth and typically brief cycle of cool-season vegetables, where Fc and fraction of reference ET can change daily during canopy development. The model automates crop water requirement calculations based on reference ET data collected by California Dept. Water Resources. Empirically-derived equations are used to estimate daily Fc time-series for a given crop type primarily as a function of planting date and expected harvest date. An application programming interface (API) is under development to provide a check on modeled Fc of current crops and facilitate CM expansion to new crops. The API will enable CM to extract field scale Fc observations from NASA's Satellite Irrigation Management Support (SIMS). SIMS is mainly Landsat based and currently monitors Fc over about 8 million irrigation acres statewide, with potential for adding data from ESA/Sentinel for improved temporal resolution. In the current study, a replicated irrigation trial was performed on romaine lettuce at the USDA Agricultural Research Station in Salinas, CA. CropManage recommendations were used to guide water treatments by drip irrigation at 50%, 75%, 100% ETc replacement levels, with an added treatment at 150% ET representing grower standard practice. Experimental results indicate that yields from the 100% and 150% treatments were not significantly different and were in-line with industry average, while

  9. Tools to support maintenance strategies under soft soil conditions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. W. M. Lambert


    Full Text Available Costs for maintenance of infrastructure in municipalities with soft soil underground conditions, are estimated to be almost 40 % higher than in others. As a result, these municipalities meet financial problems that cause overdue maintenance. In some cases municipalities are even afraid to be unable to offer a minimum service level in future. In common, traditional practice, roads and sewerage systems have been constructed in trenches that consist of sandy material that replaces the upper meters of the soft soil. Under influence of its weight, this causes accelerated settlements of the construction. A number of alternative constructions have been developed, e.g. using light-weight materials to limit settlement velocity. In order to limit future maintenance costs, improvement of maintenance strategies is desired. Tools have been and will be developed to support municipalities in improving their maintenance strategies and save money by doing that. A model (BALANS that weighs the attractiveness of alternative solutions under different soil, environmental and economic circumstances, will be presented.

  10. Development and commissioning of decision support tools for sewerage management. (United States)

    Manic, G; Printemps, C; Zug, M; Lemoine, C


    Managing sewerage systems is a highly complex task due to the dynamic nature of the facilities. Their performance strongly depends on the know-how applied by the operators. In order to define optimal operational settings, two decision support tools based on mathematical models have been developed. Moreover, easy-to-use interfaces have been created as well, aiding operators who presumably do not have the necessary skills to use modelling software. The two developed programs simulate the behaviour of both wastewater treatment plants (WWTP) and sewer network systems, respectively. They have essentially the same structure, including raw data management and statistical analysis, a simulation layer using the application programming interface of the applied software and a layer responsible for the representation of the obtained results. Four user modes are provided in the two software including the simulation of historical data using the applied and novel operational settings, as well as modes concerning prediction of possible operation periods and updates. Concerning the WWTP software, it was successfully installed in Nantes (France) in June 2004. Moreover, the one managing sewer networks has been deployed in Saint-Malo (France) in January 2005. This paper presents the structure of the developed software and the first results obtained during the commissioning phase.

  11. Ensemble Streamflow Forecast Improvements in NYC's Operations Support Tool (United States)

    Wang, L.; Weiss, W. J.; Porter, J.; Schaake, J. C.; Day, G. N.; Sheer, D. P.


    Like most other water supply utilities, New York City's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has operational challenges associated with drought and wet weather events. During drought conditions, DEP must maintain water supply reliability to 9 million customers as well as meet environmental release requirements downstream of its reservoirs. During and after wet weather events, DEP must maintain turbidity compliance in its unfiltered Catskill and Delaware reservoir systems and minimize spills to mitigate downstream flooding. Proactive reservoir management - such as release restrictions to prepare for a drought or preventative drawdown in advance of a large storm - can alleviate negative impacts associated with extreme events. It is important for water managers to understand the risks associated with proactive operations so unintended consequences such as endangering water supply reliability with excessive drawdown prior to a storm event are minimized. Probabilistic hydrologic forecasts are a critical tool in quantifying these risks and allow water managers to make more informed operational decisions. DEP has recently completed development of an Operations Support Tool (OST) that integrates ensemble streamflow forecasts, real-time observations, and a reservoir system operations model into a user-friendly graphical interface that allows its water managers to take robust and defensible proactive measures in the face of challenging system conditions. Since initial development of OST was first presented at the 2011 AGU Fall Meeting, significant improvements have been made to the forecast system. First, the monthly AR1 forecasts ('Hirsch method') were upgraded with a generalized linear model (GLM) utilizing historical daily correlations ('Extended Hirsch method' or 'eHirsch'). The development of eHirsch forecasts improved predictive skill over the Hirsch method in the first week to a month from the forecast date and produced more realistic hydrographs on the tail

  12. Electronic Safety Resource Tools -- Supporting Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Commercialization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Barilo, Nick F.


    The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) Hydrogen Safety Program conducted a planning session in Los Angeles, CA on April 1, 2014 to consider what electronic safety tools would benefit the next phase of hydrogen and fuel cell commercialization. A diverse, 20-person team led by an experienced facilitator considered the question as it applied to the eight most relevant user groups. The results and subsequent evaluation activities revealed several possible resource tools that could greatly benefit users. The tool identified as having the greatest potential for impact is a hydrogen safety portal, which can be the central location for integrating and disseminating safety information (including most of the tools identified in this report). Such a tool can provide credible and reliable information from a trustworthy source. Other impactful tools identified include a codes and standards wizard to guide users through a series of questions relating to application and specific features of the requirements; a scenario-based virtual reality training for first responders; peer networking tools to bring users from focused groups together to discuss and collaborate on hydrogen safety issues; and a focused tool for training inspectors. Table ES.1 provides results of the planning session, including proposed new tools and changes to existing tools.

  13. Human Decision Processes: Implications for SSA Support Tools (United States)

    Picciano, P.


    paper), one opinion shared is that the rational, economic, deliberate listing/evaluation of all options is NOT representative of how many decision are made. A framework gaining interest lately describes two systems predominantly at work: intuition and reasoning (Kahneman, 2003). Intuition is fast, automatic, and parallel contrasted with the more effortful, deliberative, and sequential reasoning. One of the issues of contention is that considerable research is stacked supporting both sides claiming that intuition is: • A hallmark of expertise responsible for rapid, optimal decisions in the face of adversity • A vulnerability where biases serve as decision traps leading to wrong choices Using seminal studies from a range of domains and tasking, potential solutions for SSA decision support will be offered. Important issues such as managing uncertainty, framing inquiries, and information architecture, and contextual cues will be discussed. The purpose is to provide awareness of the human limitations and capabilities in complex decision making so engineers and designers can consider such factors in their development of SSA tools.

  14. Innovative Tools for Water Quality/Quantity Management: New York City's Operations Support Tool (United States)

    Wang, L.; Schaake, J. C.; Day, G. N.; Porter, J.; Sheer, D. P.; Pyke, G.


    The New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) manages New York City's water supply, which is comprised of over 20 reservoirs and supplies more than 1 billion gallons of water per day to over 9 million customers. Recently, DEP has initiated design of an Operations Support Tool (OST), a state-of-the-art decision support system to provide computational and predictive support for water supply operations and planning. This presentation describes the technical structure of OST, including the underlying water supply and water quality models, data sources and database management, reservoir inflow forecasts, and the functionalities required to meet the needs of a diverse group of end users. OST is a major upgrade of DEP's current water supply - water quality model, developed to evaluate alternatives for controlling turbidity in NYC's Catskill reservoirs. While the current model relies on historical hydrologic and meteorological data, OST can be driven by forecasted future conditions. It will receive a variety of near-real-time data from a number of sources. OST will support two major types of simulations: long-term, for evaluating policy or infrastructure changes over an extended period of time; and short-term "position analysis" (PA) simulations, consisting of multiple short simulations, all starting from the same initial conditions. Typically, the starting conditions for a PA run will represent those for the current day and traces of forecasted hydrology will drive the model for the duration of the simulation period. The result of these simulations will be a distribution of future system states based on system operating rules and the range of input ensemble streamflow predictions. DEP managers will analyze the output distributions and make operation decisions using risk-based metrics such as probability of refill. Currently, in the developmental stages of OST, forecasts are based on antecedent hydrologic conditions and are statistical in nature. The

  15. A GIS-based support tool for sustainable spatial planning in metropolitan areas

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carsjens, G.J.; Ligtenberg, A.


    This paper describes a support tool that incorporates environmental aspects in local spatial planning processes. The tool aims to support the work of local authorities and urban planning offices, especially with regard to identifying options in the early phases of the planning process. The tool has

  16. Developing Anticipatory Life Cycle Assessment Tools to Support Responsible Innovation (United States)

    Wender, Benjamin

    Several prominent research strategy organizations recommend applying life cycle assessment (LCA) early in the development of emerging technologies. For example, the US Environmental Protection Agency, the National Research Council, the Department of Energy, and the National Nanotechnology Initiative identify the potential for LCA to inform research and development (R&D) of photovoltaics and products containing engineered nanomaterials (ENMs). In this capacity, application of LCA to emerging technologies may contribute to the growing movement for responsible research and innovation (RRI). However, existing LCA practices are largely retrospective and ill-suited to support the objectives of RRI. For example, barriers related to data availability, rapid technology change, and isolation of environmental from technical research inhibit application of LCA to developing technologies. This dissertation focuses on development of anticipatory LCA tools that incorporate elements of technology forecasting, provide robust explorations of uncertainty, and engage diverse innovation actors in overcoming retrospective approaches to environmental assessment and improvement of emerging technologies. Chapter one contextualizes current LCA practices within the growing literature articulating RRI and identifies the optimal place in the stage gate innovation model to apply LCA. Chapter one concludes with a call to develop anticipatory LCA---building on the theory of anticipatory governance---as a series of methodological improvements that seek to align LCA practices with the objectives of RRI. Chapter two provides a framework for anticipatory LCA, identifies where research from multiple disciplines informs LCA practice, and builds off the recommendations presented in the preceding chapter. Chapter two focuses on crystalline and thin film photovoltaics (PV) to illustrate the novel framework, in part because PV is an environmentally motivated technology undergoing extensive R&D efforts and

  17. Tool Support for Distributed Software Development : The past - present - and future of gaps between user requirements and tool functionalities

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Herrera, Miles; van Hillegersberg, Jos; Harmsen, Frank; Amrit, Chintan Amrit; Geisberger, Eva; Keil, Patrick; Kuhrmann, Marco


    This paper presents the past, present, and our view on future user requirements and tool functionalities supporting Globally Distributed Software Teams and highlights the changing emphasis in these user requirements.

  18. Development of transportation asset management decision support tools : final report. (United States)


    This study developed a web-based prototype decision support platform to demonstrate the benefits of transportation asset management in monitoring asset performance, supporting asset funding decisions, planning budget tradeoffs, and optimizing resourc...

  19. Supporting Postsecondary English Language Learners' Writing Proficiency Using Technological Tools (United States)

    Moore, Kathleen A.; Rutherford, Camille; Crawford, Keith A.


    Postsecondary international students who are also English language learners face a number of challenges when studying abroad and often are provided with services to support their learning. Though some research examines how institutions can support this population of students, few studies explore how technology is used to support language…

  20. Walkability Explorer. An Evaluation and Design Support Tool for Walkability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ivan Blečić


    Full Text Available Walkability Explorer is a software tool for the evaluation of urban walkability which, we argue, is an important aspect of the quality of life in cities. Many conventional approaches to the assessment of quality of life measure the distribution, density and distances of different opportunities in space. But distance is not all there is. To reason in terms of urban capabilities of people we should also take into account the quality of pedestrian accessibility and of urban opportunities offered by the city. The software tool we present in this paper is an user-friendly implementation of such an evaluation approach to walkability. It includes several GIS and analysis features, and is interoperable with other standard GIS and data-analysis tools.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available Web 2.0 tools provide enormous opportunities for teaching and learning, yet their application in education is still underdeveloped. What is more, it is no longer possible for teachers to ignore such a technological advance, while they are expected to provide students with opportunities to take control of their learning. However, teachers are still reluctant with technology integration. This paper introduces four Web 2.0 tools; Blogger, StripGenerator, Go!Animate, and Google Forms, that are free and easy to use, in an effort to motivate teachers with low technological skills in integrating them into their instruction practices. The aforementioned tools comprised the curriculum in a blended-learning professional development course for in-service teachers and attracted many favourable comments from the participants.

  2. Analysis of the Requirements Generation Process for the Logistics Analysis and Wargame Support Tool (United States)


    REQUIREMENTS GENERATION PROCESS FOR THE LOGISTICS ANALYSIS AND WARGAME SUPPORT TOOL by Jonathan M. Swan June 2017 Thesis Advisor...GENERATION PROCESS FOR THE LOGISTICS ANALYSIS AND WARGAME SUPPORT TOOL 5. FUNDING NUMBERS 6. AUTHOR(S) Jonathan M. Swan 7. PERFORMING ORGANIZATION...maximum 200 words) This thesis conducts an analysis of the system requirements for the Logistics Analysis and Wargame Support Tool (LAWST). It studies

  3. Tool-Supported User-Centred Prototyping of Mobile Applications

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Leichtenstern, Karin; André, Elisabeth; Rehm, Matthias


    PeDT (Pervasive Interface Development Toolkit for Mobile Phones) that provides assistance to interface developers of applications where mobile phones are used as interaction devices to a user’s everyday pervasive environment. Based on found tool features for UCP tools, a feature study is described between related......There is evidence that the user-centered development can increase the user-friendliness of resulting products and thus the distinguishing features compared to products of competitors. The user-centered development, however, requires comprehensive software and usability engineering skills to keep...

  4. A Performance Support Tool for Cisco Training Program Managers (United States)

    Benson, Angela D.; Bothra, Jashoda; Sharma, Priya


    Performance support systems can play an important role in corporations by managing and allowing distribution of information more easily. These systems run the gamut from simple paper job aids to sophisticated computer- and web-based software applications that support the entire corporate supply chain. According to Gery (1991), a performance…

  5. Web 2.0 Tools for Supporting Teaching (United States)

    Konstantinidis, Angelos; Theodostadou, Dimitra; Pappos, Christos


    Web 2.0 tools provide enormous opportunities for teaching and learning, yet their application in education is still underdeveloped. What is more, it is no longer possible for teachers to ignore such a technological advance, while they are expected to provide students with opportunities to take control of their learning. However, teachers are still…

  6. A generic rabies risk assessment tool to support surveillance. (United States)

    Ward, Michael P; Hernández-Jover, Marta


    The continued spread of rabies in Indonesia poses a risk to human and animal populations in the remaining free islands, as well as the neighbouring rabies-free countries of Timor Leste, Papua New Guinea and Australia. Here we describe the development of a generic risk assessment tool which can be used to rapidly determine the vulnerability of rabies-free islands, so that scarce resources can be targeted to surveillance activities and the sensitivity of surveillance systems increased. The tool was developed by integrating information on the historical spread of rabies, anthropological studies, and the opinions of local animal health experts. The resulting tool is based on eight critical parameters that can be estimated from the literature, expert opinion, observational studies and information generated from routine surveillance. In the case study presented, results generated by this tool were most sensitive to the probability that dogs are present on private and fishing boats and it was predicted that rabies-infection (one infected case) might occur in a rabies-free island (upper 95% prediction interval) with a volume of 1000 boats movements. With 25,000 boat movements, the median of the probability distribution would be equal to one infected case, with an upper 95% prediction interval of six infected cases. This tool could also be used at the national-level to guide control and eradication plans. An initial recommendation from this study is to develop a surveillance programme to determine the likelihood that boats transport dogs, for example by port surveillance or regularly conducted surveys of fisherman and passenger ferries. However, the illegal nature of dog transportation from rabies-infected to rabies-free islands is a challenge for developing such surveillance. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Tools to support GHG emissions reduction : a regional effort, part 1 - carbon footprint estimation and decision support. (United States)


    Tools are proposed for carbon footprint estimation of transportation construction projects and decision support : for construction firms that must make equipment choice and usage decisions that affect profits, project duration : and greenhouse gas em...

  8. Tool-supported Refactoring for JavaScript

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Feldthaus, Asger; Millstein, Todd; Møller, Anders


    their correctness is widely available in modern IDEs. For the JavaScript programming language, however, existing refactoring tools are less mature and often unable to ensure that program behavior is preserved. Refactoring algorithms that have been developed for statically typed languages are not applicable to JavaScript...... because of its dynamic nature. We propose a framework for specifying and implementing JavaScript refactorings based on pointer analysis. We describe novel refactorings motivated by best practice recommendations for JavaScript programming, and demonstrate how they can be described concisely in terms...... of queries provided by our framework. Experiments performed with a prototype implementation on a suite of existing applications show that our approach is well-suited for developing practical refactoring tools for JavaScript....

  9. Tool Support for Design Patterns based on Reference Attribute Grammars

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cornils, Aino; Hedin, Görel


    a flexible and extensible tool which enables designers to use design patterns in a safe and easy way and which semi-automatically documents and maintains the documentation of a software system. The system is implemented using reference attribute grammars (RAGs) which are capable of describing non......-local dependencies. Both the programming language and the design patterns are specified using RAGs, and reference attributes are used for connecting design pattern instances to the corresponding elements in the program code....

  10. Energy Signal Tool for Decision Support in Building Energy Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Henze, G. P.; Pavlak, G. S.; Florita, A. R.; Dodier, R. H.; Hirsch, A. I.


    A prototype energy signal tool is demonstrated for operational whole-building and system-level energy use evaluation. The purpose of the tool is to give a summary of building energy use which allows a building operator to quickly distinguish normal and abnormal energy use. Toward that end, energy use status is displayed as a traffic light, which is a visual metaphor for energy use that is either substantially different from expected (red and yellow lights) or approximately the same as expected (green light). Which light to display for a given energy end use is determined by comparing expected to actual energy use. As expected, energy use is necessarily uncertain; we cannot choose the appropriate light with certainty. Instead, the energy signal tool chooses the light by minimizing the expected cost of displaying the wrong light. The expected energy use is represented by a probability distribution. Energy use is modeled by a low-order lumped parameter model. Uncertainty in energy use is quantified by a Monte Carlo exploration of the influence of model parameters on energy use. Distributions over model parameters are updated over time via Bayes' theorem. The simulation study was devised to assess whole-building energy signal accuracy in the presence of uncertainty and faults at the submetered level, which may lead to tradeoffs at the whole-building level that are not detectable without submetering.

  11. Scaffolding Assignments: Analysis of Assignmentor as a Tool to Support First Year Students' Academic Writing Skills (United States)

    Silva, Pedro


    There are several technological tools which aim to support first year students' challenges, especially when it comes to academic writing. This paper analyses one of these tools, Wiley's AssignMentor. The Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge framework was used to systematise this analysis. The paper showed an alignment between the tools'…

  12. Linking ecotoxigenomic tools with ecological data to support river restoration

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Jappie, S


    Full Text Available analysis of the obtained expression profiles using AFLP-Saga TM software, transcript derived fragments (TDFs) of interest between treatments were obtained, identified and functionally annotated using bio-informatics tools. Functional categories that TDFs...% 4% 23% 15% A A A A A A A A A B B B B B B B B B Figure 3: Site 1: EWR site on Wilge River (A) Main impact of agriculture & sewage effluent (B) Gene functional annotation for Site 1 Figure 7: Site 5: Groot Olifants, upstream...

  13. Capturing Communication Supporting Classrooms: The Development of a Tool and Feasibility Study (United States)

    Dockrell, Julie E.; Bakopoulou, Ioanna; Law, James; Spencer, Sarah; Lindsay, Geoff


    There is an increasing emphasis on supporting the oral language needs of children in the classroom. A variety of different measures have been developed to assist this process but few have been derived systematically from the available research evidence. A Communication Supporting Classrooms Observation Tool (CsC Observation Tool) for children aged…

  14. Framework for a spatial Decision Support Tool for policy and decision making

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Carsjens, G.J.; Chen, W.


    The main challenge of developing of a spatial DST (Decision Support Tool) to support the decision making on future livestock production will not be a technical one, but instead a challenge of meeting the con-text requirements of the tool, such as the characteristics of the country-specific spatial

  15. The Impact of Using SMS as Learning Support Tool on Students' Learning (United States)

    Gasaymeh, Al-Mothana M.; Aldalalah, Osamah M.


    This study aimed to investigate the impact of using Short Message Service (SMS) as learning support tool on students' learning in an introductory programming course. In addition, the study examined students' perceptions of the advantages and disadvantages of the use of SMS as a learning support tool in their class. The participants in this study…

  16. A free software tool for the development of decision support systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available This article describes PostGeoOlap, a free software open source tool for decision support that integrates OLAP (On-Line Analytical Processing and GIS (Geographical Information Systems. Besides describing the tool, we show how it can be used to achieve effective and low cost decision support that is adequate for small and medium companies and for small public offices.

  17. Basic Education and Policy Support Activity: Tools and Publications. (United States)

    Creative Associates International, Inc., Washington, DC.

    The Basic Education and Policy Support (BEPS) Activity is a United States Agency for International Development (USAID)-sponsored, multi-year initiative designed to further improve the quality of, effectiveness of, and access to formal and nonformal basic education. This catalog is one element of the BEPS information dissemination process. The…

  18. Multiple criteria decision analysis (MCDA): A tool to support ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    The National Water Act (NWA) of 1998 has been promulgated in South Africa to support the attainment of sustainable water resource use. Before the Act was promulgated, landowners were entitled to unlimited groundwater use. The Act rectified this anomaly; however, the practical application of sustainable development ...

  19. Coordinated computer-supported collaborative learning: Awareness and awareness tools

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Janssen, J.J.H.M.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/242063667; Bodermer, D.


    Traditionally, research on awareness during online collaboration focused on topics such as the effects of spatial information about group members’ activities on the collaborative process. When the concept of awareness was introduced to computer-supported collaborative learning, this focus shifted to

  20. Developing a Decision Support Tool for Waste to Energy Calculations Using Energy Return on Investment (United States)


    DECISION SUPPORT TOOL FOR WASTE -TO- ENERGY CALCULATIONS USING ENERGY RETURN ON INVESTMENT by Adam C. Haag December 2016 Thesis Advisor...SUPPORT TOOL FOR WASTE -TO- ENERGY CALCULATIONS USING ENERGY RETURN ON INVESTMENT 5. FUNDING NUMBERS 6. AUTHOR(S) Adam C. Haag 7. PERFORMING...economic viability of sites for waste -to- energy technologies, mirroring the current tool’s capabilities and expanding its use. This tool returns

  1. Towards life-cycle awareness in decision support tools for engineering design


    Nergård, Henrik; Sandberg, Marcus; Larsson, Tobias


    In this paper a decision support tool with the focus on how to generate and visualize decision base coupled to the business agreement is outlined and discussed. Decision support tools for the early design phases are few and especially tools that visualize the readiness level of activities throughout the product life-cycle. Aiming for the sustainable society there is an indication that business-to-business manufacturers move toward providing a function rather than selling off the hardware and ...

  2. Towards a Tool for Computer Supported Structuring of Products

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Claus Thorp


    . However, a product possesses not only a component structure but also various organ structures which are superimposed on the component structure. The organ structures carry behaviour and make the product suited for its life phases.Our long-term research goal is to develop a computer-based system...... that is capable of supporting synthesis activities in engineering design, and thereby also support handling of various organ structures. Such a system must contain a product model, in which it is possible to describe and manipulate both various organ structures and the component structure.In this paper we focus...... on the relationships between organ structures and the component structure. By an analysis of an existing product it is shown that a component may contribute to more than one organ. A set of organ structures is identified and their influence on the component strucute is illustrated....


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available Planning by scenarios, also called prospective, is of great value in high turbulent and volatile environments, as is today, because it permits to visualize the future from a spectrum of possibilities. That visualization is strategic information that provides a competitive edge and facilitates the identification of possible threats in each scenario and in front of those threats determines the required capacities needed. Therefore, prospective planning is an indispensable tool for decision making and determining military capacities. The scenario spectrum could consider an infinite number; however, for a strategic analysis it is basic to visualize at least three options: an optimist, a pessimist, and a tendency. To determine the military capacities, it is a required minimum to consider the traditional and non-traditional threats, as well as “foreseeable” and “feasible” capacities. The present article provides a global vision of prospective planning and its relationship with determining military capacities.

  4. Teenage pregnancy-new tools to support local health campaigns. (United States)

    Petersen, Jakob; Atkinson, Philip; Petrie, Sarah; Gibin, Maurizio; Ashby, David; Longley, Paul


    Teenage pregnancy has remained high in many inner city areas despite several years of campaigns to reduce numbers and to support young people and their families tackle the problem. In this paper we propose new methods to focus local strategies on high-risk areas as well as ranking secondary schools and GP practices most likely to be in contact with young people at risk. The proposed methods proved successful in engaging local schools in a new campaign and have provided a framework for evaluation of local teenage pregnancy rates in years to come.

  5. Virtual environment simulation as a tool to support evacuation planning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mol, Antonio C.; Grecco, Claudio H.S.; Santos, Isaac J.A.L.; Carvalho, Paulo V.R.; Jorge, Carlos A.F.; Sales, Douglas S.; Couto, Pedro M.; Botelho, Felipe M.; Bastos, Felipe R.


    This work is a preliminary study of the use of a free game-engine as a tool to build and to navigate in virtual environments, with a good degree of realism, for virtual simulations of evacuation from building and risk zones. To achieve this goal, some adjustments in the game engine have been implemented. A real building with four floors, consisting of some rooms with furniture and people, has been virtually implemented. Simulations of simple different evacuation scenarios have been performed, measuring the total time spent in each case. The measured times have been compared with their corresponding real evacuation times, measured in the real building. The first results have demonstrated that the virtual environment building with the free game engine is capable to reproduce the real situation with a satisfactory level. However, it is important to emphasize that such virtual simulations serve only as an aid in the planning of real evacuation simulations, and as such must never substitute the later. (author)



  7. Indigenous knowledge as decision support tool in rainwater harvesting (United States)

    Mbilinyi, B. P.; Tumbo, S. D.; Mahoo, H. F.; Senkondo, E. M.; Hatibu, N.

    Rainfall patterns in semi-arid areas are typically highly variable, both spatially and temporally. As a result, people who rely completely on rainwater for their survival have over the centuries developed indigenous knowledge/techniques to harvest rainwater. These traditional water-harvesting systems have been sustainable for centuries. The reason for this is that they are compatible with local lifestyles, local institutional patterns and local social systems. In order to develop sustainable strategies, it is therefore important to take into account of, and learn from, what local people already know and do, and to build on this. This paper explores how indigenous knowledge is used by farmers in the Makanya catchment, Kilimanjaro region, Tanzania to identify potential sites for rainwater harvesting (RWH). The paper draws on participatory research methods including focus group discussions, key informant interviews, field visits and participatory workshops. Initial findings indicate that farmers do hold a substantial amount of knowledge about the resources around them. As there are spatially typical aspects to indigenous knowledge, it could be extrapolated over a wider geographic extent. From the preliminary findings, it is being recommended that geographic information system (GIS) could be an important tool to collect and upscale the utility of diverse indigenous knowledge in the decision-making process.

  8. Support Tool in the Diagnosis of Major Depressive Disorder (United States)

    Nunes, Luciano Comin; Pinheiro, Plácido Rogério; Pequeno, Tarcísio Cavalcante; Pinheiro, Mirian Calíope Dantas

    Major Depressive Disorder have been responsible for millions of professionals temporary removal, and even permanent, from diverse fields of activities around the world, generating damage to social, financial, productive systems and social security, and especially damage to the image of the individual and his family that these disorders produce in individuals who are patients, characteristics that make them stigmatized and discriminated into their society, making difficult their return to the production system. The lack of early diagnosis has provided reactive and late measures, only when the professional suffering psychological disorder is already showing signs of incapacity for working and social relationships. This article aims to assist in the decision making to establish early diagnosis of these types of psychological disorders. It presents a proposal for a hybrid model composed of expert system structured methodologies for decision support (Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis - MCDA) and representations of knowledge structured in logical rules of production and probabilities (Artificial Intelligence - AI).

  9. Electrostatic Levitation: A Tool to Support Materials Research in Microgravity (United States)

    Rogers, Jan; SanSoucie, Mike


    Containerless processing represents an important topic for materials research in microgravity. Levitated specimens are free from contact with a container, which permits studies of deeply undercooled melts, and high-temperature, highly reactive materials. Containerless processing provides data for studies of thermophysical properties, phase equilibria, metastable state formation, microstructure formation, undercooling, and nucleation. The European Space Agency (ESA) and the German Aerospace Center (DLR) jointly developed an electromagnetic levitator facility (MSL-EML) for containerless materials processing in space. The electrostatic levitator (ESL) facility at the Marshall Space Flight Center provides support for the development of containerless processing studies for the ISS. Apparatus and techniques have been developed to use the ESL to provide data for phase diagram determination, creep resistance, emissivity, specific heat, density/thermal expansion, viscosity, surface tension and triggered nucleation of melts. The capabilities and results from selected ESL-based characterization studies performed at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center will be presented.

  10. An Information Technology Tool to Support Negotiating Teams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jose Montanana


    Full Text Available This paper discusses computer-supported large-scale negotiation, in particular, negotiation with advisers. It is claimed that better communication within negotiating teams should lead to longer, more productive sessions than the current ones. To this end, an information technology environment should be provided for the negotiation. The paper introduces SHINE, a collaborative software system developed at the University of Chile. This software has many features to allow rich interactions among advisers belonging to the same team, among negotiators and also between a negotiator and his advisers. Emphasis is placed on the design features to enable and ease these interactions. The facilities include WYSIWIS windows, enhanced electronic mail to send and receive text or video messages with several urgency levels, an evaluation procedure and various ways to state comments and ideas. SHINE has been implemented as a prototype on Sun Sparc workstations.

  11. Dynamic visualizations as tools for supporting cosmological literacy (United States)

    Buck, Zoe Elizabeth

    My dissertation research is designed to improve access to STEM content through the development of cosmology visualizations that support all learners as they engage in cosmological sense-making. To better understand how to design visualizations that work toward breaking cycles of power and access in the sciences, I orient my work to following "meta-question": How might educators use visualizations to support diverse ways of knowing and learning in order to expand access to cosmology, and to science? In this dissertation, I address this meta-question from a pragmatic epistemological perspective, through a sociocultural lens, following three lines of inquiry: experimental methods (Creswell, 2003) with a focus on basic visualization design, activity analysis (Wells, 1996; Ash, 2001; Rahm, 2012) with a focus on culturally and linguistically diverse learners, and case study (Creswell, 2000) with a focus on expansive learning at a planetarium (Engestrom, 2001; Ash, 2014). My research questions are as follows, each of which corresponds to a self contained course of inquiry with its own design, data, analysis and results: 1) Can mediational cues like color affect the way learners interpret the content in a cosmology visualization? 2) How do cosmology visualizations support cosmological sense-making for diverse students? 3) What are the shared objects of dynamic networks of activity around visualization production and use in a large, urban planetarium and how do they affect learning? The result is a mixed-methods design (Sweetman, Badiee & Creswell, 2010) where both qualitative and quantitative data are used when appropriate to address my research goals. In the introduction I begin by establishing a theoretical framework for understanding visualizations within cultural historical activity theory (CHAT) and situating the chapters that follow within that framework. I also introduce the concept of cosmological literacy, which I define as the set of conceptual, semiotic and

  12. Evaluating the Utility of Web-Based Consumer Support Tools Using Rough Sets (United States)

    Maciag, Timothy; Hepting, Daryl H.; Slezak, Dominik; Hilderman, Robert J.

    On the Web, many popular e-commerce sites provide consumers with decision support tools to assist them in their commerce-related decision-making. Many consumers will rank the utility of these tools quite highly. Data obtained from web usage mining analyses, which may provide knowledge about a user's online experiences, could help indicate the utility of these tools. This type of analysis could provide insight into whether provided tools are adequately assisting consumers in conducting their online shopping activities or if new or additional enhancements need consideration. Although some research in this regard has been described in previous literature, there is still much that can be done. The authors of this paper hypothesize that a measurement of consumer decision accuracy, i.e. a measurement preferences, could help indicate the utility of these tools. This paper describes a procedure developed towards this goal using elements of rough set theory. The authors evaluated the procedure using two support tools, one based on a tool developed by the US-EPA and the other developed by one of the authors called cogito. Results from the evaluation did provide interesting insights on the utility of both support tools. Although it was shown that the cogito tool obtained slightly higher decision accuracy, both tools could be improved from additional enhancements. Details of the procedure developed and results obtained from the evaluation will be provided. Opportunities for future work are also discussed.

  13. Computer-based tools for decision support at the Hanford Site

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Doctor, P.G.; Mahaffey, J.A.; Cowley, P.J.; Freshley, M.D.; Hassig, N.L.; Brothers, J.W.; Glantz, C.S.; Strachan, D.M.


    To help integrate activities in the environmental restoration and waste management mission of the Hanford Site, the Hanford Integrated Planning Project (HIPP) was established and funded by the US Department of Energy. The project is divided into three key program elements, the first focusing on an explicit, defensible and comprehensive method for evaluating technical options. Based on the premise that computer technology can be used to support the decision-making process and facilitate integration among programs and activities, the Decision Support Tools Task was charged with assessing the status of computer technology for those purposes at the Site. The task addressed two types of tools: tools need to provide technical information and management support tools. Technical tools include performance and risk assessment models, information management systems, data and the computer infrastructure to supports models, data, and information management systems. Management decision support tools are used to synthesize information at a high' level to assist with making decisions. The major conclusions resulting from the assessment are that there is much technical information available, but it is not reaching the decision-makers in a form to be used. Many existing tools provide components that are needed to integrate site activities; however, some components are missing and, more importantly, the ''glue'' or connections to tie the components together to answer decision-makers questions is largely absent. Top priority should be given to decision support tools that support activities given in the TPA. Other decision tools are needed to facilitate and support the environmental restoration and waste management mission

  14. Computer-based tools for decision support at the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Doctor, P.G.; Mahaffey, J.A.; Cowley, P.J.; Freshley, M.D.; Hassig, N.L.; Brothers, J.W.; Glantz, C.S.; Strachan, D.M.


    To help integrate activities in the environmental restoration and waste management mission of the Hanford Site, the Hanford Integrated Planning Project (HIPP) was established and funded by the US Department of Energy. The project is divided into three key program elements, the first focusing on an explicit, defensible and comprehensive method for evaluating technical options. Based on the premise that computer technology can be used to support the decision-making process and facilitate integration among programs and activities, the Decision Support Tools Task was charged with assessing the status of computer technology for those purposes at the Site. The task addressed two types of tools: tools need to provide technical information and management support tools. Technical tools include performance and risk assessment models, information management systems, data and the computer infrastructure to supports models, data, and information management systems. Management decision support tools are used to synthesize information at a high' level to assist with making decisions. The major conclusions resulting from the assessment are that there is much technical information available, but it is not reaching the decision-makers in a form to be used. Many existing tools provide components that are needed to integrate site activities; however, some components are missing and, more importantly, the glue'' or connections to tie the components together to answer decision-makers questions is largely absent. Top priority should be given to decision support tools that support activities given in the TPA. Other decision tools are needed to facilitate and support the environmental restoration and waste management mission.

  15. Computer-based tools for decision support at the Hanford Site

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Doctor, P.G.; Mahaffey, J.A.; Cowley, P.J.; Freshley, M.D.; Hassig, N.L.; Brothers, J.W.; Glantz, C.S.; Strachan, D.M.


    To help integrate activities in the environmental restoration and waste management mission of the Hanford Site, the Hanford Integrated Planning Project (HIPP) was established and funded by the US Department of Energy. The project is divided into three key program elements, the first focusing on an explicit, defensible and comprehensive method for evaluating technical options. Based on the premise that computer technology can be used to support the decision-making process and facilitate integration among programs and activities, the Decision Support Tools Task was charged with assessing the status of computer technology for those purposes at the Site. The task addressed two types of tools: tools need to provide technical information and management support tools. Technical tools include performance and risk assessment models, information management systems, data and the computer infrastructure to supports models, data, and information management systems. Management decision support tools are used to synthesize information at a high` level to assist with making decisions. The major conclusions resulting from the assessment are that there is much technical information available, but it is not reaching the decision-makers in a form to be used. Many existing tools provide components that are needed to integrate site activities; however, some components are missing and, more importantly, the ``glue`` or connections to tie the components together to answer decision-makers questions is largely absent. Top priority should be given to decision support tools that support activities given in the TPA. Other decision tools are needed to facilitate and support the environmental restoration and waste management mission.

  16. The Integrated Medical Model: A Decision Support Tool for In-flight Crew Health Care (United States)

    Butler, Doug


    This viewgraph presentation reviews the development of an Integrated Medical Model (IMM) decision support tool for in-flight crew health care safety. Clinical methods, resources, and case scenarios are also addressed.

  17. The 8 Learning Events Model: a Pedagogic Conceptual Tool Supporting Diversification of Learning Methods

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verpoorten, Dominique; Poumay, M; Leclercq, D


    Please, cite this publication as: Verpoorten, D., Poumay, M., & Leclercq, D. (2006). The 8 Learning Events Model: a Pedagogic Conceptual Tool Supporting Diversification of Learning Methods. Proceedings of International Workshop in Learning Networks for Lifelong Competence Development, TENCompetence

  18. A Java Based Human Computer Interface For a UAV Decision Support Tool Using Conformal Mapping

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Flood, Randy


    .... We solve the problem in two ways. First, we create a UAV Decision Support Tool (UAV DST) that uses a set of Java software objects to display maps and convert between latitude-longitude coordinates and x-y coordinates...

  19. Catalog of Existing Small Tools for Surface Preparation and Support Equipment for Blasters and Painters

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Peart, John; Unthank, H. D


    The objective of this project has been to provide supervisors of shipyard surface preparation and coating operators with a catalog of the small tools and support equipment used by blasters and painters...

  20. Decision Support Tool and Simulation Testbed for Airborne Spacing and Merging in Super Dense Operations Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The key innovation in this effort is the development of a decision support tool and simulation testbed for Airborne Spacing and Merging (ASM). We focus on concepts...

  1. A Decision Support Model and Tool to Assist Financial Decision-Making in Universities (United States)

    Bhayat, Imtiaz; Manuguerra, Maurizio; Baldock, Clive


    In this paper, a model and tool is proposed to assist universities and other mission-based organisations to ascertain systematically the optimal portfolio of projects, in any year, meeting the organisations risk tolerances and available funds. The model and tool presented build on previous work on university operations and decision support systems…

  2. Virtual Ribosome - a comprehensive DNA translation tool with support for integration of sequence feature annotation

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wernersson, Rasmus


    Virtual Ribosome is a DNA translation tool with two areas of focus. ( i) Providing a strong translation tool in its own right, with an integrated ORF finder, full support for the IUPAC degenerate DNA alphabet and all translation tables defined by the NCBI taxonomy group, including the use...

  3. The Changing Role of Instructors in Distance Education: Impact on Tool Support. (United States)

    Biedebach, Anke; Bomsdorf, Birgit; Schlageter, Gunter

    At the university of Hagen a lot of experience exists in performing Web-based teaching and in implementing tools supporting e-learning. To share this knowledge, (inexperienced) instructors more and more ask for tool-based assistance in designing and administrating e-learning courses. Considering experience from other universities, it becomes…

  4. Electronic Documentation Support Tools and Text Duplication in the Electronic Medical Record (United States)

    Wrenn, Jesse


    In order to ease the burden of electronic note entry on physicians, electronic documentation support tools have been developed to assist in note authoring. There is little evidence of the effects of these tools on attributes of clinical documentation, including document quality. Furthermore, the resultant abundance of duplicated text and…

  5. Piloting a Web-Based Practicum Support Tool: Associate Teachers' Perceived Benefits and Drawbacks (United States)

    Petrarca, Diana


    This pilot study explored how a small group of associate teachers responded to a web-based learning tool created specifically to support them in mentoring teacher candidates during the practicum component of an initial teacher education program in Southern Ontario, Canada. The learning tool's content drew from the teacher education literature, and…

  6. Towards an interactive web tool that supports shared decision making in dementia : Identifying user requirements

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Span, M.; Smits, C.; Groen-van de Ven, L.; Jukema, J.; Hettinga, M.; Cremers, A.H.M.; Vernooij-Dassen, M.; Eefsting, J.


    To support shared decision making in care networks of people with dementia, an interactive web tool for people with dementia, informal caregivers, case managers and other professional caregivers is being developed. This study aims to identify user requirements for such a tool. A multiple method

  7. AngelStow: A Commercial Optimization-Based Decision Support Tool for Stowage Planning

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Delgado-Ortegon, Alberto; Jensen, Rune Møller; Guilbert, Nicolas

    save port fees, optimize use of vessel capacity, and reduce bunker consumption. Stowage Coordinators (SCs) produce these plans manually with the help of graphical tools, but high-quality SPs are hard to generate with the limited support they provide. In this abstract, we introduce AngelStow which...... is a commercial optimization-based decision support tool for stowing container vessels developed in collaboration between Ange Optimization and The IT University of Copenhagen. The tool assists SCs in the process of generating SPs interactively, focusing on satisfying and optimizing constraints and objectives...

  8. Process and Tool Support for Ontology-Aware Life Support System Development and Integration, Phase I (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Recent advances in ontology development support a rich description of entities that are modeled within a domain and how these entities relate to each other. However,...

  9. Process and Tool Support for Ontology-Aware Life Support System Development and Integration Project (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Recent advances in ontology development support a rich description of entities that are modeled within a domain and how these entities relate to each other. However,...

  10. Prototype of a diagnostic decision support tool for structural damage in masonry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    De Vent, I.A.E.


    This prototype of a diagnostic decision support tool for structural damage in traditional masonry is the result of a PhD research project. The research project has aimed to improve and facilitate the diagnostic process by offering support in the initial phase in which hypotheses are generated. The

  11. The role of knowledge management tools in supporting sustainable forest management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H. Vacik


    Full Text Available Aim of study: Knowledge Management (KM tools facilitate the implementation of knowledge processes by identifying, creating, structuring, and sharing knowledge through use of information technology in order to improve decision-making. In this contribution, we review the way in which KM tools and techniques are used in forest management, and categorize a selected set of them according to their contribution to support decision makers in the phases of problem identification, problem modelling, and problem solving.Material and Methods: Existing examples of cognitive mapping tools, web portals, workflow systems, best practices, and expert systems as well as intelligent agents are screened for their applicability and use in the context of decision support for sustainable forest management. Evidence from scientific literature and case studies is utilized to evaluate the contribution of the different KM tools to support problem identification, problem modelling, and problem solving.Main results: Intelligent agents, expert systems and cognitive maps support all phases of the forest planning process strongly. Web based tools have good potential to support participatory forest planning. Based on the needs of forest management decision support and the thus-far underutilized capabilities of KM tools it becomes evident that future decision analysis will have to consider the use of KM more intensively. Research highlights: As the problem-solving process is the vehicle for connecting both knowledge and decision making performance, the next generation of DSS will need to better encapsulate practices that enhance and promote knowledge management. Web based tools will substitute desktop applications by utilizing various model libraries on the internet.Keywords: best practices; cognitive mapping; expert systems; intelligent agents; web portals; workflow systems; Decision Support Systems. 

  12. Design support document for the K Basins Vertical Fuel Handling Tools

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bridges, A.E.


    The purpose of this document is to provide the design support information for the Vertical Fuel Handling Tools, developed for the removal of N Reactor fuel elements from their storage canisters in the K Basins storage pool and insertion into the Single Fuel Element Can for subsequent shipment to a Hot Cell for examination. Examination of these N Reactor fuel elements is part of the overall characterization effort. These new hand tools are required since previous fuel movement has involved grasping the fuel in a horizontal position. These tools are required to lift an element vertically from the storage canister. Additionally, a Mark II storage canister Lip Seal Protector was designed and fabricated for use during fuel retrieval. This device was required to prevent damage to the canister lip should a fuel element accidentally be dropped during its retrieval, using the handling tools. Supporting documentation for this device is included in this document

  13. Interactive Decision-Support Tool for Risk-Based Radiation Therapy Plan Comparison for Hodgkin Lymphoma

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brodin, N. Patrik; Maraldo, Maja V.; Aznar, Marianne C.


    PURPOSE: To present a novel tool that allows quantitative estimation and visualization of the risk of various relevant normal tissue endpoints to aid in treatment plan comparison and clinical decision making in radiation therapy (RT) planning for Hodgkin lymphoma (HL). METHODS AND MATERIALS...... and a volumetric modulated arc therapy plan for a patient with mediastinal HL. CONCLUSION: This multiple-endpoint decision-support tool provides quantitative risk estimates to supplement the clinical judgment of the radiation oncologist when comparing different RT options....

  14. Innovative methods and tools for professionals working in supported living services for intellectually disabled persons. (United States)

    Gruiz, Katalin


    Autonomy of mid-seriously and seriously intellectually disabled persons is encouraged both by legislations on human rights and the modern social care and services. The process leading to the maximum possible autonomy is illustrated by a developmental spiral in our model. Specialty of the development is that the personal educational projects are realized during everyday activities. The process requires conscious professionals with an empowering and motivating attitude, with adult relationship to the intellectually disabled persons and versatile skills and tools. In this educational relationship the social professional and the supported person are equal partners moving together along the spiral of human development. An innovative tool-battery has been developed aiding support-staff in the 'pedagogical' task embedded into everyday social services. The tool-battery and its first application in supported living services of the Hungarian Down Foundation are introduced in this paper.

  15. Artificial intelligence tools decision support systems in condition monitoring and diagnosis

    CERN Document Server

    Galar Pascual, Diego


    Artificial Intelligence Tools: Decision Support Systems in Condition Monitoring and Diagnosis discusses various white- and black-box approaches to fault diagnosis in condition monitoring (CM). This indispensable resource: Addresses nearest-neighbor-based, clustering-based, statistical, and information theory-based techniques Considers the merits of each technique as well as the issues associated with real-life application Covers classification methods, from neural networks to Bayesian and support vector machines Proposes fuzzy logic to explain the uncertainties associated with diagnostic processes Provides data sets, sample signals, and MATLAB® code for algorithm testing Artificial Intelligence Tools: Decision Support Systems in Condition Monitoring and Diagnosis delivers a thorough evaluation of the latest AI tools for CM, describing the most common fault diagnosis techniques used and the data acquired when these techniques are applied.

  16. TESPI (Tool for Environmental Sound Product Innovation): a simplified software tool to support environmentally conscious design in SMEs (United States)

    Misceo, Monica; Buonamici, Roberto; Buttol, Patrizia; Naldesi, Luciano; Grimaldi, Filomena; Rinaldi, Caterina


    TESPI (Tool for Environmental Sound Product Innovation) is the prototype of a software tool developed within the framework of the "eLCA" project. The project, ( by the European Commission, is realising "On line green tools and services for Small and Medium sized Enterprises (SMEs)". The implementation by SMEs of environmental product innovation (as fostered by the European Integrated Product Policy, IPP) needs specific adaptation to their economic model, their knowledge of production and management processes and their relationships with innovation and the environment. In particular, quality and costs are the main driving forces of innovation in European SMEs, and well known barriers exist to the adoption of an environmental approach in the product design. Starting from these considerations, the TESPI tool has been developed to support the first steps of product design taking into account both the quality and the environment. Two main issues have been considered: (i) classic Quality Function Deployment (QFD) can hardly be proposed to SMEs; (ii) the environmental aspects of the product life cycle need to be integrated with the quality approach. TESPI is a user friendly web-based tool, has a training approach and applies to modular products. Users are guided through the investigation of the quality aspects of their product (customer"s needs and requirements fulfilment) and the identification of the key environmental aspects in the product"s life cycle. A simplified check list allows analyzing the environmental performance of the product. Help is available for a better understanding of the analysis criteria. As a result, the significant aspects for the redesign of the product are identified.

  17. Interactive Decision-Support Tool for Risk-Based Radiation Therapy Plan Comparison for Hodgkin Lymphoma

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brodin, N. Patrik [Department of Radiation Oncology, Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, New York, New York (United States); Maraldo, Maja V., E-mail: [Department of Radiation Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Aznar, Marianne C. [Department of Radiation Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Niels Bohr Institute, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Vogelius, Ivan R. [Department of Radiation Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Petersen, Peter M. [Department of Radiation Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Department of Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Department of Hematology, Rigshospitalet, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Bentzen, Søren M. [Department of Radiation Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Department of Human Oncology, University of Wisconsin Medical School, Madison, Wisconsin (United States); Specht, Lena [Department of Radiation Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Department of Oncology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark); Department of Hematology, Rigshospitalet, Faculty of Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen (Denmark)


    Purpose: To present a novel tool that allows quantitative estimation and visualization of the risk of various relevant normal tissue endpoints to aid in treatment plan comparison and clinical decision making in radiation therapy (RT) planning for Hodgkin lymphoma (HL). Methods and Materials: A decision-support tool for risk-based, individualized treatment plan comparison is presented. The tool displays dose–response relationships, derived from published clinical data, for a number of relevant side effects and thereby provides direct visualization of the trade-off between these endpoints. The Quantitative Analyses of Normal Tissue Effects in the Clinic reports were applied, complemented with newer data where available. A “relevance score” was assigned to each data source, reflecting how relevant the input data are to current RT for HL. Results: The tool is applied to visualize the local steepness of dose–response curves to drive the reoptimization of a volumetric modulated arc therapy treatment plan for an HL patient with head-and-neck involvement. We also use this decision-support tool to visualize and quantitatively evaluate the trade-off between a 3-dimensional conformal RT plan and a volumetric modulated arc therapy plan for a patient with mediastinal HL. Conclusion: This multiple-endpoint decision-support tool provides quantitative risk estimates to supplement the clinical judgment of the radiation oncologist when comparing different RT options.

  18. Integrating decision support tools and environmental information systems: a case study on the Province of Milan

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bagli, S.; Pistocchi, A.; Mazzoli, P.; Valentini, P.


    The paper demonstrates an application of advanced decision support tools within the framework of the environmental information system of the Province of Milan. These tools include environmental simulation models, multi criteria analysis, risk analysis and environmental accounting for marketable emission permits. After describing the general structure of the system, three demonstrational case studies are introduced concerning: groundwater pollution management; atmospheric pollution management; urban environmental quality perception and management. In the conclusion, potential use of tools like the ones implemented by the province of Milan within the framework of Local Agenda 21 processes is recalled [it

  19. Supporting decision making in cross-border regions: a health technology assessment tool for hospitals. (United States)

    Knies, Saskia; Lombardi, Gloria; Commers, Matt; Dauben, Hans-Peter; Evers, Silvia; Michelsen, Kai; Oortwijn, Wija; Opara, Chibuzo; Brand, Helmut


    The aim of this study was to develop an health technology assessment (HTA) decision tool to support the decision-making process on health technologies for hospital decision makers in cross-border regions. Several methods were used to collect information necessary to develop the cross-border mini-HTA decision tool. The literature was inventoried on HTA in border regions and local settings and the use of HTA by local decision makers. Semi-structured interviews with hospital decision makers in cross-border regions were also performed. Based on group discussion of the resulting information, it was decided to use the Danish mini-HTA guideline as a starting point for development of the decision tool. After finishing the first version of the decision tool it was tested in two pilot studies. Some questions in the Danish mini-HTA guideline were not relevant. Other questions needed rephrasing and questions about cross-border situations were added. The pilots showed several missing topics, including legal questions and reimbursement issues. The final decision tool consists of three sections: a general section, a section for hospitals not cooperating cross-border and a section for hospitals that are cooperating with hospitals across a national or regional border. Based on our literature search, this may be the first cross-border mini-HTA decision tool. The decision tool will be of help for healthcare professionals and decision makers in border settings who would like to use HTA evidence to support their decision-making process.

  20. Enhancing Motivation in Online Courses with Mobile Communication Tool Support: A Comparative Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chantorn Chaiprasurt


    Full Text Available Mobile technologies have helped establish new channels of communication among learners and instructors, potentially providing greater access to course information, and promoting easier access to course activities and learner motivation in online learning environments. The paper compares motivation between groups of learners being taught through an online course based on an e-learning system with and without the support of mobile communication tools, respectively. These tools, which are implemented on a mobile phone, extend the use of the existing Moodle learning management system (LMS under the guidance of a mobile communication tools framework. This framework is considered to be effective in promoting learner motivation and encouraging interaction between learners and instructors as well as among learner peers in online learning environments. A quasi-experimental research design was used to empirically investigate the influence of these tools on learner motivation using subjective assessment (for attention, relevance, confidence, satisfaction, and social ability and objective assessment (for disengagement, engagement, and academic performance. The results indicate that the use of the tools was effective in improving learner motivation, especially in terms of the attention and engagement variables. Overall, there were statistically significant differences in subjective motivation, with a higher level achieved by experimental-group learners (supported by the tools than control-group learners (unsupported by the tools.

  1. Credit analysis using cognitive maps as a tool to support decision making in a factoring company

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sergio Renato Ferreira Decker


    Full Text Available This study represents a case study conducted in a factoring company in the city of Pelotas, Rio Grande do Sul. In order to support company managers, the research aimed to develop a tool to support the decision to grant credit to new customers. Aiming to better understand the problem presented, with all its complexity, a Cognitive Map of the credit analysis process was developed in a constructive way along with the maker.. Through the resulting Cognitive Map, the decision maker now possesses an important tool to describe their decisions. Such research will proceed with the development of the remaining steps necessary to build a  multicriteria decision model.

  2. Overview of EPA tools for supporting local-, state- and regional-level decision makers addressing energy and environmental issues: NYC MARKAL Energy Systems Model?and Municipal Solid Waste Decision Support Tool (United States)

    A workshop will be conducted to demonstrate and focus on two decision support tools developed at EPA/ORD: 1. Community-scale MARKAL model: an energy-water technology evaluation tool and 2. Municipal Solid Waste Decision Support Tool (MSW DST). The Workshop will be part of Southea...

  3. A Reference Architecture for Providing Tools as a Service to Support Global Software Development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chauhan, Aufeef


    Global Software Development (GSD) teams encounter challenges that are associated with distribution of software development activities across multiple geographic regions. The limited support for performing collaborative development and engineering activities and lack of sufficient support for main......Global Software Development (GSD) teams encounter challenges that are associated with distribution of software development activities across multiple geographic regions. The limited support for performing collaborative development and engineering activities and lack of sufficient support......-computing paradigm for addressing above-mentioned issues by providing a framework to select appropriate tools as well as associated services and reference architecture of the cloud-enabled middleware platform that allows on demand provisioning of software engineering Tools as a Service (TaaS) with focus...

  4. LCA-IWM: a decision support tool for sustainability assessment of waste management systems. (United States)

    den Boer, J; den Boer, E; Jager, J


    The paper outlines the most significant result of the project 'The use of life cycle assessment tools for the development of integrated waste management strategies for cities and regions with rapid growing economies', which was the development of two decision-support tools: a municipal waste prognostic tool and a waste management system assessment tool. The article focuses on the assessment tool, which supports the adequate decision making in the planning of urban waste management systems by allowing the creation and comparison of different scenarios, considering three basic subsystems: (i) temporary storage; (ii) collection and transport and (iii) treatment, disposal and recycling. The design and analysis options, as well as the assumptions made for each subsystem, are shortly introduced, providing an overview of the applied methodologies and technologies. The sustainability assessment methodology used in the project to support the selection of the most adequate scenario is presented with a brief explanation of the procedures, criteria and indicators applied on the evaluation of each of the three sustainability pillars.

  5. Getting Clearer About Surgical Innovation: A New Definition and a New Tool to Support Responsible Practice. (United States)

    Hutchison, Katrina; Rogers, Wendy; Eyers, Anthony; Lotz, Mianna


    This article presents an original definition of surgical innovation and a practical tool for identifying planned innovations. These will support the responsible introduction of surgical innovations. Frameworks developed for the safer introduction of surgical innovations rely upon identifying cases of innovation; oversight cannot occur unless innovations are identified. However, there is no consensus among surgeons about which interventions they consider innovative; existing definitions are vague and impractical. Using conceptual analysis, this article synthesizes findings from relevant literature, and from qualitative research with surgeons, to develop an original definition of surgical innovation and a tool for prospectively identifying planned surgical innovations. The tool has been developed in light of feedback from health care professionals, surgeons, and policy makers. This definition of innovation distinguishes between variations, introduction of established interventions, and innovations in surgical techniques or use of devices. It can be applied easily and consistently, is sensitive to the key features of innovation (newness and degree of change), is prospective, and focuses on features relevant to safety and evaluation. The accompanying tool is deliberately broad so that appropriate supports may, if necessary, be provided each time that a surgeon does something "new." The definition presented in this article overcomes a number of practical challenges. The definition and tool will be of value in supporting responsible surgical innovation, in particular, through the prospective identification of planned innovations.

  6. LCA-IWM: A decision support tool for sustainability assessment of waste management systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boer, J. den; Boer, E. den; Jager, J.


    The paper outlines the most significant result of the project 'The use of life cycle assessment tools for the development of integrated waste management strategies for cities and regions with rapid growing economies', which was the development of two decision-support tools: a municipal waste prognostic tool and a waste management system assessment tool. The article focuses on the assessment tool, which supports the adequate decision making in the planning of urban waste management systems by allowing the creation and comparison of different scenarios, considering three basic subsystems: (i) temporary storage; (ii) collection and transport and (iii) treatment, disposal and recycling. The design and analysis options, as well as the assumptions made for each subsystem, are shortly introduced, providing an overview of the applied methodologies and technologies. The sustainability assessment methodology used in the project to support the selection of the most adequate scenario is presented with a brief explanation of the procedures, criteria and indicators applied on the evaluation of each of the three sustainability pillars

  7. Risk-based decision support tools: protecting rail-centered transit corridors from cascading effects. (United States)

    Greenberg, Michael R; Lowrie, Karen; Mayer, Henry; Altiok, Tayfur


    We consider the value of decision support tools for passenger rail system managers. First, we call for models that follow events along main rail lines and then into the surrounding environment where they can cascade onto connected light rail, bus, auto, truck, and other transport modes. Second, we suggest that both probabilistic risk assessment (PRA-based) and agent-based models have a role to play at different scales of analysis and for different kinds of risks. Third, we argue that economic impact tools need more systematic evaluation. Fourth, we note that developers of decision support tools face a challenge of balancing their desire for theoretical elegance and the tendency to focus only on high consequence events against decisionmakers' mistrust of complex tools that they and their staff cannot manage and incorporate into their routine operations, as well as the high costs of developing, updating, and applying decision support tools to transport systems undergoing budget cuts and worker and service reductions. © 2011 Society for Risk Analysis.

  8. A user's guide to coping with estuarine management bureaucracy: An Estuarine Planning Support System (EPSS) tool. (United States)

    Lonsdale, Jemma; Nicholson, Rose; Weston, Keith; Elliott, Michael; Birchenough, Andrew; Sühring, Roxana


    Estuaries are amongst the most socio-economically and ecologically important environments however, due to competing and conflicting demands, management is often challenging with a complex legislative framework managed by multiple agencies. To facilitate the understanding of this legislative framework, we have developed a GISbased Estuarine Planning Support System tool. The tool integrates the requirements of the relevant legislation and provides a basis for assessing the current environmental state of an estuary as well as informing and assessing new plans to ensure a healthy estuarine state. The tool ensures that the information is easily accessible for regulators, managers, developers and the public. The tool is intended to be adaptable, but is assessed using the Humber Estuary, United Kingdom as a case study area. The successful application of the tool for complex socio-economic and environmental systems demonstrates that the tool can efficiently guide users through the complex requirements needed to support sustainable development. Crown Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Implementing Lumberjacks and Black Swans Into Model-Based Tools to Support Human-Automation Interaction. (United States)

    Sebok, Angelia; Wickens, Christopher D


    The objectives were to (a) implement theoretical perspectives regarding human-automation interaction (HAI) into model-based tools to assist designers in developing systems that support effective performance and (b) conduct validations to assess the ability of the models to predict operator performance. Two key concepts in HAI, the lumberjack analogy and black swan events, have been studied extensively. The lumberjack analogy describes the effects of imperfect automation on operator performance. In routine operations, an increased degree of automation supports performance, but in failure conditions, increased automation results in more significantly impaired performance. Black swans are the rare and unexpected failures of imperfect automation. The lumberjack analogy and black swan concepts have been implemented into three model-based tools that predict operator performance in different systems. These tools include a flight management system, a remotely controlled robotic arm, and an environmental process control system. Each modeling effort included a corresponding validation. In one validation, the software tool was used to compare three flight management system designs, which were ranked in the same order as predicted by subject matter experts. The second validation compared model-predicted operator complacency with empirical performance in the same conditions. The third validation compared model-predicted and empirically determined time to detect and repair faults in four automation conditions. The three model-based tools offer useful ways to predict operator performance in complex systems. The three tools offer ways to predict the effects of different automation designs on operator performance.

  10. Issues on the Development and Application of Computer Tools to Support Product Structuring and Configuring

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Claus Thorp; Riitahuhta, A.


    The aim of this article is to make a balance on the results and challenges in the efforts to develop computer tools to support product structuring and configuring in product development projects. The balance will be made in two dimensions, a design science and an industrial dimension. The design...... science dimension focuses on our understanding of product structure and product configuration. The industrial dimension presents findings from a number of projects regarding the implementation of computer tools to support engineering designers in industrial practice. The article concludes...... that there are large positive effects to be gained for industrial companies by conscious implementing computer tools based on the results of design science. The positive effects will be measured by e.g. predictable product quality, reduced lead time, and reuse of design solutions....


    EPA¿s National Risk Management Research Laboratory has led the development of a municipal solid waste decision support tool (MSW-DST). The computer software can be used to calculate life-cycle environmental tradeoffs and full costs of different waste management plans or recycling...

  12. Dutch gas distribution grid goes green: decision support tool for local biogas utilization

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Weidenaar, Teade; Hoekstra, Sipke; Wolters, Mannes


    A Decision Support Tool (DST) has been developed that will aid Distribution Service Operators (DSOs) in their decision making process on which investments to make in the gas distribution grid in order to facilitate the use of biogas. The DST considers both the conversion of biogas to electricity as

  13. Reducing fuel consumption by using a new fuel-efficiency support tool

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Voort, Mascha C.; Dougherty, Mark; Dougherty, M.S.


    A fuel-efficiency support tool has been designed, which includes a normative model describing optimal driver behaviour for minimising fuel consumption. If actual behaviour deviates from optimal behaviour, the system presents advice on how to change behaviour. Evaluation revealed that drivers used

  14. Web-service architecture for tools supporting life-long e-Learning platforms

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dimov, Alexander; Stefanov, Krassen


    Dimov, A., & Stefanov, K. (2008). Web-service architecture for tools supporting life-long e-Learning platforms. In R. Koper, K. Stefanov & D. Dicheva (Eds.), Proceedings of the 5th International TENCompetence Open Workshop "Stimulating Personal Development and Knowledge Sharing" (pp. 67-71).

  15. Mediated Authentic Video: A Flexible Tool Supporting a Developmental Approach to Teacher Education (United States)

    Stutchbury, Kris; Woodward, Clare


    YouTube now has more searches than Google, indicating that video is a motivating and, potentially, powerful learning tool. This paper investigates how we can embrace video to support improvements in teacher education. It will draw on innovative approaches to teacher education, developed by the Open University UK, in order to explore in more depth…

  16. Additional Support for the Information Systems Analyst Exam as a Valid Program Assessment Tool (United States)

    Carpenter, Donald A.; Snyder, Johnny; Slauson, Gayla Jo; Bridge, Morgan K.


    This paper presents a statistical analysis to support the notion that the Information Systems Analyst (ISA) exam can be used as a program assessment tool in addition to measuring student performance. It compares ISA exam scores earned by students in one particular Computer Information Systems program with scores earned by the same students on the…

  17. TESTAR : Tool Support for Test Automation at the User Interface Level

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vos, Tanja E.J.; Kruse, Peter M.; Condori Fernandez, Nelly; Bauersfeld, Sebastian; Wegener, Joachim


    Testing applications with a graphical user interface (GUI) is an important, though challenging and time consuming task. The state of the art in the industry are still capture and replay tools, which may simplify the recording and execution of input sequences, but do not support the tester in finding

  18. Getting Students Excited about Learning: Incorporating Digital Tools to Support the Writing Process (United States)

    Saulsburry, Rachel; Kilpatrick, Jennifer Renée; Wolbers, Kimberly A.; Dostal, Hannah


    Technology--in the form of digital tools incorporated into writing instruction--can help teachers motivate and engage young children, and it may be especially critical for students who do everything they can to avoid writing. Technology may bolster student involvement, foster the engagement of reluctant or struggling writers, and support writing…

  19. Assessing Sustainability of Coral Reef Ecosystem Services using a Spatially-Explicit Decision Support Tool (United States)

    Forecasting and communicating the potential outcomes of decision options requires support tools that aid in evaluating alternative scenarios in a user-friendly context and that highlight variables relevant to the decision options and valuable stakeholders. Envision is a GIS-base...

  20. BASINs 4.0 Climate Assessment Tool (CAT): Supporting Documentation and User's Manual (Final Report) (United States)

    EPA announced the availability of the report, BASINS 4.0 Climate Assessment Tool (CAT): Supporting Documentation and User's Manual. This report was prepared by the EPA's Global Change Research Program (GCRP), an assessment-oriented program, that sits within the Office of R...

  1. Planning support tools and their effects in participatory urban adaptation workshops. (United States)

    McEvoy, Sadie; van de Ven, Frans H M; Blind, Michiel W; Slinger, Jill H


    In the face of a changing climate, many cities are engaged in adaptation planning and are using participatory workshops to involve stakeholders in these initiatives. Different tools are being used to structure the process and content of participatory planning workshops, but it is unclear what effect the tools have on the workshops and their results. We evaluated three different tools (Group Model Building, the Adaptation Support Tool, and the Stress Test Guideline) and a tool-free approach in repeated simulated workshops, to observe and compare (1) the way workshops played out, and (2) the direct outcomes that were achieved. Tools appear to influence both aspects. Specifically, we measured differences in the learning effects in groups, in the development of shared understanding within groups, in the types of plans that are developed by groups, and in the nature of participation during the workshops. Further research is needed to translate these results into practice, but this is a first step in advancing knowledge about the influence of tools in participatory planning activities. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. The development of a supportive care needs assessment tool for Indigenous people with cancer. (United States)

    Garvey, Gail; Beesley, Vanessa L; Janda, Monika; Jacka, Catherine; Green, Adèle C; O'Rourke, Peter; Valery, Patricia C


    Little is known about the supportive care needs of Indigenous people with cancer and to date, existing needs assessment tools have not considered cultural issues for this population. We aimed to adapt an existing supportive care needs assessment tool for use with Indigenous Australians with cancer. Face-to-face interviews with Indigenous cancer patients (n = 29) and five focus groups with Indigenous key-informants (n = 23) were conducted to assess the face and content validity, cultural acceptability, utility and relevance of the Supportive Care Needs Survey - Short Form 34 (SCNS-SF34) for use with Indigenous patients with cancer. All items from the SCNS-SF34 were shortened and changed to use more appropriate language (e.g. the word 'anxiety' was substituted with 'worry'). Seven questions were omitted (e.g. items on death and future considerations) as they were deemed culturally inappropriate or irrelevant and 12 items were added (e.g. accessible transport). Optional instructions were added before the sexual items. The design and response format of the SCNS-SF34 was modified to make it easier to use for Indigenous cancer patients. Given the extensive modifications to the SCNS-SF34 and the liklihood of a different factor structure we consider this tool to be a new tool rather than a modification. The Supportive care needs assessment tool for Indigenous people (SCNAT-IP) shows promising face and content validity and will be useful in informing services where they need to direct their attention for these patients. Indigenous people with cancer have language, customs and specific needs that are not accommodated within the standard SCNS-SF34. Our SCNAT-IP improves acceptability, relevance and face validity for Indigenous-specific concerns. Our SCNAT-IP will allow screening for supportive care needs that are specific to Indigenous cancer patients' and greatly inform targeted policy development and practice.

  3. Pilot study of digital tools to support multimodal hand hygiene in a clinical setting. (United States)

    Thirkell, Gary; Chambers, Joanne; Gilbart, Wayne; Thornhill, Kerrill; Arbogast, James; Lacey, Gerard


    Digital tools for hand hygiene do not share data, limiting their potential to support multimodal programs. The Christie NHS Foundation Trust, United Kingdom, worked with GOJO (in the United States), MEG (in Ireland), and SureWash (in Ireland) to integrate their systems and pilot their combined use in a clinical setting. A 28-bed medical oncology unit piloted the system for 5 weeks. Live data from the tools were combined to create a novel combined risk status metric that was displayed publicly and via a management Web site. The combined risk status reduced over the pilot period. However, larger and longer duration studies are required to reach statistical significance. Staff and especially patient reaction was positive in that 70% of the hand hygiene training events were by patients. The digital tools did not negatively impact clinical workflow and received positive engagement from staff and patients. The combined risk status did not change significantly over the short pilot period because there was also no specific hand hygiene improvement campaign underway at the time of the pilot study. The results indicate that integrated digital tools can provide both rich data and novel tools that both measure impact and provide feedback to support the implementation of multimodal hand hygiene campaigns, reducing the need for significant additional personnel resources. Copyright © 2018 Association for Professionals in Infection Control and Epidemiology, Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. A Holistic Approach to Interdisciplinary Innovation Supported by a Simple Tool

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Denise J. Stokholm, Marianne


    Innovation is recognised as a strategy to achieve competitive businesses and products. Managing innovation at all levels requires integration of knowledge and interdisciplinary cooperation. Different understandings and approaches to innovation between professions often result in communication...... problems. To overcome this barrier a common ground is needed. This paper describes a holistic approach to innovation and presents a simple tool for facilitating cooperation on a diversity of innovation matters. It describes the development and use of the tool and demonstrates its capacity to support...

  5. PROMO: a computerized tool to support process monitoring activities -application in CANDU simulators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Singh, D.T.; Singh, P.P.


    PROMO, a prototype computerized PROcess MOnitoring tool, has been designed for the resolution of perceived complexity under conditions of time constraints and criticality. It is suggested that this makes it uniquely suitable for applications such as nuclear power plant operator training and support. This paper describes the tool, the theory underlying its design, and results from preliminary laboratory experiments. While field tests are necessary prior to the drawing of conclusions, the results from the laboratory trials are promising. Efforts are currently underway to extend the research setting to power plant operator training centers. (author). 57 refs., 1 fig

  6. Modeling a Decision Support Tool for Buildable and Sustainable Building Envelope Designs

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natee Singhaputtangkul


    Full Text Available Sustainability and buildability requirements in building envelope design have significantly gained more importance nowadays, yet there is a lack of an appropriate decision support system (DSS that can help a building design team to incorporate these requirements and manage their tradeoffs at once. The main objective of this study is to build such a tool to facilitate a building design team to take into account sustainability and buildability criteria for assessment of building envelopes of high-rise residential buildings in Singapore. Literature reviews were conducted to investigate a comprehensive set of the sustainability and buildability criteria. This also included development of the tool using a Quality Functional Deployment (QFD approach combined with fuzzy set theory. A building design team was engaged to test the tool with the aim to evaluate usefulness of the tool in managing the tradeoffs among the sustainability and buildability criteria. The results from a qualitative data analysis suggested that the tool allowed the design team to effectively find a balance between the tradeoffs among the criteria when assessing multiple building envelope design alternatives. Main contributions of using this tool are achievement of a more efficient assessment of the building envelopes and more sustainable and buildable building envelope design.

  7. The eXtensible ontology development (XOD) principles and tool implementation to support ontology interoperability. (United States)

    He, Yongqun; Xiang, Zuoshuang; Zheng, Jie; Lin, Yu; Overton, James A; Ong, Edison


    Ontologies are critical to data/metadata and knowledge standardization, sharing, and analysis. With hundreds of biological and biomedical ontologies developed, it has become critical to ensure ontology interoperability and the usage of interoperable ontologies for standardized data representation and integration. The suite of web-based Ontoanimal tools (e.g., Ontofox, Ontorat, and Ontobee) support different aspects of extensible ontology development. By summarizing the common features of Ontoanimal and other similar tools, we identified and proposed an "eXtensible Ontology Development" (XOD) strategy and its associated four principles. These XOD principles reuse existing terms and semantic relations from reliable ontologies, develop and apply well-established ontology design patterns (ODPs), and involve community efforts to support new ontology development, promoting standardized and interoperable data and knowledge representation and integration. The adoption of the XOD strategy, together with robust XOD tool development, will greatly support ontology interoperability and robust ontology applications to support data to be Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable (i.e., FAIR).

  8. A Simple Synchro – Modal Decision Support Tool for the Piraeus Container Terminal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kapetanis, George N.; Psaraftis, Harilaos N.; Spyrou, Dimitrios

    study above, being however open architecture software it can be expanded and applied to other ports and routes. The final outcome will be an easy and user friendly tool with the possibility to alter different input parameters and receive quickly a useful decision support system for the shipper...... – Piraeus – Prague. The current paper will present an easy to use simple tool to continuously assess even during the transportation event all the alternative modes for a given destination in terms of time cost and emissions. An analytical fully parameterized model will be the basis for this tool which...... will be run for the chain Shanghai - Piraeus – Prague. The overall scenario is as follows: A container ship is arriving from China to the Piraeus Container Terminal. One of its containers is destined to an inland Enterprise in Prague. The most common way for transportation to Prague is rail, but also truck...

  9. Evaluation and Assessment in Information Literacy: WASSAIL as a tool to support diverse methods

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nancy Goebel


    Full Text Available In the higher education Information Literacy context, there is growing interest and requirements for evaluation of librarian teaching and assessment of student learning. This session will explore these issues and use WASSAIL as a sample tool to consider for these purposes. WASSAIL is open source software developed at the Augustana Campus Library of the University of Alberta to support the evaluation and assessment requirements of Augustana's Information Literacy program. WASSAIL was the 2010 ACRL Instruction Section Innovation Award winner. Session participants are requested to bring laptops to interact with WASSAIL in the hands-on part of the workshop. Participants can bring questions they would like to enter into evaluation or assessment tools, or sample questions will be provided. A diversity of methods will be discussed: evaluation tools such as end of "one-shot" questionnaires and general surveys, as well as assessment methods such as in-class quizzes, pre-/post-tests, and more.

  10. A Simple Synchro – Modal Decision Support Tool for the Piraeus Container Terminal

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kapetanis, George N.; Psaraftis, Harilaos N.; Spyrou, Dimitrios


    – Piraeus – Prague. The current paper will present an easy to use simple tool to continuously assess even during the transportation event all the alternative modes for a given destination in terms of time cost and emissions. An analytical fully parameterized model will be the basis for this tool which...... study above, being however open architecture software it can be expanded and applied to other ports and routes. The final outcome will be an easy and user friendly tool with the possibility to alter different input parameters and receive quickly a useful decision support system for the shipper...... job and maintain his set priority while in parallel keeping the remaining two parameters in control. Down times for example could be eliminated and efficiency gains could be achieved with decreased environmental footprint. The Port of Piraeus is the largest Greek seaport and one of the largest ports...

  11. Transient ischaemic attack and stroke risk: pilot of a primary care electronic decision support tool

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ranta A


    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: Transient ischaemic attacks (TIAs indicate high risk for stroke and rapid management reduces stroke burden. Rapid specialist access to initiate timely management is often challenging to achieve. AIM: To assess the feasibility of implementing a TIA/Stroke electronic decision support (EDS tool intended to aid general practitioners (GPs in the timely management of TIAs. METHODS: An eight-week pilot provided access to the TIA/Stroke EDS to selected GPs in the MidCentral district, with subsequent patient record review and a post-pilot user satisfaction survey. RESULTS: Eleven patients from eight practices were entered into the tool and when EDS-rendered advice was followed, diagnosis was accurate and management was in accordance with New Zealand TIA guidelines. No adverse outcomes resulted and user feedback was positive. DISCUSSION: Results indicate that wider implementation of the TIA/Stroke EDS tool is feasible.

  12. Fuzzy Decision Support for Tools Selection in the Core Front End Activities of New Product Development

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Achiche, S.; Appio, F.P.; McAloone, Tim C.


    managers, working for five different companies. The automatically constructed FDSMs accurately reproduced the managers’ estimations using the learning data sets and were very robust when validated with hidden data sets. The developed models can be easily used for quick financial assessments of tools...... in CFE activities can vary a lot and hence largely influence their financial performances later on in the NPD process......., an economic evaluation of the cost of tool usage is critical, and there is furthermore a need to characterize them in terms of their influence on the FE. This paper focuses on decision support for managers/ designers in their process of assessing the cost of choosing/using tools in the core front end (CFE...

  13. The development of an online decision support tool for organizational readiness for change. (United States)

    Khan, Sobia; Timmings, Caitlyn; Moore, Julia E; Marquez, Christine; Pyka, Kasha; Gheihman, Galina; Straus, Sharon E


    Much importance has been placed on assessing readiness for change as one of the earliest steps of implementation, but measuring it can be a complex and daunting task. Organizations and individuals struggle with how to reliably and accurately measure readiness for change. Several measures have been developed to help organizations assess readiness, but these are often underused due to the difficulty of selecting the right measure. In response to this challenge, we will develop and test a prototype of a decision support tool that is designed to guide individuals interested in implementation in the selection of an appropriate readiness assessment measure for their setting. A multi-phase approach will be used to develop the decision support tool. First, we will identify key measures for assessing organizational readiness for change from a recently completed systematic review. Included measures will be those developed for healthcare settings (e.g., acute care, public health, mental health) and that have been deemed valid and reliable. Second, study investigators and field experts will engage in a mapping exercise to categorize individual items of included measures according to key readiness constructs from an existing framework. Third, a stakeholder panel will be recruited and consulted to determine the feasibility and relevance of the selected measures using a modified Delphi process. Fourth, findings from the mapping exercise and stakeholder consultation will inform the development of a decision support tool that will guide users in appropriately selecting change readiness measures. Fifth, the tool will undergo usability testing. Our proposed decision support tool will address current challenges in the field of organizational change readiness by aiding individuals in selecting a valid and reliable assessment measure that is relevant to user needs and practice settings. We anticipate that implementers and researchers who use our tool will be more likely to conduct

  14. A modeling tool to support decision making in future hydropower development in Chile (United States)

    Vicuna, S.; Hermansen, C.; Cerda, J. P.; Olivares, M. A.; Gomez, T. I.; Toha, E.; Poblete, D.; Mao, L.; Falvey, M. J.; Pliscoff, P.; Melo, O.; Lacy, S.; Peredo, M.; Marquet, P. A.; Maturana, J.; Gironas, J. A.


    Modeling tools support planning by providing transparent means to assess the outcome of natural resources management alternatives within technical frameworks in the presence of conflicting objectives. Such tools, when employed to model different scenarios, complement discussion in a policy-making context. Examples of practical use of this type of tool exist, such as the Canadian public forest management, but are not common, especially in the context of developing countries. We present a tool to support the selection from a portfolio of potential future hydropower projects in Chile. This tool, developed by a large team of researchers under the guidance of the Chilean Energy Ministry, is especially relevant in the context of evident regionalism, skepticism and change in societal values in a country that has achieved a sustained growth alongside increased demands from society. The tool operates at a scale of a river reach, between 1-5 km long, on a domain that can be defined according to the scale needs of the related discussion, and its application can vary from river basins to regions or other spatial configurations that may be of interest. The tool addresses both available hydropower potential and the existence (inferred or observed) of other ecological, social, cultural and productive characteristics of the territory which are valuable to society, and provides a means to evaluate their interaction. The occurrence of each of these other valuable characteristics in the territory is measured by generating a presence-density score for each. Considering the level of constraint each characteristic imposes on hydropower development, they are weighted against each other and an aggregate score is computed. With this information, optimal trade-offs are computed between additional hydropower capacity and valuable local characteristics over the entire domain, using the classical knapsack 0-1 optimization algorithm. Various scenarios of different weightings and hydropower

  15. Cloud-Based Tools to Support High-Resolution Modeling (Invited) (United States)

    Jones, N.; Nelson, J.; Swain, N.; Christensen, S.


    The majority of watershed models developed to support decision-making by water management agencies are simple, lumped-parameter models. Maturity in research codes and advances in the computational power from multi-core processors on desktop machines, commercial cloud-computing resources, and supercomputers with thousands of cores have created new opportunities for employing more accurate, high-resolution distributed models for routine use in decision support. The barriers for using such models on a more routine basis include massive amounts of spatial data that must be processed for each new scenario and lack of efficient visualization tools. In this presentation we will review a current NSF-funded project called CI-WATER that is intended to overcome many of these roadblocks associated with high-resolution modeling. We are developing a suite of tools that will make it possible to deploy customized web-based apps for running custom scenarios for high-resolution models with minimal effort. These tools are based on a software stack that includes 52 North, MapServer, PostGIS, HT Condor, CKAN, and Python. This open source stack provides a simple scripting environment for quickly configuring new custom applications for running high-resolution models as geoprocessing workflows. The HT Condor component facilitates simple access to local distributed computers or commercial cloud resources when necessary for stochastic simulations. The CKAN framework provides a powerful suite of tools for hosting such workflows in a web-based environment that includes visualization tools and storage of model simulations in a database to archival, querying, and sharing of model results. Prototype applications including land use change, snow melt, and burned area analysis will be presented. This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1135482

  16. Improvement of tool support of the spatial approach to regional planning: problems, specifics, trends

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nataliya Gennadievna Yushkova


    Full Text Available The emerging imperatives of innovation economic development in Russia determine the content of conceptual and institutional constraints to the development of regional economic systems (RES. They consider the regional planning system as a leading priority in its inseparable unity with modern public administration tasks. However, the practice of development of long-term plans in the RF subjects proves that the innovation challenges of economic policy are not reflected properly in them or they are significantly distorted. The following reasons reduce the effectiveness of modernization processes in the RF subjects and hamper the appropriate reaction of RES on their impact: the lack of coordination between socio-economic and spatial regional plans, the imbalance of interaction between state authorities engaged in long-term planning, the lack of real prerequisites for the implementation of innovation initiatives in the regions. Systematization and analysis of long-term plans make it possible to substantiate the consistency of the spatial approach to regional planning expressed in the dominance of the transformational function that synchronizes the configuration and parameters of RES, and to establish ways to integrate spatial components in the system of regional planning through optimization of its tool support. The change in the content of the instrumentation support is based on the synthesis of the predominant basic characteristics of the existing tools used in isolated subsystems of regional planning of socio-economic and territorial development. The study has established a system of tool support for regional planning that adapts to the changes in both internal and external factors in the development of RES. Three main groups of tools: organizing, regulating, and coordinating are defined by their typing in accordance with the groups of management functions. The article proposes the modeling of combinations of tools that are subordinated to the

  17. A tool to support meaningful person-centred activity for clients with dementia - a Delphi study. (United States)

    Lloyd, Barbara; Stirling, Christine


    This paper reports on a study to validate the concept of the 'Activity Support Tool' that aimed to assist dementia service workers to identify and act upon the support needs of people with dementia living alone, in line with the person-centred ideal. The tool was part of a two-stage exploratory qualitative study, which used interview and observational data from seven people with dementia living alone. Findings highlighted that people with dementia use objects and spaces within their homes to maintain or re-enact identities from the past. Thematic results from interviews were translated into a tool, with construct validation using the Delphi technique. Eighteen expert health professionals received round one of the questionnaire and six participants completed round three. The first round directed our focus towards operationalizing the person-centred ideal of dementia care. The tool was considered by almost all advisory panel members to be a potentially valuable resource for helping to address impediments to integrated, effective and person-centred dementia care. Specific strengths identified were simplicity, person-centeredness and applicability across service settings. Issues of concern included practicability, risk management, gender stereotyping and terminology. The results support the findings of previous research into the intuitive and ethical appeal, but problematic applicability, of person-centred dementia services. Health professionals with a range of service-related expertise found the concept of person-centred care compelling, but required tangible, enduring structures to translate the ideal into practical action. The tool now requires further research to test its usefulness in practice.

  18. Using the Communication Methods, Tools and Support During Management of Project Communication in Industrial Manufacturing Enterprises (United States)

    Samáková, Jana; Babčanová, Dagmar; Hrablikchovanová, Henrieta; Mesárošová, Jana; Šujanová, Jana


    Effective communication is the most significant ability for project manager and successful project. However, during the management of projects communication, it is very often forgotten, often overlooked or taken for granted. In the management of projects, it is principally necessary to deal with communication during all project lifecycle. Within the project communication, it is very important to define the main methods, tools, support of communication and frequency of communication; these belong to the most important elements of the communication channel which is very often forgotten. Therefore, the main aim of the paper is to analyse the utilisation of the communication channel: communication methods, communication tools, communication frequency and to support project communication in industrial manufacturing enterprises in Slovakia. Based on the research, we can conclude that communication channel is not adequately elaborated in international methodologies and standards of project management as well as in industrial manufacturing enterprises. These facts are very negative, conclusion and it is therefore necessary to deal with the problem.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yavuz SAMUR


    Full Text Available In computer-supported collaborative learning (CSCL environments, there are many researches done on collaborative learning activities; however, in game-based learning environments, more research and literature on collaborative learning activities are required. Actually, both game-based learning environments and wikis enable us to use new chances for learning, especially in collaborative learning activities. Therefore, in this paper, related literature on wikis and how game & instructional designers can leverage from wikis in game-based learning settings for enhancing students’ collaborative learning activities are examined. Based on the reviewed literature, two main suggestions are given in this paper with their underlying reasons. First, using wikis as a support tool for enhancing collaboration in digital game-based learning (DGBL environments, and second using wikis as an assessment tool in DGBL are suggested.

  20. Web-Based Tools for Data Visualization and Decision Support for South Asia (United States)

    Jones, N.; Nelson, J.; Pulla, S. T.; Ames, D. P.; Souffront, M.; David, C. H.; Zaitchik, B. F.; Gatlin, P. N.; Matin, M. A.


    The objective of the NASA SERVIR project is to assist developing countries in using information provided by Earth observing satellites to assess and manage climate risks, land use, and water resources. We present a collection of web apps that integrate earth observations and in situ data to facilitate deployment of data and water resources models as decision-making tools in support of this effort. The interactive nature of web apps makes this an excellent medium for creating decision support tools that harness cutting edge modeling techniques. Thin client apps hosted in a cloud portal eliminates the need for the decision makers to procure and maintain the high performance hardware required by the models, deal with issues related to software installation and platform incompatibilities, or monitor and install software updates, a problem that is exacerbated for many of the regional SERVIR hubs where both financial and technical capacity may be limited. All that is needed to use the system is an Internet connection and a web browser. We take advantage of these technologies to develop tools which can be centrally maintained but openly accessible. Advanced mapping and visualization make results intuitive and information derived actionable. We also take advantage of the emerging standards for sharing water information across the web using the OGC and WMO approved WaterML standards. This makes our tools interoperable and extensible via application programming interfaces (APIs) so that tools and data from other projects can both consume and share the tools developed in our project. Our approach enables the integration of multiple types of data and models, thus facilitating collaboration between science teams in SERVIR. The apps developed thus far by our team process time-varying netCDF files from Earth observations and large-scale computer simulations and allow visualization and exploration via raster animation and extraction of time series at selected points and/or regions.

  1. Towards tool support for spreadsheet-based domain-specific languages

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Adam, Marian Sorin; Schultz, Ulrik Pagh


    the syntax of such spreadsheet-based DSLs (SDSLs), and there is no tool support for automatically generating language infrastructure such as parsers and IDE support. In this paper we define a simple notion of two-dimensional grammars for SDSLs, and show how such grammars can be used for automatically...... generating parsers that extract structured data from a spreadsheet in the form of an AST. We demonstrate automatic generation of parsers for a number of examples, including the questionnaire DSL from LWC2014 and a DSL for writing safety specifications....

  2. Modeling a Decision Support Tool for Buildable and Sustainable Building Envelope Designs


    Natee Singhaputtangkul; Sui Pheng Low


    Sustainability and buildability requirements in building envelope design have significantly gained more importance nowadays, yet there is a lack of an appropriate decision support system (DSS) that can help a building design team to incorporate these requirements and manage their tradeoffs at once. The main objective of this study is to build such a tool to facilitate a building design team to take into account sustainability and buildability criteria for assessment of building envelopes of h...

  3. Usability Testing of a Complex Clinical Decision Support Tool in the Emergency Department: Lessons Learned. (United States)

    Press, Anne; McCullagh, Lauren; Khan, Sundas; Schachter, Andy; Pardo, Salvatore; McGinn, Thomas


    As the electronic health record (EHR) becomes the preferred documentation tool across medical practices, health care organizations are pushing for clinical decision support systems (CDSS) to help bring clinical decision support (CDS) tools to the forefront of patient-physician interactions. A CDSS is integrated into the EHR and allows physicians to easily utilize CDS tools. However, often CDSS are integrated into the EHR without an initial phase of usability testing, resulting in poor adoption rates. Usability testing is important because it evaluates a CDSS by testing it on actual users. This paper outlines the usability phase of a study, which will test the impact of integration of the Wells CDSS for pulmonary embolism (PE) diagnosis into a large urban emergency department, where workflow is often chaotic and high stakes decisions are frequently made. We hypothesize that conducting usability testing prior to integration of the Wells score into an emergency room EHR will result in increased adoption rates by physicians. The objective of the study was to conduct usability testing for the integration of the Wells clinical prediction rule into a tertiary care center's emergency department EHR. We conducted usability testing of a CDS tool in the emergency department EHR. The CDS tool consisted of the Wells rule for PE in the form of a calculator and was triggered off computed tomography (CT) orders or patients' chief complaint. The study was conducted at a tertiary hospital in Queens, New York. There were seven residents that were recruited and participated in two phases of usability testing. The usability testing employed a "think aloud" method and "near-live" clinical simulation, where care providers interacted with standardized patients enacting a clinical scenario. Both phases were audiotaped, video-taped, and had screen-capture software activated for onscreen recordings. Phase I: Data from the "think-aloud" phase of the study showed an overall positive outlook on

  4. Adapting a Technology-Based Implementation Support Tool for Community Mental Health: Challenges and Lessons Learned. (United States)

    Livet, Melanie; Fixsen, Amanda


    With mental health services shifting to community-based settings, community mental health (CMH) organizations are under increasing pressure to deliver effective services. Despite availability of evidence-based interventions, there is a gap between effective mental health practices and the care that is routinely delivered. Bridging this gap requires availability of easily tailorable implementation support tools to assist providers in implementing evidence-based intervention with quality, thereby increasing the likelihood of achieving the desired client outcomes. This study documents the process and lessons learned from exploring the feasibility of adapting such a technology-based tool, Centervention, as the example innovation, for use in CMH settings. Mixed-methods data on core features, innovation-provider fit, and organizational capacity were collected from 44 CMH providers. Lessons learned included the need to augment delivery through technology with more personal interactions, the importance of customizing and integrating the tool with existing technologies, and the need to incorporate a number of strategies to assist with adoption and use of Centervention-like tools in CMH contexts. This study adds to the current body of literature on the adaptation process for technology-based tools and provides information that can guide additional innovations for CMH settings.

  5. Validation of a pediatric bedside tool to predict time to death after withdrawal of life support. (United States)

    Das, Ashima; Anderson, Ingrid M; Speicher, David G; Speicher, Richard H; Shein, Steven L; Rotta, Alexandre T


    To evaluate the accuracy of a tool developed to predict timing of death following withdrawal of life support in children. Pertinent variables for all pediatric deaths (age ≤ 21 years) from 1/2009 to 6/2014 in our pediatric intensive care unit (PICU) were extracted through a detailed review of the medical records. As originally described, a recently developed tool that predicts timing of death in children following withdrawal of life support (dallas predictor tool [DPT]) was used to calculate individual scores for each patient. Individual scores were calculated for prediction of death within 30 min (DPT30) and within 60 min (DPT60). For various resulting DPT30 and DPT60 scores, sensitivity, specificity and area under the receiver operating characteristic curve were calculated. There were 8829 PICU admissions resulting in 132 (1.5%) deaths. Death followed withdrawal of life support in 70 patients (53%). After excluding subjects with insufficient data to calculate DPT scores, 62 subjects were analyzed. Average age of patients was 5.3 years (SD: 6.9), median time to death after withdrawal of life support was 25 min (range; 7 min to 16 h 54 min). Respiratory failure, shock and sepsis were the most common diagnoses. Thirty-seven patients (59.6%) died within 30 min of withdrawal of life support and 52 (83.8%) died within 60 min. DPT30 scores ranged from -17 to 16. A DPT30 score ≥ -3 was most predictive of death within that time period, with sensitivity = 0.76, specificity = 0.52, AUC = 0.69 and an overall classification accuracy = 66.1%. DPT60 scores ranged from -21 to 28. A DPT60 score ≥ -9 was most predictive of death within that time period, with sensitivity = 0.75, specificity = 0.80, AUC = 0.85 and an overall classification accuracy = 75.8%. In this external cohort, the DPT is clinically relevant in predicting time from withdrawal of life support to death. In our patients, the DPT is more useful in predicting death within 60 min of withdrawal of life support

  6. Review. Supporting problem structuring with computer-based tools in participatory forest planning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hujala, T.; Khadka, C.; Wolfslehner, B.; Vacik, H.


    Aim of study: This review presents the state-of-art of using computerized techniques for problem structuring (PS) in participatory forest planning. Frequency and modes of using different computerized tool types and their contribution for planning processes as well as critical observations are described, followed by recommendations on how to better integrate PS with the use of forest decision support systems. Area of study: The reviewed research cases are from Asia, Europe, North-America, Africa and Australia. Material and methods: Via Scopus search and screening of abstracts, 32 research articles from years 2002-2011 were selected for review. Explicit and implicit evidence of using computerized tools for PS was recorded and assessed with content-driven qualitative analysis. Main results: GIS and forest-specific simulation tools were the most prevalent software types whereas cognitive modelling software and spreadsheet and calculation tools were less frequently used, followed by multi-criteria and interactive tools. The typical use type was to provide outputs of simulation–optimization or spatial analysis to negotiation situations or to compile summaries or illustrations afterwards; using software during group negotiation to foster interaction was observed only in a few cases. Research highlights: Expertise in both decision support systems and group learning is needed to better integrate PS and computerized decision analysis. From the knowledge management perspective, it is recommended to consider how the results of PS —e.g. conceptual models— could be stored into a problem perception database, and how PS and decision making could be streamlined by retrievals from such systems. (Author)

  7. Participatory design of probability-based decision support tools for in-hospital nurses. (United States)

    Jeffery, Alvin D; Novak, Laurie L; Kennedy, Betsy; Dietrich, Mary S; Mion, Lorraine C


    To describe nurses' preferences for the design of a probability-based clinical decision support (PB-CDS) tool for in-hospital clinical deterioration. A convenience sample of bedside nurses, charge nurses, and rapid response nurses (n = 20) from adult and pediatric hospitals completed participatory design sessions with researchers in a simulation laboratory to elicit preferred design considerations for a PB-CDS tool. Following theme-based content analysis, we shared findings with user interface designers and created a low-fidelity prototype. Three major themes and several considerations for design elements of a PB-CDS tool surfaced from end users. Themes focused on "painting a picture" of the patient condition over time, promoting empowerment, and aligning probability information with what a nurse already believes about the patient. The most notable design element consideration included visualizing a temporal trend of the predicted probability of the outcome along with user-selected overlapping depictions of vital signs, laboratory values, and outcome-related treatments and interventions. Participants expressed that the prototype adequately operationalized requests from the design sessions. Participatory design served as a valuable method in taking the first step toward developing PB-CDS tools for nurses. This information about preferred design elements of tools that support, rather than interrupt, nurses' cognitive workflows can benefit future studies in this field as well as nurses' practice. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Medical Informatics Association 2017. This work is written by US Government employees and is in the public domain in the United States.

  8. Inclusion of social indicators in decision support tools for the selection of sustainable site remediation options. (United States)

    Cappuyns, Valérie


    Sustainable remediation requires a balanced decision-making process in which environmental, economic and social aspects of different remediation options are all considered together and the optimum remediation solution is selected. More attention has been paid to the evaluation of environmental and economic aspects, in particular to reduce the human and environmental risks and the remediation costs, to the exclusion of social aspects of remediation. This paper investigates how social aspects are currently considered in sustainability assessments of remediation projects. A selection of decision support tools (DSTs), used for the sustainability assessment of a remediation project, is analyzed to define how social aspects are considered in those tools. The social indicator categories of the Sustainable Remediation Forum - United Kingdom (SuRF-UK), are used as a basis for this evaluation. The consideration of social aspects in the investigated decision support tools is limited, but a clear increase is noticed in more recently developed tools. Among the five social indicator categories defined by SuRF-UK to facilitate a holistic consideration of social aspects of a remediation project only "Human health and safety" is systematically taken into account. "Neighbourhood and locality" is also often addressed, mostly emphasizing the potential disturbance caused by the remediation activities. However, the evaluation of 'Ethics and Equality', Communities and community involvement', and 'Uncertainty and evidence' is often neglected. Nevertheless, concrete examples can be found in some of the investigated tools. Specific legislation, standard procedures, and guidelines that have to be followed in a region or country are mainly been set up in the context of protecting human and ecosystem health, safety and prevention of nuisance. However, they sometimes already include some of the aspects addressed by the social indicators. In this perspective the use of DST to evaluate the

  9. An ArcGIS decision support tool for artificial reefs site selection (ArcGIS ARSS) (United States)

    Stylianou, Stavros; Zodiatis, George


    Although the use and benefits of artificial reefs, both socio-economic and environmental, have been recognized with research and national development programmes worldwide their development is rarely subjected to a rigorous site selection process and the majority of the projects use the traditional (non-GIS) approach, based on trial and error mode. Recent studies have shown that the use of Geographic Information Systems, unlike to traditional methods, for the identification of suitable areas for artificial reefs siting seems to offer a number of distinct advantages minimizing possible errors, time and cost. A decision support tool (DSS) has been developed based on the existing knowledge, the multi-criteria decision analysis techniques and the GIS approach used in previous studies in order to help the stakeholders to identify the optimal locations for artificial reefs deployment on the basis of the physical, biological, oceanographic and socio-economic features of the sites. The tool provides to the users the ability to produce a final report with the results and suitability maps. The ArcGIS ARSS support tool runs within the existing ArcMap 10.2.x environment and for the development the VB .NET high level programming language has been used along with ArcObjects 10.2.x. Two local-scale case studies were conducted in order to test the application of the tool focusing on artificial reef siting. The results obtained from the case studies have shown that the tool can be successfully integrated within the site selection process in order to select objectively the optimal site for artificial reefs deployment.

  10. Cyberinfrastructure for the collaborative development of U2U decision support tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larry L. Biehl


    Full Text Available This paper describes the use of cyberinfrastructure to create interactive applications as part of the Useful to Usable (U2U project. These applications transform historical climate data, knowledge, and models into decision support tools for end users such as crop farmers, university Extension educators, and other agricultural advisors. In creating a cyberinfrastructure to support the U2U project, four major challenges have been addressed: designing and developing highly usable web applications with frequent feedback, establishing a software engineering environment to support iterative development, integrating and synthesizing historical and current datasets from a variety of sources (local vs. remote, different access methods, and formats, and supporting project collaboration needs of data and document sharing, project management, and public outreach. The overall goals of the cyberinfrastructure and its architecture design are described. Methods for data retrieval and synthesis, as well as the various software components utilized are discussed. The development and integration of tools into the collaborative HUBzero framework are highlighted, including the use of HUBzero’s core features to share ideas, algorithms, and results. A highly iterative development process that includes feedback from experts and end-users to feed requirement definition, design and application updates are also examined.

  11. Decision-support tools for Extreme Weather and Climate Events in the Northeast United States (United States)

    Kumar, S.; Lowery, M.; Whelchel, A.


    Decision-support tools were assessed for the 2013 National Climate Assessment technical input document, "Climate Change in the Northeast, A Sourcebook". The assessment included tools designed to generate and deliver actionable information to assist states and highly populated urban and other communities in assessment of climate change vulnerability and risk, quantification of effects, and identification of adaptive strategies in the context of adaptation planning across inter-annual, seasonal and multi-decadal time scales. State-level adaptation planning in the Northeast has generally relied on qualitative vulnerability assessments by expert panels and stakeholders, although some states have undertaken initiatives to develop statewide databases to support vulnerability assessments by urban and local governments, and state agencies. The devastation caused by Superstorm Sandy in October 2012 has raised awareness of the potential for extreme weather events to unprecedented levels and created urgency for action, especially in coastal urban and suburban communities that experienced pronounced impacts - especially in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. Planning approaches vary, but any adaptation and resiliency planning process must include the following: - Knowledge of the probable change in a climate variable (e.g., precipitation, temperature, sea-level rise) over time or that the climate variable will attain a certain threshold deemed to be significant; - Knowledge of intensity and frequency of climate hazards (past, current or future events or conditions with potential to cause harm) and their relationship with climate variables; - Assessment of climate vulnerabilities (sensitive resources, infrastructure or populations exposed to climate-related hazards); - Assessment of relative risks to vulnerable resources; - Identification and prioritization of adaptive strategies to address risks. Many organizations are developing decision-support tools to assist in the urban

  12. Quantifying the Personal Creative Experience: Evaluation of Digital Creativity Support Tools Using Self-Report and Physiological Responses (United States)

    Carroll, Erin Ashley


    Creativity is understood intuitively, but it is not easily defined and therefore difficult to measure. This makes it challenging to evaluate the ability of a digital tool to support the creative process. When evaluating creativity support tools (CSTs), it is critical to look beyond traditional time, error, and other productivity measurements that…

  13. Visualization in simulation tools: requirements and a tool specification to support the teaching of dynamic biological processes. (United States)

    Jørgensen, Katarina M; Haddow, Pauline C


    Simulation tools are playing an increasingly important role behind advances in the field of systems biology. However, the current generation of biological science students has either little or no experience with such tools. As such, this educational glitch is limiting both the potential use of such tools as well as the potential for tighter cooperation between the designers and users. Although some simulation tool producers encourage their use in teaching, little attempt has hitherto been made to analyze and discuss their suitability as an educational tool for noncomputing science students. In general, today's simulation tools assume that the user has a stronger mathematical and computing background than that which is found in most biological science curricula, thus making the introduction of such tools a considerable pedagogical challenge. This paper provides an evaluation of the pedagogical attributes of existing simulation tools for cell signal transduction based on Cognitive Load theory. Further, design recommendations for an improved educational simulation tool are provided. The study is based on simulation tools for cell signal transduction. However, the discussions are relevant to a broader biological simulation tool set.

  14. Critical review of decision support tools for sustainability assessment of site remediation options. (United States)

    Huysegoms, Lies; Cappuyns, Valérie


    In Europe alone, there are more than 2,5 million potentially contaminated sites of which 14% are expected to require remediation. Contaminated soil and groundwater can cause damage to human health as well as to valuable ecosystems. Globally more attention has been paid to this problem of soil contamination in the past decades. For example, more than 58 000 sites have been remediated in Europe between 2006 and 2011. Together with this increase in remediation projects there has been a surge in the development of new remediation technologies and decision support tools to be able to match every site and its specific characteristics to the best possible remediation alternative. In the past years the development of decision support tools (DST) has evolved in a more sustainable direction. Several DSTs added the claim not only to denote effective or technologically and economically feasible remediation alternatives but also to point out the more or most sustainable remediation alternatives. These trends in the evaluation of site remediation options left users with a confusing clew of possibly applicable tools to assist them in decision making for contaminated site remediation. This review provides a structured overview on the extent decision support tools for contaminated site remediation, that claim to assist in choosing the most sustainable remediation alternative, actually include the different elements of sustainability proposed in our assessment framework. The review contains an in-depth analysis of thirteen tools specifically developed to assess the sustainability of site remediation alternatives. This analysis is based on six criteria derived from the definition of sustainable development of the Brundtland report. The six criteria were concretized by using the three pillars of sustainability, applied to site remediation according to the SuRF-UK framework, two criteria derived from Life Cycle Assessment and Cost-Benefit Analysis, and an 'User friendly' criterion

  15. Tools in a clinical information system supporting clinical trials at a Swiss University Hospital. (United States)

    Weisskopf, Michael; Bucklar, Guido; Blaser, Jürg


    Issues concerning inadequate source data of clinical trials rank second in the most common findings by regulatory authorities. The increasing use of electronic clinical information systems by healthcare providers offers an opportunity to facilitate and improve the conduct of clinical trials and the source documentation. We report on a number of tools implemented into the clinical information system of a university hospital to support clinical research. In 2011/2012, a set of tools was developed in the clinical information system of the University Hospital Zurich to support clinical research, including (1) a trial registry for documenting metadata on the clinical trials conducted at the hospital, (2) a patient-trial-assignment-tool to tag patients in the electronic medical charts as participants of specific trials, (3) medical record templates for the documentation of study visits and trial-related procedures, (4) online queries on trials and trial participants, (5) access to the electronic medical records for clinical monitors, (6) an alerting tool to notify of hospital admissions of trial participants, (7) queries to identify potentially eligible patients in the planning phase as trial feasibility checks and during the trial as recruitment support, and (8) order sets to facilitate the complete and accurate performance of study visit procedures. The number of approximately 100 new registrations per year in the voluntary trial registry in the clinical information system now matches the numbers of the existing mandatory trial registry of the hospital. Likewise, the yearly numbers of patients tagged as trial participants as well as the use of the standardized trial record templates increased to 2408 documented trial enrolments and 190 reports generated/month in the year 2013. Accounts for 32 clinical monitors have been established in the first 2 years monitoring a total of 49 trials in 16 clinical departments. A total of 15 months after adding the optional feature of

  16. Application of knowledge tools in training, based on problems’ solving: methodology and it support

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. V. Kudryavtsev


    Full Text Available The development of information accessibility in the 21st century necessitates the production of own knowledge in the learning process, and not justthe transfer of information. The computer should be used as a universal tool for working with knowledge, which is the study of the world, information obtaining, the organization and structuring of their own knowledge and presentation to other people. The aim of the work is to develop a methodology for the use of tools for working with knowledge in problem-based learning, which will be used to form an appropriate information and educational environment. The relevance of the paper is due to the importance of problem-based learning, as well as the emergence of many tools and technologies for obtaining, structuring and transferring knowledge. Traditional education focuses on the transfer of knowledge mainly in the study area, but less attention is paid to the development of common metacognitive abilities, including problems’ solving. With problem-based learning, knowledge is acquired through interaction with the surrounding world and the development of one’s own judgments. This educational methodology has been known for a long time, but our goal is to support this process by using tools for working with knowledge at different stages of problems’ solving. The paper provides a theoretical overview of previous studies and the current state of the problem-based learning area and work with knowledge. We have studied knowledge management tools based on several classifications and selected the most suitable ones to support problem-based learning. The distribution of work tools with knowledge on the stages of the problemsolving process is proposed. We have considered the use of computer tools and options for creating an informational educational environment for implementing the proposed ideas of problem-based learning and working with knowledge. A more detailed consideration is given to the implementation

  17. A decision-support tool to inform Australian strategies for preventing suicide and suicidal behaviour

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrew Page


    Full Text Available Dynamic simulation modelling is increasingly being recognised as a valuable decision-support tool to help guide investments and actions to address complex public health issues such as suicide. In particular, participatory system dynamics (SD modelling provides a useful tool for asking high-level ‘what if’ questions, and testing the likely impacts of different combinations of policies and interventions at an aggregate level before they are implemented in the real world. We developed an SD model for suicide prevention in Australia, and investigated the hypothesised impacts over the next 10 years (2015–2025 of a combination of current intervention strategies proposed for population interventions in Australia: 1 general practitioner (GP training, 2 coordinated aftercare in those who have attempted suicide, 3 school-based mental health literacy programs, 4 brief-contact interventions in hospital settings, and 5 psychosocial treatment approaches. Findings suggest that the largest reductions in suicide were associated with GP training (6% and coordinated aftercare approaches (4%, with total reductions of 12% for all interventions combined. This paper highlights the value of dynamic modelling methods for managing complexity and uncertainty, and demonstrates their potential use as a decision-support tool for policy makers and program planners for community suicide prevention actions.

  18. Methods and tools to support real time risk-based flood forecasting - a UK pilot application

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brown Emma


    Full Text Available Flood managers have traditionally used probabilistic models to assess potential flood risk for strategic planning and non-operational applications. Computational restrictions on data volumes and simulation times have meant that information on the risk of flooding has not been available for operational flood forecasting purposes. In practice, however, the operational flood manager has probabilistic questions to answer, which are not completely supported by the outputs of traditional, deterministic flood forecasting systems. In a collaborative approach, HR Wallingford and Deltares have developed methods, tools and techniques to extend existing flood forecasting systems with elements of strategic flood risk analysis, including probabilistic failure analysis, two dimensional flood spreading simulation and the analysis of flood impacts and consequences. This paper presents the results of the application of these new operational flood risk management tools to a pilot catchment in the UK. It discusses the problems of performing probabilistic flood risk assessment in real time and how these have been addressed in this study. It also describes the challenges of the communication of risk to operational flood managers and to the general public, and how these new methods and tools can provide risk-based supporting evidence to assist with this process.

  19. Using data visualization tools to support degradation assessment in nuclear piping

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jyrkama, M.I.; Pandey, M.D.


    Nuclear utilities collect a vast amount of in-service inspection data as part of periodic inspection plans and the detailed assessment and monitoring of various degradation mechanisms, such as fretting, corrosion, and creep. In many cases, the focus is primarily on ensuring that the observed minimum or maximum values are within the acceptable regulatory limits, while the rest of the (often costly) surveillance data remains unused and unanalyzed. The objective of this study is to illustrate how data visualization tools can be used effectively to analyze and consider all of the in-service inspection data, and hence provide valuable support for the degradation assessment in nuclear piping. The 2D and 3D visualization tools discussed in this paper were developed mainly in the context of flow accelerated corrosion (FAC) assessment in feeder piping, where the complex pipe geometries and flow conditions have a significant impact on the ultrasonic (UT) wall thickness measurements. The visualization of eddy current inspection results from the assessment of pitting corrosion of steam generator tubing will also be discussed briefly. The visualization tools provide a more comprehensive view of the degree and extent of degradation, and hence directly support the planning of future inspection of critical components by identifying key locations and areas for detailed monitoring. The results furthermore increase the confidence and reliability of fitness-for-service (FFS) assessments and life cycle management (LCM) planning decisions with respect to component repair or replacement. (author)

  20. The development of a standardised diet history tool to support the diagnosis of food allergy. (United States)

    Skypala, Isabel J; Venter, Carina; Meyer, Rosan; deJong, Nicolette W; Fox, Adam T; Groetch, Marion; Oude Elberink, J N; Sprikkelman, Aline; Diamandi, Louiza; Vlieg-Boerstra, Berber J


    The disparity between reported and diagnosed food allergy makes robust diagnosis imperative. The allergy-focussed history is an important starting point, but published literature on its efficacy is sparse. Using a structured approach to connect symptoms, suspected foods and dietary intake, a multi-disciplinary task force of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology developed paediatric and adult diet history tools. Both tools are divided into stages using traffic light labelling (red, amber and green). The red stage requires the practitioner to gather relevant information on symptoms, atopic history, food triggers, foods eaten and nutritional issues. The amber stage facilitates interpretation of the responses to the red-stage questions, thus enabling the practitioner to prepare to move forward. The final green stage provides a summary template and test algorithm to support continuation down the diagnostic pathway. These tools will provide a standardised, practical approach to support food allergy diagnosis, ensuring that all relevant information is captured and interpreted in a robust manner. Future work is required to validate their use in diverse age groups, disease entities and in different countries, in order to account for differences in health care systems, food availability and dietary norms.

  1. A Contribution to Guide the Use of Support Tools for Technology Roadmapping: a Case Study in the Clothing Industry


    Cindy Johanna Ibarra González; André Ogliari; Aline França de Abreu


    This article presents guidelines regarding the use of tools to support technology roadmapping based on a case study of an exploratory and descriptive nature in a small company in the clothing sector. After introducing a systematic approach to technology roadmapping with their support tools, an empirical analysis is then presented of the application of the tools of the market layer – a questionnaire for consultation with the consumers and bibliographical research – and the business layer – SWO...

  2. CDPP supporting tools to Solar Orbiter and Parker Solar Probe data exploitation (United States)

    Genot, V. N.; Cecconi, B.; Dufourg, N.; Gangloff, M.; André, N.; Bouchemit, M.; Jacquey, C.; Pitout, F.; Rouillard, A.; Nathanaël, J.; Lavraud, B.; Durand, J.; Tao, C.; Buchlin, E.; Witasse, O. G.


    In recent years the French Centre de Données de la Physique des Plasmas (CDPP) has extended its data analysis capability by designing a number of new tools. In the solar and heliospheric contexts, and in direct support to the forthcoming solar ESA and NASA missions in these fields, these tools comprise of the Propagation Tool which helps linking solar perturbations observed both in remote and in-situ data; this is achieved through direct connection to the companion solar database MEDOC and the CDPP AMDA database. More recently, in the frame of Europlanet 2020 RI, a 1D MHD solar wind propagation code (Tao et al., 2005) has been interfaced to provide real time solar wind monitors at cruising probes and planetary environments using ACE real time data as inputs (Heliopropa service). Finally, simulations, models and data may be combined and visualized in a 3D context with 3DView. This presentation will overview the various functionalities of these tools and provide examples, in particular a 'CME tracking' case recently published (Witasse et al., 2017). Europlanet 2020 RI has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 654208.

  3. Technologies as Support Tools for Persons with Autistic Spectrum Disorder: A Systematic Review (United States)

    Aresti-Bartolome, Nuria; Garcia-Zapirain, Begonya


    This study analyzes the technologies most widely used to work on areas affected by the Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Technologies can focus on the strengths and weaknesses of this disorder as they make it possible to create controlled environments, reducing the anxiety produced by real social situations. Extensive research has proven the efficiency of technologies as support tools for therapy and their acceptation by ASD sufferers and the people who are with them on a daily basis. This article is organized by the types of systems developed: virtual reality applications, telehealth systems, social robots and dedicated applications, all of which are classified by the areas they center on: communication, social learning and imitation skills and other ASD-associated conditions. 40.5% of the research conducted is found to be focused on communication as opposed to 37.8% focused on learning and social imitation skills and 21.6% which underlines problems associated with this disorder. Although most of the studies reveal how useful these tools are in therapy, they are generic tools for ASD sufferers in general, which means there is a lack of personalised tools to meet each person’s needs. PMID:25093654

  4. Technologies as Support Tools for Persons with Autistic Spectrum Disorder: A Systematic Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nuria Aresti-Bartolome


    Full Text Available This study analyzes the technologies most widely used to work on areas affected by the Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD. Technologies can focus on the strengths and weaknesses of this disorder as they make it possible to create controlled environments, reducing the anxiety produced by real social situations. Extensive research has proven the efficiency of technologies as support tools for therapy and their acceptation by ASD sufferers and the people who are with them on a daily basis. This article is organized by the types of systems developed: virtual reality applications, telehealth systems, social robots and dedicated applications, all of which are classified by the areas they center on: communication, social learning and imitation skills and other ASD-associated conditions. 40.5% of the research conducted is found to be focused on communication as opposed to 37.8% focused on learning and social imitation skills and 21.6% which underlines problems associated with this disorder. Although most of the studies reveal how useful these tools are in therapy, they are generic tools for ASD sufferers in general, which means there is a lack of personalised tools to meet each person’s needs.

  5. Clinical Decision Support Tools for Selecting Interventions for Patients with Disabling Musculoskeletal Disorders

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gross, Douglas P; Armijo-Olivo, Susan; Shaw, William S


    Purpose We aimed to identify and inventory clinical decision support (CDS) tools for helping front-line staff select interventions for patients with musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders. Methods We used Arksey and O'Malley's scoping review framework which progresses through five stages: (1) identifying...... multiple disciplines, we searched health care, computing science and business databases. Results Our search resulted in 4605 manuscripts. Titles and abstracts were screened for relevance. The reliability of the screening process was high with an average percentage of agreement of 92.3 %. Of the located...... rapidly advancing computer technologies, are under development and of potential interest to health care providers, case management organizations and funders of care. Based on the results of this scoping review, we conclude that these tools, models and systems should be subjected to further validation...

  6. Qualitative: Python Tool for MT Quality Estimation Supporting Server Mode and Hybrid MT

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Avramidis Eleftherios


    Full Text Available We are presenting the development contributions of the last two years to our Python opensource Quality Estimation tool, a tool that can function in both experiment-mode and online web-service mode. The latest version provides a new MT interface, which communicates with SMT and rule-based translation engines and supports on-the-fly sentence selection. Additionally, we present an improved Machine Learning interface allowing more efficient communication with several state-of-the-art toolkits. Additions also include a more informative training process, a Python re-implementation of QuEst baseline features, a new LM toolkit integration, an additional PCFG parser and alignments of syntactic nodes.

  7. Final Report: Evaluation of Tools and Metrics to Support Employer Selection of Health Plans. (United States)

    Mattke, Soeren; Van Busum, Kristin R; Martsolf, Grant R


    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) places strong emphasis on quality of care as a means to improve outcomes for Americans and promote the financial sustainability of our health care system. Included in the ACA are new disclosure requirements that require health plans to provide a summary of benefits and coverage that accurately describes the benefits under the plan or coverage. These requirements are intended to support employers' procurement of high-value health coverage for their employees. This study attempts to help employers understand the structural differences between health plans and the performance dimensions along which plans can differ, as well as to educate employers about available tools that can be used to evaluate plan options. The study also discusses the extent to which these and other tools or resources are used by employers to inform choices between health plans.

  8. An Evaluation of an Assignment Management and Monitoring Tool to Support Student Assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mee Chin Wee


    Full Text Available Information and communication technology (ICT has influenced many fields and revolutionized the way they function. One of the major fields is education. In institutions of higher education, lecturers rely on ICT tools such as the Internet, email, word processing and presentation software for assistance in teaching and learning. Automated assignment management is another important technique that is used in managing student assessments. However, existing systems have limited features to support assignment supervision. The aim of this paper is to present a prototype called Lightweight Assignment Management Prototype (LAMP and its evaluation. This prototype is designed to assist in the assignment monitoring process, which is not supported by existing systems. The paper starts with a description of the assignment supervision process at the higher education level. Then the tools available in supporting assignment management are reviewed. This is followed by a proposed scenario for assignment management and monitoring. The methodology used to test the prototype is then presented. A few user interfaces of the prototype’s main modules, from both the lecturers’ and the students’ perspectives, are described. Finally, the results of the evaluation are discussed.

  9. The Integrated Medical Model: A Risk Assessment and Decision Support Tool for Space Flight Medical Systems (United States)

    Kerstman, Eric; Minard, Charles; Saile, Lynn; deCarvalho, Mary Freire; Myers, Jerry; Walton, Marlei; Butler, Douglas; Iyengar, Sriram; Johnson-Throop, Kathy; Baumann, David


    The Integrated Medical Model (IMM) is a decision support tool that is useful to mission planners and medical system designers in assessing risks and designing medical systems for space flight missions. The IMM provides an evidence based approach for optimizing medical resources and minimizing risks within space flight operational constraints. The mathematical relationships among mission and crew profiles, medical condition incidence data, in-flight medical resources, potential crew functional impairments, and clinical end-states are established to determine probable mission outcomes. Stochastic computational methods are used to forecast probability distributions of crew health and medical resource utilization, as well as estimates of medical evacuation and loss of crew life. The IMM has been used in support of the International Space Station (ISS) medical kit redesign, the medical component of the ISS Probabilistic Risk Assessment, and the development of the Constellation Medical Conditions List. The IMM also will be used to refine medical requirements for the Constellation program. The IMM outputs for ISS and Constellation design reference missions will be presented to demonstrate the potential of the IMM in assessing risks, planning missions, and designing medical systems. The implementation of the IMM verification and validation plan will be reviewed. Additional planned capabilities of the IMM, including optimization techniques and the inclusion of a mission timeline, will be discussed. Given the space flight constraints of mass, volume, and crew medical training, the IMM is a valuable risk assessment and decision support tool for medical system design and mission planning.

  10. Understanding the stakeholders' intention to use economic decision-support tools: A cross-sectional study with the tobacco return on investment tool. (United States)

    Cheung, Kei Long; Evers, Silvia M A A; Hiligsmann, Mickaël; Vokó, Zoltán; Pokhrel, Subhash; Jones, Teresa; Muñoz, Celia; Wolfenstetter, Silke B; Józwiak-Hagymásy, Judit; de Vries, Hein


    Despite an increased number of economic evaluations of tobacco control interventions, the uptake by stakeholders continues to be limited. Understanding the underlying mechanism in adopting such economic decision-support tools by stakeholders is therefore important. By applying the I-Change Model, this study aims to identify which factors determine potential uptake of an economic decision-support tool, i.e., the Return on Investment tool. Stakeholders (decision-makers, purchasers of services/pharma products, professionals/service providers, evidence generators and advocates of health promotion) were interviewed in five countries, using an I-Change based questionnaire. MANOVA's were conducted to assess differences between intenders and non-intenders regarding beliefs. A multiple regression analysis was conducted to identify the main explanatory variables of intention to use an economic decision-support tool. Ninety-three stakeholders participated. Significant differences in beliefs were found between non-intenders and intenders: risk perception, attitude, social support, and self-efficacy towards using the tool. Regression showed that demographics, pre-motivational, and motivational factors explained 69% of the variation in intention. This study is the first to provide a theoretical framework to understand differences in beliefs between stakeholders who do or do not intend to use economic decision-support tools, and empirically corroborating the framework. This contributes to our understanding of the facilitators and barriers to the uptake of these studies. Copyright © 2015 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  11. Educational tool for modeling and simulation of a closed regenerative life support system (United States)

    Arai, Tatsuya; Fanchiang, Christine; Aoki, Hirofumi; Newman, Dava J.

    For long term missions on the moon and Mars, regenerative life support systems emerge as a promising key technology for sustaining successful explorations with reduced re-supply logistics and cost. The purpose of this study was to create a simple model of a regenerative life support system which allows preliminary investigation of system responses. A simplified regenerative life support system was made with MATLAB Simulink ™. Mass flows in the system were simplified to carbon, water, oxygen and carbon dioxide. The subsystems included crew members, animals, a plant module, and a waste processor, which exchanged mass into and out of mass reservoirs. Preliminary numerical simulations were carried out to observe system responses. The simplified life support system model allowed preliminary investigation of the system response to perturbations such as increased or decreased number of crew members. The model is simple and flexible enough to add new components, and also possible to numerically predict non-linear subsystem functions and responses. Future work includes practical issues such as energy efficiency, air leakage, nutrition, and plant growth modeling. The model functions as an effective teaching tool about how a regenerative advanced life support system works.

  12. Aggregation Tool to Create Curated Data albums to Support Disaster Recovery and Response (United States)

    Ramachandran, R.; Kulkarni, A.; Maskey, M.; Li, X.; Flynn, S.


    Economic losses due to natural hazards are estimated to be around 6-10 billion dollars annually for the U.S. and this number keeps increasing every year. This increase has been attributed to population growth and migration to more hazard prone locations. As this trend continues, in concert with shifts in weather patterns caused by climate change, it is anticipated that losses associated with natural disasters will keep growing substantially. One of challenges disaster response and recovery analysts face is to quickly find, access and utilize a vast variety of relevant geospatial data collected by different federal agencies. More often analysts may be familiar with limited, but specific datasets and are often unaware of or unfamiliar with a large quantity of other useful resources. Finding airborne or satellite data useful to a natural disaster event often requires a time consuming search through web pages and data archives. The search process for the analyst could be made much more efficient and productive if a tool could go beyond a typical search engine and provide not just links to web sites but actual links to specific data relevant to the natural disaster, parse unstructured reports for useful information nuggets, as well as gather other related reports, summaries, news stories, and images. This presentation will describe a semantic aggregation tool developed to address similar problem for Earth Science researchers. This tool provides automated curation, and creates "Data Albums" to support case studies. The generated "Data Albums" are compiled collections of information related to a specific science topic or event, containing links to relevant data files (granules) from different instruments; tools and services for visualization and analysis; information about the event contained in news reports, and images or videos to supplement research analysis. An ontology-based relevancy-ranking algorithm drives the curation of relevant data sets for a given event. This


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vadim Alexandrovich Lomazov


    Full Text Available The purpose of work consists in development of methods of information and algorithmic support of decision-making at an assessment and personnel selection taking into account motivation. The methods of a multicriteria assessment of alternatives and expert technologies are used as researching tools. The main result of the presented work is creation of the mathematical model that allows estimating a motivational orientation in the actions of the staff and job applicants. The scope of results of the work is the sphere of theoretical and applied questions of human resource management of the organizations.DOI:

  14. Predicting Human Error in Air Traffic Control Decision Support Tools and Free Flight Concepts (United States)

    Mogford, Richard; Kopardekar, Parimal


    The document is a set of briefing slides summarizing the work the Advanced Air Transportation Technologies (AATT) Project is doing on predicting air traffic controller and airline pilot human error when using new decision support software tools and when involved in testing new air traffic control concepts. Previous work in this area is reviewed as well as research being done jointly with the FAA. Plans for error prediction work in the AATT Project are discussed. The audience is human factors researchers and aviation psychologists from government and industry.

  15. Longitudinal adoption rates of complex decision support tools in primary care. (United States)

    McCullagh, Lauren; Mann, Devin; Rosen, Lisa; Kannry, Joseph; McGinn, Thomas


    Translating research findings into practice promises to standardise care. Translation includes the integration of evidence-based guidelines at the point of care, discerning the best methods to disseminate research findings and models to sustain the implementation of best practices.By applying usability testing to clinical decision support(CDS) design, overall adoption rates of 60% can be realised.What has not been examined is how long adoption rates are sustained and the characteristics associated with long-term use. We conducted secondary analysis to decipher the factors impacting sustained use of CD Stools. This study was a secondary data analysis from a clinical trial conducted at an academic institution in New York City. Study data was identified patients electronic health records (EHR). The trial was to test the implementation of an integrated clinical prediction rule(iCPR) into the EHR. The primary outcome variable was iCPR tool acceptance of the tool. iCPR tool completion and iCPR smartest completion were additional outcome variables of interest. The secondary aim was to examine user characteristics associated with iCPR tool use in later time periods. Characteristics of interest included age, resident year, use of electronic health records (yes/no) and use of best practice alerts (BPA) (yes/no). Generalised linear mixed models (GLiMM) were used to compare iCPR use over time for each outcome of interest: namely, iCPR acceptance, iCPR completion and iCPR smartset completion.GLiMM was also used to examine resident characteristics associated with iCPR tool use in later time periods; specifically, intermediate and long-term (ie, 90+days). The tool was accepted, on average, 82.18% in the first 90 days (short-term period). The use decreases to 56.07% and 45.61% in intermediate and long-term time periods, respectively. There was a significant association between iCPR tool completion and time periods(pgestalt that are influencing adoption rates. Further analysis of

  16. An investigation of the validity of the Work Assessment Triage Tool clinical decision support tool for selecting optimal rehabilitation interventions for workers with musculoskeletal injuries. (United States)

    Qin, Ziling; Armijo-Olivo, Susan; Woodhouse, Linda J; Gross, Douglas P


    To evaluate the concurrent validity of a clinical decision support tool (Work Assessment Triage Tool (WATT)) developed to select rehabilitation treatments for injured workers with musculoskeletal conditions. Methodological study with cross-sectional and prospective components. Data were obtained from the Workers' Compensation Board of Alberta rehabilitation facility in Edmonton, Canada. A total of 432 workers' compensation claimants evaluated between November 2011 and June 2012. Percentage agreement between the Work Assessment Triage Tool and clinician recommendations was used to determine concurrent validity. In claimants returning to work, frequencies of matching were calculated and compared between clinician and Work Assessment Triage Tool recommendations and the actual programs undertaken by claimants. The frequency of each intervention recommended by clinicians, Work Assessment Triage Tool, and case managers were also calculated and compared. Percentage agreement between clinician and Work Assessment Triage Tool recommendations was poor (19%) to moderate (46%) and Kappa = 0.37 (95% CI -0.02, 0.76). The Work Assessment Triage Tool did not improve upon clinician recommendations as only 14 out of 31 claimants returning to work had programs that contradicted clinician recommendations, but were consistent with Work Assessment Triage Tool recommendations. Clinicians and case managers were inclined to recommend functional restoration, physical therapy, or no rehabilitation while the Work Assessment Triage Tool recommended additional evidence-based interventions, such as workplace-based interventions. Our findings do not provide evidence of concurrent validity for the Work Assessment Triage Tool compared with clinician recommendations. Based on these results, we cannot recommend further implementation of the Work Assessment Triage Tool. However, the Work Assessment Triage Tool appeared more likely than clinicians to recommend interventions supported by evidence

  17. Investigating the Heart Pump Implant Decision Process: Opportunities for Decision Support Tools to Help (United States)

    Yang, Qian; Zimmerman, John; Steinfeld, Aaron; Carey, Lisa; Antaki, James F.


    Clinical decision support tools (DSTs) are computational systems that aid healthcare decision-making. While effective in labs, almost all these systems failed when they moved into clinical practice. Healthcare researchers speculated it is most likely due to a lack of user-centered HCI considerations in the design of these systems. This paper describes a field study investigating how clinicians make a heart pump implant decision with a focus on how to best integrate an intelligent DST into their work process. Our findings reveal a lack of perceived need for and trust of machine intelligence, as well as many barriers to computer use at the point of clinical decision-making. These findings suggest an alternative perspective to the traditional use models, in which clinicians engage with DSTs at the point of making a decision. We identify situations across patients’ healthcare trajectories when decision supports would help, and we discuss new forms it might take in these situations. PMID:27833397

  18. Managing Sustainability with the Support of Business Intelligence Methods and Tools (United States)

    Petrini, Maira; Pozzebon, Marlei

    In this paper we explore the role of business intelligence (BI) in helping to support the management of sustainability in contemporary firms. The concepts of sustainability and corporate social responsibility (CSR) are among the most important themes to have emerged in the last decade at the global level. We suggest that BI methods and tools have an important but not yet well studied role to play in helping organizations implement and monitor sustainable and socially responsible business practices. Using grounded theory, the main contribution of our study is to propose a conceptual model that seeks to support the process of definition and monitoring of socio-environmental indicators and the relationship between their management and business strategy.

  19. Nongeneric tool support for model-driven product development; Werkzeugunterstuetzung fuer die modellbasierte Produktentwicklung. Maschinenlesbare Spezifikationen selbst erstellen

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bock, C. [Technische Univ. Kaiserslautern (Germany). Lehrstuhl fuer Produktionsautomatisierung; Zuehlke, D. [Technische Univ. Kaiserslautern (Germany). Lehrstuhl fuer Produktionsautomatisierung; Deutsches Forschungszentrum fuer Kuenstliche Intelligenz (DFKI), Kaiserslautern (DE). Zentrum fuer Mensch-Maschine-Interaktion (ZMMI)


    A well-defined specification process is a central success factor in human-machine-interface development. Consequently in interdisciplinary development teams specification documents are an important communication instrument. In order to replace todays typically paper-based specification and to leverage the benefits of their electronic equivalents developers demand comprehensive and applicable computer-based tool kits. Manufacturers' increasing awareness of appropriate tool support causes alternative approaches for tool kit creation to emerge. Therefore this article introduces meta-modelling as a promising attempt to create nongeneric tool support with justifiable effort. This enables manufacturers to take advantage of electronic specifications in product development processes.

  20. Advancing institutional efforts to support research mentorship: a conceptual framework and self-assessment tool. (United States)

    Keyser, Donna J; Lakoski, Joan M; Lara-Cinisomo, Sandraluz; Schultz, Dana J; Williams, Valerie L; Zellers, Darlene F; Pincus, Harold Alan


    The purpose of this article is to assist institutions in advancing their efforts to support research mentorship. The authors begin by describing how institutions can shape the key domains of research mentorship: (1) the criteria for selecting mentors, (2) incentives for motivating faculty to serve effectively as mentors, (3) factors that facilitate the mentor-mentee relationship, (4) factors that strengthen a mentee's ability to conduct research responsibly, and (5) factors that contribute to the professional development of both mentees and mentors. On the basis of a conceptual analysis of these domains as currently documented in the literature, as well as their collective experience examining mentoring programs at a range of academic medicine institutions and departments, the authors provide a framework that leaders of institutions and/or departments can adapt for use as a tool to document and monitor policies for guiding the mentorship process, the programs/activities through which these policies are implemented, and the structures that are responsible for maintaining policies and implementing programs. The authors provide an example of how one hypothetical institution might use the self-assessment tool to track its policies, programs, and structures across the key domains of research mentorship and, on the basis of this information, identify a range of potential actions to strengthen its research mentoring efforts. The authors conclude with a brief discussion of the limitations of the self-assessment tool, the potential drawbacks and benefits of the overall approach, and proposed next steps for research in this area.

  1. A Decision Support Tool for Building Integrated Renewable Energy Microgrids Connected to a Smart Grid

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Damilola A. Asaleye


    Full Text Available The objective of this study was to create a tool that will enable renewable energy microgrid (REμG facility users to make informed decisions on the utilization of electrical power output from a building integrated REμG connected to a smart grid. A decision support tool for renewable energy microgrids (DSTREM capable of predicting photovoltaic array and wind turbine power outputs was developed. The tool simulated users’ daily electricity consumption costs, avoided CO2 emissions and incurred monetary income relative to the usage of the building integrated REμG connected to the national electricity smart grid. DSTREM forecasted climate variables, which were used to predict REμG power output over a period of seven days. Control logic was used to prioritize supply of electricity to consumers from the renewable energy sources and the national smart grid. Across the evaluated REμG electricity supply options and during working days, electricity exported by the REμG to the national smart grid ranged from 0% to 61% of total daily generation. The results demonstrated that both monetary saving and CO2 offsets can be substantially improved through the application of DSTREM to a REμG connected to a building.

  2. For Third Enrollment Period, Marketplaces Expand Decision Support Tools To Assist Consumers. (United States)

    Wong, Charlene A; Polsky, Daniel E; Jones, Arthur T; Weiner, Janet; Town, Robert J; Baker, Tom


    The design of the Affordable Care Act's online health insurance Marketplaces can improve how consumers make complex health plan choices. We examined the choice environment on the state-based Marketplaces and in the third open enrollment period. Compared to previous enrollment periods, we found greater adoption of some decision support tools, such as total cost estimators and integrated provider lookups. Total cost estimators differed in how they generated estimates: In some Marketplaces, consumers categorized their own utilization, while in others, consumers answered detailed questions and were assigned a utilization profile. The tools available before creating an account (in the window-shopping period) and afterward (in the real-shopping period) differed in several Marketplaces. For example, five Marketplaces provided total cost estimators to window shoppers, but only two provided them to real shoppers. Further research is needed on the impact of different choice environments and on which tools are most effective in helping consumers pick optimal plans. Project HOPE—The People-to-People Health Foundation, Inc.

  3. Sustainable Use of Pesticide Applications in Citrus: A Support Tool for Volume Rate Adjustment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cruz Garcerá


    Full Text Available Rational application of pesticides by properly adjusting the amount of product to the actual needs and specific conditions for application is a key factor for sustainable plant protection. However, current plant protection product (PPP labels registered for citrus in EU are usually expressed as concentration (%; rate/hl and/or as the maximum dose of product per unit of ground surface, without taking into account those conditions. In this work, the fundamentals of a support tool, called CitrusVol, developed to recommend mix volume rates in PPP applications in citrus orchards using airblast sprayers, are presented. This tool takes into consideration crop characteristics (geometry, leaf area density, pests, and product and application efficiency, and it is based on scientific data obtained previously regarding the minimum deposit required to achieve maximum efficacy, efficiency of airblast sprayers in citrus orchards, and characterization of the crop. The use of this tool in several commercial orchards allowed a reduction of the volume rate and the PPPs used in comparison with the commonly used by farmers of between 11% and 74%, with an average of 31%, without affecting the efficacy. CitrusVol is freely available on a website and in an app for smartphones.

  4. "Think aloud" and "Near live" usability testing of two complex clinical decision support tools. (United States)

    Richardson, Safiya; Mishuris, Rebecca; O'Connell, Alexander; Feldstein, David; Hess, Rachel; Smith, Paul; McCullagh, Lauren; McGinn, Thomas; Mann, Devin


    Low provider adoption continues to be a significant barrier to realizing the potential of clinical decision support. "Think Aloud" and "Near Live" usability testing were conducted on two clinical decision support tools. Each was composed of an alert, a clinical prediction rule which estimated risk of either group A Streptococcus pharyngitis or pneumonia and an automatic order set based on risk. The objective of this study was to further understanding of the facilitators of usability and to evaluate the types of additional information gained from proceeding to "Near Live" testing after completing "Think Aloud". This was a qualitative observational study conducted at a large academic health care system with 12 primary care providers. During "Think Aloud" testing, participants were provided with written clinical scenarios and asked to verbalize their thought process while interacting with the tool. During "Near Live" testing participants interacted with a mock patient. Morae usability software was used to record full screen capture and audio during every session. Participant comments were placed into coding categories and analyzed for generalizable themes. Themes were compared across usability methods. "Think Aloud" and "Near Live" usability testing generated similar themes under the coding categories visibility, workflow, content, understand-ability and navigation. However, they generated significantly different themes under the coding categories usability, practical usefulness and medical usefulness. During both types of testing participants found the tool easier to use when important text was distinct in its appearance, alerts were passive and appropriately timed, content was up to date, language was clear and simple, and each component of the tool included obvious indicators of next steps. Participant comments reflected higher expectations for usability and usefulness during "Near Live" testing. For example, visit aids, such as automatically generated order sets

  5. A review of decision support, risk communication and patient information tools for thrombolytic treatment in acute stroke: lessons for tool developers. (United States)

    Flynn, Darren; Ford, Gary A; Stobbart, Lynne; Rodgers, Helen; Murtagh, Madeleine J; Thomson, Richard G


    Tools to support clinical or patient decision-making in the treatment/management of a health condition are used in a range of clinical settings for numerous preference-sensitive healthcare decisions. Their impact in clinical practice is largely dependent on their quality across a range of domains. We critically analysed currently available tools to support decision making or patient understanding in the treatment of acute ischaemic stroke with intravenous thrombolysis, as an exemplar to provide clinicians/researchers with practical guidance on development, evaluation and implementation of such tools for other preference-sensitive treatment options/decisions in different clinical contexts. Tools were identified from bibliographic databases, Internet searches and a survey of UK and North American stroke networks. Two reviewers critically analysed tools to establish: information on benefits/risks of thrombolysis included in tools, and the methods used to convey probabilistic information (verbal descriptors, numerical and graphical); adherence to guidance on presenting outcome probabilities (IPDASi probabilities items) and information content (Picker Institute Checklist); readability (Fog Index); and the extent that tools had comprehensive development processes. Nine tools of 26 identified included information on a full range of benefits/risks of thrombolysis. Verbal descriptors, frequencies and percentages were used to convey probabilistic information in 20, 19 and 18 tools respectively, whilst nine used graphical methods. Shortcomings in presentation of outcome probabilities (e.g. omitting outcomes without treatment) were identified. Patient information tools had an aggregate median Fog index score of 10. None of the tools had comprehensive development processes. Tools to support decision making or patient understanding in the treatment of acute stroke with thrombolysis have been sub-optimally developed. Development of tools should utilise mixed methods and

  6. Communications tools in research projects to support Semi and Non Structured Information

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Astrid Jaime


    Full Text Available Innovation and thus the production of knowledge becomes a factor of competitiveness. In this context quality management could be complemented by knowledge management to aim the improvement of knowledge production by research activities process. To this end, after describing knowledge and informa-tion typologies in engineering activities, a knowledge man-agement system is proposed. The goal is to support: (1 Semi-Structured Information (e.g. reports, etc. thanks to the BASIC-Lab tool functions, which are based on attributing points of view and annotations to documents and document zones, and (2 Non-Structured Information (such as mail, dialogues, etc., thanks to MICA-Graph approach which intends to support ex-change of technical messages that concerns common resolution of research problems within project teams and to capitalise relevant knowledge. For the both approaches, prototype tools have been developed and evaluated, primarily to feed back with manufacturing knowledge in the EADS industrial envi-ronment.

  7. Which species? A decision-support tool to guide plant selection in stormwater biofilters (United States)

    Payne, Emily G. I.; Pham, Tracey; Deletic, Ana; Hatt, Belinda E.; Cook, Perran L. M.; Fletcher, Tim D.


    Plant species are diverse in form, function and environmental response. This provides enormous potential for designing nature-based stormwater treatment technologies, such as biofiltration systems. However, species can vary dramatically in their pollutant-removal performance, particularly for nitrogen removal. Currently, there is a lack of information on how to efficiently select from the vast palette of species. This study aimed to identify plant traits beneficial to performance and create a decision-support tool to screen species for further testing. A laboratory experiment using 220 biofilter columns paired plant morphological characteristics with nitrogen removal and water loss for 20 Australian native species and two lawn grasses. Testing was undertaken during wet and dry conditions, for two biofilter designs (saturated zone and free-draining). An extensive root system and high total biomass were critical to the effective removal of total nitrogen (TN) and nitrate (NO3-), driven by high nitrogen assimilation. The same characteristics were key to performance under dry conditions, and were associated with high water use for Australian native plants; linking assimilation and transpiration. The decision-support tool uses these scientific relationships and readily-available information to identify the morphology, natural distribution and stress tolerances likely to be good predictors of plant nitrogen and water uptake.

  8. A tool for urban soundscape evaluation applying Support Vector Machines for developing a soundscape classification model. (United States)

    Torija, Antonio J; Ruiz, Diego P; Ramos-Ridao, Angel F


    To ensure appropriate soundscape management in urban environments, the urban-planning authorities need a range of tools that enable such a task to be performed. An essential step during the management of urban areas from a sound standpoint should be the evaluation of the soundscape in such an area. In this sense, it has been widely acknowledged that a subjective and acoustical categorization of a soundscape is the first step to evaluate it, providing a basis for designing or adapting it to match people's expectations as well. In this sense, this work proposes a model for automatic classification of urban soundscapes. This model is intended for the automatic classification of urban soundscapes based on underlying acoustical and perceptual criteria. Thus, this classification model is proposed to be used as a tool for a comprehensive urban soundscape evaluation. Because of the great complexity associated with the problem, two machine learning techniques, Support Vector Machines (SVM) and Support Vector Machines trained with Sequential Minimal Optimization (SMO), are implemented in developing model classification. The results indicate that the SMO model outperforms the SVM model in the specific task of soundscape classification. With the implementation of the SMO algorithm, the classification model achieves an outstanding performance (91.3% of instances correctly classified). © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Tools, Services & Support of NASA Salinity Mission Data Archival Distribution through PO.DAAC (United States)

    Tsontos, V. M.; Vazquez, J.


    The Physical Oceanography Distributed Active Center (PO.DAAC) serves as the designated NASA repository and distribution node for all Aquarius/SAC-D and SMAP sea surface salinity (SSS) mission data products in close collaboration with the projects. In addition to these official mission products, that by December 2017 will include the Aquarius V5.0 end-of-mission data, PO.DAAC archives and distributes high-value, principal investigator led satellite SSS products, and also datasets from NASA's "Salinity Processes in the Upper Ocean Regional Study" (SPURS 1 & 2) field campaigns in the N. Atlantic salinity maximum and high rainfall E. Tropical Pacific regions. Here we report on the status of these data holdings at PO.DAAC, and the range of data services and access tools that are provided in support of NASA salinity. These include user support and data discovery services, OPeNDAP and THREDDS web services for subsetting/extraction, and visualization via LAS and SOTO. Emphasis is placed on newer capabilities, including PODAAC's consolidated web services (CWS) and advanced L2 subsetting tool called HiTIDE.

  10. Supporting strategic thinking of smallholder dairy farmers using a whole farm simulation tool. (United States)

    Le Gal, Pierre-Yves; Bernard, Jennifer; Moulin, Charles-Henri


    This article investigates how a one-to-one support process based on the use of a whole dairy farm simulation tool helps both farmers to reflect on their production strategies and researchers to better understand the farmers' contexts of action and decision. The support process consists of a minimum of four discussion sessions with the farmer: designing the Initial Scenario and formulating a diagnosis, building and simulating the Project Scenario corresponding to the objective targeted by the farmer, building and comparing alternative scenarios proposed both by the farmer and the researcher, and evaluating the process with the farmer. The approach was tested with six smallholder farmers in Brazil. It is illustrated with the example of one farmer who aimed to develop his milk production by more than doubling his herd size on the same cultivated area. Two other examples illustrate the diversity of issues addressed with this approach. The first estimates the sensitivity of economic results to price variations of milk and concentrates. The second compares two scenarios in terms of forage supply autonomy. The discussion assesses the outcomes of the approach for farmers in terms of response to their specific issues and of knowledge acquired. The research outputs are discussed in terms of the value and limits of using simulation tools within both participatory action research and advisory processes.

  11. Facilitating adaptive management in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed through the use of online decision support tools (United States)

    Mullinx, Cassandra; Phillips, Scott; Shenk, Kelly; Hearn, Paul; Devereux, Olivia


    The Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) is attempting to more strategically implement management actions to improve the health of the Nation’s largest estuary. In 2007 the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) CBP office began a joint effort to develop a suite of Internetaccessible decision-support tools and to help meet the needs of CBP partners to improve water quality and habitat conditions in the Chesapeake Bay and its watersheds. An adaptive management framework is being used to provide a structured decision process for information and individual tools needed to implement and assess practices to improve the condition of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem. The Chesapeake Online Adaptive Support Toolkit (COAST) is a collection of web-based analytical tools and information, organized in an adaptive management framework, intended to aid decisionmakers in protecting and restoring the integrity of the Bay ecosystem. The initial version of COAST is focused on water quality issues. During early and mid- 2008, initial ideas for COAST were shared and discussed with various CBP partners and other potential user groups. At these meetings, test cases were selected to help improve understanding of the types of information and analytical functionality that would be most useful for specific partners’ needs. These discussions added considerable knowledge about the nature of decisionmaking for Federal, State, local and nongovernmental partners. Version 1.0 of COAST, released in early winter of 2008, will be further reviewed to determine improvements needed to address implementation and assessment of water quality practices. Future versions of COAST may address other aspects of ecosystem restoration, including restoration of habitat and living resources and maintaining watershed health.

  12. Tool-supported Interactive Correction and Semantic Annotation of Narrative Clinical Reports. (United States)

    Zvára, Karel; Tomečková, Marie; Peleška, Jan; Svátek, Vojtěch; Zvárová, Jana


    Our main objective is to design a method of, and supporting software for, interactive correction and semantic annotation of narrative clinical reports, which would allow for their easier and less erroneous processing outside their original context: first, by physicians unfamiliar with the original language (and possibly also the source specialty), and second, by tools requiring structured information, such as decision-support systems. Our additional goal is to gain insights into the process of narrative report creation, including the errors and ambiguities arising therein, and also into the process of report annotation by clinical terms. Finally, we also aim to provide a dataset of ground-truth transformations (specific for Czech as the source language), set up by expert physicians, which can be reused in the future for subsequent analytical studies and for training automated transformation procedures. A three-phase preprocessing method has been developed to support secondary use of narrative clinical reports in electronic health record. Narrative clinical reports are narrative texts of healthcare documentation often stored in electronic health records. In the first phase a narrative clinical report is tokenized. In the second phase the tokenized clinical report is normalized. The normalized clinical report is easily readable for health professionals with the knowledge of the language used in the narrative clinical report. In the third phase the normalized clinical report is enriched with extracted structured information. The final result of the third phase is a semi-structured normalized clinical report where the extracted clinical terms are matched to codebook terms. Software tools for interactive correction, expansion and semantic annotation of narrative clinical reports has been developed and the three-phase preprocessing method validated in the cardiology area. The three-phase preprocessing method was validated on 49 anonymous Czech narrative clinical reports

  13. Conceptual air sparging decision tool in support of the development of an air sparging optimization decision tool

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)



    The enclosed document describes a conceptual decision tool (hereinafter, Tool) for determining applicability of and for optimizing air sparging systems. The Tool was developed by a multi-disciplinary team of internationally recognized experts in air sparging technology, lead by a group of project and task managers at Parsons Engineering Science, Inc. (Parsons ES). The team included Mr. Douglas Downey and Dr. Robert Hinchee of Parsons ES, Dr. Paul Johnson of Arizona State University, Dr. Richard Johnson of Oregon Graduate Institute, and Mr. Michael Marley of Envirogen, Inc. User Community Panel Review was coordinated by Dr. Robert Siegrist of Colorado School of Mines (also of Oak Ridge National Laboratory) and Dr. Thomas Brouns of Battelle/Pacific Northwest Laboratory. The Tool is intended to provide guidance to field practitioners and environmental managers for evaluating the applicability and optimization of air sparging as remedial action technique.

  14. Developing and validating a practical decision support tool (DST) for biomass selection on marginal land. (United States)

    Andersson-Sköld, Y; Bardos, P; Chalot, M; Bert, V; Crutu, G; Phanthavongsa, P; Delplanque, M; Track, T; Cundy, A B


    Marginal, often contaminated, sites exist in large areas across the world as a result of historic activities such as industry, transportation and mineral extraction. Remediation, or other improvements, of these sites is typically only considered for sites with high exploitation pressure and those posing the highest risks to human health or the environment. At the same time there is increasing competition for land resources for different needs such as biofuel production. Potentially some of this land requirement could be met by production of biomass on brownfield or other marginal land, thereby improving the land while applying the crop cultivation as part of an integrated management strategy. The design and decision making for such a strategy will be site specific. A decision support framework, the Rejuvenate DST (decision support tool) has been developed with the aim of supporting such site specific decision making. This tool is presented here, and has been tested by applying it to a number of case study sites. The consequent SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunities and threats) analysis is discussed and evaluated. The DST was found to be systematic, transparent, and applicable for diverse sites in France, Romania and Sweden, in addition to the sites to which it was applied through its development. The DST is regarded as especially useful if applied as a checklist in an iterative way throughout the decision process, from identifying potential crops to identifying knowledge gaps, working/non-working management strategies and potential risks. The DST also provides a structure promoting effective stakeholder engagement. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Policies and procedures: a tool to support the implementation of clinical guidelines? (United States)

    St-Pierre, Isabelle; Davies, Barbara; Edwards, Nancy; Griffin, Patricia


    To explore the use of policies and procedures as a tool to support the implementation of clinical guidelines and to determine the relationship between organizational support and stability with nurses' perception of policy change. Secondary analysis of qualitative and quantitative data collected in the post-intervention phase of the study entitled Evaluation of the Dissemination and Utilization of Best Practice Guidelines by Registered Nurses in Ontario. Eleven agencies across Ontario, Canada. Fifty nursing staff, 32 nurse administrators and 22 clinical resource nurses (90% response) participated in semi-structured interviews. A total of 316 randomly selected nursing staff from 23 participating units in 11 agencies completed questionnaires (65% response). Qualitative data from semi-structured interviews were examined to determine whether participants had modified their policies and procedures as part of the implementation of clinical guidelines. Using SPSS 11.0 for Windows, the authors assessed, using independent t-tests, the relationship between the perception of modification of policies and procedures and the perceptions of organizational support an organisational stability. While modifications to policies and procedures were made at each agency as part of the implementation of clinical guidelines, 27% of staff disagreed that modifications had been made. Nursing staff who agreed that changes had been made to policies and procedures were significantly more likely to report positive organizational support for clinical guideline implementation. Findings suggest the need to increase nursing staffs' awareness of changes to policies and procedures during clinical guideline implementation. Furthermore, results indicate that organizational support may have a positive influence on modifications to policies and procedures that are guided by research-based clinical guideline recommendations.

  16. A decision support tool for adaptive management of native prairie ecosystems (United States)

    Hunt, Victoria M.; Jacobi, Sarah; Gannon, Jill J.; Zorn, Jennifer E.; Moore, Clinton; Lonsdorf, Eric V.


    The Native Prairie Adaptive Management initiative is a decision support framework that provides cooperators with management-action recommendations to help them conserve native species and suppress invasive species on prairie lands. We developed a Web-based decision support tool (DST) for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U.S. Geological Survey initiative. The DST facilitates cross-organizational data sharing, performs analyses to improve conservation delivery, and requires no technical expertise to operate. Each year since 2012, the DST has used monitoring data to update ecological knowledge that it translates into situation-specific management-action recommendations (e.g., controlled burn or prescribed graze). The DST provides annual recommendations for more than 10,000 acres on 20 refuge complexes in four U.S. states. We describe how the DST promotes the long-term implementation of the program for which it was designed and may facilitate decision support and improve ecological outcomes of other conservation efforts.

  17. Proceedings of the Workshop on Methods & Tools for Computer Supported Collaborative Creativity Process: Linking creativity & informal learning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Retalis, Symeon; Sloep, Peter


    Retalis, S., & Sloep, P. B. (Eds.) (2009). Collection of 4 symposium papers at EC-TEL 2009. Proceedings of the Workshop on Methods & Tools for Computer Supported Collaborative Creativity Process: Linking creativity & informal learning. September, 30, 2009, Nice,

  18. A decision support tool for vehicle infrastructure integration : understanding information effects and advancing data fusion algorithms for traffic management applications. (United States)


    This research seeks to explore vehicle-to-vehicle information networks to understand the interplay : between the information communicated and traffic conditions on the network. A longer-term goal is to : develop a decision support tool for processing...

  19. Usability evaluation of a clinical decision support tool for osteoporosis disease management

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Newton David


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Osteoporosis affects over 200 million people worldwide at a high cost to healthcare systems. Although guidelines are available, patients are not receiving appropriate diagnostic testing or treatment. Findings from a systematic review of osteoporosis interventions and a series of focus groups were used to develop a functional multifaceted tool that can support clinical decision-making in osteoporosis disease management at the point of care. The objective of our study was to assess how well the prototype met functional goals and usability needs. Methods We conducted a usability study for each component of the tool--the Best Practice Recommendation Prompt (BestPROMPT, the Risk Assessment Questionnaire (RAQ, and the Customised Osteoporosis Education (COPE sheet--using the framework described by Kushniruk and Patel. All studies consisted of one-on-one sessions with a moderator using a standardised worksheet. Sessions were audio- and video-taped and transcribed verbatim. Data analysis consisted of a combination of qualitative and quantitative analyses. Results In study 1, physicians liked that the BestPROMPT can provide customised recommendations based on risk factors identified from the RAQ. Barriers included lack of time to use the tool, the need to alter clinic workflow to enable point-of-care use, and that the tool may disrupt the real reason for the visit. In study 2, patients completed the RAQ in a mean of 6 minutes, 35 seconds. Of the 42 critical incidents, 60% were navigational and most occurred when the first nine participants were using the stylus pen; no critical incidents were observed with the last six participants that used the touch screen. Patients thought that the RAQ questions were easy to read and understand, but they found it difficult to initiate the questionnaire. Suggestions for improvement included improving aspects of the interface and navigation. The results of study 3 showed that most patients were able

  20. Project management support tool implementation. DynaLearn, EC FP7 STREP project 231526, Deliverable D1.1

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bredeweg, B.; Liem, J.


    Different project management tools have been evaluated. We have chosen several well-known, flexible and mature tools to support management activities and communication between the DynaLearn project participants. We have created a DynaLearn website for stakeholders outside the DynaLearn website. An

  1. Applying the Bundle-Move Connection Approach to the Development of an Online Writing Support Tool for Research Articles (United States)

    Mizumoto, Atsushi; Hamatani, Sawako; Imao, Yasuhiro


    With advances in information and computer technology, genre-based writing pedagogy has developed greatly in recent years. In order to further this growth in technology-enhanced genre writing pedagogy, this study developed a data-driven and theory-based practical support tool for writing research articles. This web-based, innovative tool, powered…

  2. Tools and strategies for engaging the supervisor in technology-supported work-based learning : evaluation research

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bianco, M.; Collis, Betty; Egan, Toby Marshall; Morris, Michael Lane; Inbakumar, Vinod


    This study reports the results of the formative evaluations of two computer-supported tools and the associated strategies for their use. Tools and strategies embedded in web-based courses can increase a supervisor’s involvement in helping employees transfer learning onto the workplace. Issues

  3. Human Anterior Intraparietal and Ventral Premotor Cortices Support Representations of Grasping with the Hand or a Novel Tool

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jacobs, S.; Danielmeier, C.; Frey, S.H.


    Humans display a remarkable capacity to use tools instead of their biological effectors. Yet, little is known about the mechanisms that support these behaviors. Here, participants learned to grasp objects, appearing in a variety of orientations, with a novel, handheld mechanical tool. Following

  4. Nuclear and Radiological Emergency Management and Rehabilitation Strategies: Towards a EU approach for decision support tools

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Raskob, W.; Gering, F.; Lochard, J.; Nisbet, A.; Starostova, V.; Tomic, B.


    Highlights: → European emergency management and rehabilitation was strengthened. → Development of generic European handbooks for urban and agricultural areas. → Decision support systems became more operational. → Harmonisation of tools in Europe has been promoted. - Abstract: The 5-year multi-national project EURANOS (European Approach to Nuclear and Radiological Emergency Management and Rehabilitation Strategies), funded by the European Commission and 23 European Member States, started in April 2004. Integrating 17 national emergency management organisations with 33 research institutes, it brings together best practices, knowledge and technology to enhance the preparedness for Europe's response to any radiation emergency and long term contamination. Key objectives of the project are to collate information on the likely effectiveness and consequences of a wide range of countermeasures, to provide guidance to emergency management organisations and decision makers on the establishment of an appropriate response strategy and to further enhance advanced decision support systems (DSS), in particular, RODOS (Real-time On-line Decisions Support) decision support system), through feedback from their operational use. Further, the project aims to create regional initiatives leading to information exchange based on state-of-the-art information technologies, to develop guidance which assists Member States in developing a framework for the sustainable rehabilitation of living conditions in contaminated areas and to maintain and enhance knowledge and competence through emergency exercises, training and education, thus fostering best practice in emergency response. The project is divided into three major research activities and a set of demonstration projects which are split in two phases lasting over two and three years, respectively. The research activities address specific issues previously identified by the users or by previous research in the area. They are focused

  5. Europlanet-RI: Access to Planetary Data, Tools, Models and Support Information (United States)

    Schmidt, W.; Capria, M. T.; Chanteur, G.


    During the past three years the Europlanet Research Infrastructure consortium with financial support from the EU's 7th framework program has developed a wide range of tools to support all aspects of planetary research. During the final year of the project these are being integrated into the "Integrated and Distributed Information Service IDIS" [1]. The challenge is the diversity of research fields involved in planetary research, each with its own way of collecting and archiving data and publishing its results. Nevertheless the results of one field are needed by others to be able to correctly interpret their observations, and to design new kinds of measurements to advance our knowledge of the Solar system. The IDIS team in close cooperation with the efforts of the International Planetary Data Alliance (IPDA) has developed a data model which allows the registration of a wide range of data sources including the results from modelling efforts thereby providing Virtual Observatory (IDIS-VO) [2,3] services for the community to register and access data from planetary data centres, laboratory measurements, spectral- and molecular data bases and simulations. Once a data set from any of these sources is registered with IDIS, it can be accessed, its used archive format translated into a compatible internal format and combined with other data using the visualization tools developed in connection with IDIS. Tools to calculate ephemeris data for a wide range of solar system bodies, to visualize their locations or identify them from existing images can be found as well as interactive tools to evaluate chemical reaction paths, spectral information from gas or solids or the mapping of planetary surfaces. Additionally information about ground observation possibilities, test facilities, laboratories, research institutes and scientists with detailed contact information is made available to the user. For the developers of new space instruments and operators of active missions support

  6. Aggregation Tool to Create Curated Data albums to Support Disaster Recovery and Response (United States)

    Ramachandran, Rahul; Kulkarni, Ajinkya; Maskey, Manil; Bakare, Rohan; Basyal, Sabin; Li, Xiang; Flynn, Shannon


    recovery efforts. The search process for the analyst could be made much more efficient and productive if a tool could go beyond a typical search engine and provide not just links to web sites but actual links to specific data relevant to the natural disaster, parse unstructured reports for useful information nuggets, as well as gather other related reports, summaries, news stories, and images. This presentation will describe a semantic aggregation tool developed to address similar problem for Earth Science researchers. This tool provides automated curation, and creates "Data Albums" to support case studies. The generated "Data Albums" are compiled collections of information related to a specific science topic or event, containing links to relevant data files (granules) from different instruments; tools and services for visualization and analysis; information about the event contained in news reports, and images or videos to supplement research analysis. An ontology-based relevancy-ranking algorithm drives the curation of relevant data sets for a given event. This tool is now being used to generate a catalog of Hurricane Case Studies at Global Hydrology Resource Center (GHRC), one of NASA's Distribute Active Archive Centers. Another instance of the Data Albums tool is currently being created in collaboration with NASA/MSFC's SPoRT Center, which conducts research on unique NASA products and capabilities that can be transitioned to the operational community to solve forecast problems. This new instance focuses on severe weather to support SPoRT researchers in their model evaluation studies

  7. A Decision Support Tool for Appropriate Glucose-Lowering Therapy in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ampudia-Blasco, F Javier; Benhamou, Pierre Yves; Charpentier, Guillaume


    /UCLA Appropriateness Method) of treatment strategies for 930 clinical scenarios, which were permutations of clinical variables considered relevant to treatment choice. These included current treatment, hemoglobin A1c difference from individualized target, risk of hypoglycemia, body mass index, life expectancy...... a patient-specific decision support tool based on a systematic analysis of expert opinion. Materials and Methods: Based on the American Diabetes Association (ADA)/European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) 2012 position statement, a panel of 12 European experts rated the appropriateness (RAND......Abstract Background: Optimal glucose-lowering therapy in type 2 diabetes mellitus requires a patient-specific approach. Although a good framework, current guidelines are insufficiently detailed to address the different phenotypes and individual needs of patients seen in daily practice. We developed...

  8. New tool in place to support authors and CERN as a publisher

    CERN Multimedia

    Anaïs Schaeffer


    CERN has published the Yellow Reports since the inception of the Laboratory. Until now this activity has followed a traditional, largely manual publishing workflow. Thanks to its new publishing platform, the CERN Publishing Service now offers a modern tool to the CERN community for its in-house publishing needs, managing the publication workflow from the submission of manuscripts to peer-review and publication.   Like every scientific institution, CERN has the important task of communicating its work, discoveries and achievements via publications in journals, the proceedings of conferences and books. For material that is not submitted to a third-party publisher, which is often the case for reports and in some cases for proceedings, the CERN Publishing Service supports the workflow with a dedicated Publishing Platform based on open-source software, Open Journal System, developed by the Public Knowledge Project (PKP) and currently used by thousands of institutions all over the world. Now available to ...

  9. Information technology and decision support tools for stakeholder-driven river basin salinity management

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Quinn, N.W.T; Cozad, D.B.; Lee, G.


    Innovative strategies for effective basin-scale salinity management have been developed in the Hunter River Basin of Australia and more recently in the San Joaquin River Basin of California. In both instances web-based stakeholder information dissemination has been a key to achieving a high level of stakeholder involvement and the formulation of effective decision support salinity management tools. A common element to implementation of salinity management strategies in both river basins has been the concept of river assimilative capacity for controlling export salt loading and the potential for trading of the right to discharge salt load to the river - the Hunter River in Australia and the San Joaquin River in California. Both rivers provide basin drainage and the means of exporting salt to the ocean. The paper compares and contrasts the use of monitoring, modeling and information dissemination in the two basins to achieve environmental compliance and sustain irrigated agriculture in an equitable and socially and politically acceptable manner.

  10. Danish heat atlas as a support tool for energy system models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Petrovic, Stefan N.; Karlsson, Kenneth B.


    Highlights: • The GIS method for calculating costs of district heating expansion is presented. • High socio-economic potential for district heating is identified within urban areas. • The method for coupling a heat atlas and TIMES optimization model is proposed. • Presented methods can be used for any geographical region worldwide. - Abstract: In the past four decades following the global oil crisis in 1973, Denmark has implemented remarkable changes in its energy sector, mainly due to the energy conservation measures on the demand side and the energy efficiency improvements on the supply side. Nowadays, the capital intensive infrastructure investments, such as the expansion of district heating networks and the introduction of significant heat saving measures require highly detailed decision-support tool. A Danish heat atlas provides highly detailed database with extensive information about more than 2.5 million buildings in Denmark. Energy system analysis tools incorporate environmental, economic, energy and engineering analysis of future energy systems and are considered crucial for the quantitative assessment of transitional scenarios towards future milestones, such as EU 2020 goals and Denmark’s goal of achieving fossil free society after 2050. The present paper shows how a Danish heat atlas can be used for providing inputs to energy system models, especially related to the analysis of heat saving measures within building stock and expansion of district heating networks. As a result, marginal cost curves are created, approximated and prepared for the use in optimization energy system model. Moreover, it is concluded that heat atlas can contribute as a tool for data storage and visualisation of results

  11. Marky: a tool supporting annotation consistency in multi-user and iterative document annotation projects. (United States)

    Pérez-Pérez, Martín; Glez-Peña, Daniel; Fdez-Riverola, Florentino; Lourenço, Anália


    Document annotation is a key task in the development of Text Mining methods and applications. High quality annotated corpora are invaluable, but their preparation requires a considerable amount of resources and time. Although the existing annotation tools offer good user interaction interfaces to domain experts, project management and quality control abilities are still limited. Therefore, the current work introduces Marky, a new Web-based document annotation tool equipped to manage multi-user and iterative projects, and to evaluate annotation quality throughout the project life cycle. At the core, Marky is a Web application based on the open source CakePHP framework. User interface relies on HTML5 and CSS3 technologies. Rangy library assists in browser-independent implementation of common DOM range and selection tasks, and Ajax and JQuery technologies are used to enhance user-system interaction. Marky grants solid management of inter- and intra-annotator work. Most notably, its annotation tracking system supports systematic and on-demand agreement analysis and annotation amendment. Each annotator may work over documents as usual, but all the annotations made are saved by the tracking system and may be further compared. So, the project administrator is able to evaluate annotation consistency among annotators and across rounds of annotation, while annotators are able to reject or amend subsets of annotations made in previous rounds. As a side effect, the tracking system minimises resource and time consumption. Marky is a novel environment for managing multi-user and iterative document annotation projects. Compared to other tools, Marky offers a similar visually intuitive annotation experience while providing unique means to minimise annotation effort and enforce annotation quality, and therefore corpus consistency. Marky is freely available for non-commercial use at Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Modeling decision making as a support tool for policy making on renewable energy development

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cannemi, Marco; García-Melón, Mónica; Aragonés-Beltrán, Pablo; Gómez-Navarro, Tomás


    This paper presents the findings of a study on decision making models for the analysis of capital-risk investors’ preferences on biomass power plants projects. The aim of the work is to improve the support tools for policy makers in the field of renewable energy development. Analytic Network Process (ANP) helps to better understand capital-risk investors preferences towards different kinds of biomass fueled power plants. The results of the research allow public administration to better foresee the investors’ reaction to the incentive system, or to modify the incentive system to better drive investors’ decisions. Changing the incentive system is seen as major risk by investors. Therefore, public administration must design better and longer-term incentive systems, forecasting market reactions. For that, two scenarios have been designed, one showing a typical decision making process and another proposing an improved decision making scenario. A case study conducted in Italy has revealed that ANP allows understanding how capital-risk investors interpret the situation and make decisions when investing on biomass power plants; the differences between the interests of public administrations’s and promoters’, how decision making could be influenced by adding new decision criteria, and which case would be ranked best according to the decision models. - Highlights: • We applied ANP to the investors’ preferences on biomass power plants projects. • The aim is to improve the advising tools for renewable energy policy making. • A case study has been carried out with the help of two experts. • We designed two scenarios: decision making as it is and how could it be improved. • Results prove ANP is a fruitful tool enhancing participation and transparency

  13. Waste incineration in rotary kilns: a new simulation combustion tool to support design and technical change. (United States)

    Lombardi, Francesco; Lategano, Emanuele; Cordiner, Stefano; Torretta, Vincenzo


    This article presents a tool based on a simplified model developed for the combustion processes in a rotary kiln incinerator (slightly inclined rotating primary combustion chamber). The model was developed with the aim of supporting the design phase of the incinerator combustion chamber and, at the same time, of investigating possible technical changes in existing plants in order to optimise the combustion process and the dimension of the rotary kiln (length, diameter) as a function of the characteristics of the fed waste. The tool has been applied and the obtained results compared with a real incineration plant operating on healthcare waste located in Rome (Italy). The mass and thermal balances were taken into account, together with kinetic parameters for the combustion of the specific waste stream. The mass balance considered only the major mass components (carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen and sulphur). The measured external temperatures appear to be in good agreement with the simulated results. A sensitivity analysis of the plant under different operating conditions was carried out using different input flow rates and excess air ratios, and an assessment was made of the refractory and insulator properties of the kiln's behaviour. Some of the simulated results were used during the periodical maintenance to improve the refractory characteristics in order to reduce the fret and corrosion process.

  14. Using ultrasonography as a teaching support tool in undergraduate medical education - time to reach a decision. (United States)

    Mircea, Petru-Adrian; Badea, Radu; Fodor, Daniela; Buzoianu, Anca Dana


    Medical education and the process of teaching and learning, respectively, are constantly changing. This is induced by the pace at which knowledge, teaching methodology and its related tools are updated, the use of simulation, virtual depiction and the use of static and/or dynamic images. In this respect, X-ray images have been used in the understanding of macroanatomy ever since the beginning of the last century. Starting with the 1990s, when high-performing and relatively less costly equipment started to emerge, several experts in the field of education anticipated the huge resource that ultrasound could become in the field of medicine. The method is easy to understand, intuitive and available to anyone studying human anatomy and, subsequently, the major pathological issues during undergraduate medical studies. The present paper reviews the attempts made at using ultrasound as an educational support tool, from the first experiences in teaching anatomy (Hannover Medical School, 1996) until the recent development of an entire medical university curriculum integrating ultrasound (University of South Carolina, School of Medicine, 2006-2011). It is an exciting journey proving beyond any doubt that the method should be learned, understood and developed in medical schools from the undergraduate stage, together with the other clinical skills.

  15. Supportive Noninvasive Tool for the Diagnosis of Breast Cancer Using a Thermographic Camera as Sensor

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marco Antonio Garduño-Ramón


    Full Text Available Breast cancer is the leading disease in incidence and mortality among women in developing countries. The opportune diagnosis of this disease strengthens the survival index. Mammography application is limited by age and periodicity. Temperature is a physical magnitude that can be measured by using multiple sensing techniques. IR (infrared thermography using commercial cameras is gaining relevance in industrial and medical applications because it is a non-invasive and non-intrusive technology. Asymmetrical temperature in certain human body zones is associated with cancer. In this paper, an IR thermographic sensor is applied for breast cancer detection. This work includes an automatic breast segmentation methodology, to spot the hottest regions in thermograms using the morphological watershed operator to help the experts locate the tumor. A protocol for thermogram acquisition considering the required time to achieve a thermal stabilization is also proposed. Breast thermograms are evaluated as thermal matrices, instead of gray scale or false color images, increasing the certainty of the provided diagnosis. The proposed tool was validated using the Database for Mastology Research and tested in a voluntary group of 454 women of different ages and cancer stages with good results, leading to the possibility of being used as a supportive tool to detect breast cancer and angiogenesis cases.

  16. Developing an eHealth Tool to Support Patient Empowerment at Home. (United States)

    Schildmeijer, Kristina; Wannheden, Carolina; Nilsson, Lina; Frykholm, Oscar; Hellström, Amanda; Flink, Maria; Ekstedt, Mirjam


    In previous research we have learned that patients with chronic or complex diseases often experience difficulties when transitioning from hospital care to self-care in their home. We address these difficulties by developing an eHealth tool for patients - ePATH (electronic Patient Activation in Treatment at Home) - intended to empower each patient to manage their individual situation. We have employed a user-centered design process involving both patients and healthcare personnel to specify the content and functionality of ePATH. The system is deployed as a web application with secure login for patients. In this article, we describe the main content and functionality of the system that makes it possible for a patient to manage symptoms development in relation to treatment progression Interactive functionality, e.g., reminders and social support, is included to make the ePATH a useful and informative bridge between patients, next-of-kin and different caregivers. One lesson learned is that it is necessary to incorporate motivational components in the development of an eHealth tool to successfully overcome the "intention-behavior" gap. The self-determination theory of motivation can be used to ensure that important aspects are not missed.

  17. Evaluation of Pushback Decision-Support Tool Concept for Charlotte Douglas International Airport Ramp Operations (United States)

    Hayashi, Miwa; Hoang, Ty; Jung, Yoon C.; Malik, Waqar; Lee, Hanbong; Dulchinos, Victoria L.


    This paper proposes a new departure pushback decision-support tool (DST) for airport ramp-tower controllers. It is based on NASA's Spot and Runway Departure Advisor (SARDA) collaborative decision-making concept, except with the modification that the gate releases now are controlled by tactical pushback (or gate-hold) advisories instead of strategic pre-assignments of target pushback times to individual departure flights. The proposed ramp DST relies on data exchange with the airport traffic control tower (ATCT) to coordinate pushbacks with the ATCT's flow-management intentions under current operational constraints, such as Traffic Management Initiative constraints. Airlines would benefit in reduced taxi delay and fuel burn. The concept was evaluated in a human-in-the-loop simulation experiment with current ramp-tower controllers at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport as participants. The results showed that the tool helped reduce taxi time by one minute per flight and overall departure flight fuel consumption by 10-12% without reducing runway throughput. Expect Departure Clearance Time (EDCT) conformance also was improved when advisories were provided. These benefits were attained without increasing the ramp-tower controllers' workload. Additionally, the advisories reduced the ATCT controllers' workload.

  18. A Transparent Decision Support Tool in Screening for Laryngeal Disorders Using Voice and Query Data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonas Minelga


    Full Text Available The aim of this study is a transparent tool for analysis of voice (sustained phonation /a/ and query data capable of providing support in screening for laryngeal disorders. In this work, screening is concerned with identification of potentially pathological cases by classifying subject’s data into ’healthy’ and ’pathological’ classes as well as visual exploration of data and automatic decisions. A set of association rules and a decision tree, techniques lending themselves for exploration, were generated for pathology detection. Data pairwise similarities, estimated in a novel way, were mapped onto a 2D metric space for visual inspection and analysis. Accurate identification of pathological cases was observed on unseen subjects using the most discriminative query parameter and six audio parameters routinely used by otolaryngologists in a clinical practice: equal error rate (EER of 11.1% was achieved using association rules and 10.2% using the decision tree. The EER was further reduced to 9.5% by combining results from these two classifiers. The developed solution can be a useful tool for Otolaryngology departments in diagnostics, education and exploratory tasks.

  19. An Evolutionary Complex Systems Decision-Support Tool for the Management of Operations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baldwin, J S; Allen, P M; Ridgway, K


    This research aimed to add both to the development of complex systems thinking in the subject area of Operations and Production Management and to the limited number of applications of computational models and simulations from the science of complex systems. The latter potentially offer helpful decision-support tools for operations and production managers. A mechanical engineering firm was used as a case study where a combined qualitative and quantitative methodological approach was employed to extract the required data from four senior managers. Company performance measures as well as firm technologies, practices and policies, and their relation and interaction with one another, were elicited. The data were subjected to an evolutionary complex systems model resulting in a series of simulations. The findings included both reassuring and some unexpected results. The simulation based on the CEO's opinions led the most cohesive and synergistic collection of practices describing the firm, closely followed by the Marketing and R and D Managers. The Manufacturing Manager's responses led to the most extreme evolutionary trajectory where the integrity of the entire firm came into question particularly when considering how employees were utilised. By drawing directly from the opinions and views of managers rather than from logical 'if-then' rules and averaged mathematical representations of agents that characterise agent-based and other self-organisational models, this work builds on previous applications by capturing a micro-level description of diversity and a learning effect that has been problematical not only in terms of theory but also in application. This approach can be used as a decision-support tool for operations and other managers providing a forum with which to explore a) the strengths, weaknesses and consequences of different decision-making capacities within the firm; b) the introduction of new manufacturing technologies, practices and policies; and, c) the

  20. EPA Leadership on Science, Innovation, and Decision Support Tools for Addressing Current and Future Challenges. (United States)

    Hecht, Alan D; Ferster, Aaron; Summers, Kevin


    When the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was established nearly 50 years ago, the nation faced serious threats to its air, land, and water, which in turn impacted human health. These threats were effectively addressed by the creation of EPA (in 1970) and many subsequent landmark environmental legislations which in turn significantly reduced threats to the Nation's environment and public health. A key element of historic legislation is research aimed at dealing with current and future problems. Today we face national and global challenges that go beyond classic media-specific (air, land, water) environmental legislation and require an integrated paradigm of action and engagement based on (1) innovation based on science and technology, (2) stakeholder engagement and collaboration, and (3) public education and support. This three-pronged approach recognizes that current environmental problems, include social as well as physical and environmental factors, are best addressed through collaborative problem solving, the application of innovation in science and technology, and multiple stakeholder engagement. To achieve that goal, EPA's Office of Research and Development (ORD) is working directly with states and local communities to develop and apply a suite of accessible decision support tools (DST) that aim to improve environmental conditions, protect human health, enhance economic opportunity, and advance a resilient and sustainability society. This paper showcases joint EPA and state actions to develop tools and approaches that not only meet current environmental and public health challenges, but do so in a way that advances sustainable, healthy, and resilient communities well into the future. EPA's future plans should build on current work but aim to effectively respond to growing external pressures. Growing pressures from megatrends are a major challenge for the new Administration and for cities and states across the country. The recent hurricanes hitting

  1. An Evolutionary Complex Systems Decision-Support Tool for the Management of Operations (United States)

    Baldwin, J. S.; Allen, P. M.; Ridgway, K.


    This research aimed to add both to the development of complex systems thinking in the subject area of Operations and Production Management and to the limited number of applications of computational models and simulations from the science of complex systems. The latter potentially offer helpful decision-support tools for operations and production managers. A mechanical engineering firm was used as a case study where a combined qualitative and quantitative methodological approach was employed to extract the required data from four senior managers. Company performance measures as well as firm technologies, practices and policies, and their relation and interaction with one another, were elicited. The data were subjected to an evolutionary complex systems model resulting in a series of simulations. The findings included both reassuring and some unexpected results. The simulation based on the CEO's opinions led the most cohesive and synergistic collection of practices describing the firm, closely followed by the Marketing and R&D Managers. The Manufacturing Manager's responses led to the most extreme evolutionary trajectory where the integrity of the entire firm came into question particularly when considering how employees were utilised. By drawing directly from the opinions and views of managers rather than from logical 'if-then' rules and averaged mathematical representations of agents that characterise agent-based and other self-organisational models, this work builds on previous applications by capturing a micro-level description of diversity and a learning effect that has been problematical not only in terms of theory but also in application. This approach can be used as a decision-support tool for operations and other managers providing a forum with which to explore a) the strengths, weaknesses and consequences of different decision-making capacities within the firm; b) the introduction of new manufacturing technologies, practices and policies; and, c) the

  2. Evolution of the Pediatric Advanced Life Support course: enhanced learning with a new debriefing tool and Web-based module for Pediatric Advanced Life Support instructors. (United States)

    Cheng, Adam; Rodgers, David L; van der Jagt, Élise; Eppich, Walter; O'Donnell, John


    To describe the history of the Pediatric Advanced Life Support course and outline the new developments in instructor training that will impact the way debriefing is conducted during Pediatric Advanced Life Support courses. The Pediatric Advanced Life Support course, first released by the American Heart Association in 1988, has seen substantial growth and change over the past few decades. Over that time, Pediatric Advanced Life Support has become the standard for resuscitation training for pediatric healthcare providers in North America. The incorporation of high-fidelity simulation-based learning into the most recent version of Pediatric Advanced Life Support has helped to enhance the realism of scenarios and cases, but has also placed more emphasis on the importance of post scenario debriefing. We developed two new resources: an online debriefing module designed to introduce a new model of debriefing and a debriefing tool for real-time use during Pediatric Advanced Life Support courses, to enhance and standardize the quality of debriefing by Pediatric Advanced Life Support instructors. In this article, we review the history of Pediatric Advanced Life Support and Pediatric Advanced Life Support instructor training and discuss the development and implementation of the new debriefing module and debriefing tool for Pediatric Advanced Life Support instructors. The incorporation of the debriefing module and debriefing tool into the 2011 Pediatric Advanced Life Support instructor materials will help both new and existing Pediatric Advanced Life Support instructors develop and enhance their debriefing skills with the intention of improving the acquisition of knowledge and skills for Pediatric Advanced Life Support students.

  3. Development of Generic Tools for Coastal Early Warning and Decision Support

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bogaard Tom


    Full Text Available Recent and historic high-impact events demonstrated coastal risk (Xynthia, Europe, 2010; Katrina, USA, 2005. This is only to get worse, because risk is increasing due to increase in both hazard intensity, frequency and increase in consequences (increased coastal development. Adaptation requires a re-evaluation of coastal disaster risk reduction (DRR strategies and a new mix of prevention, mitigation (e.g. limiting construction in flood-prone areas and preparedness (e.g. Early warning systems, EWS measures. Within the EU funded project RISC-KIT the focus is on preparedness measures and its aim is to demonstrate robustness and applicability of coastal EWS (Early Warning Systems and DSS (Decision Support Systems. Delft-FEWS, a generic tool for Early Warning Systems has been extended, to be applied at sites all across Europe. The challenges for developing a modern EWS are found in the integration of large data sets, specialised modules to process the data, and open interfaces to allow easy integration of existing modelling capacities. In response to these challenges, Delft-FEWS provides a state of the art EWS framework, which is highly customizable to the specific requirements of an individual organisation. For ten case study sites on all EU regional seas a EWS has been developed, to provide real-time (short-term forecasts and early warnings. The EWS component is a 2D model framework of hydro-meteo and morphological models which computes hazard intensities. The total expected impact of a hazard can be obtained by using a Bayesian network DSS. This DSS, which is incorporated in the Delft-FEWS platform is a tool that links coastal multi-hazards to their socioeconomic and environmental consequences. An important innovation of the EWS/DSS lies in its application in dual mode: as a forecast and warning system and as a consistent ex-ante planning tool to evaluate the long-term vulnerability due to multiple (low-frequency coastal hazards, under various

  4. Transboundary Water: Improving Methodologies and Developing Integrated Tools to Support Water Security (United States)

    Hakimdavar, Raha; Wood, Danielle; Eylander, John; Peters-Lidard, Christa; Smith, Jane; Doorn, Brad; Green, David; Hummel, Corey; Moore, Thomas C.


    River basins for which transboundary coordination and governance is a factor are of concern to US national security, yet there is often a lack of sufficient data-driven information available at the needed time horizons to inform transboundary water decision-making for the intelligence, defense, and foreign policy communities. To address this need, a two-day workshop entitled Transboundary Water: Improving Methodologies and Developing Integrated Tools to Support Global Water Security was held in August 2017 in Maryland. The committee that organized and convened the workshop (the Organizing Committee) included representatives from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the US Army Corps of Engineers Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC), and the US Air Force. The primary goal of the workshop was to advance knowledge on the current US Government and partners' technical information needs and gaps to support national security interests in relation to transboundary water. The workshop also aimed to identify avenues for greater communication and collaboration among the scientific, intelligence, defense, and foreign policy communities. The discussion around transboundary water was considered in the context of the greater global water challenges facing US national security.

  5. Open Educational Resources in Support of Science Learning: Tools for Inquiry and Observation (United States)

    Scanlon, Eileen


    This article focuses on the potential of free tools, particularly inquiry tools for influencing participation in twenty-first-century learning in science, as well as influencing the development of communities around tools. Two examples are presented: one on the development of an open source tool for structured inquiry learning that can bridge the…

  6. The Carpe Diem West Academy: Connecting Water Resources Practitioners and Decision Support Tool Developers in Pursuit of Climate Change Adaptation (United States)

    Hartmann, H. C.; morino, K.; Wiltshire, K.


    Water resources practitioners face a confusing and often overwhelming plethora of evolving tools and methods for considering climate change in planning and management. Many tools require substantial investments in data gathering, analysis, or stakeholder engagement. Many address only pieces of the climate change adaptation challenge without clear interconnection. Additionally, there are few standards of practice in the application of these tools. The Carpe Diem West Academy provides knowledge sharing, community building, and collaboration among water resources practitioners and decision support tool developers to facilitate use of science in adaptation efforts. The technical core of the Academy is a web portal ( that uses multiple frameworks, including iterative risk management, to organize an interactive compendium of over 150 tools and training resources developed by others, that are useful for water resources planning and management, including consideration of interconnections with other resources such as energy and ecosystem services. Academy users are supported through a variety of experimental approaches, including webinars and facilitated web discussion, for efficiently engaging water resources practitioners, at a scale that is practical to sustain, that fosters shared learning about tools and their application in adaptation efforts, and that can support establishment of best practices for incorporating uncertainty and climate change. The Academy has also been useful for identifying gaps where additional tools, methods, or professional development training are needed, and for providing feedback to tool developers. We report on key findings on the effectiveness of the Academy's multiple approaches.

  7. A support vector machine tool for adaptive tomotherapy treatments: Prediction of head and neck patients criticalities. (United States)

    Guidi, Gabriele; Maffei, Nicola; Vecchi, Claudio; Ciarmatori, Alberto; Mistretta, Grazia Maria; Gottardi, Giovanni; Meduri, Bruno; Baldazzi, Giuseppe; Bertoni, Filippo; Costi, Tiziana


    Adaptive radiation therapy (ART) is an advanced field of radiation oncology. Image-guided radiation therapy (IGRT) methods can support daily setup and assess anatomical variations during therapy, which could prevent incorrect dose distribution and unexpected toxicities. A re-planning to correct these anatomical variations should be done daily/weekly, but to be applicable to a large number of patients, still require time consumption and resources. Using unsupervised machine learning on retrospective data, we have developed a predictive network, to identify patients that would benefit of a re-planning. 1200 MVCT of 40 head and neck (H&N) cases were re-contoured, automatically, using deformable hybrid registration and structures mapping. Deformable algorithm and MATLAB(®) homemade machine learning process, developed, allow prediction of criticalities for Tomotherapy treatments. Using retrospective analysis of H&N treatments, we have investigated and predicted tumor shrinkage and organ at risk (OAR) deformations. Support vector machine (SVM) and cluster analysis have identified cases or treatment sessions with potential criticalities, based on dose and volume discrepancies between fractions. During 1st weeks of treatment, 84% of patients shown an output comparable to average standard radiation treatment behavior. Starting from the 4th week, significant morpho-dosimetric changes affect 77% of patients, suggesting need for re-planning. The comparison of treatment delivered and ART simulation was carried out with receiver operating characteristic (ROC) curves, showing monotonous increase of ROC area. Warping methods, supported by daily image analysis and predictive tools, can improve personalization and monitoring of each treatment, thereby minimizing anatomic and dosimetric divergences from initial constraints. Copyright © 2015 Associazione Italiana di Fisica Medica. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. Incorporating Social Media into your Support Tool Box: Points to Consider from Genetics-Based Communities. (United States)

    Rocha, Heather Mae; Savatt, Juliann M; Riggs, Erin Rooney; Wagner, Jennifer K; Faucett, W Andrew; Martin, Christa Lese


    Patients with newly-described or rare genetic findings are turning to social media to find and connect with others. Blogs, Facebook groups, and Twitter have all been reported as tools for patients to connect with one another. However, the preferences for social media use and privacy among patients, their families, and these communities have not been well characterized. To explore preferences about privacy and membership guidelines, an online survey was administered to two web-based patient registries, Simons Variation in Individuals Project ( ) and GenomeConnect ( ). Over a three-month period, invitations were sent to 2524 individuals and 103 responses (4%) were received and analyzed. Responses indicate that Facebook is the most popular resource accessed within this sample population (99%). Participants used social media to look for information about their diagnosis or test results (83%), read posts from rare disease groups or organizations (73%), participate in conversations about their diagnosis (67%), and connect with others to find support (58%). Focusing on privacy issues in social media, respondents indicate that membership and access impact the level of comfort in sharing personal or medical information. Nearly 60% of respondents felt uncomfortable sharing photos or medical information within a public Facebook group, whereas only 12% of respondents felt uncomfortable sharing in private group targeted to families alone. Using this preliminary data concerning social media use and privacy, we developed points for genetic counselors to incorporate when discussing available support resources for patients with a new, or rare, genetic diagnosis or genetic test result. Genetic counselors are trained to provide anticipatory guidance to families adapting to new genetic information, and are well-equipped to help patients consider their preferences about using social media as a source of information and support.

  9. Towards a decision support tool for real estate management in the health sector using real options and scenario planning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Reedt Dortland, Maartje; Voordijk, Johannes T.; Dewulf, Geert P.M.R.


    Purpose – Uncertainties affecting health organizations inevitably influence real estate decisions since real estate is required to facilitate the primary health process. The purpose of this study is to develop a decision support tool that supports health organisations in defining what flexibility

  10. Stakeholder views of management and decision support tools to integrate climate change into Great Lakes Lake Whitefish management (United States)

    Lynch, Abigail J.; Taylor, William W.; McCright, Aaron M.


    Decision support tools can aid decision making by systematically incorporating information, accounting for uncertainties, and facilitating evaluation between alternatives. Without user buy-in, however, decision support tools can fail to influence decision-making processes. We surveyed fishery researchers, managers, and fishers affiliated with the Lake Whitefish Coregonus clupeaformis fishery in the 1836 Treaty Waters of Lakes Huron, Michigan, and Superior to assess opinions of current and future management needs to identify barriers to, and opportunities for, developing a decision support tool based on Lake Whitefish recruitment projections with climate change. Approximately 64% of 39 respondents were satisfied with current management, and nearly 85% agreed that science was well integrated into management programs. Though decision support tools can facilitate science integration into management, respondents suggest that they face significant implementation barriers, including lack of political will to change management and perceived uncertainty in decision support outputs. Recommendations from this survey can inform development of decision support tools for fishery management in the Great Lakes and other regions.

  11. Integrating research tools to support the management of social-ecological systems under climate change

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brian W. Miller


    Full Text Available Developing resource management strategies in the face of climate change is complicated by the considerable uncertainty associated with projections of climate and its impacts and by the complex interactions between social and ecological variables. The broad, interconnected nature of this challenge has resulted in calls for analytical frameworks that integrate research tools and can support natural resource management decision making in the face of uncertainty and complex interactions. We respond to this call by first reviewing three methods that have proven useful for climate change research, but whose application and development have been largely isolated: species distribution modeling, scenario planning, and simulation modeling. Species distribution models provide data-driven estimates of the future distributions of species of interest, but they face several limitations and their output alone is not sufficient to guide complex decisions for how best to manage resources given social and economic considerations along with dynamic and uncertain future conditions. Researchers and managers are increasingly exploring potential futures of social-ecological systems through scenario planning, but this process often lacks quantitative response modeling and validation procedures. Simulation models are well placed to provide added rigor to scenario planning because of their ability to reproduce complex system dynamics, but the scenarios and management options explored in simulations are often not developed by stakeholders, and there is not a clear consensus on how to include climate model outputs. We see these strengths and weaknesses as complementarities and offer an analytical framework for integrating these three tools. We then describe the ways in which this framework can help shift climate change research from useful to usable.

  12. C1-1: Portfolio Management: Using Lean Tools to Support Project Teams with Grant Management (United States)

    Reinig, Stephen


    Background/Aims Group Health Research Institute (GHRI) utilizes Lean tools and techniques to enhance customer service, monitor compliance, and enhance project team interactions and communications. GHRI’s Grants and Contracts Administration (GCA) recently used Lean tools to design and implement a grant “portfolio management” system and process to support Principal Investigators (PIs). The system tracks six key indicators of funded grants: award status, budgetary spend rate, effort reporting, subaward execution, subawardee invoicing, and progress reporting. The process allows issues to be identified, tracked, and resolved early on with the project team before any serious problems arise. Methods GCA conducted a series of stakeholder interviews to determine the viability of quarterly portfolio review meetings. Project teams liked the idea of discussing the PI’s portfolio, but were leery about quarterly meetings. Therefore, we constructed a process that maximized technology and built in flexibility regarding quarter meetings. The six key indicators were selected, defined, and placed on a dashboard in SharePoint. Each PI has a customized SharePoint page with a calendar showing all major grant deadlines and deliverables; a folder of documents related to the rankings and discussion during each quarterly meeting; and an issue tracker to follow-up on team-identified issues and problems requiring attention. Customer satisfaction data was also collected after each initial quarterly meeting. Results As of October 2012, approximately 25 face-to-face meetings and 5 virtual meetings (i.e., materials and links emailed to the project team) have been completed (210 projects and 85 subawards will have been reviewed by the end of 2012). Satisfaction survey data indicates over 75% of team members (22 of 30 individuals) like the face-to-face meetings and hope to continue the quarterly review process. Conclusions The new portfolio management process has been received favorably by

  13. Integrating research tools to support the management of social-ecological systems under climate change (United States)

    Miller, Brian W.; Morisette, Jeffrey T.


    Developing resource management strategies in the face of climate change is complicated by the considerable uncertainty associated with projections of climate and its impacts and by the complex interactions between social and ecological variables. The broad, interconnected nature of this challenge has resulted in calls for analytical frameworks that integrate research tools and can support natural resource management decision making in the face of uncertainty and complex interactions. We respond to this call by first reviewing three methods that have proven useful for climate change research, but whose application and development have been largely isolated: species distribution modeling, scenario planning, and simulation modeling. Species distribution models provide data-driven estimates of the future distributions of species of interest, but they face several limitations and their output alone is not sufficient to guide complex decisions for how best to manage resources given social and economic considerations along with dynamic and uncertain future conditions. Researchers and managers are increasingly exploring potential futures of social-ecological systems through scenario planning, but this process often lacks quantitative response modeling and validation procedures. Simulation models are well placed to provide added rigor to scenario planning because of their ability to reproduce complex system dynamics, but the scenarios and management options explored in simulations are often not developed by stakeholders, and there is not a clear consensus on how to include climate model outputs. We see these strengths and weaknesses as complementarities and offer an analytical framework for integrating these three tools. We then describe the ways in which this framework can help shift climate change research from useful to usable.

  14. 3D Visualization Tools to Support Soil Management In Relation to Sustainable Agriculture and Ecosystem Services (United States)

    Wang, Chen


    game engines as tools for supporting archaeology and the reconstruction of cultural heritage - the case-study of the Roman villa of Casal de Freiria, Journal of Archaeological Science, 38(12): 3296-3308. Wang, C., Miller, D.R., Brown I., Jiang Y., Castellazzi M, "Visualisation Techniques to Support Public Interpretation of Future Climate Change and Land Use Choices: A Case Study from N-E Scotland", International Journal of Digital Earth, Volume 9, Issue 6, pp.586-605, 2016. VLT, Scotland's soil, Wang, C., Miller, D.R., Jiang Y., Donaldson-Selby, "Use of 3D Visualisation Tools for Representing Urban Greenspace Spatial Planning", 2015 IEEE International Conference on Information Science and Control Engineering Shanghai, China, April 24-26, 2015. Tobias, S., Buser, T., Buchecker, M. (2016) Does real-time visualization support local stakeholders in developing landscape visions? Environment and Planning B:Planning and Design, 43: 84¨ C197. Li.Y, Zhu. A-Xing, Shi. Z, Liu. J and Du. F, "Supplemental sampling for digital soil mapping based on prediction uncertainty from both the feature domain and the spatial domain", The Global Journal of Soil Science, Volume 284, pp 73-84, 2016. Warren-Kretzschmar. B and Haaren, C, "Communicating spatial planning decisions at the landscape and farm level with landscape visualization", Journal of Biogeosciences and Forestry, volume 7, pp 434-442, 2014.

  15. Application of the US decision support tool for materials and waste management

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Thorneloe, Susan A.; Weitz, Keith; Jambeck, Jenna


    The US Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) launched the Resource Conservation Challenge (RCC) in 2002 to help reduce waste and move towards more sustainable resource consumption. The objective of the RCC is to help communities, industries, and the public think in terms of materials management rather than waste disposal. Reducing cost, finding more efficient and effective strategies to manage municipal waste, and thinking in terms of materials management requires a holistic approach that considers life-cycle environmental tradeoffs. The US EPA's National Risk Management Research Laboratory has led the development of a municipal solid waste decision support tool (MSW-DST). The computer software can be used to calculate life-cycle environmental tradeoffs and full costs of different waste management or materials recovery programs. The environmental methodology is based on the use of life-cycle assessment and the cost methodology is based on the use of full-cost accounting. Life-cycle inventory (LCI) environmental impacts and costs are calculated from the point of collection, handling, transport, treatment, and disposal. For any materials that are recovered for recycling, offsets are calculated to reflect potential emissions savings from use of virgin materials. The use of the MSW-DST provides a standardized format and consistent basis to compare alternatives. This paper provides an illustration of how the MSW-DST can be used by evaluating ten management strategies for a hypothetical medium-sized community to compare the life-cycle environmental and cost tradeoffs. The LCI results from the MSW-DST are then used as inputs into another US EPA tool, the Tool for the reduction and assessment of chemical and other environmental impacts, to convert the LCI results into impact indicators. The goal of this paper is to demonstrate how the MSW-DST can be used to identify and balance multiple criteria (costs and environmental impacts) when evaluating options for materials and

  16. The NOAA Local Climate Analysis Tool - An Application in Support of a Weather Ready Nation (United States)

    Timofeyeva, M. M.; Horsfall, F. M.


    Citizens across the U.S., including decision makers from the local to the national level, have a multitude of questions about climate, such as the current state and how that state fits into the historical context, and more importantly, how climate will impact them, especially with regard to linkages to extreme weather events. Developing answers to these types of questions for locations has typically required extensive work to gather data, conduct analyses, and generate relevant explanations and graphics. Too frequently providers don't have ready access to or knowledge of reliable, trusted data sets, nor sound, scientifically accepted analysis techniques such that they can provide a rapid response to queries they receive. In order to support National Weather Service (NWS) local office forecasters with information they need to deliver timely responses to climate-related questions from their customers, we have developed the Local Climate Analysis Tool (LCAT). LCAT uses the principles of artificial intelligence to respond to queries, in particular, through use of machine technology that responds intelligently to input from users. A user translates customer questions into primary variables and issues and LCAT pulls the most relevant data and analysis techniques to provide information back to the user, who in turn responds to their customer. Most responses take on the order of 10 seconds, which includes providing statistics, graphical displays of information, translations for users, metadata, and a summary of the user request to LCAT. Applications in Phase I of LCAT, which is targeted for the NWS field offices, include Climate Change Impacts, Climate Variability Impacts, Drought Analysis and Impacts, Water Resources Applications, Attribution of Extreme Events, and analysis techniques such as time series analysis, trend analysis, compositing, and correlation and regression techniques. Data accessed by LCAT are homogenized historical COOP and Climate Prediction Center

  17. A Contribution to Guide the Use of Support Tools for Technology Roadmapping: a Case Study in the Clothing Industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cindy Johanna Ibarra González


    Full Text Available This article presents guidelines regarding the use of tools to support technology roadmapping based on a case study of an exploratory and descriptive nature in a small company in the clothing sector. After introducing a systematic approach to technology roadmapping with their support tools, an empirical analysis is then presented of the application of the tools of the market layer – a questionnaire for consultation with the consumers and bibliographical research – and the business layer – SWOT matrix, through illustrative examples. Each tool was analyzed in relation to the complexity, time, cost of implementation, relevance and quality of the resulting information, the most common problems associated with their use. Here we show that the tools of the market layer proved to be easiest to use when compared with the tools of business layer, varying the time required, but involving, in general, a low cost in its application to obtain relevant and quality results for the development of the roadmap. Based on the results, general guidelines for the use of these tools to assist in the process of technology roadmapping were established as well as a comparison between the tools.

  18. A Sustainable Historic Waterfront Revitalization Decision Support Tool for Attracting Tourists

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Keyvanfar


    Full Text Available Waterfront revitalization would be an effective strategy to preserve heritages, conserve the contaminated or abandoned site and inspire the identity and authenticity. However, there is no decision support tool to quantify and evaluate the sustainability accreditation of waterfronts in tourism attraction. This research aimed to identify the most potential waterfront typology in tourism attraction and develop the waterfront sustainable revitalization (SWR index assessment model. The SWR index can assist policy makers and urban developers to analyze the heritage waterfronts using Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP method. The research found out the historic waterfront has the highest potential in tourism attraction among other typologies. And, pollution moderator is mostly important sub-criterion in tourism absorption (WC2.2 = 0.1294; followed by Identity (WC1.2 = 0.1272 and Safety and well-being (WC1.3 = 0.1043. The SWR index can be applied in any waterfronts in heritage cities around the world, while this research implemented it as a case study in Bandar Maharani, Muar, Malaysia. It resulted Bandar Maharani was ranked as grade C; means, usable waterfront to which extent environmental, social and physical revitalization are needed. The SWR index can be coupled with other decision-making methods in future, to reduce its inconsistencies and increasing accuracy.

  19. Generation of Look-Up Tables for Dynamic Job Shop Scheduling Decision Support Tool (United States)

    Oktaviandri, Muchamad; Hassan, Adnan; Mohd Shaharoun, Awaluddin


    Majority of existing scheduling techniques are based on static demand and deterministic processing time, while most job shop scheduling problem are concerned with dynamic demand and stochastic processing time. As a consequence, the solutions obtained from the traditional scheduling technique are ineffective wherever changes occur to the system. Therefore, this research intends to develop a decision support tool (DST) based on promising artificial intelligent that is able to accommodate the dynamics that regularly occur in job shop scheduling problem. The DST was designed through three phases, i.e. (i) the look-up table generation, (ii) inverse model development and (iii) integration of DST components. This paper reports the generation of look-up tables for various scenarios as a part in development of the DST. A discrete event simulation model was used to compare the performance among SPT, EDD, FCFS, S/OPN and Slack rules; the best performances measures (mean flow time, mean tardiness and mean lateness) and the job order requirement (inter-arrival time, due dates tightness and setup time ratio) which were compiled into look-up tables. The well-known 6/6/J/Cmax Problem from Muth and Thompson (1963) was used as a case study. In the future, the performance measure of various scheduling scenarios and the job order requirement will be mapped using ANN inverse model.

  20. Design and partial implementation of RSFQ-based Batcher-banyan switch and support tools (United States)

    Zinoviev, Dmitry Yurievich

    This paper describes the results of the analysis and implementation of ultra-fast low-power superconductor digital switching cores based on Rapid Single-Flux-Quantum (RSFQ) technology. In particular, RSFQ circuits for implementation of crossbar, Batcher-banyan and TDM shared bus switching cores are considered, and possible parameters of these circuits are estimated. The results show that the proposed RSFQ digital switches with overall throughput of 2.88 Tbps per chip operating at the exchange frequencies of ˜30GHz and dissipating very little power could effectively compete with their semiconductor and photonic counterparts. Based upon the results of the analysis, the Batcher-banyan switching core was chosen for the hardware implementation. Several low-level architectures of the so-called beta element, or 2 x 2 cross-point switch, and also address decoders for a sorting and for an expanding network nodes, were developed and mapped onto RSFQ elementary cells. We consider the support tools and concepts used for the simulation, modeling, and testing of the switching network, namely, physical-level and gate-level simulators of complex RSFQ circuits. Octopux-an automated setup for low-speed testing of digital and analog superconductor circuits-is also presented. A TDM-based beta-element which constitutes one of the most important parts of the core, and the systolic clock distribution network, were designed, fabricated in 3.5 μm niobium-trilayer technology and tested using Octopux.

  1. Quantitative analysis of repetitive movement as a tool for diagnostic support in ergonomics. (United States)

    Barros Oliveira, Paulo Antonio; Scopel, Juliana


    To evaluate muscular strain in the upper limbs of workers in a freeze-processing plant for poultry by developing a tool for quantitative analysis, yielding a final score, which can provide diagnostic support in legal proceedings. The Strain index proposed by Moore & Garg was used to quantify biomechanical aspects of muscular strain, evaluating the intensity and duration of effort, frequency of movement, position of wrist and hand, speed of activity and duration of the task per shift. The index was applied in three critical work-areas in a freeze-processing plant for poultry where the activities of nine workers were analyzed. Absenteeism caused by osteomuscular lesions and mental-health problems reaches 20%. The three work-areas studied are those where the birds' throats are cut, where they are suspended on a conveyor-belt and, where they are wrapped. These areas were chosen because they have the highest rates of absenteeism and rotation of workers. The findings identified final scores between 12 and 27, when 7 or more means the maximum risk. Defensive strategies developed by workers can reduce biomechanical problems arising from high throughput rates, but are not enough by themselves to allow production to proceed without the occurrence of osteomuscular problems.

  2. The systems integration operations/logistics model as a decision-support tool

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Miller, C.; Vogel, L.W.; Joy, D.S.


    Congress has enacted legislation specifying Yucca Mountain, Nevada, for characterization as the candidate site for the disposal of spent fuel and high-level wastes and has authorized a monitored retrievable storage (MRS) facility if one is warranted. Nevertheless, the exact configuration of the facilities making up the Federal Waste Management System (FWMS) was not specified. This has left the Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management (OCRWM) the responsibility for assuring the design of a safe and reliable disposal system. In order to assist in the analysis of potential configuration alternatives, operating strategies, and other factors for the FWMS and its various elements, a decision-support tool known as the systems integration operations/logistics model (SOLMOD) was developed. SOLMOD is a discrete event simulation model that emulates the movement and interaction of equipment and radioactive waste as it is processed through the FWMS - from pickup at reactor pools to emplacement. The model can be used to measure the impacts of different operating schedules and rules, system configurations, and equipment and other resource availabilities on the performance of processes comprising the FWMS and how these factors combine to determine overall system performance. SOLMOD can assist in identifying bottlenecks and can be used to assess capacity utilization of specific equipment and staff as well as overall system resilience

  3. Footprints: A Visual Search Tool that Supports Discovery and Coverage Tracking. (United States)

    Isaacs, Ellen; Domico, Kelly; Ahern, Shane; Bart, Eugene; Singhal, Mudita


    Searching a large document collection to learn about a broad subject involves the iterative process of figuring out what to ask, filtering the results, identifying useful documents, and deciding when one has covered enough material to stop searching. We are calling this activity "discoverage," discovery of relevant material and tracking coverage of that material. We built a visual analytic tool called Footprints that uses multiple coordinated visualizations to help users navigate through the discoverage process. To support discovery, Footprints displays topics extracted from documents that provide an overview of the search space and are used to construct searches visuospatially. Footprints allows users to triage their search results by assigning a status to each document (To Read, Read, Useful), and those status markings are shown on interactive histograms depicting the user's coverage through the documents across dates, sources, and topics. Coverage histograms help users notice biases in their search and fill any gaps in their analytic process. To create Footprints, we used a highly iterative, user-centered approach in which we conducted many evaluations during both the design and implementation stages and continually modified the design in response to feedback.

  4. Decision-support tool for assessing future nuclear reactor generation portfolios

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jain, Shashi; Roelofs, Ferry; Oosterlee, Cornelis W.


    Capital costs, fuel, operation and maintenance (O and M) costs, and electricity prices play a key role in the economics of nuclear power plants. Often standardized reactor designs are required to be locally adapted, which often impacts the project plans and the supply chain. It then becomes difficult to ascertain how these changes will eventually reflect in costs, which makes the capital costs component of nuclear power plants uncertain. Different nuclear reactor types compete economically by having either lower and less uncertain construction costs, increased efficiencies, lower and less uncertain fuel cycles and O and M costs etc. The decision making process related to nuclear power plants requires a holistic approach that takes into account the key economic factors and their uncertainties. We here present a decision-support tool that satisfactorily takes into account the major uncertainties in the cost elements of a nuclear power plant, to provide an optimal portfolio of nuclear reactors. The portfolio so obtained, under our model assumptions and the constraints considered, maximizes the combined returns for a given level of risk or uncertainty. These decisions are made using a combination of real option theory and mean–variance portfolio optimization. - Highlights: • Decisions to continue or abandon the construction of NPPs • Mean–variance portfolio of nuclear reactors • Sensitivity study of mean–variance portfolio of nuclear reactors

  5. A decision support tool for sustainable supplier selection in manufacturing firms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ifeyinwa Orji


    Full Text Available Purpose: Most original equipment manufacturers (OEMs are strategically involved in supplier base rationalization and increased consciousness of sustainable development thus, reinforcing need for accurately considering sustainability in supplier selection to improve organizational performance. In real industrial case, imprecise data, ambiguity of human judgment, uncertainty among sustainability factors and the need to capture all subjective and objective criteria are unavoidable and pose huge challenge to accurately incorporate sustainability factors into supplier selection.Methodology: This study develops a model based on integrated multi- criteria decision making (MCDM methods to solve such problems. The developed model applies Fuzzy logic, DEMATEL and TOPSIS to effectively analyze the interdependencies between sustainability criteria and to select the best sustainable supplier in fuzzy environment while capturing all subjective and objective criteria. A case study is illustrated to test the proposed model in a gear manufacturing company, an OEM to provide insights and for practical applications.Findings: Results show that social factors of sustainability ranks as the most important in supplier selection. However, the most influential sustainability sub- criteria are work safety (WS and quality.Originality/Value: The model is capable of capturing all subjective and objective criteria in fuzzy environment to accurately incorporate sustainability factors in supplier selection. It is decision support tool relevant for providing insights to managers while implementing sustainable supplier selection.

  6. Comparing the use of computer-supported collaboration tools among university students with different life circumstances

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miikka J. Eriksson


    Full Text Available The proportion of higher education students who integrate learning with various life circumstances such as employment or raising children is increasing. This study aims to compare whether and what kinds of differences exist between the perceived use of synchronous and asynchronous computer-mediated communication tools among university students with children or in full-time employment and students without these commitments. The data were collected in a Finnish University by the means of an online questionnaire. The results indicate that students with multiple commitments were using more virtual learning environments and less instant messaging (IM especially when communicating with their peers. The low level of IM might be an indication of not being able to or not wanting to create close ties with their peer students. The practical implication of the study is that pedagogical choices should support different kinds of learning strategies. Students with multiple commitments, and especially students with children, should be encouraged and assisted to create stronger ties with their peers, if they are willing to do so.

  7. First observation of Dorylus ant feeding in Budongo chimpanzees supports absence of stick-tool culture. (United States)

    Mugisha, Steven; Zuberbühler, Klaus; Hobaiter, Catherine


    The use of stick- or probe-tools is a chimpanzee universal, recorded in all long-term study populations across Africa, except one: Budongo, Uganda. Here, after 25 years of observation, stick-tool use remains absent under both natural circumstances and strong experimental scaffolding. Instead, the chimpanzees employ a rich repertoire of leaf-tools for a variety of dietary and hygiene tasks. One use of stick-tools in other communities is in feeding on the aggressive Dorylus 'army ant' species, consumed by chimpanzees at all long-term study sites outside of mid-Western Uganda. Here we report the first observation of army-ant feeding in Budongo, in which individuals from the Waibira chimpanzee community employed detached leaves to feed on a ground swarm. We describe the behaviour and discuss whether or not it can be considered tool use, together with its implication for the absence of stick-tool 'culture' in Budongo chimpanzees.

  8. A decision support tool for identifying abuse of controlled substances by ForwardHealth Medicaid members. (United States)

    Mailloux, Allan T; Cummings, Stephen W; Mugdh, Mrinal


    Our objective was to use Wisconsin's Medicaid Evaluation and Decision Support (MEDS) data warehouse to develop and validate a decision support tool (DST) that (1) identifies Wisconsin Medicaid fee-for-service recipients who are abusing controlled substances, (2) effectively replicates clinical pharmacist recommendations for interventions intended to curb abuse of physician and pharmacy services, and (3) automates data extraction, profile generation and tracking of recommendations and interventions. From pharmacist manual reviews of medication profiles, seven measures of overutilization of controlled substances were developed, including (1-2) 6-month and 2-month "shopping" scores, (3-4) 6-month and 2-month forgery scores, (5) duplicate/same day prescriptions, (6) count of controlled substance claims, and the (7) shopping 6-month score for the individual therapeutic class with the highest score. The pattern analysis logic for the measures was encoded into SQL and applied to the medication profiles of 190 recipients who had already undergone manual review. The scores for each measure and numbers of providers were analyzed by exhaustive chi-squared automatic interaction detection (CHAID) to determine significant thresholds and combinations of predictors of pharmacist recommendations, resulting in a decision tree to classify recipients by pharmacist recommendations. The overall correct classification rate of the decision tree was 95.3%, with a 2.4% false positive rate and 4.0% false negative rate for lock-in versus prescriber-alert letter recommendations. Measures used by the decision tree include the 2-month and 6-month shopping scores, and the number of pharmacies and prescribers. The number of pharmacies was the best predictor of abuse of controlled substances. When a Medicaid recipient receives prescriptions for controlled substances at 8 or more pharmacies, the likelihood of a lock-in recommendation is 90%. The availability of the Wisconsin MEDS data warehouse has

  9. Tools for Virtual Collaboration Designed for High Resolution Hydrologic Research with Continental-Scale Data Support (United States)

    Duffy, Christopher; Leonard, Lorne; Shi, Yuning; Bhatt, Gopal; Hanson, Paul; Gil, Yolanda; Yu, Xuan


    Using a series of recent examples and papers we explore some progress and potential for virtual (cyber-) collaboration inspired by access to high resolution, harmonized public-sector data at continental scales [1]. The first example describes 7 meso-scale catchments in Pennsylvania, USA where the watershed is forced by climate reanalysis and IPCC future climate scenarios (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change). We show how existing public-sector data and community models are currently able to resolve fine-scale eco-hydrologic processes regarding wetland response to climate change [2]. The results reveal that regional climate change is only part of the story, with large variations in flood and drought response associated with differences in terrain, physiography, landuse and/or hydrogeology. The importance of community-driven virtual testbeds are demonstrated in the context of Critical Zone Observatories, where earth scientists from around the world are organizing hydro-geophysical data and model results to explore new processes that couple hydrologic models with land-atmosphere interaction, biogeochemical weathering, carbon-nitrogen cycle, landscape evolution and ecosystem services [3][4]. Critical Zone cyber-research demonstrates how data-driven model development requires a flexible computational structure where process modules are relatively easy to incorporate and where new data structures can be implemented [5]. From the perspective of "Big-Data" the paper points out that extrapolating results from virtual observatories to catchments at continental scales, will require centralized or cloud-based cyberinfrastructure as a necessary condition for effectively sharing petabytes of data and model results [6]. Finally we outline how innovative cyber-science is supporting earth-science learning, sharing and exploration through the use of on-line tools where hydrologists and limnologists are sharing data and models for simulating the coupled impacts of catchment

  10. Next-Generation Ion Thruster Design Tool to Support Future Space Missions, Phase II (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Computational tools that accurately predict the performance of electric propulsion devices are highly desirable and beneficial to NASA and the broader electric...

  11. Next-Generation Ion Thruster Design Tool to Support Future Space Missions, Phase I (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — Computational tools that accurately predict the performance of electric propulsion devices are highly desirable by NASA and the broader electric propulsion...

  12. Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Stormwater Decision Support Tools for Infrastructure Selection and the Barriers to Implementation (United States)

    Spahr, K.; Hogue, T. S.


    Selecting the most appropriate green, gray, and / or hybrid system for stormwater treatment and conveyance can prove challenging to decision markers across all scales, from site managers to large municipalities. To help streamline the selection process, a multi-disciplinary team of academics and professionals is developing an industry standard for selecting and evaluating the most appropriate stormwater management technology for different regions. To make the tool more robust and comprehensive, life-cycle cost assessment and optimization modules will be included to evaluate non-monetized and ecosystem benefits of selected technologies. Initial work includes surveying advisory board members based in cities that use existing decision support tools in their infrastructure planning process. These surveys will qualify the decisions currently being made and identify challenges within the current planning process across a range of hydroclimatic regions and city size. Analysis of social and other non-technical barriers to adoption of the existing tools is also being performed, with identification of regional differences and institutional challenges. Surveys will also gage the regional appropriateness of certain stormwater technologies based off experiences in implementing stormwater treatment and conveyance plans. In additional to compiling qualitative data on existing decision support tools, a technical review of components of the decision support tool used will be performed. Gaps in each tool's analysis, like the lack of certain critical functionalities, will be identified and ease of use will be evaluated. Conclusions drawn from both the qualitative and quantitative analyses will be used to inform the development of the new decision support tool and its eventual dissemination.

  13. Advantages of integration of uranium exploration data in GIS and models as tools for decision support

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tusveld, M.C.L.


    In many areas where uranium has been or is explored, an enormous amount of data on geology and hydrogeology is available. When these uranium exploration data are stored in a structured way, they can be made useful for other purposes dm uranium exploration only. For instance, in case of environmental pollution, which is often a side-effect of uranium activities such as mining and leaching, the data can be used to develop a computer model of the environment. With such a model impacts can be calculated of different scenarios for cleaning up or isolation of the pollution. A GIS can be used to store the data, to visualize the data (map production) and to analyse the data, but also to calculate input for the models. The advantages of using GIS and models as tools for decision support are explained with the Contaminant Transport Information System (CTIS) as a case study. The CTIS has been developed for remediation operations in the uranium mining area Straz pod Ralskem and Hamr in the Czech Republic. The CTIS consists of a GIS database, a regional groundwater flow model and a local contaminant transport model as well as interfaces for data transfer between the components of the information system. The power of the CTIS lies in the fact that the modelling necessary for the design of a remediation operation can be carried out efficiently by using one of the two models, depending on the specific question. Thus alternative remediation scenarios can be judged easily and fairly on their consequences and effectiveness. (author)

  14. Effects of Airport Tower Controller Decision Support Tool on Controllers Head-Up Time (United States)

    Hayashi, Miwa; Cruz Lopez, Jose M.


    Despite that aircraft positions and movements can be easily monitored on the radar displays at major airports nowadays, it is still important for the air traffic control tower (ATCT) controllers to look outside the window as much as possible to assure safe operations of traffic management. The present paper investigates whether an introduction of the NASA's proposed Spot and Runway Departure Advisor (SARDA), a decision support tool for the ATCT controller, would increase or decrease the controllers' head-up time. SARDA provides the controller departure-release schedule advisories, i.e., when to release each departure aircraft in order to minimize individual aircraft's fuel consumption on taxiways and simultaneously maximize the overall runway throughput. The SARDA advisories were presented on electronic flight strips (EFS). To investigate effects on the head-up time, a human-in-the-loop simulation experiment with two retired ATCT controller participants was conducted in a high-fidelity ATCT cab simulator with 360-degree computer-generated out-the-window view. Each controller participant wore a wearable video camera on a side of their head with the camera facing forward. The video data were later used to calculate their line of sight at each moment and eventually identify their head-up times. Four sessions were run with the SARDA advisories, and four sessions were run without (baseline). Traffic-load levels were varied in each session. The same set of user interface - EFS and the radar displays - were used in both the advisory and baseline sessions to make them directly comparable. The paper reports the findings and discusses their implications.

  15. Validation of the Supportive and Palliative Care Indicators Tool in a Geriatric Population. (United States)

    De Bock, Reine; Van Den Noortgate, Nele; Piers, Ruth


    Timely identification of patients in need of palliative care is especially challenging in a geriatric population because of prognostic uncertainty. The Supportive and Palliative Care Indicators Tool (SPICT™) aims at facilitating this identification, yet has not been validated in a geriatric population. This study validates the SPICT in a geriatric patient population admitted to the hospital. This is a retrospective cohort study. Subject were patients admitted to the acute geriatric ward of a Belgian university hospital between January 1 and June 30, 2014. Data including demographics, functional status, comorbidities, treatment limitation decision (TLD), and one-year mortality were collected. SPICT was measured retrospectively by an independent assessor. Out of 435 included patients, 54.7% had a positive SPICT, using a cut-off value of 2 for the general indicators and a cut-off value of 1 for the clinical questions. SPICT-positive patients were older (p = 0.033), more frequently male (p = 0.028), and had more comorbidities (p = 0.015) than SPICT-negative patients. The overall one-year mortality was 32.2%, 48.7% in SPICT-positive patients, and 11.5% in SPICT-negative patients (p present versus 26.9% in SPICT-negative cases (p < 0.001). SPICT seems to be valuable for identifying geriatric patients in need of palliative care as it demonstrates significant association with one-year mortality and with clinical survival predictions of experienced geriatricians, as reflected by TLDs given.

  16. Clinician attitudes, skills, motivations and experience following the implementation of clinical decision support tools in a large dental practice. (United States)

    Mertz, Elizabeth; Wides, Cynthia; White, Joel


    This study assesses dental clinicians' pre- and post-implementation attitudes, skills, and experiences with three clinical decision support (CDS) tools built into the electronic health record (EHR) of a multi-specialty group dental practice. Electronic surveys designed to examine factors for acceptance of EHR-based CDS tools including caries management by risk assessment (CAMBRA), periodontal disease management by risk assessment (PEMBRA) and a risk assessment-based Proactive Dental Care Plan (PDCP) were distributed to all Willamette Dental Group employees at 2 time points; 3 months pre-implementation (Fall 2013) and 15 months after implementation (winter 2015). The surveys collected demographics, measures of job experience and satisfaction, and attitudes toward each CDS tool. The baseline survey response rate among clinicians was 83.1% (n = 567) and follow-up survey response rate was 63.2% (n = 508). Among the 344 clinicians who responded to both before and after surveys, 27% were general and specialist dentists, 32% were dental hygienists, and 41% were dental assistants. Adherence to the CDS tools has been sustained at 98%+ since roll-out. Between baseline and follow-up, the change in mean attitude scores regarding CAMBRA reflect statistically significant improvement in formal training, knowing how to use the tools, belief in the science supporting the tools, and the usefulness of the tool to motivate patients. For PEMBRA, statistically significant improvement was found in formal training, knowing how to use the tools, belief in the science supporting the tools, with improvement also found in belief that the format and process worked well. Finally, for the PDCP, significant and positive changes were seen for every attitude and skill item scored. A strong and positive correlation with post-implementation attitudes was found with positive experiences in the work environment, whereas a negative correlation was found with workload and stress. Clinicians highly

  17. A case study about supporting the development of thinking by means of ICT and concretisation tools

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lou A.M.P. Slangen; Piet A.M. Kommers; Nardie L.J.A.


    Improving learning and thinking in school has been an objective of the educational community for a long time. Computer applications and especially mind tools can be helpful in reaching this objective. Control software that operates a connected physical micro world and is used as a kind of mind tool,

  18. Implementation of TAMSIM and EROW right-of-way acquisition decision - support tools. (United States)


    An implementation project was performed to initiate use of TAMSIM and EROW tools in region offices and : the Right of Way (ROW) Division. The research team worked with Texas Department of Transportation : regional ROW staffs to apply both tools to a ...

  19. Towards harnessing theories through tool support for hard real-time Java programming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bøgholm, Thomas; Frost, Christian; Hansen, Rene Rydhof


    We present a rationale for a selection of tools that assist developers of hard real-time applications to verify that programs conform to a Java real-time profile and that platform-specific resource constraints are satisfied. These tools are specialised instances of more generic static analysis an...

  20. Towards harnessing theories through tool support for hard real-time Java programming

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Søndergaard, Hans; Bøgholm, Thomas; Frost, Christian


    We present a rationale for a selection of tools that assist developers of hard real-time applications to verify that programs conform to a Java real-time profile and that platform-specific resource constraints are satisfied. These tools are specialised instances of more generic static analysis...

  1. Latest Community Coordinated Modeling Center (CCMC) services and innovative tools supporting the space weather research and operational communities. (United States)

    Mendoza, A. M. M.; Rastaetter, L.; Kuznetsova, M. M.; Mays, M. L.; Chulaki, A.; Shim, J. S.; MacNeice, P. J.; Taktakishvili, A.; Collado-Vega, Y. M.; Weigand, C.; Zheng, Y.; Mullinix, R.; Patel, K.; Pembroke, A. D.; Pulkkinen, A. A.; Boblitt, J. M.; Bakshi, S. S.; Tsui, T.


    The Community Coordinated Modeling Center (CCMC), with the fundamental goal of aiding the transition of modern space science models into space weather forecasting while supporting space science research, has been serving as an integral hub for over 15 years, providing invaluable resources to both space weather scientific and operational communities. CCMC has developed and provided innovative web-based point of access tools varying from: Runs-On-Request System - providing unprecedented global access to the largest collection of state-of-the-art solar and space physics models, Integrated Space Weather Analysis (iSWA) - a powerful dissemination system for space weather information, Advanced Online Visualization and Analysis tools for more accurate interpretation of model results, Standard Data formats for Simulation Data downloads, and Mobile apps to view space weather data anywhere to the scientific community. In addition to supporting research and performing model evaluations, CCMC also supports space science education by hosting summer students through local universities. In this poster, we will showcase CCMC's latest innovative tools and services, and CCMC's tools that revolutionized the way we do research and improve our operational space weather capabilities. CCMC's free tools and resources are all publicly available online (

  2. Verification of Ensemble Forecasts for the New York City Operations Support Tool (United States)

    Day, G.; Schaake, J. C.; Thiemann, M.; Draijer, S.; Wang, L.


    The New York City water supply system operated by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) serves nine million people. It covers 2,000 square miles of portions of the Catskill, Delaware, and Croton watersheds, and it includes nineteen reservoirs and three controlled lakes. DEP is developing an Operations Support Tool (OST) to support its water supply operations and planning activities. OST includes historical and real-time data, a model of the water supply system complete with operating rules, and lake water quality models developed to evaluate alternatives for managing turbidity in the New York City Catskill reservoirs. OST will enable DEP to manage turbidity in its unfiltered system while satisfying its primary objective of meeting the City's water supply needs, in addition to considering secondary objectives of maintaining ecological flows, supporting fishery and recreation releases, and mitigating downstream flood peaks. The current version of OST relies on statistical forecasts of flows in the system based on recent observed flows. To improve short-term decision making, plans are being made to transition to National Weather Service (NWS) ensemble forecasts based on hydrologic models that account for short-term weather forecast skill, longer-term climate information, as well as the hydrologic state of the watersheds and recent observed flows. To ensure that the ensemble forecasts are unbiased and that the ensemble spread reflects the actual uncertainty of the forecasts, a statistical model has been developed to post-process the NWS ensemble forecasts to account for hydrologic model error as well as any inherent bias and uncertainty in initial model states, meteorological data and forecasts. The post-processor is designed to produce adjusted ensemble forecasts that are consistent with the DEP historical flow sequences that were used to develop the system operating rules. A set of historical hindcasts that is representative of the real-time ensemble

  3. The Design and Development of a Computerized Tool Support for Conducting Senior Projects in Software Engineering Education (United States)

    Chen, Chung-Yang; Teng, Kao-Chiuan


    This paper presents a computerized tool support, the Meetings-Flow Project Collaboration System (MFS), for designing, directing and sustaining the collaborative teamwork required in senior projects in software engineering (SE) education. Among many schools' SE curricula, senior projects serve as a capstone course that provides comprehensive…

  4. Applications of urban tree canopy assessment and prioritization tools: supporting collaborative decision making to achieve urban sustainability goals (United States)

    Dexter H. Locke; J. Morgan Grove; Michael Galvin; Jarlath P.M. ONeil-Dunne; Charles. Murphy


    Urban Tree Canopy (UTC) Prioritizations can be both a set of geographic analysis tools and a planning process for collaborative decision-making. In this paper, we describe how UTC Prioritizations can be used as a planning process to provide decision support to multiple government agencies, civic groups and private businesses to aid in reaching a canopy target. Linkages...

  5. Development of a 2nd Generation Decision Support Tool to Optimize Resource and Energy Recovery for Municipal Solid Waste (United States)

    In 2012, EPA’s Office of Research and Development released the MSW decision support tool (MSW-DST) to help identify strategies for more sustainable MSW management. Depending upon local infrastructure, energy grid mix, population density, and waste composition and quantity, the m...

  6. Future direction for effective sustainable design : A survey on the extent and the format of a decision support tool

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Erbas, I.; Van Dijk, S.


    This paper – as part of a broader research - summarizes the key findings of a survey based on an online questionnaire which has investigated existing insights, needs and expectations of architects about decision support tools (DSTs) to assess sustainability of buildings. The survey is conducted in

  7. Effectiveness of Demonstrations Supported by ICT Tools on Upper Secondary School Students' Attitudes towards the Learning of Physics (United States)

    Yap, Boon Chien; Chew, Charles


    This quantitative research study reports the effectiveness of demonstrations supported by appropriate information and communication technology (ICT) tools such as dataloggers, animations and video clips on upper secondary school students' attitudes towards the learning of physics. A sample of 94 secondary four express stream (age 16 years) and…

  8. Supporting Small-Group Learning Using Multiple Web 2.0 Tools: A Case Study in the Higher Education Context (United States)

    Laru, Jari; Naykki, Piia; Jarvela, Sanna


    In this single-case study, small groups of learners were supported by use of multiple social software tools and face-to-face activities in the context of higher education. The aim of the study was to explore how designed learning activities contribute to students' learning outcomes by studying probabilistic dependencies between the variables.…

  9. A Monte Carlo based decision-support tool for assessing generation portfolios in future carbon constrained electricity industries

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vithayasrichareon, Peerapat; MacGill, Iain F.


    This paper presents a novel decision-support tool for assessing future generation portfolios in an increasingly uncertain electricity industry. The tool combines optimal generation mix concepts with Monte Carlo simulation and portfolio analysis techniques to determine expected overall industry costs, associated cost uncertainty, and expected CO 2 emissions for different generation portfolio mixes. The tool can incorporate complex and correlated probability distributions for estimated future fossil-fuel costs, carbon prices, plant investment costs, and demand, including price elasticity impacts. The intent of this tool is to facilitate risk-weighted generation investment and associated policy decision-making given uncertainties facing the electricity industry. Applications of this tool are demonstrated through a case study of an electricity industry with coal, CCGT, and OCGT facing future uncertainties. Results highlight some significant generation investment challenges, including the impacts of uncertain and correlated carbon and fossil-fuel prices, the role of future demand changes in response to electricity prices, and the impact of construction cost uncertainties on capital intensive generation. The tool can incorporate virtually any type of input probability distribution, and support sophisticated risk assessments of different portfolios, including downside economic risks. It can also assess portfolios against multi-criterion objectives such as greenhouse emissions as well as overall industry costs. - Highlights: ► Present a decision support tool to assist generation investment and policy making under uncertainty. ► Generation portfolios are assessed based on their expected costs, risks, and CO 2 emissions. ► There is tradeoff among expected cost, risks, and CO 2 emissions of generation portfolios. ► Investment challenges include economic impact of uncertainties and the effect of price elasticity. ► CO 2 emissions reduction depends on the mix of

  10. User involvement and supporting tools in business-to-business service innovations: Insights from Facility Management services

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nardelli, Giulia

    the research question. By following Miles and Huberman (1984)’s this study started with a literature review of studies investigating service innovation, service innovations models, user roles and tools in service innovation in general, to conduct an empirical investigation in facility management (FM) services...... and expectations with respect to such service innovation. In addition the study reveals that face-to-face tools are preferred to ICT-based tools in business-to-business FM service innovations. Research limitations/implications – As in all qualitative research, the main limitation of our study......Purpose – This article investigates and conceptualizes user involvement in business-to-business service innovations as well as the tools that are used to support interactions in such a service innovation process. Design/methodology/approach – The paper uses a qualitative research approach to answer...

  11. Web-based decision support and visualization tools for water quality management in the Chesapeake Bay watershed (United States)

    Mullinix, C.; Hearn, P.; Zhang, H.; Aguinaldo, J.


    Federal, State, and local water quality managers charged with restoring the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem require tools to maximize the impact of their limited resources. To address this need, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and the Environmental Protection Agency's Chesapeake Bay Program (CBP) are developing a suite of Web-based tools called the Chesapeake Online Assessment Support Toolkit (COAST). The goal of COAST is to help CBP partners identify geographic areas where restoration activities would have the greatest effect, select the appropriate management strategies, and improve coordination and prioritization among partners. As part of the COAST suite of tools focused on environmental restoration, a water quality management visualization component called the Nutrient Yields Mapper (NYM) tool is being developed by USGS. The NYM tool is a web application that uses watershed yield estimates from USGS SPAtially Referenced Regressions On Watershed (SPARROW) attributes model (Schwarz et al., 2006) [6] to allow water quality managers to identify important sources of nitrogen and phosphorous within the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The NYM tool utilizes new open source technologies that have become popular in geospatial web development, including components such as OpenLayers and GeoServer. This paper presents examples of water quality data analysis based on nutrient type, source, yield, and area of interest using the NYM tool for the Chesapeake Bay watershed. In addition, we describe examples of map-based techniques for identifying high and low nutrient yield areas; web map engines; and data visualization and data management techniques.

  12. Collaborative use of geodesign tools to support decision-making on adaptation to climate change

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Eikelboom, T.; Janssen, R.


    Spatial planners around the world need to make climate change adaptation plans. Climate adaptation planning requires combining spatial information with stakeholder values. This study demonstrates the potential of geodesign tools as a mean to integrate spatial analysis with stakeholder participation

  13. Application of knowledge tools in training, based on problems’ solving: methodology and it support


    D. V. Kudryavtsev; S. A. Kostousov


    The development of information accessibility in the 21st century necessitates the production of own knowledge in the learning process, and not justthe transfer of information. The computer should be used as a universal tool for working with knowledge, which is the study of the world, information obtaining, the organization and structuring of their own knowledge and presentation to other people. The aim of the work is to develop a methodology for the use of tools for working with knowledge in ...

  14. Development of continuous pharmaceutical production processes supported by process systems engineering methods and tools

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gernaey, Krist; Cervera Padrell, Albert Emili; Woodley, John


    The pharmaceutical industry is undergoing a radical transition towards continuous production processes. Systematic use of process systems engineering (PSE) methods and tools form the key to achieve this transition in a structured and efficient way.......The pharmaceutical industry is undergoing a radical transition towards continuous production processes. Systematic use of process systems engineering (PSE) methods and tools form the key to achieve this transition in a structured and efficient way....

  15. Bridging the Gap: Developing a Tool to Support Local Civilian and Military Disaster Preparedness (United States)


    communities in order to scale the needed capabilities. In this exam - ple, we ask users to input the population of their communities. In the tool, we will...guidance exam - ines how current standards of care would need to be altered in response to a mass casualty event, identifies what tools are needed to...the civilian community and military both prepare for this event, which first took place in 1990 ( SOA Watch, undated). However, interviewees suggested

  16. Software Engineering Practices and Tool Support: an exploratory study in New Zealand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chris Phillips


    Full Text Available This study was designed as a preliminary investigation of the practices of software engineers within New Zealand, including their use of development tools. The project involved a review of relevant literature on software engineering and CASE tools, the development and testing of an interview protocol, and structured interviews with five software engineers. This paper describes the project, presents the findings, examines the results in the context of the literature and outlines on-going funded work involving a larger survey.

  17. Development of Multi-slice Analytical Tool to Support BIM-based Design Process (United States)

    Atmodiwirjo, P.; Johanes, M.; Yatmo, Y. A.


    This paper describes the on-going development of computational tool to analyse architecture and interior space based on multi-slice representation approach that is integrated with Building Information Modelling (BIM). Architecture and interior space is experienced as a dynamic entity, which have the spatial properties that might be variable from one part of space to another, therefore the representation of space through standard architectural drawings is sometimes not sufficient. The representation of space as a series of slices with certain properties in each slice becomes important, so that the different characteristics in each part of space could inform the design process. The analytical tool is developed for use as a stand-alone application that utilises the data exported from generic BIM modelling tool. The tool would be useful to assist design development process that applies BIM, particularly for the design of architecture and interior spaces that are experienced as continuous spaces. The tool allows the identification of how the spatial properties change dynamically throughout the space and allows the prediction of the potential design problems. Integrating the multi-slice analytical tool in BIM-based design process thereby could assist the architects to generate better design and to avoid unnecessary costs that are often caused by failure to identify problems during design development stages.

  18. Cost Benefit Analysis Modeling Tool for Electric vs. ICE Airport Ground Support Equipment – Development and Results

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    James Francfort; Kevin Morrow; Dimitri Hochard


    This report documents efforts to develop a computer tool for modeling the economic payback for comparative airport ground support equipment (GSE) that are propelled by either electric motors or gasoline and diesel engines. The types of GSE modeled are pushback tractors, baggage tractors, and belt loaders. The GSE modeling tool includes an emissions module that estimates the amount of tailpipe emissions saved by replacing internal combustion engine GSE with electric GSE. This report contains modeling assumptions, methodology, a user’s manual, and modeling results. The model was developed based on the operations of two airlines at four United States airports.

  19. Creation of a simple natural language processing tool to support an imaging utilization quality dashboard. (United States)

    Swartz, Jordan; Koziatek, Christian; Theobald, Jason; Smith, Silas; Iturrate, Eduardo


    Testing for venous thromboembolism (VTE) is associated with cost and risk to patients (e.g. radiation). To assess the appropriateness of imaging utilization at the provider level, it is important to know that provider's diagnostic yield (percentage of tests positive for the diagnostic entity of interest). However, determining diagnostic yield typically requires either time-consuming, manual review of radiology reports or the use of complex and/or proprietary natural language processing software. The objectives of this study were twofold: 1) to develop and implement a simple, user-configurable, and open-source natural language processing tool to classify radiology reports with high accuracy and 2) to use the results of the tool to design a provider-specific VTE imaging dashboard, consisting of both utilization rate and diagnostic yield. Two physicians reviewed a training set of 400 lower extremity ultrasound (UTZ) and computed tomography pulmonary angiogram (CTPA) reports to understand the language used in VTE-positive and VTE-negative reports. The insights from this review informed the arguments to the five modifiable parameters of the NLP tool. A validation set of 2,000 studies was then independently classified by the reviewers and by the tool; the classifications were compared and the performance of the tool was calculated. The tool was highly accurate in classifying the presence and absence of VTE for both the UTZ (sensitivity 95.7%; 95% CI 91.5-99.8, specificity 100%; 95% CI 100-100) and CTPA reports (sensitivity 97.1%; 95% CI 94.3-99.9, specificity 98.6%; 95% CI 97.8-99.4). The diagnostic yield was then calculated at the individual provider level and the imaging dashboard was created. We have created a novel NLP tool designed for users without a background in computer programming, which has been used to classify venous thromboembolism reports with a high degree of accuracy. The tool is open-source and available for download at http

  20. Using an ecosystem service decision support tool to support ridge to reef management: An example of sediment reduction in west Maui, Hawaii (United States)

    Falinski, K. A.; Oleson, K.; Htun, H.; Kappel, C.; Lecky, J.; Rowe, C.; Selkoe, K.; White, C.


    Faced with anthropogenic stressors and declining coral reef states, managers concerned with restoration and resilience of coral reefs are increasingly recognizing the need to take a ridge-to-reef, ecosystem-based approach. An ecosystem services framing can help managers move towards these goals, helping to illustrate trade-offs and opportunities of management actions in terms of their impacts on society. We describe a research program building a spatial ecosystem services-based decision-support tool, and being applied to guide ridge-to-reef management in a NOAA priority site in West Maui. We use multiple modeling methods to link biophysical processes to ecosystem services and their spatial flows and social values in an integrating platform. Modeled services include water availability, sediment retention, nutrient retention and carbon sequestration on land. A coral reef ecosystem service model is under development to capture the linkages between terrestrial and coastal ecosystem services. Valuation studies are underway to quantify the implications for human well-being. The tool integrates techniques from decision science to facilitate decision making. We use the sediment retention model to illustrate the types of analyses the tool can support. The case study explores the tradeoffs between road rehabilitation costs and sediment export avoided. We couple the sediment and cost models with trade-off analysis to identify optimal distributed solutions that are most cost-effective in reducing erosion, and then use those models to estimate sediment exposure to coral reefs. We find that cooperation between land owners reveals opportunities for maximizing the benefits of fixing roads and minimizes costs. This research forms the building blocks of an ecosystem service decision support tool that we intend to continue to test and apply in other Pacific Island settings.

  1. The Registry of Knowledge Translation Methods and Tools: a resource to support evidence-informed public health. (United States)

    Peirson, Leslea; Catallo, Cristina; Chera, Sunita


    This paper examines the development of a globally accessible online Registry of Knowledge Translation Methods and Tools to support evidence-informed public health. A search strategy, screening and data extraction tools, and writing template were developed to find, assess, and summarize relevant methods and tools. An interactive website and searchable database were designed to house the registry. Formative evaluation was undertaken to inform refinements. Over 43,000 citations were screened; almost 700 were full-text reviewed, 140 of which were included. By November 2012, 133 summaries were available. Between January 1 and November 30, 2012 over 32,945 visitors from more than 190 countries accessed the registry. Results from 286 surveys and 19 interviews indicated the registry is valued and useful, but would benefit from a more intuitive indexing system and refinements to the summaries. User stories and promotional activities help expand the reach and uptake of knowledge translation methods and tools in public health contexts. The National Collaborating Centre for Methods and Tools' Registry of Methods and Tools is a unique and practical resource for public health decision makers worldwide.



    Huang, Wen-Yuan; Hyberg, Bengt; Segarra, Eduardo


    This paper analyzes a variable price support program (VPS) as an alternative to the current farm income support program. The VPS program can control U.S. agricultural production while protecting income of small farmers. The VPS is designed to alter farm level production decisions by reducing commodity support prices for each additional unit of production produced. This will serve to discourage excess aggregate production. The VPS program can be a mechanism to stabilize income of efficient sma...

  3. A new supporting tool for pig handling in the breeding-slaughterhouse production chain. (United States)

    Giametta, Ferruccio; Catalano, Pasquale; Gentile, Andrea; Perone, Claudio; Bianchi, Biagio


    This paper focuses on a research concerning the operational management of the pig-handling phase, during the period of breeding and before slaughtering. Given the behaviour of these animals during transfers, a particular tool has been designed to manage them in this phase. A total number of 48 animals, divided in 4 groups, were moved without use of the tool (control groups) and by using the tool described in this article. The time required by the control groups to leave the pen ranges from 21 to 125 seconds; while, when the proposed tool was used, the time for the movement of the animals ranged between 10 and 17 seconds. In particular, in the groups where the tool was deployed the 'waiting phase' (before the first animal goes out) lasted less than half of the time of the 'waiting phase' of the control group, thus showing a minimization of the effects of the 'panic phenomenon' among the animals. Thus, the studied device can be considered as valid guide technique, both for the quick exit of the first animal and for those that follow. Once the row has been formed, the animals continue neatly to leave the box. This study also shows that this solution can also be considered appropriate for reducing the identified critical issues in the traditional handling. The need of only 1 worker to move the group of pigs is important to achieve economic saving. The deployment of this tool, thus, make possible to consider the movement of animals no longer a 'critical stage', but as a routine step of the production cycle of pork's meat.

  4. An informatics supported web-based data annotation and query tool to expedite translational research for head and neck malignancies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Amin, Waqas; Kang, Hyunseok P; Egloff, Ann Marie; Singh, Harpreet; Trent, Kerry; Ridge-Hetrick, Jennifer; Seethala, Raja R; Grandis, Jennifer; Parwani, Anil V


    The Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in Head and Neck Cancer neoplasm virtual biorepository is a bioinformatics-supported system to incorporate data from various clinical, pathological, and molecular systems into a single architecture based on a set of common data elements (CDEs) that provides semantic and syntactic interoperability of data sets. The various components of this annotation tool include the Development of Common Data Elements (CDEs) that are derived from College of American Pathologists (CAP) Checklist and North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACR) standards. The Data Entry Tool is a portable and flexible Oracle-based data entry device, which is an easily mastered web-based tool. The Data Query Tool helps investigators and researchers to search de-identified information within the warehouse/resource through a 'point and click' interface, thus enabling only the selected data elements to be essentially copied into a data mart using a multi dimensional model from the warehouse's relational structure. The SPORE Head and Neck Neoplasm Database contains multimodal datasets that are accessible to investigators via an easy to use query tool. The database currently holds 6553 cases and 10607 tumor accessions. Among these, there are 965 metastatic, 4227 primary, 1369 recurrent, and 483 new primary cases. The data disclosure is strictly regulated by user's authorization. The SPORE Head and Neck Neoplasm Virtual Biorepository is a robust translational biomedical informatics tool that can facilitate basic science, clinical, and translational research. The Data Query Tool acts as a central source providing a mechanism for researchers to efficiently find clinically annotated datasets and biospecimens that are relevant to their research areas. The tool protects patient privacy by revealing only de-identified data in accordance with regulations and approvals of the IRB and scientific review committee

  5. Indian real time online decision support system (IRODOS): a mitigation tool for handling offsite nuclear emergency

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Vinod Kumar, A.; Oza, R.B.; Chaudhury, P.; Suri, M.; Saindane, S.; Singh, K.D.; Bhargava, P.; Sharma, V.K.


    A real time online decision support system as a nuclear emergency response system for handling offsite nuclear emergency at the Nuclear Power Plant (NPPs) has been developed by Health Safety and Environment Group, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) under the frame work of 'Indian Real time Online Decision Support System 'IRODOS'. (author)

  6. The Effects of a Concept Map-Based Support Tool on Simulation-Based Inquiry Learning (United States)

    Hagemans, Mieke G.; van der Meij, Hans; de Jong, Ton


    Students often need support to optimize their learning in inquiry learning environments. In 2 studies, we investigated the effects of adding concept-map-based support to a simulation-based inquiry environment on kinematics. The concept map displayed the main domain concepts and their relations, while dynamic color coding of the concepts displayed…

  7. Education Assistant Support in Inclusive Western Australian Classrooms: Trialling a Screening Tool in an Australian Context (United States)

    O'Rourke, John; West, John


    Education assistants (EAs) who support students with disability in general education classrooms often find themselves in difficult situations. Caught in the firing line between their personal sense of duty, expectations of the classroom teachers, and the challenges that inclusion presents, their roles as primary support agents are anything but…

  8. Developing a Decision-Support-Tool for an Air Taxi Service in Western Europe

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Wee, G.P.; Van Nes, R.; Van Duin, J.H.R.; Sengers, P.; Ghijs, S.S.A.


    This paper is a research proposal to develop a tool to analyze logistic concepts of the air taxi service of Aeolus Aviation in different scenarios. Based on this analysis recommendations can be done for a suitable logistic concept for Aeolus. Based on background analysis of the air taxi service

  9. Linking climate change and fish conservation efforts using spatially explicit decision support tools (United States)

    Douglas P. Peterson; Seth J. Wenger; Bruce E. Rieman; Daniel J. Isaak


    Fisheries professionals are increasingly tasked with incorporating climate change projections into their decisions. Here we demonstrate how a structured decision framework, coupled with analytical tools and spatial data sets, can help integrate climate and biological information to evaluate management alternatives. We present examples that link downscaled climate...

  10. Speaking Spontaneously in the Modern Foreign Languages Classroom: Tools for Supporting Successful Target Language Conversation (United States)

    Christie, Colin


    This article reports on the findings of a study into the conditions which promote spontaneous learner talk in the target language in the modern foreign languages (MFL) classroom. A qualitative case study approach was adopted. French lessons, with school students aged 11-16 years old, were observed and analysed with the aim of identifying tools and…

  11. Methodology Investigation of AI(Artificial Intelligence) Test Officer Support Tool. Volume 1 (United States)


    American Association for Artificial inteligence A! ............. Artificial inteliigence AMC ............ Unt:ed States Army Maeriel Comand ASL...block number) FIELD GROUP SUB-GROUP Artificial Intelligence, Expert Systems Automated Aids to Testing 9. ABSTRACT (Continue on reverse if necessary and...identify by block number) This report covers the application of Artificial Intelligence-Techniques to the problem of creating automated tools to

  12. Translating statistical species-habitat models to interactive decision support tools.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lyndsie S Wszola

    Full Text Available Understanding species-habitat relationships is vital to successful conservation, but the tools used to communicate species-habitat relationships are often poorly suited to the information needs of conservation practitioners. Here we present a novel method for translating a statistical species-habitat model, a regression analysis relating ring-necked pheasant abundance to landcover, into an interactive online tool. The Pheasant Habitat Simulator combines the analytical power of the R programming environment with the user-friendly Shiny web interface to create an online platform in which wildlife professionals can explore the effects of variation in local landcover on relative pheasant habitat suitability within spatial scales relevant to individual wildlife managers. Our tool allows users to virtually manipulate the landcover composition of a simulated space to explore how changes in landcover may affect pheasant relative habitat suitability, and guides users through the economic tradeoffs of landscape changes. We offer suggestions for development of similar interactive applications and demonstrate their potential as innovative science delivery tools for diverse professional and public audiences.

  13. Advancement of Tools Supporting Improvement of Work Safety in Selected Industrial Company (United States)

    Gembalska-Kwiecień, Anna


    In the presented article, the advancement of tools to improve the safety of work in the researched industrial company was taken into consideration. Attention was paid to the skillful analysis of the working environment, which includes the available technologies, work organization and human capital. These factors determine the development of the best prevention activities to minimize the number of accidents.

  14. Gaming in Education: Using Games as a Support Tool to Teach History (United States)

    Zirawaga, Victor Samuel; Olusanya, Adeleye Idowu; Maduku, Tinovimbanashe


    The use of current and emerging tools in education is becoming a blistering topic among educators and educational institutions. Gaming in education may be viewed as an interference to learning but its role in education is to increase students' motivation and engagement, to enhance visual skills, to improve students' interaction and collaboration…

  15. Supporting Students' Transition from Primary School to High School Using the Internet as a Communication Tool (United States)

    Maher, Damian


    This paper reports on a transition project where the Internet as a communication tool was used to facilitate interactions between primary school and high school students. The qualitative case study involved capturing the online interactions of the students and teachers as well as the use of questionnaires. Results of the study demonstrate that the…

  16. Experiences in Education Innovation: Developing Tools in Support of Active Learning (United States)

    Vera, Carlos; Felez, Jesus; Cobos, Jose Antonio; Sanchez-Naranjo, Maria Jesus; Pinto, Gabriel


    The paper focuses on educational projects developed in the ETSII (Escuela Tecnica Superior de Ingenieros Industriales) of the Polytechnic University of Madrid during the past few years. These projects were developed as new tools for enhancing the active role of students, for improving practical teaching, especially by means of virtual laboratories…

  17. PatternCoder: A Programming Support Tool for Learning Binary Class Associations and Design Patterns (United States)

    Paterson, J. H.; Cheng, K. F.; Haddow, J.


    PatternCoder is a software tool to aid student understanding of class associations. It has a wizard-based interface which allows students to select an appropriate binary class association or design pattern for a given problem. Java code is then generated which allows students to explore the way in which the class associations are implemented in a…

  18. Designing Feedback to Support Language Acquisition Using the "Ingenio" Authoring Tool (United States)

    Gimeno Sanz, Ana; De-Sequeira, Jose Macario


    The increasing demand for high quality innovative foreign language teaching and learning materials led the CAMILLE R&D Group at the Universidad Politecnica de Valencia (Spain) to design a completely online language-independent authoring tool and content manager to allow teachers from around the world to design and deliver tailor-made online…

  19. Time Capture Tool (TimeCaT): development of a comprehensive application to support data capture for Time Motion Studies. (United States)

    Lopetegui, Marcelo; Yen, Po-Yin; Lai, Albert M; Embi, Peter J; Payne, Philip R O


    Time Motion Studies (TMS) have proved to be the gold standard method to measure and quantify clinical workflow, and have been widely used to assess the impact of health information systems implementation. Although there are tools available to conduct TMS, they provide different approaches for multitasking, interruptions, inter-observer reliability assessment and task taxonomy, making results across studies not comparable. We postulate that a significant contributing factor towards the standardization and spread of TMS would be the availability and spread of an accessible, scalable and dynamic tool. We present the development of a comprehensive Time Capture Tool (TimeCaT): a web application developed to support data capture for TMS. Ongoing and continuous development of TimeCaT includes the development and validation of a realistic inter-observer reliability scoring algorithm, the creation of an online clinical tasks ontology, and a novel quantitative workflow comparison method.

  20. Designing Tool Support for Translating Use Cases and UML 2.0 Sequence Diagrams into a Coloured Petri Net

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fernandes, Joao Miguel; Tjell, Simon; Jørgensen, Jens Bæk


    On a case study on the specification of an elevator controller, this paper presents an approach that can translate given UML descriptions into a Coloured Petri Net (CPN) model. The UML descriptions must be specified in the form of Use Cases (UCs) and UML 2.0 Sequence Diagrams (SDs). The CPN model...... constitutes one single, coherent and executable representation of all possible behaviours that are specified by the given UML artefacts. CPN is a formal modelling language that enables construction and analysis of scalable, executable models of behaviour. A combined use of UML and CPN can be useful in several...... projects. CPN is well supported by the tool called CPN Tools and the work we present here is aimed at building a CPN Tools front-end engine that implements the proposed translation....

  1. Experimental verification of an energy consumption signal tool for operational decision support in an office building

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pavlak, Gregory S.; Henze, Gregor P.; Hirsch, Adam I.; Florita, Anthony R.; Dodier, Robert H.


    This paper demonstrates an energy signal tool to assess the system-level and whole-building energy use of an office building in downtown Denver, Colorado. The energy signal tool uses a traffic light visualization to alert a building operator to energy use which is substantially different from expected. The tool selects which light to display for a given energy end-use by comparing measured energy use to expected energy use, accounting for uncertainty. A red light is only displayed when a fault is likely enough, and abnormal operation costly enough, that taking action will yield the lowest cost result. While the theoretical advances and tool development were reported previously, it has only been tested using a basic building model and has not, until now, been experimentally verified. Expected energy use for the field demonstration is provided by a compact reduced-order representation of the Alliance Center, generated from a detailed DOE-2.2 energy model. Actual building energy consumption data is taken from the summer of 2014 for the office building immediately after a significant renovation project. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate a first look at the building following its major renovation compared to the design intent. The tool indicated strong under-consumption in lighting and plug loads and strong over-consumption in HVAC energy consumption, which prompted several focused actions for follow-up investigation. In addition, this paper illustrates the application of Bayesian inference to the estimation of posterior parameter probability distributions to measured data. Practical discussion of the application is provided, along with additional findings from further investigating the significant difference between expected and actual energy consumption.

  2. Characteristics and evolution of the ecosystem of software tools supporting research in molecular biology. (United States)

    Pazos, Florencio; Chagoyen, Monica


    Daily work in molecular biology presently depends on a large number of computational tools. An in-depth, large-scale study of that 'ecosystem' of Web tools, its characteristics, interconnectivity, patterns of usage/citation, temporal evolution and rate of decay is crucial for understanding the forces that shape it and for informing initiatives aimed at its funding, long-term maintenance and improvement. In particular, the long-term maintenance of these tools is compromised because of their specific development model. Hundreds of published studies become irreproducible de facto, as the software tools used to conduct them become unavailable. In this study, we present a large-scale survey of >5400 publications describing Web servers within the two main bibliographic resources for disseminating new software developments in molecular biology. For all these servers, we studied their citation patterns, the subjects they address, their citation networks and the temporal evolution of these factors. We also analysed how these factors affect the availability of these servers (whether they are alive). Our results show that this ecosystem of tools is highly interconnected and adapts to the 'trendy' subjects in every moment. The servers present characteristic temporal patterns of citation/usage, and there is a worrying rate of server 'death', which is influenced by factors such as the server popularity and the institutions that hosts it. These results can inform initiatives aimed at the long-term maintenance of these resources. © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:

  3. Creation of an Open Framework for Point-of-Care Computer-Assisted Reporting and Decision Support Tools for Radiologists. (United States)

    Alkasab, Tarik K; Bizzo, Bernardo C; Berland, Lincoln L; Nair, Sujith; Pandharipande, Pari V; Harvey, H Benjamin


    Decreasing unnecessary variation in radiology reporting and producing guideline-concordant reports is fundamental to radiology's success in value-based payment models and good for patient care. In this article, we present an open authoring system for point-of-care clinical decision support tools integrated into the radiologist reporting environment referred to as the computer-assisted reporting and decision support (CAR/DS) framework. The CAR/DS authoring system, described herein, includes: (1) a definition format for representing radiology clinical guidelines as structured, machine-readable Extensible Markup Language documents and (2) a user-friendly reference implementation to test the fidelity of the created definition files with the clinical guideline. The proposed definition format and reference implementation will enable content creators to develop CAR/DS tools that voice recognition software (VRS) vendors can use to extend the commercial tools currently in use. In making the definition format and reference implementation software freely available, we hope to empower individual radiologists, expert groups such as the ACR, and VRS vendors to develop a robust ecosystem of CAR/DS tools that can further improve the quality and efficiency of the patient care that our field provides. We hope that this initial effort can serve as the basis for a community-owned open standard for guideline definition that the imaging informatics and VRS vendor communities will embrace and strengthen. To this end, the ACR Assist™ initiative is intended to make the College's clinical content, including the Incidental Findings Committee White Papers, available for decision support tool creation based upon the herein described CAR/DS framework. Copyright © 2017 American College of Radiology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. A methodology and decision support tool for informing state-level bioenergy policymaking: New Jersey biofuels as a case study (United States)

    Brennan-Tonetta, Margaret

    This dissertation seeks to provide key information and a decision support tool that states can use to support long-term goals of fossil fuel displacement and greenhouse gas reductions. The research yields three outcomes: (1) A methodology that allows for a comprehensive and consistent inventory and assessment of bioenergy feedstocks in terms of type, quantity, and energy potential. Development of a standardized methodology for consistent inventorying of biomass resources fosters research and business development of promising technologies that are compatible with the state's biomass resource base. (2) A unique interactive decision support tool that allows for systematic bioenergy analysis and evaluation of policy alternatives through the generation of biomass inventory and energy potential data for a wide variety of feedstocks and applicable technologies, using New Jersey as a case study. Development of a database that can assess the major components of a bioenergy system in one tool allows for easy evaluation of technology, feedstock and policy options. The methodology and decision support tool is applicable to other states and regions (with location specific modifications), thus contributing to the achievement of state and federal goals of renewable energy utilization. (3) Development of policy recommendations based on the results of the decision support tool that will help to guide New Jersey into a sustainable renewable energy future. The database developed in this research represents the first ever assessment of bioenergy potential for New Jersey. It can serve as a foundation for future research and modifications that could increase its power as a more robust policy analysis tool. As such, the current database is not able to perform analysis of tradeoffs across broad policy objectives such as economic development vs. CO2 emissions, or energy independence vs. source reduction of solid waste. Instead, it operates one level below that with comparisons of kWh or

  5. UniSchooLabs Toolkit: Tools and Methodologies to Support the Adoption of Universities’ Remote and Virtual Labs in Schools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Augusto Chioccariello


    Full Text Available The UniSchooLabs project aims at creating an infrastructure supporting web access to remote/virtual labs and associated educational resources to engage learners with hands-on and minds-on activities in science, technology and math in schools. The UniSchooLabs tool-kit supports the teacher in selecting a remote or virtual lab and developing a lab activity based on an inquiry model template. While working with the toolkit the teacher has access to three main features: a a catalogue of available online laboratories; b an archive of activities created by other users; c a tool for creating new activities or reusing existing ones.

  6. Development and Exploration of a Regional Stormwater BMP Performance Database to Parameterize an Integrated Decision Support Tool (i-DST) (United States)

    Bell, C.; Li, Y.; Lopez, E.; Hogue, T. S.


    Decision support tools that quantitatively estimate the cost and performance of infrastructure alternatives are valuable for urban planners. Such a tool is needed to aid in planning stormwater projects to meet diverse goals such as the regulation of stormwater runoff and its pollutants, minimization of economic costs, and maximization of environmental and social benefits in the communities served by the infrastructure. This work gives a brief overview of an integrated decision support tool, called i-DST, that is currently being developed to serve this need. This presentation focuses on the development of a default database for the i-DST that parameterizes water quality treatment efficiency of stormwater best management practices (BMPs) by region. Parameterizing the i-DST by region will allow the tool to perform accurate simulations in all parts of the United States. A national dataset of BMP performance is analyzed to determine which of a series of candidate regionalizations explains the most variance in the national dataset. The data used in the regionalization analysis comes from the International Stormwater BMP Database and data gleaned from an ongoing systematic review of peer-reviewed and gray literature. In addition to identifying a regionalization scheme for water quality performance parameters in the i-DST, our review process will also provide example methods and protocols for systematic reviews in the field of Earth Science.

  7. Application of SIG and OLAP technologies on IBGE databases as a decision support tool for the county administration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    REGO, E. A.


    Full Text Available This paper shows a Decision Support System development for any brazilian county. The system is free of any costs research. For doing so, one uses the datawarehouse, OLAP and GIS technologies all together with the IBGE's database to give to the user a query building tool, showing the results in maps or/and tables format, on a very simple and efficient way.

  8. Perceived Breastfeeding Support Assessment Tool (PBSAT): development and testing of psychometric properties with Pakistani urban working mothers. (United States)

    Hirani, Shela Akbar Ali; Karmaliani, Rozina; Christie, Thomas; Parpio, Yasmin; Rafique, Ghazala


    breast feeding is an essential source of nutrition among young babies; however, in Pakistan a gradual decline in prevalence of breast feeding, especially among urban working mothers, has been reported. Previous studies among Pakistani urban working mothers have revealed that ensuring exclusivity and continuation of breast feeding is challenging if social and/or workplace environmental support is minimal or absent. This problem indicated a crucial need to assess availability of breast-feeding support for Pakistani urban working mothers by using a comprehensive, reliable, and validated tool in their national language (Urdu). to develop and test the psychometric properties of the 'Perceived Breastfeeding Support Assessment Tool' (PBSAT) that can gauge Pakistani urban working mothers' perceptions about breast-feeding support. this methodological research was undertaken in five phases. During phase I, a preliminary draft of the PBSAT was developed by using the Socio-ecological model, reviewing literature, and referring to two United States based tools. In Phase II, the instrument was evaluated by seven different experts, and, in Phase III, the instrument was revised, translated, and back translated. In Phase IV, the tool was pilot tested among 20 participants and then modified on the basis of statistical analysis. In Phase V, the refined instrument was tested on 200 breast-feeding working mothers recruited through purposive sampling from the government and private health-care settings in Karachi, Pakistan. Approvals were received from the Ethical Review Committees of the identified settings. the 29-item based PBSAT revealed an acceptable inter-rater reliability of 0.95, and an internal consistency reliability coefficient (Cronbach's alpha) of 0.85. A construct validity assessment through Exploratory Factor Analysis revealed that the PBSAT has two dimensions, 'workplace environmental support' (12 items; α=0.86) and 'social environmental support' (17 items; α=0.77). the

  9. DMPwerkzeug - A tool to support the planning, implementation, and organization of research data management. (United States)

    Klar, Jochen; Engelhardt, Claudia; Neuroth, Heike; Enke, Harry


    Following the call to make the results of publicly funded research openly accessible, more and more funding agencies demand the submission of a data management plan (DMP) as part of the application process. These documents specify, how the data management of the project is organized and what datasets will be published when. Of particular importance for European researchers is the Open Data Research Pilot of Horizon 2020 which requires data management plans for a set of 9 selected research fields from social sciences to nanotechnology. In order to assist the researchers creating these documents, several institutions developed dedicated software tools. The most well-known are DMPonline by the Digital Curation Centre (DCC) and DMPtool by the California Digital Library (CDL) - both extensive and well received web applications. The core functionality of these tools is the assisted editing of the DMP templates provided by the particular funding agency.While this is certainly helpful, especially in an environment with a plethora of different funding agencies like the UK or the USA, these tools are somewhat limited to this particular task and don't utilise the full potential of DMP. Beyond the purpose of fulfilling funder requirements, DMP can be useful for a number of additional tasks. In the initial conception phase of a project, they can be used as a planning tool to determine which date management activities and measures are necessary throughout the research process, to assess which resources are needed, and which institutions (computing centers, libraries, data centers) should be involved. During the project, they can act as a constant reference or guideline for the handling of research data. They also determine where the data will be stored after the project has ended and whether it can be accessed by the public, helping to take into account resulting requirements of the data center or actions necessary to ensure re-usability by others from early on. Ideally, a DMP

  10. The Second Victim Experience and Support Tool: Validation of an Organizational Resource for Assessing Second Victim Effects and the Quality of Support Resources. (United States)

    Burlison, Jonathan D; Scott, Susan D; Browne, Emily K; Thompson, Sierra G; Hoffman, James M


    Medical errors and unanticipated negative patient outcomes can damage the well-being of health care providers. These affected individuals, referred to as "second victims," can experience various psychological and physical symptoms. Support resources provided by health care organizations to prevent and reduce second victim-related harm are often inadequate. In this study, we present the development and psychometric evaluation of the Second Victim Experience and Support Tool (SVEST), a survey instrument that can assist health care organizations to implement and track the performance of second victim support resources. The SVEST (29 items representing 7 dimensions and 2 outcome variables) was completed by 303 health care providers involved in direct patient care. The survey collected responses on second victim-related psychological and physical symptoms and the quality of support resources. Desirability of possible support resources was also measured. The SVEST was assessed for content validity, internal consistency, and construct validity with confirmatory factor analysis. Confirmatory factor analysis results suggested good model fit for the survey. Cronbach α reliability scores for the survey dimensions ranged from 0.61 to 0.89. The most desired second victim support option was "A respected peer to discuss the details of what happened." The SVEST can be used by health care organizations to evaluate second victim experiences of their staff and the quality of existing support resources. It can also provide health care organization leaders with information on second victim-related support resources most preferred by their staff. The SVEST can be administered before and after implementing new second victim resources to measure perceptions of effectiveness.

  11. Decision support tools for evaluation and selection of technologies for soil remediation and disposal of halogenated waste

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Khelifi, O.; Zinovyev, S.; Lodolo, A.; Vranes, S.; Miertus, S. [ICS-UNIDO, Trieste (Italy)


    One of the most justified demands in abating the pollution created by polychlorinated substances is the remediation of contaminated sites, mainly soil remediation, which is also the most complex technical task in removing pollution because of the necessity to process huge quantities of matrix and to account for numerous side factors. The commercial technologies are usually based on rather direct and simplified but also secure processes, which often approach remediation in a general way, where different types of pollutants can be decontaminated at the same time by each technology. A number of different soil remediation technologies are nowadays available and the continuous competition among environmental service companies and technology developers generates a further increase in the clean-up options. The demand for decision support tools that could help decision makers in selecting the most appropriate technology for the specific contaminated site has consequently increased. These decision support tools (DST) are designed to help decision makers (site owners, local community representatives, environmentalists, regulators, etc.) to assess available technologies and preliminarily select the preferred remedial options. The analysis for the identification of the most suitable options in the DST is based on technical, economic, environmental, and social criteria. These criteria are ranked by all parties involved in the decision process to determine their relative importance for a particular remediation project. The aim of the present paper is to present the new approach for building decision support tool to evaluate different technologies for remediation and disposal of halogenated waste.

  12. Statistical Decision Support Tools for System-Oriented Runway Management, Phase II (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The feasibility of developing a statistical decision support system for traffic flow management in the terminal area and runway load balancing was demonstrated in...

  13. Combining pre-spill shoreline segmentation data and shoreline assessment tools to support early response management and planning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lamarche, A.; Owens, E.H.; Martin, V.; Laforest, S.


    Several organizations, such as Environment Canada and the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company, are developing or refining pre-spill databases containing information about physical shoreline characteristics. Automated links between these pre-spill shoreline characteristic databases and computerized shoreline assessment tools were recently created by Environment Canada (Quebec and Ontario regions). The tools, which use Geographical Information System (GIS) technology, can be used for planning and documenting support needed for shoreline cleanup operations. A training exercise, designed to evaluate a spill management system integrating the Quebec region pre-spill shoreline database and the ShoreAssess R shoreline assessment system, was conducted at Vercheres, Quebec in October 2002 by Eastern Canada Response Corporation. The testing took place during the planning stage of the early phases of a spill, namely after the first over-flight. The computerized shoreline assessment tools made it possible to evaluate the length and type of shoreline that would potentially be impacted by oil. The tools also made it possible to assess the shoreline treatment methods most likely to be used, and evaluate the probable duration of the cleanup operation. The information would have to be available in time to be considered during the planning activities. The training exercise demonstrated that the integration of the databases is a valuable tool during the early phases of an oil spill response. 9 refs., 2 tabs., 6 figs

  14. Introduction of the computer-based operation training tools in classrooms to support simulator training

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Noji, K.; Suzuki, K.; Kobayashi, A.


    Operation training with full-scope simulators is effective to improve trainees operation competency. To obtain more effective results of simulator training, roles of the ''classroom operation training'' closely cooperated to simulator training are important. The ''classroom operation training'' is aimed at pre- and post-studies for operation knowledge related to operation training using full-scope simulators. We have been developing computer-based operation training tools which are used in classroom training sessions. As the first step, we developed the Simulator Training Replay System. This is an aiding tool in the classroom used to enhance trainees operation performance. This system can synchronously replay plant behavior on CRT display with operators action on a video monitor in the simulator training sessions. This system is used to review plant behavior - trainees response after simulator training sessions and to understand plant behavior - operation procedure before operation training. (author)

  15. Evaluating the Impact of Information Technology Tools to Support the Asthma Medical Home. (United States)

    Matiz, L Adriana; Robbins-Milne, Laura; Krause, M Christine; Peretz, Patricia J; Rausch, John C


    This study aimed to evaluate the impact of information technology tools on the outcomes of children with asthma in the medical home. A registry was established for children aged 4 to 18 years with an ICD-9 code for asthma. Changes to the electronic health record included modifications to notes, care plans, and orders. A retrospective analysis of emergency department and in-patient utilization for a cohort of patients was conducted from July 2009 through June 2013. Of the study population (n = 1217), 65% had a classification of asthma severity and 63% were risk-stratified. Seventy percent had a control assessment at least once. Care plan use increased from 5% to 22% and enrollment in care coordination increased from 0.1% to 4%. After 3 years, there was a reduction of emergency department and inpatient admissions for asthma (P technology tools was associated with improved asthma outcomes. © The Author(s) 2015.

  16. Social media as a beneficial tool to support preterm infants and parents


    Marjan Ghazisaeedi


    Home care, continuous follow-up, and endless post discharge support play vital role in preventing the emergence of mental and physical disabilities and death among preterm infants. Providing necessary care and support for such infants requires huge financial and human resources and exposes heavy costs on hygiene and health system. Internet and information sharing applications, particularly Web 2.0, and social media present innovative techniques to provide a convenient channel to exch...

  17. Sustain the Mission Project: Energy and Water Costing Methodology and Decision Support Tool (United States)


    plant costs (operating, capital, personnel) (HQDA G-4, Office of Director of Supply, 164th Quartermaster Corps Support Group). 2.7 Garrison...bottles on palettes 50% contractor 50% military 40% 100 MRAP Leg 2: BSB to Consuming Unit 8,400 1 liter bottles on palettes 100% military 40...a commercial plant in theater (Anaconda); continuous operation of plant at peak load, 18 hours/day, 365 days/year. 7. Army supports commercial

  18. Tool Support for Collaborative Teaching and Learning of Object-Oriented Modelling

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Klaus Marius; Ratzer, Anne Vinter


    Modeling is central to doing and learning object-oriented development. We present a new tool, Ideogramic UML, for gesture-based collaborative modeling with the Unified Modeling Language (UML), which can be used to collaboratively teach and learn modeling. Furthermore, we discuss how we have effec...... effectively used Ideogramic UML to teach object-oriented modeling and the UML to groups of students using the UML for project assignments....

  19. Development of software tool support for enterprise architecture in small and medium-sized enterprises


    Dumeez, Joost; Bernaert, Maxime; Poels, Geert


    Part 4: Enterprise Modelling Approaches and Tools for Agility and Flexibility; International audience; Enterprise architecture (EA) is used to improve the alignment of different facets of a company. The recognition for the need of EA in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) has recently risen as a means to manage complexity and change [1]. Due to the specific problems and characteristics of SMEs, a different approach is necessary. CHOOSE was therefore developed as an EA approach focused o...

  20. Decision Support Tool for Deep Energy Efficiency Retrofits in DoD Installations (United States)


    building energy background at the level of an energy manager or equivalent the tool developers need to have a strong software and HVAC-modeling...Methodology developed for the analysis of energy performance and retrofit screening of DoD facilities...Anthony Martinez, Ruben Ramos, Andres Hinojosa, and Jerry McCall • Fort Bragg: Melinda Harrington and Brian Thompson This page left blank

  1. The relevance of thermal hydraulics pipeline simulation as a regulatory support tool

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Silva, Patricia Mannarino; Santos, Almir Beserra dos [Agencia Nacional do Petroleo, Gas Natural e Biocombustiveis (ANP), Rio de Janeiro, RJ (Brazil)


    The capacity definition of a pipeline, along with its allocation, is very relevant to assure market transparency, nondiscriminatory access, security of supply, and also to give consistent signs for expansion needs. Nevertheless, the capacity definition is a controversial issue, and may widely vary depending on the technical and commercial assumptions made. To calculate a pipeline's nominal capacity, there are a variety of simulation tools, which include steady state, transient and on-line computer programs. It is desirable that the simulation tool is robust enough to predict the pipeline's capacity under different conditions. There are many variables that impact the flow through a pipeline, like gas characteristics, pipe and environmental variables. Designing a thermal model is a time-consuming task that requests understanding the level of detail need, in order to achieve success in its application. This article discusses the capacity definition, its role and calculation guidelines, describes ANP's experience with capacity calculation and further challenges according to the new regulation, and debates the role of thermal hydraulic simulation as a regulatory tool. (author)

  2. New Heterofunctional Supports Based on Glutaraldehyde-Activation: A Tool for Enzyme Immobilization at Neutral pH. (United States)

    Melo, Ricardo Rodrigues de; Alnoch, Robson Carlos; Vilela, Adriana Ferreira Lopes; Souza, Emanuel Maltempi de; Krieger, Nadia; Ruller, Roberto; Sato, Hélia Harumi; Mateo, Cesar


    Immobilization is an exciting alternative to improve the stability of enzymatic processes. However, part of the applied covalent strategies for immobilization uses specific conditions, generally alkaline pH, where some enzymes are not stable. Here, a new generation of heterofunctional supports with application at neutral pH conditions was proposed. New supports were developed with different bifunctional groups (i.e., hydrophobic or carboxylic/metal) capable of adsorbing biocatalysts at different regions (hydrophobic or histidine richest place), together with a glutaraldehyde group that promotes an irreversible immobilization at neutral conditions. To verify these supports, a multi-protein model system ( E. coli extract) and four enzymes ( Candida rugosa lipase, metagenomic lipase, β-galactosidase and β-glucosidase) were used. The immobilization mechanism was tested and indicated that moderate ionic strength should be applied to avoid possible unspecific adsorption. The use of different supports allowed the immobilization of most of the proteins contained in a crude protein extract. In addition, different supports yielded catalysts of the tested enzymes with different catalytic properties. At neutral pH, the new supports were able to adsorb and covalently immobilize the four enzymes tested with different recovered activity values. Notably, the use of these supports proved to be an efficient alternative tool for enzyme immobilization at neutral pH.

  3. Designing a Business Model for Environmental Monitoring Services Using Fast MCDS Innovation Support Tools

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tuomo Eskelinen


    Full Text Available The free availability of open data provides opportunities to start new businesses and gain business intelligence. However, although data is often used to support decisions and actions, the possibilities offered by modern sensor technologies with connections to cloud-based data collection services are not being effectively capitalized. Data collection systems are also not generally open source solutions, even though open and flexibly adjustable systems would broaden the opportunities for solutions and larger revenue streams. In this article, we used action research methods to discover new business opportunities in a semi-open information system that utilizes environmental monitoring data. We applied a four-stage innovation process for industry, which included context definition, idea generation, and selection, and produced multi-criteria decision support (MCDS data to help the design of business model. This was done to reveal business opportunities for an environmental monitoring service. Among these opportunities, one service-style business model canvas was identified as feasible and selected for further development. We identified items that are needed in the commercialization process of environmental monitoring services. Our process combines open environmental monitoring data, participative innovation process, and MCDS support, and it supports and accelerates a co-creative business model creation process that is cost-beneficial in terms of saving time. The results are applicable to the creation of an open data information system that supports data-driven innovation.

  4. From Documentation Images to Restauration Support Tools: a Path Following the Neptune Fountain in Bologna Design Process (United States)

    Apollonio, F. I.; Ballabeni, M.; Bertacchi, S.; Fallavollita, F.; Foschi, R.; Gaiani, M.


    The sixteenth-century Fountain of Neptune is one of Bologna's most renowned landmarks. During the recent restoration activities of the monumental sculpture group, consisting in precious marbles and highly refined bronzes with water jets, a photographic campaign has been carried out exclusively for documentation purposes of the current state of preservation of the complex. Nevertheless, the highquality imagery was used for a different use, namely to create a 3D digital model accurate in shape and color by means of automated photogrammetric techniques and a robust customized pipeline. This 3D model was used as basic tool to support many and different activities of the restoration site. The paper describes the 3D model construction technique used and the most important applications in which it was used as support tool for restoration: (i) reliable documentation of the actual state; (ii) surface cleaning analysis; (iii) new water system and jets; (iv) new lighting design simulation; (v) support for preliminary analysis and projectual studies related to hardly accessible areas; (vi) structural analysis; (vii) base for filling gaps or missing elements through 3D printing; (viii) high-quality visualization and rendering and (ix) support for data modelling and semantic-based diagrams.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. I. Apollonio


    Full Text Available The sixteenth-century Fountain of Neptune is one of Bologna’s most renowned landmarks. During the recent restoration activities of the monumental sculpture group, consisting in precious marbles and highly refined bronzes with water jets, a photographic campaign has been carried out exclusively for documentation purposes of the current state of preservation of the complex. Nevertheless, the highquality imagery was used for a different use, namely to create a 3D digital model accurate in shape and color by means of automated photogrammetric techniques and a robust customized pipeline. This 3D model was used as basic tool to support many and different activities of the restoration site. The paper describes the 3D model construction technique used and the most important applications in which it was used as support tool for restoration: (i reliable documentation of the actual state; (ii surface cleaning analysis; (iii new water system and jets; (iv new lighting design simulation; (v support for preliminary analysis and projectual studies related to hardly accessible areas; (vi structural analysis; (vii base for filling gaps or missing elements through 3D printing; (viii high-quality visualization and rendering and (ix support for data modelling and semantic-based diagrams.

  6. Care to Plan: An Online Tool That Offers Tailored Support to Dementia Caregivers. (United States)

    Gaugler, Joseph E; Reese, Mark; Tanler, Richard


    Even with the advent of evidence-based interventions, an ongoing concern in clinical practice is how to help dementia caregivers determine what type of support is best for them absent a laborious process of trial and error. To help address this practice gap, the present study developed and tested the feasibility of "Care to Plan" (CtP), an online resource for dementia caregivers (e.g., relatives or unpaid nonrelatives) that generates tailored support recommendations. Care to Plan was developed using an iterative prototype and testing process with the assistance of a 29-member Community Advisory Board. A parallel-convergent mixed methods design (quan + QUAL) was used that included a post-CtP survey and a brief semistructured interview to capture in-depth information on the utility and feasibility of CtP. The sample included 30 caregivers of persons with dementia. The integrated qualitative and quantitative data indicated that CtP was simple and easy to understand, the streamlined visual layout facilitated utility, and the individualized recommendations could meet the needs of users. Key barriers to use included the need for additional features (e.g., video introductions of caregiver support types) to further guide dementia caregivers' potential use of tailored support. The multiple data sources underscore the high feasibility and utility of CtP. By describing, identifying, and prioritizing support, CtP could help to improve the care planning process for dementia caregivers. Future dissemination efforts should aim to demonstrate how CtP can be implemented seamlessly within current family caregiver support systems. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:

  7. On the current needs in European decision support tools for contaminated areas

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Andersson, Kasper Grann


    As part of the ongoing European project NERIS-TP, a revision has been made of some parameters influencing dose estimates in the European emergency management decision support systems RODOS and ARGOS. On the basis of survey data, the estimates of the time fractions typically spent indoors and outd......As part of the ongoing European project NERIS-TP, a revision has been made of some parameters influencing dose estimates in the European emergency management decision support systems RODOS and ARGOS. On the basis of survey data, the estimates of the time fractions typically spent indoors...

  8. Collaborative Software Development in Support of Fast Adaptive AeroSpace Tools (FAAST) (United States)

    Kleb, William L.; Nielsen, Eric J.; Gnoffo, Peter A.; Park, Michael A.; Wood, William A.


    A collaborative software development approach is described. The software product is an adaptation of proven computational capabilities combined with new capabilities to form the Agency's next generation aerothermodynamic and aerodynamic analysis and design tools. To efficiently produce a cohesive, robust, and extensible software suite, the approach uses agile software development techniques; specifically, project retrospectives, the Scrum status meeting format, and a subset of Extreme Programming's coding practices are employed. Examples are provided which demonstrate the substantial benefits derived from employing these practices. Also included is a discussion of issues encountered when porting legacy Fortran 77 code to Fortran 95 and a Fortran 95 coding standard.

  9. Support Tool in the Diagnosis of Sales Price of Dental Plans (United States)

    de Oliveira, Raquel A. F.; Lóscio, Bernadette F.; Pinheiro, Plácido Rogério

    It shows the formatting of a table of price to be used by a company is an activity that cannot be performed only empirically. The application of statistical methodologies and actuarial comes, increasingly, being used widely by companies primarily in the business of health plan. The increasing use of these techniques ensures that a manager of these companies more security and lower risk exposure while assisting them in making decisions. The aim of this paper is to present a tool for calculating the price of dental health developed in Java and PL/PgSQL.

  10. Decision support tool to evaluate alternative policies regulating wind integration into autonomous energy systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zouros, N.; Contaxis, G.C.; Kabouris, J.


    Integration of wind power into autonomous electricity systems strongly depends on the specific technical characteristics of these systems; the regulations applied should take into account physical system constraints. Introduction of market rules makes the issue even more complicated since the interests of the market participants often conflict each other. In this paper, an integrated tool for the comparative assessment of alternative regulatory policies is presented along with a methodology for decision-making, based on alternative scenarios analysis. The social welfare concept is followed instead of the traditional Least Cost Planning

  11. Consensus As A Tool Supporting Customer Behaviour Prediction In Social Crm Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam Czyszczoń


    Full Text Available Social Customer Relationship Management systems represent a new area in thefield of CRM which together with rapid development of Social Networks andSocial Media has acquired strategic importance for many companies. As a responseto ongoing challenges related to growing customer expectations, in thispaper we present intelligent tools for customer behaviour prediction in SocialCRM systems. The use of the consensus approach is aimed at resolving contradictoryforecasts of customer behaviour provided by different agents working asindependent Artificial Neural Networks systems. The goal of the presented toolis to improve prediction functionality of customer behaviour.

  12. Fifteen years SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics: life science databases, tools and support. (United States)

    Stockinger, Heinz; Altenhoff, Adrian M; Arnold, Konstantin; Bairoch, Amos; Bastian, Frederic; Bergmann, Sven; Bougueleret, Lydie; Bucher, Philipp; Delorenzi, Mauro; Lane, Lydie; Le Mercier, Philippe; Lisacek, Frédérique; Michielin, Olivier; Palagi, Patricia M; Rougemont, Jacques; Schwede, Torsten; von Mering, Christian; van Nimwegen, Erik; Walther, Daniel; Xenarios, Ioannis; Zavolan, Mihaela; Zdobnov, Evgeny M; Zoete, Vincent; Appel, Ron D


    The SIB Swiss Institute of Bioinformatics ( was created in 1998 as an institution to foster excellence in bioinformatics. It is renowned worldwide for its databases and software tools, such as UniProtKB/Swiss-Prot, PROSITE, SWISS-MODEL, STRING, etc, that are all accessible on, SIB's Bioinformatics Resource Portal. This article provides an overview of the scientific and training resources SIB has consistently been offering to the life science community for more than 15 years. © The Author(s) 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

  13. Decision support tools for collaborative marine spatial planning: identifying potential sites for tidal energy devices around the Mull of Kintyre, Scotland

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Janssen, R.; Arciniegas, G.A.; Alexander, K.A.


    The expansion of offshore renewable energy production, such as wind, wave and tidal energy, is likely to lead to conflict between different users of the sea. Two types of spatial decision support tools were developed to support stakeholder workshops. A value mapping tool combines regional attributes

  14. Using the Tools in TRADE I: A Decision Support System for Traffic Light maintenance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Vlijmen, S.F.M.; Wieringa, Roelf J.


    In this report we develop a specification of requirements and conceptual design of a decision support system for maintenance of the lamps in traffic regulation systems. Requirements and design are both specified using semi-formal techniques in TRADE (Toolkit for Requirements and Design Engineering).

  15. The NETLAKE Metadatabase – A tool to support automatic monitoring on lakes in Europe and beyond

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Jennings, E.; de Eyto, E.; Laas, A.; Pierson, D. C.; Mircheva, G.; Naumoski, A.; Clarke, A.; Helay, M.; Šumberová, Kateřina; Langenhaun, D.


    Roč. 26, č. 4 (2017), s. 95-100 ISSN 1539-607X Grant - others:COST(XE) ES1201 Program:ES Institutional support: RVO:67985939 Keywords : sensor-based monitoring * data sharing * lakes and reservoirs Subject RIV: DA - Hydrology ; Limnology OBOR OECD: Marine biology, freshwater biology, limnology

  16. Simulation and gaming as a support tool for lean manufacturing systems - a case example from industry

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Zee, DJ; Slomp, J; Kuhl, M.E.; Steiger, N.M.; Armstrong, F.B.; Joines, J.


    In this article we illustrate how simulation and gaming can be used to support lean manufacturing systems. More in particular we study a case example from industry - a manual assembly line for mail-inserting systems - for which we have developed a simulation game. This paper focuses on the

  17. Using the iPad as a Tool to Support Literacy Instruction (United States)

    Hutchison, Amy; Beschorner, Beth


    The purpose of this case study was to examine how iPads could be integrated into literacy instruction in a fourth-grade classroom in ways consistent with new conceptions of literacy and in ways that transform traditional literacy instruction by supporting readers in creating multimodal responses to reading. Results indicate that several features…

  18. Digital Tools to Support Knowledge Sharing and Cooperation in High-Investment Product-Services

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aromaa, S.; Leino, S.P.; Reyes-Lecuona, A.; Frangakis, N.; Berglund, J.; Bosch, T.; Rhijn, G. van; Granholm, G.


    The manufacturing industry needs to adapt their product-services to meet customer requirements in today’s rapidly changing markets. This paper presents how technologies can support knowledge sharing and collaboration during product-service processes. This work was part of the European Union

  19. Technology Use as a Support Tool by Secondary Students with Autism (United States)

    Hedges, Susan H.; Odom, Samuel L.; Hume, Kara; Sam, Ann


    The purpose of this study was to examine how secondary students with autism spectrum disorder use technology in supportive ways. In this self-report survey study, 472 adolescents with autism spectrum disorder enrolled in high school described the forms of technology they use and purposes for which they use it. Students reported the benefits as…

  20. The drought calculator: decision support tool for predicting forage growth during drought (United States)

    The Drought Calculator (DC), a spreadsheet-based decision support system, was developed to help ranchers and range managers predict reductions in forage production due to drought. Forage growth potential (FGP) is predicted as a weighted average of monthly precipitation during the spring. Precipita...

  1. Technologies and spatial data for modern land governance. Tools to support the cadastral reform

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flavio Celestino Ferrante


    Full Text Available This article outlines the methods and activities, in the field of mapping, in support of the important process of renewal of the entire cadastral system. It describes the technology and spatial data currently available that can assist in setting up complex issues of reforming appraisal system and, more generally, in the processes against tax evasion in real estate.

  2. A Model-level Mutation Tool to Support the Assessment of the Test Case Quality

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Condori Fernandez, Nelly; Granda, Maria Fernanda; Vos, Tanja E.J.; Pastor, Oscar; Gołuchowski, M.; Pańkowska, C.; Linger, H.; Schneider, C.


    Although mutation testing is a well-known technique for assessing the quality of tests, there is not a lot of support available for model-level mutation analysis. It is also considered to be expensive due to: (i) the large number of mutants generated; ii) the time-consuming activity of determining


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    N. R. Stéphenne


    Full Text Available This paper describes a WebGIS prototype developed for the Walloon administration to improve the communication and the management of sediments dredging actions carried out in rivers and lakes. In Wallonia, levelling dredged sediments on banks requires an official authorization from the administration. This request refers to geospatial datasets such as the official land use map, the cadastral map or the distance to potential pollution sources. Centralising geodatabases within a web interface facilitate the management of these authorizations for the managers and the central administration. The proposed system integrates various data from disparate sources. Some issues in map scale, spatial search quality and cartographic visualisation are discussed in this paper with the solutions provided. The prototype web application is currently discussed with some potential users in order to understand in which way this tool facilitate the communication, the management and the quality of the authorisation process. The structure of the paper states the why, what, who and how of this communication tool with a special focus on errors and uncertainties.

  4. Feasibility of streamlining an interactive Bayesian-based diagnostic support tool designed for clinical practice (United States)

    Chen, Po-Hao; Botzolakis, Emmanuel; Mohan, Suyash; Bryan, R. N.; Cook, Tessa


    In radiology, diagnostic errors occur either through the failure of detection or incorrect interpretation. Errors are estimated to occur in 30-35% of all exams and contribute to 40-54% of medical malpractice litigations. In this work, we focus on reducing incorrect interpretation of known imaging features. Existing literature categorizes cognitive bias leading a radiologist to an incorrect diagnosis despite having correctly recognized the abnormal imaging features: anchoring bias, framing effect, availability bias, and premature closure. Computational methods make a unique contribution, as they do not exhibit the same cognitive biases as a human. Bayesian networks formalize the diagnostic process. They modify pre-test diagnostic probabilities using clinical and imaging features, arriving at a post-test probability for each possible diagnosis. To translate Bayesian networks to clinical practice, we implemented an entirely web-based open-source software tool. In this tool, the radiologist first selects a network of choice (e.g. basal ganglia). Then, large, clearly labeled buttons displaying salient imaging features are displayed on the screen serving both as a checklist and for input. As the radiologist inputs the value of an extracted imaging feature, the conditional probabilities of each possible diagnosis are updated. The software presents its level of diagnostic discrimination using a Pareto distribution chart, updated with each additional imaging feature. Active collaboration with the clinical radiologist is a feasible approach to software design and leads to design decisions closely coupling the complex mathematics of conditional probability in Bayesian networks with practice.

  5. A Cell Migration Tracking Tool Supports Coupling of Tissue Rotation to Elongation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dong-Yuan Chen


    Full Text Available Cell migration is indispensable to morphogenesis and homeostasis. Live imaging allows mechanistic insights, but long-term observation can alter normal biology, and tools to track movements in vivo without perturbation are lacking. We develop here a tool called M-TRAIL (matrix-labeling technique for real-time and inferred location, which reveals migration histories in fixed tissues. Using clones that overexpress GFP-tagged extracellular matrix (ECM components, motility trajectories are mapped based on durable traces deposited onto basement membrane. We applied M-TRAIL to Drosophila follicle rotation, comparing in vivo and ex vivo migratory dynamics. The rate, trajectory, and cessation of rotation in wild-type (WT follicles measured in vivo and ex vivo were identical, as was rotation failure in fat2 mutants. However, follicles carrying intracellularly truncated Fat2, previously reported to lack rotation ex vivo, in fact rotate in vivo at a reduced speed, thus revalidating the hypothesis that rotation is required for tissue elongation. The M-TRAIL approach could be applied to track and quantitate in vivo cell motility in other tissues and organisms.

  6. CAD-RADS - a new clinical decision support tool for coronary computed tomography angiography. (United States)

    Foldyna, Borek; Szilveszter, Bálint; Scholtz, Jan-Erik; Banerji, Dahlia; Maurovich-Horvat, Pál; Hoffmann, Udo


    Coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA) has been established as an accurate method to non-invasively assess coronary artery disease (CAD). The proposed 'Coronary Artery Disease Reporting and Data System' (CAD-RADS) may enable standardised reporting of the broad spectrum of coronary CTA findings related to the presence, extent and composition of coronary atherosclerosis. The CAD-RADS classification is a comprehensive tool for summarising findings on a per-patient-basis dependent on the highest-grade coronary artery lesion, ranging from CAD-RADS 0 (absence of CAD) to CAD-RADS 5 (total occlusion of a coronary artery). In addition, it provides suggestions for clinical management for each classification, including further testing and therapeutic options. Despite some limitations, CAD-RADS may facilitate improved communication between imagers and patient caregivers. As such, CAD-RADS may enable a more efficient use of coronary CTA leading to more accurate utilisation of invasive coronary angiograms. Furthermore, widespread use of CAD-RADS may facilitate registry-based research of diagnostic and prognostic aspects of CTA. • CAD-RADS is a tool for standardising coronary CTA reports. • CAD-RADS includes clinical treatment recommendations based on CTA findings. • CAD-RADS has the potential to reduce variability of CTA reports.

  7. Megasite Management Tool (mmt): a Decision Support System Built Using Mapwindow Activex Control (United States)

    Pulsani, B. R.


    Megasite Management Tool (MMT) is planning and evaluation software for contaminated sites. Using different statistical modules, MMT produces maps which help decision makers in rehabilitating contaminated sites. The input data used by MMT is of geographic nature and exists as shapefile and raster format. As MMT is built using simple windows forms application, the objective of the study was to find a way to visualize geographic data and to allow the user to edit its attribute information. Therefore, the application requirement was to find GIS libraries which offer capabilities such as (1) map viewer with navigation tools (2) library to read/write geographic data and (3) software which allows free distribution of the developed components. A research on these requirements led to the discovery of MapWindow ActiveX components which not only offered these capabilities but also provided free and open source licensing options for redistribution. Although considerable amount of reports and publications exist on MMT, the major contribution provided by MapWindow libraries have been under played. The current study emphasises upon the contribution and advantages MapWindow ActiveX provides for incorporating GIS functionality to an already existing application. Similar components for other languages have also been reviewed.

  8. FAG – a management support tool with BI techniques to assist teachers in the virtual learning environment Moodle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luciana Silva Zapparolli


    Full Text Available One of the great challenges in distance-learning is to follow the actions of the teachers/tutors and also the actions of students during the process of teaching and learning. This article presents the FAG Tool integrated with the LMS Moodle was developed to help managers of the Distance Education environment to monitor the actions of teachers/tutors and also teachers/tutors in the follow-up of student actions. Through the techniques of Business Intelligence (BI and Learning Analytics (LA, the tool generates analytical reports and dashboards, presenting a holistic and transversal view, being this vision the differential of this tool. The use of FAG allows teachers/tutors to monitor the participation of all their students in all virtual rooms under their responsibility and thus take corrective measures in the teaching and learning process, such as reducing the risk of avoidance. For the managers, it can be considered as a support tool for decision making regarding the faculty, maintaining or not the teacher/tutor in the process of teaching and learning or even be a base to enlarge or reduce their classes depending on their performance in the virtual environment. Through the use of the FAG, this decision-making can happen during the teaching and learning process and not only after the end, as is usual, because the reports are easy to understand and present accurate information in time to ensure the success of the teaching and learning process.

  9. Results from evaluations of models and cost-effectiveness tools to support introduction decisions for new vaccines need critical appraisal

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moorthy Vasee


    Full Text Available Abstract The World Health Organization (WHO recommends that the cost-effectiveness (CE of introducing new vaccines be considered before such a programme is implemented. However, in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs, it is often challenging to perform and interpret the results of model-based economic appraisals of vaccines that benefit from locally relevant data. As a result, WHO embarked on a series of consultations to assess economic analytical tools to support vaccine introduction decisions for pneumococcal, rotavirus and human papillomavirus vaccines. The objectives of these assessments are to provide decision makers with a menu of existing CE tools for vaccines and their characteristics rather than to endorse the use of a single tool. The outcome will provide policy makers in LMICs with information about the feasibility of applying these models to inform their own decision making. We argue that if models and CE analyses are used to inform decisions, they ought to be critically appraised beforehand, including a transparent evaluation of their structure, assumptions and data sources (in isolation or in comparison to similar tools, so that decision makers can use them while being fully aware of their robustness and limitations.

  10. Bridging the gap: leveraging business intelligence tools in support of patient safety and financial effectiveness. (United States)

    Ferranti, Jeffrey M; Langman, Matthew K; Tanaka, David; McCall, Jonathan; Ahmad, Asif


    Healthcare is increasingly dependent upon information technology (IT), but the accumulation of data has outpaced our capacity to use it to improve operating efficiency, clinical quality, and financial effectiveness. Moreover, hospitals have lagged in adopting thoughtful analytic approaches that would allow operational leaders and providers to capitalize upon existing data stores. In this manuscript, we propose a fundamental re-evaluation of strategic IT investments in healthcare, with the goal of increasing efficiency, reducing costs, and improving outcomes through the targeted application of health analytics. We also present three case studies that illustrate the use of health analytics to leverage pre-existing data resources to support improvements in patient safety and quality of care, to increase the accuracy of billing and collection, and support emerging health issues. We believe that such active investment in health analytics will prove essential to realizing the full promise of investments in electronic clinical systems.

  11. New Abstraction Networks and a New Visualization Tool in Support of Auditing the SNOMED CT Content (United States)

    Geller, James; Ochs, Christopher; Perl, Yehoshua; Xu, Junchuan


    Medical terminologies are large and complex. Frequently, errors are hidden in this complexity. Our objective is to find such errors, which can be aided by deriving abstraction networks from a large terminology. Abstraction networks preserve important features but eliminate many minor details, which are often not useful for identifying errors. Providing visualizations for such abstraction networks aids auditors by allowing them to quickly focus on elements of interest within a terminology. Previously we introduced area taxonomies and partial area taxonomies for SNOMED CT. In this paper, two advanced, novel kinds of abstraction networks, the relationship-constrained partial area subtaxonomy and the root-constrained partial area subtaxonomy are defined and their benefits are demonstrated. We also describe BLUSNO, an innovative software tool for quickly generating and visualizing these SNOMED CT abstraction networks. BLUSNO is a dynamic, interactive system that provides quick access to well organized information about SNOMED CT. PMID:23304293

  12. Digital Repositories of Learning Material as a Support Tool for Knowledge Management and Capacity Building

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marmonti, E.


    Full text: For some years, digital repositories are emerging as a de facto standard service for storing, preserving and disseminate knowledge: academic, scientific information and, more recently, primary research data of institutions. Some of the digital repositories host also collections of material classified as learning objects; some others are created to manage only learning objects (LO), as the Learning Objects Digital Repositories, or were built to function as learning objects aggregators. The term “learning object” itself is involving different types of structures, organization and complexity. This paper will show how digital repositories, metadata standards and semantic web technologies can be valuable tools for managing educational content, which can contribute to build a learning and knowledge driven organization. (author

  13. Acquisition Program Lead Systems Integration/Lead Capabilities Integration Decision Support Methodology and Tool (United States)


    business management and has worked for Lone Star Analysis for two years. Prior to joining Lone Star, Jennifer spent six years with Walmart Distribution...Program Manager will develop and execute an approved Acquisition Strategy . This document is the Program Manager’s plan for program execution across the...describes the business, technical, and support strategies that the Program Manager plans to employ to manage program risks and meet program objectives. The

  14. Towards a Tool-Supported Quality Model for Model-Driven Engineering


    Mohagheghi, Parastoo


    This paper reviews definitions of model quality before introducing five properties of models that are important for building high-quality models. These are identified to be correctness, completeness, consistency, comprehensibility and confinement. We have earlier defined a quality model that separates intangible quality goals from tangible quality-carrying properties and practices that should be in place to support these properties.  A part of that work was to define a metamodel for deve...

  15. The hydrogeological well database TANGRAM©: a tool for data processing to support groundwater assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tullia Bonomi


    Full Text Available At the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences of the University of Milano-Bicocca (DISAT-UNIMIB, a hydrogeological well database, called TANGRAM©, has been developed and published on line at, developing an earlier 1989 DOS version. This package can be used to store, display, and process all data related to water wells, including administrative information, well characteristics, stratigraphic logs, water levels, pumping rates, and other hydrogeological information. Currently, the database contains more than 39.200 wells located in the Italian region of Lombardy (90%, Piedmont (9% and Valle d’Aosta (1%. TANGRAM© has been created both as a tool for researches and for public administration’s administrators who have projects in common with DISAT-UNIMIB. Indeed, transferring wells data from paper into TANGRAM© offers both an easier and more robust way to correlate hydrogeological data and a more organized management of the administrative information. Some Administrations use TANGRAM© regularly as a tool for wells data management (Brescia Province, ARPA Valle Aosta. An innovative aspect of the database is the quantitative extraction of stratigraphic data. In the part of the software intended for research purposes, all well logs are translated into 8-digit alphanumeric codes and the user composes the code interpreting the description at each stratigraphic level. So the stratigraphic well data can be coded, then quantified and processed. This is made possible by attributing a weight to the digits of the code for textures. The program calculates the weighted percentage of the chosen lithology, as related to each individual layer. These extractions are the starting point for subsequent hydrogeological studies: well head protection area, reconstruction of the dynamics of flow, realization of the quarry plans and flux and transport hydrogeological models. The results of a two-dimensional distribution of coarse

  16. The GMOseek matrix: a decision support tool for optimizing the detection of genetically modified plants (United States)


    Background Since their first commercialization, the diversity of taxa and the genetic composition of transgene sequences in genetically modified plants (GMOs) are constantly increasing. To date, the detection of GMOs and derived products is commonly performed by PCR-based methods targeting specific DNA sequences introduced into the host genome. Information available regarding the GMOs’ molecular characterization is dispersed and not appropriately organized. For this reason, GMO testing is very challenging and requires more complex screening strategies and decision making schemes, demanding in return the use of efficient bioinformatics tools relying on reliable information. Description The GMOseek matrix was built as a comprehensive, online open-access tabulated database which provides a reliable, comprehensive and user-friendly overview of 328 GMO events and 247 different genetic elements (status: 18/07/2013). The GMOseek matrix is aiming to facilitate GMO detection from plant origin at different phases of the analysis. It assists in selecting the targets for a screening analysis, interpreting the screening results, checking the occurrence of a screening element in a group of selected GMOs, identifying gaps in the available pool of GMO detection methods, and designing a decision tree. The GMOseek matrix is an independent database with effective functionalities in a format facilitating transferability to other platforms. Data were collected from all available sources and experimentally tested where detection methods and certified reference materials (CRMs) were available. Conclusions The GMOseek matrix is currently a unique and very valuable tool with reliable information on GMOs from plant origin and their present genetic elements that enables further development of appropriate strategies for GMO detection. It is flexible enough to be further updated with new information and integrated in different applications and platforms. PMID:23965170

  17. Web 2.0 collaboration tools to support student research in hydrology - an opinion (United States)

    Pathirana, A.; Gersonius, B.; Radhakrishnan, M.


    A growing body of evidence suggests that it is unwise to make the a-priori assumption that university students are ready and eager to embrace modern online technologies employed to enhance the educational experience. We present an opinion on employing Wiki, a popular Web 2.0 technology, in small student groups, based on a case-study of using it customized as a personal learning environment (PLE) for supporting thesis research in hydrology. Since inception in 2006 the system presented has proven to facilitate knowledge construction and peer-communication within and across groups of students of different academic years and to stimulate learning. Being an open ended and egalitarian system, it was a minimal burden to maintain, as all students became content authors and shared responsibility. A number of unintended uses of the system were also observed, like using it as a backup medium and mobile storage. We attribute the success and sustainability of the proposed web 2.0-based approach to the fact that the efforts were not limited to the application of the technology, but comprised the creation of a supporting environment with educational activities organized around it. We propose that Wiki-based PLEs are much more suitable than traditional learning management systems for supporting non-classroom education activities like thesis research in hydrology.

  18. Simulation software support (S3) system a software testing and debugging tool

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Burgess, D.C.; Mahjouri, F.S.


    The largest percentage of technical effort in the software development process is accounted for debugging and testing. It is not unusual for a software development organization to spend over 50% of the total project effort on testing. In the extreme, testing of human-rated software (e.g., nuclear reactor monitoring, training simulator) can cost three to five times as much as all other software engineering steps combined. The Simulation Software Support (S 3 ) System, developed by the Link-Miles Simulation Corporation is ideally suited for real-time simulation applications which involve a large database with models programmed in FORTRAN. This paper will focus on testing elements of the S 3 system. In this paper system support software utilities are provided which enable the loading and execution of modules in the development environment. These elements include the Linking/Loader (LLD) for dynamically linking program modules and loading them into memory and the interactive executive (IEXEC) for controlling the execution of the modules. Features of the Interactive Symbolic Debugger (SD) and the Real Time Executive (RTEXEC) to support the unit and integrated testing will be explored

  19. A3byComp: A Support tool for Basic Implementation of Competency Management Systems in Social Entities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)



    Full Text Available The importance of managing processes related to people working in institutions within the scope of FEAPS evidenced by the increasing incorporation into the strategy of the organizations policies aimed at improving the working conditions of workers and in the development of competence management systems aimed at promoting professional development, which aims greater effectiveness and efficiency in providing support for improving the quality of life of people with disabilities and their families. At the same time, banks have highlighted the need for specific instruments and tools that facilitate the implementation of these systems. In Extremadura, it has been developed a software tool for the implementation of basic competence management systems called A3byComp that has been freely available to the entire network promoting industry collaboration aimed mutual learning.

  20. A spatial decision support tool for estimating population catchments to aid rural and remote health service allocation planning. (United States)

    Schuurman, Nadine; Randall, Ellen; Berube, Myriam


    There is mounting pressure on healthcare planners to manage and contain costs. In rural regions, there is a particular need to rationalize health service allocation to ensure the best possible coverage for a dispersed population. Rural health administrators need to be able to quantify the population affected by their allocation decisions and, therefore, need the capacity to incorporate spatial analyses into their decision-making process. Spatial decision support systems (SDSS) can provide this capability. In this article, we combine geographical information systems (GIS) with a web-based graphical user interface (webGUI) in a SDSS tool that enables rural decision-makers charged with service allocation, to estimate population catchments around specific health services in rural and remote areas. Using this tool, health-care planners can model multiple scenarios to determine the optimal location for health services, as well as the number of people served in each instance.

  1. Refurbishment decision support tools review—Energy and life cycle as key aspects to sustainable refurbishment projects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ferreira, Joaquim; Pinheiro, Manuel Duarte; Brito, Jorge de


    Europe is facing one of its most challenging crises since Great Depression and the construction sector is one of the worst affected. Refurbishment is therefore often suggested as one of the most useful solutions for the current real estate crisis in consolidated areas like the EU. On the other hand, it is imperative to construct buildings according to sustainable principles regarding economic, environmental and social issues. Therefore, proper decision-support methods are needed to help designers, investors and policy makers to choose the most sustainable solution for a refurbishment project, especially for energy retrofit works. This paper reviews the works relating to sustainable refurbishment decision-support tools which have already been developed. For this purpose we have analysed and classified 40 different methods, with particular focus on their main common aims. They are also compared with other classifications proposed. This paper further highlights the role of energy as a driving factor and discusses what other research developments are needed to create related tools for the future that could respond to actual construction requirements. - Highlights: • Sustainable refurbishment as an important challenge. • Proper decision-support methods are needed to refurbishment. • The paper reviews 40 different methods, focusing their main common aims. • The paper highlights the role of the energy as key factor to search sustainability. • It also stresses the importance of life cycle approach in refurbishment projects

  2. The impact of the carer support needs assessment tool (CSNAT in community palliative care using a stepped wedge cluster trial.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Samar M Aoun

    Full Text Available Family caregiving towards the end-of-life entails considerable emotional, social, financial and physical costs for caregivers. Evidence suggests that good support can improve caregiver psychological outcomes. The primary aim of this study was to investigate the impact of using the carer support needs assessment tool (CSNAT, as an intervention to identify and address support needs in end of life home care, on family caregiver outcomes. A stepped wedge design was used to trial the CSNAT intervention in three bases of Silver Chain Hospice Care in Western Australia, 2012-14. The intervention consisted of at least two visits from nurses (2-3 weeks apart to identify, review and address caregivers' needs. The outcome measures for the intervention and control groups were caregiver strain and distress as measured by the Family Appraisal of Caregiving Questionnaire (FACQ-PC, caregiver mental and physical health as measured by SF-12v2, and caregiver workload as measured by extent of caregiver assistance with activities of daily living, at baseline and follow up. Total recruitment was 620. There was 45% attrition for each group between baseline and follow-up mainly due to patient deaths resulting in 322 caregivers completing the study (233 in the intervention group and 89 in the control group. At follow-up, the intervention group showed significant reduction in caregiver strain relative to controls, p=0.018, d=0.348 (95% CI 0.25 to 0.41. Priority support needs identified by caregivers included knowing what to expect in the future, having time for yourself in the day and dealing with your feelings and worries. Despite the challenges at the clinician, organisational and trial levels, the CSNAT intervention led to an improvement in caregiver strain. Effective implementation of an evidence-informed and caregiver-led tool represents a necessary step towards helping palliative care providers better assess and address caregiver needs, ensuring adequate family

  3. A diagnostic support tool for lumbar spinal stenosis: a self-administered, self-reported history questionnaire

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yokoyama Toru


    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is no validated gold-standard diagnostic support tool for LSS, and therefore an accurate diagnosis depends on clinical assessment. Assessment of the diagnostic value of the history of the patient requires an evaluation of the differences and overlap of symptoms of the radicular and cauda equina types; however, no tool is available for evaluation of the LSS category. We attempted to develop a self-administered, self-reported history questionnaire as a diagnostic support tool for LSS using a clinical epidemiological approach. The aim of the present study was to use this tool to assess the diagnostic value of the history of the patient for categorization of LSS. Methods The initial derivation study included 137 patients with LSS and 97 with lumbar disc herniation who successfully recovered following surgical treatment. The LSS patients were categorized into radicular and cauda equina types based on history, physical examinations, and MRI. Predictive factors for overlapping symptoms between the two types and for cauda equina symptoms in LSS were derived by univariate analysis. A self-administered, self-reported history questionnaire (SSHQ was developed based on these findings. A prospective derivation study was then performed in a series of 115 patients with LSS who completed the SSHQ before surgery. All these patients recovered following surgical treatment. The sensitivity of the SSHQ was calculated and clinical prediction rules for LSS were developed. A validation study was subsequently performed on 250 outpatients who complained of lower back pain with or without leg symptoms. The sensitivity and specificity of the SSHQ were calculated, and the test-retest reliability over two weeks was investigated in 217 patients whose symptoms remained unchanged. Results The key predictive factors for overlapping symptoms between the two categories of LSS were age > 50, lower-extremity pain or numbness, increased pain when walking

  4. Web 2.0 collaboration tool to support student research in hydrology – an opinion

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Radhakrishnan


    Full Text Available A growing body of evidence suggests that it is unwise to make the a-priori assumption that university students are ready and eager to embrace modern online technologies employed to enhance the educational experience. We present our opinion on employing Wiki, a popular Web 2.0 technology, in small student groups, based on a case-study of using it customized to work as a personal learning environment (PLE1 (Fiedler and Väljataga, 2011 for supporting thesis research in hydrology. Since inception in 2006, the system presented has proven to facilitate knowledge construction and peer-communication within and across groups of students of different academic years and to stimulate learning. Being an open ended and egalitarian system, it was a minimal burden to maintain, as all students became content authors and shared responsibility. A number of unintended uses of the system were also observed, like using it as a backup medium and mobile storage. We attribute the success and sustainability of the proposed Web 2.0-based approach to the fact that the efforts were not limited to the application of the technology, but comprised the creation of a supporting environment with educational activities organized around it. We propose that Wiki-based PLEs are much more suitable than traditional learning management systems for supporting non-classroom education activities like thesis research in hydrology. 1Here we use the term PLE to refer to the conceptual framework to make the process of knowledge construction a personalized experience – rather than to refer to the technology (in this case Wiki used to attempt implementing such a system.

  5. Web 2.0 collaboration tool to support student research in hydrology - an opinion (United States)

    Pathirana, A.; Gersonius, B.; Radhakrishnan, M.


    A growing body of evidence suggests that it is unwise to make the a-priori assumption that university students are ready and eager to embrace modern online technologies employed to enhance the educational experience. We present our opinion on employing Wiki, a popular Web 2.0 technology, in small student groups, based on a case-study of using it customized to work as a personal learning environment (PLE1) (Fiedler and Väljataga, 2011) for supporting thesis research in hydrology. Since inception in 2006, the system presented has proven to facilitate knowledge construction and peer-communication within and across groups of students of different academic years and to stimulate learning. Being an open ended and egalitarian system, it was a minimal burden to maintain, as all students became content authors and shared responsibility. A number of unintended uses of the system were also observed, like using it as a backup medium and mobile storage. We attribute the success and sustainability of the proposed Web 2.0-based approach to the fact that the efforts were not limited to the application of the technology, but comprised the creation of a supporting environment with educational activities organized around it. We propose that Wiki-based PLEs are much more suitable than traditional learning management systems for supporting non-classroom education activities like thesis research in hydrology. 1Here we use the term PLE to refer to the conceptual framework to make the process of knowledge construction a personalized experience - rather than to refer to the technology (in this case Wiki) used to attempt implementing such a system.

  6. Student use of Web 2.0 tools to support argumentation in a high school science classroom (United States)

    Weible, Jennifer L.

    This ethnographic study is an investigation into how two classes of chemistry students (n=35) from a low-income high school with a one-to-one laptop initiative used Web 2.0 tools to support participation in the science practice of argumentation (i.e., sensemaking, articulating understandings, and persuading an audience) during a unit on alternative energy. The science curriculum utilized the Technology-Enhanced Inquiry Tools for Science Education as a pedagogical framework (Kim, Hannafin, & Bryan, 2007). Video recordings of the classroom work, small group discussions, and focus group interviews, documents, screen shots, wiki evidence, and student produced multi-media artifacts were the data analyzed for this study. Open and focused coding techniques, counts of social tags and wiki moves, and interpretive analyses were used to find patterns in the data. The study found that the tools of social bookmarking, wiki, and persuasive multimedia artifacts supported participation in argumentation. In addition, students utilized the affordances of the technologies in multiple ways to communicate, collaborate, manage the work of others, and efficiently complete their science project. This study also found that technologically enhanced science curriculum can bridge students' everyday and scientific understandings of making meaning, articulating understandings, and persuading others of their point of view. As a result, implications from this work include a set of design principles for science inquiry learning that utilize technology. This study suggests new consideration of analytical methodology that blends wiki data analytics and video data. It also suggests that utilizing technology as a bridging strategy serves two roles within classrooms: (a) deepening students' understanding of alternative energy science content and (b) supporting students as they learn to participate in the practices of argumentation.

  7. Mechanistic modeling of cyclic voltammetry: A helpful tool for understanding biosensor principles and supporting design optimization

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Semenova, Daria; Zubov, Alexandr; Silina, Yuliya E.


    development and to perform cyclic voltammetry (CV) measurements. As initial step in the model development we proposed the interpretation of experimental voltammograms obtained in the absence of substrate (glucose). The model equations describe dynamic diffusion and reaction of the involved species (oxygen...... optimization were independently supported by results of cyclic voltammetry and multi-analytical studies, such as scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) and liquid chromatography-electrospray ionization-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-ESI-MS/MS). Remarkably, a linear...

  8. A Path to Operating System and Runtime Support for Extreme Scale Tools

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Miller, Barton P; Roth, Philip; DelSignore, John


    In this project, we cast distributed resource access as operations on files in a global name space and developed a common, scalable solution for group operations on distributed processes and files. The resulting solution enables tool and middleware developers to quickly create new scalable software or easily improve the scalability of existing software. The cornerstone of the project was the design of a new programming idiom called group file operations that eliminates iterative behavior when a single process must apply the same set of file operations to a group of related files. To demonstrate our novel and scalable ideas for group file operations and global name space composition, we developed a group file system called TBON-FS that leverages a tree-based overlay network (TBON), specifically MRNet, for logarithmic communication and distributed data aggregation. We also developed proc++, a new synthetic file system co-designed for use in scalable group file operations. Over the course of the project, we evaluated the utility and performance of group file operations, global name space composition, TBON-FS, and proc++ in three case studies. The first study focused on the ease in using group file operations and TBON-FS to quickly develop several new scalable tools for distributed system administration and monitoring. The second study evaluated the integration of group file operation and TBON-FS within the Ganglia Distributed Monitoring System to improve its scalability for clusters. The final study involved the integration of group file operations, TBON-FS, and proc++ within TotalView, the widely-used parallel debugger. For this project, the work of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) team occurred primarily in two directions: bringing the MRNet tree-based overlay network (TBON) implementation to the Cray XT platform, and investigating techniques for predicting the performance of MRNet topologies on such systems. Rogue Wave Software (RWS), formerly Total

  9. Development of Nutrition Education Using support tools to select a well-balanced diet in the Homemaking in Elementary School


    Itou, Keiko; Yamaguchi, Satoshi; Yamamoto, Nami; Ishida, Hiroko


    The implementation plan of the nutrition education for children of 5th graders of the elementary school using the support tools to select a well-balanced diet was developed and practiced. The children’ behavior in the learning process were recorded and analyzed to empirically examine the effect of the nutrition education on the students in their learning process of nutrition knowledge as well as in their acquiring process of behavior to arrange a well-balanced diet.   The results were as ...

  10. Visual Support in Children with Autism Spectrum Development as a Tool for Changing Problem Behavior

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    olpakova L.O.,


    Full Text Available The paper presents data of observations made in a group of 10 children with autism spectrum disorder aged 5-8 years experiencing behavioral problems and difficulties with communication and social interaction. A behavioral intervention was carried out in the group basing on the principles of applied behavioral analysis (ABA. Following the primary test and with accordance to the parents’ requests, a team of specialists worked over the period of six months attempting to change problem behaviors and to compensate for academic deficiencies in the children. Each day the specialists along with the parents collected data and introduced necessary corrections into the intervention plans. Since all children in the group could barely understand speech and had much difficulty with communication, one of the core methods employed in the work was visual support which became a basic element in every technique applied. Applying visual supports in education settings as well as at home contributed much to the compensation of the difficulties related to speech understanding and helped decrease the level of anxiety in the children, which, in turn, resulted in an apparent decline in problem behavior and faster progress in the acquisition of academic skills.

  11. Multi-Agent Decision Support Tool to Enable Interoperability among Heterogeneous Energy Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Brígida Teixeira


    Full Text Available Worldwide electricity markets are undergoing a major restructuring process. One of the main reasons for the ongoing changes is to enable the adaptation of current market models to the new paradigm that arises from the large-scale integration of distributed generation sources. In order to deal with the unpredictability caused by the intermittent nature of the distributed generation and the large number of variables that contribute to the energy sector balance, it is extremely important to use simulation systems that are capable of dealing with the required complexity. This paper presents the Tools Control Center (TOOCC, a framework that allows the interoperability between heterogeneous energy and power simulation systems through the use of ontologies, allowing the simulation of scenarios with a high degree of complexity, through the cooperation of the individual capacities of each system. A case study based on real data is presented in order to demonstrate the interoperability capabilities of TOOCC. The simulation considers the energy management of a microgrid of a real university campus, from the perspective of the network manager and also of its consumers/producers, in a projection for a typical day of the winter of 2050.

  12. Overview on How Data Mining Tools May Support Cardiovascular Disease Prediction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dan-Andrei Sitar-Taut


    Full Text Available Terms as knowledge discovery or KnowledgeDiscovery from Databases (KDD, Data Mining (DM, ArtificialIntelligence (AI, Machine Learning (ML, Artificial Neuralnetworks (ANN, decision tables and trees, gain from day to day,an increasing significance in medical data analysis. They permitthe identification, evaluation, and quantification of some lessvisible, intuitively unpredictable, by using generally large sets ofdata. Cardiology represents an extremely vast and importantdomain, having multiple and complex social and humanimplications. These are enough reasons to promote theresearches in this area, becoming shortly not just national orEuropean priorities, but also world-level ones. The profoundand multiple interwoven relationships among the cardiovascularrisk factors and cardiovascular diseases – but still far to becompletely discovered or understood – represent a niche forapplying IT&C modern and multidisciplinary tools in order tosolve the existing knowledge gaps.This paper’s aim is to present, by emphasizing their absoluteor relative pros and cons, several opportunities of applying DMtools in cardiology, more precisely in endothelial dysfunctiondiagnostic and quantification the relationships between theseand so-called “classical” cardiovascular risk factors.

  13. Supporting Red List threat assessments with GeoCAT: geospatial conservation assessment tool. (United States)

    Bachman, Steven; Moat, Justin; Hill, Andrew W; de Torre, Javier; Scott, Ben


    GeoCAT is an open source, browser based tool that performs rapid geospatial analysis to ease the process of Red Listing taxa. Developed to utilise spatially referenced primary occurrence data, the analysis focuses on two aspects of the geographic range of a taxon: the extent of occurrence (EOO) and the area of occupancy (AOO). These metrics form part of the IUCN Red List categories and criteria and have often proved challenging to obtain in an accurate, consistent and repeatable way. Within a familiar Google Maps environment, GeoCAT users can quickly and easily combine data from multiple sources such as GBIF, Flickr and Scratchpads as well as user generated occurrence data. Analysis is done with the click of a button and is visualised instantly, providing an indication of the Red List threat rating, subject to meeting the full requirements of the criteria. Outputs including the results, data and parameters used for analysis are stored in a GeoCAT file that can be easily reloaded or shared with collaborators. GeoCAT is a first step toward automating the data handling process of Red List assessing and provides a valuable hub from which further developments and enhancements can be spawned.

  14. Supporting Red List threat assessments with GeoCAT: geospatial conservation assessment tool

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Steven Bachman


    Full Text Available GeoCAT is an open source, browser based tool that performs rapid geospatial analysis to ease the process of Red Listing taxa. Developed to utilise spatially referenced primary occurrence data, the analysis focuses on two aspects of the geographic range of a taxon: the extent of occurrence (EOO and the area of occupancy (AOO. These metrics form part of the IUCN Red List categories and criteria and have often proved challenging to obtain in an accurate, consistent and repeatable way. Within a familiar Google Maps environment, GeoCAT users can quickly and easily combine data from multiple sources such as GBIF, Flickr and Scratchpads as well as user generated occurrence data. Analysis is done with the click of a button and is visualised instantly, providing an indication of the Red List threat rating, subject to meeting the full requirements of the criteria. Outputs including the results, data and parameters used for analysis are stored in a GeoCAT file that can be easily reloaded or shared with collaborators. GeoCAT is a first step toward automating the data handling process of Red List assessing and provides a valuable hub from which further developments and enhancements can be spawned.

  15. ITER Equatorial Port plug engineering: Design and remote handling activities supported by Virtual Reality tools

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Keller, Delphine; Dechelle, Christian; Doceul, Louis; Madeleine, Sylvain; Martins, Jean Pierre; Measson, Yvan; Patterlini, Jean Claude; Wagrez, Julien


    In the context of ITER, CEA/IRFM has participated to the design and integration of several components in the Equatorial Port plug region. Particularly, in the framework of the grant F4E-2008-GRT-09-PNS-TBM, CEA/IRFM has contributed to the test blanket module system (TBS) design and robot access feasibility study in the Port Cell. Simulations of the maintenance procedure were studied and fully integrated to the design process, enabling to provide space reservation for human and robotic access. For this mean, CEA/IRFM has used a CEA LIST Virtual Reality simulation software directly integrated to the Solidworks CAD software. The feasibility to connect/dis-connect the pipes in front of the Bioshield by a set of potential standard industrial arms was demonstrated. Aiming to give more realism to maintenance scenario and CAD models, CEA IRFM has decided to build a Virtual Reality platform in the institute, integrated to the design office. With the expertise of CEA LIST, this platform aims to provide the nearest possible links between design and remote handling needs. This paper presents the outcome of the robot access study and discusses about the Virtual Reality tools that are being developed for these applications.

  16. MEDOR, a didactic tool to support interpretation of bioassay data after internal contamination by actinides. (United States)

    Mièle, A; Blanchin, N; Raynaud, P; Quesne, B; Giraud, J M; Fottorino, R; Bérard, P; Ansoborlo, E; Franck, D; Blanchardon, E; Challeton-de Vathaire, C; Lebaron-Jacobs, L; Poncy, J L; Piechowski, J; Fritsch, P


    A didactic software, MEthodes DOsimètriques de REférence (MEDOR), is being developed to provide help in the interpretation of biological data. Its main purpose is to evaluate the pertinence of the application of different models. This paper describes its first version that is focused on inhalation exposure to actinide aerosols. With this tool, sensitivity analysis on different parameters of the ICRP models can be easily done for aerosol deposition, in terms of activity and particle number, actinide biokinetics and doses. The user can analyse different inhalation cases showing either that dose per unit intake cannot be applied if the aerosol contains a low number of particles or that an inhibition of the late pulmonary clearance by particle transport can occur which contributes to a 3-4 fold increase in effective dose as compared with application of default parameters. This underlines the need to estimate systematically the number of deposited particles, as well as to do chest monitoring as long as possible.

  17. REDLetr: Workflow and tools to support the migration of legacy clinical data capture systems to REDCap. (United States)

    Dunn, William D; Cobb, Jake; Levey, Allan I; Gutman, David A


    A memory clinic at an academic medical center has relied on several ad hoc data capture systems including Microsoft Access and Excel for cognitive assessments over the last several years. However these solutions are challenging to maintain and limit the potential of hypothesis-driven or longitudinal research. REDCap, a secure web application based on PHP and MySQL, is a practical solution for improving data capture and organization. Here, we present a workflow and toolset to facilitate legacy data migration and real-time clinical research data collection into REDCap as well as challenges encountered. Legacy data consisted of neuropsychological tests stored in over 4000 Excel workbooks. Functions for data extraction, norm scoring, converting to REDCap-compatible formats, accessing the REDCap API, and clinical report generation were developed and executed in Python. Over 400 unique data points for each workbook were migrated and integrated into our REDCap database. Moving forward, our REDCap-based system replaces the Excel-based data collection method as well as eases the integration into the standard clinical research workflow and Electronic Health Record. In the age of growing data, efficient organization and storage of clinical and research data is critical for advancing research and providing efficient patient care. We believe that the workflow and tools described in this work to promote legacy data integration as well as real time data collection into REDCap ultimately facilitate these goals. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.

  18. The Development of an Online Support Tool for the Teaching and Learning of the IEEE Standard 1500 for Embedded Core-based Integrated Circuits

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian A Grout


    Full Text Available In this paper, an online education tool for assisting the teaching and learning of the IEEE 1500 standard testability method, used to support the testing of complex system-on-a-chip (SoC integrated circuits (ICs, is developed and presented. The tool is an Internet browser based tool that supports the ability to investigate key aspects of the standard and its application to embedded core-based IC designs. The tool allows the user to create VHDL descriptions of both the test circuitry and the function circuitry via the Internet browser interface. The key considerations for developing this tool were to provide a computer based learning tool to support the teaching and learning of the standard and its application. This paper is an extended version of a paper presented at the EDUCON 2012 conference in April 2012.

  19. Life cycle assessment as development and decision support tool for wastewater resource recovery technology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fang, Linda L.; Valverde Perez, Borja; Damgaard, Anders


    Life cycle assessment (LCA) has been increasingly used in the field of wastewater treatment where the focus has been to identify environmental trade-offs of current technologies. In a novel approach, we use LCA to support early stage research and development of a biochemical system for wastewater......, TRENS reduces global warming up to 15% and marine eutrophication impacts up to 9% compared to conventional treatment. This is due to the recovery and reuse of nutrient resources, primarily nitrogen. The key environmental concerns obtained through the LCA are linked to increased human toxicity impacts...... of the LCA pinpointed nutrient substitution and heavy metals content of algae biofertilizer as critical areas for further research if the performance of nutrient recovery systems such as TRENS is to be better characterized. Our study provides valuable feedback to the TRENS developers and identifies...

  20. Technical Targets - A Tool to Support Strategic Planning in the Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Looney, B.B.


    The Subsurface Contaminants Focus Area (SCFA) is supported by a lead laboratory consisting of technical representatives from DOE laboratories across the country. This broadly representative scientific group has developed and implemented a process to define Technical Targets to assist the SCFA in strategic planning and in managing their environmental research and development portfolio. At an initial meeting in Golden Colorado, an initial set of Technical Targets was identified using a rapid consensus based technical triage process. Thirteen Technical Targets were identified and described. Vital scientific and technical objectives were generated for each target. The targets generally fall into one of the following five strategic investment categories: Enhancing Environmental Stewardship, Eliminating Contaminant Sources, Isolating Contaminants, Controlling Contaminant Plumes, Enabling DOEs CleanUp Efforts. The resulting targets and the detail they comprise on what is, and what is not, needed to meet Environmental Management needs provide a comprehensive technically-based framework to assist in prioritizing future work and in managing the SCFA program

  1. A Danish decision-support GIS tool for management of urban air quality and human exposures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Jensen, S.S.; Berkowicz, R.; Hertel, O. [National Environmental Research Institute, Roskilde (Denmark). Dept. of Atmospheric Environment; Hansen, H.S. [National Environmental Research Institute, Roskilde (Denmark). Dept. of Policy Analysis


    A new prototype model system named AirGIS has been developed to support local authorities in air quality management for big Danish cities. The system is based on the Danish operational street pollution model (OSPM), technical and cadastral digital maps and Danish national administrative databases on buildings, cadastres and populations. It applies a geographic information system (GIS). AirGIS estimates ambient air pollution levels at high temporal and spatial resolutions. The model system enables mapping of traffic emissions, air quality levels and human exposures at residence addresses, at workplace addresses and in streets. Mapping and scenario results can be compared with air quality limits. Impact assessment of traffic air pollution abatement measures can also be carried out. (author)

  2. DART: Tools and Support for Ensemble Data Assimilation Research, Operations, and Education (United States)

    Anderson, J. L.; Raeder, K.; Hoar, T. J.; Collins, N.; Kershaw, H.; Romine, G. S.; Liu, H.; Mizzi, A. P.; Lei, L.; Chatterjee, A.; Karspeck, A. R.; Pedatella, N. M.


    The Data Assimilation Research Testbed (DART) is a community facility for ensemble data assimilation developed and supported by the National Center for Atmospheric Research. DART provides a comprehensive suite of software, documentation, examples and tutorials that can be used for ensemble data assimilation research, operations, and education. Scientists and software engineers from the Data Assimilation Research Section at NCAR are available to actively support DART users who want to use existing DART products or develop their own new applications. Current DART users range from university professors teaching data assimilation, to individual graduate students working with simple models, through national laboratories doing operational prediction with large state-of-the-art models. DART runs efficiently on many computational platforms ranging from laptops through thousands of cores on the newest supercomputers. This poster focuses on recent developments for coupled data assimilation with DART and NCAR's Community Earth System Model. DART interfaces to the Community Atmosphere Model (CAM), the Parallel Ocean Program (POP) and the Community Land Model (CLM) can now be used to do multiple component data assimilation with the fully-coupled CESM prediction model. The software innovations required to enable this are described. The latest results for ensemble assimilation experiments with each of the component models are presented along with initial comparisons to corresponding assimilations with the coupled model. A newly developed DART interface to the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model (WACCM) is now available. An overview of results of the relative value of assimilating tropospheric and middle atmosphere observations in WACCM is presented. DART is also used with many other types of geophysical models. Highlights of the latest results using DART with the Weather Research and Forecasting (WRF) model for springtime weather over the central United States are also

  3. Online Platform as a Tool to Support Postgraduate Training in General Practice - A Case Report. (United States)

    Dini, Lorena; Galanski, Claire; Döpfmer, Susanne; Gehrke-Beck, Sabine; Bayer, Gudrun; Boeckle, Martin; Micheel, Isabel; Novak, Jasminko; Heintze, Christoph


    Objective: Physicians in postgraduate training (PPT) in General Practice (GP) typically have very little interaction with their peers, as there is usually only one resident physician working in their respective department or GP office at a given time. Therefore, the online platform KOLEGEA, presented here, aims to support postgraduate training in general practice (PT in GP) in Germany through virtual interaction. Methodology: In 2012, the interdisciplinary research project KOLEGEA set up an online platform that any physicians in PT in GP can use for free after registration with their unitary continuous education number (Einheitliche Fortbildungsnummer, EFN). It offers problem-based learning and allows to discuss self-published anonymized patient cases with the community that can be classified and discussed with experienced mentors (specialists in general practice - GPs) in small virtual groups. Results: An anonymous online survey carried out as part of the 2014 project evaluation showed a good acceptance of the platform, even though shortage of time was mentioned as a limiting factor for its use. Data analysis showed that KOLEGEA was used by PPT in GP in all federal states. Patterns of passive use were predominant (90%). This report also describes the further development of the platform (in 2015 and 2016) that integrates an activity monitor as part of a gamification concept. Conclusions: Due to a low response rate of the 2014 online survey and the preliminary evaluations of usage patterns we could identify only initial trends regarding the role of KOLEGEA in supporting PPT. The platform was perceived as a helpful supplement to better structure PT in GP.

  4. QuVis interactive simulations: tools to support quantum mechanics instruction (United States)

    Kohnle, Antje


    Quantum mechanics holds a fascination for many students, but its mathematical complexity and counterintuitive results can present major barriers. The QuVis Quantum Mechanics Visualization Project ( aims to overcome these issues through the development and evaluation of interactive simulations with accompanying activities for the learning and teaching of quantum mechanics. Over 90 simulations are now available on the QuVis website. One collection of simulations is embedded in the Institute of Physics Quantum Physics website (, which consists of freely available resources for an introductory course in quantum mechanics starting from two-level systems. Simulations support model-building by reducing complexity, focusing on fundamental ideas and making the invisible visible. They promote engaged exploration, sense-making and linking of multiple representations, and include high levels of interactivity and direct feedback. Simulations are research-based and evaluation with students informs all stages of the development process. Simulations are iteratively refined using student feedback in individual observation sessions and in-class trials. Evaluation has shown that the simulations can help students learn quantum mechanics concepts at both the introductory and advanced undergraduate level and that students perceive simulations to be beneficial to their learning. Recent activity includes the launch of a new collection of HTML5 simulations that run on both desktop and tablet-based devices and the introduction of a goal and reward structure in simulations through the inclusion of challenges. This presentation will give an overview of the QuVis resources, highlight recent work and outline future plans. QuVis is supported by the UK Institute of Physics, the UK Higher Education Academy and the University of St Andrews.

  5. using explanatory models to derive simple tools for Avanced Life Support system studies - Crop Modelling (United States)

    Cavazzoni, J.

    System-level analyses for Advanced Life Support (ALS) require mathematical models for various processes, such as biomass production and waste management, which would ideally be integrated into overall system models. Explanatory models (also referred to as mechanistic or process models) would provide the basis for a more robust system model, as these would be based on an understanding of processes specific to ALS studies. However, integrating such models may not always be practicable because of their complexity, especially for initial system-level analyses where simple sub-models may be satisfactory. One way to address this is to capture important features of explanatory models in simple models that may be readily integrated for system-level analyses. In this paper, explanatory crop models were used to generate parameters and multi-variable polynomial equations for basic models that are suitable for estimating the direction and magnitude of daily changes in canopy gas-exchange, harvest index, and production scheduling due to off- nominal conditions for ALS system studies. The simplest variant of these models consists of only a few equations, and has been integrated into a top-level SIMULINK model for the Bioregenerative Planetary Life Support Systems Test Complex (BIO-Plex), a large-scale human-rated test facility under development at NASA Johnson Space Center. When included in systems studies, the simple crop models may help identify issues that need to be addressed using more detailed modeling studies and specific experiments. Similar modeling simplifications may also prove useful for other ALS sub-systems, as well as for Earth system applications.

  6. Energy Saving Melting and Revert Reduction Technology (E-SMARRT): Design Support for Tooling Optimization

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wang, Dongtao


    High pressure die casting is an intrinsically efficient net shape process and improvements in energy efficiency are strongly dependent on design and process improvements that reduce scrap rates so that more of the total consumed energy goes into acceptable, usable castings. Computer simulation has become widely used within the industry but use is not universal. Further, many key design decisions must be made before the simulation can be run and expense in terms of money and time often limits the number of decision iterations that can be explored. This work continues several years of work creating simple, very fast, design tools that can assist with the early stage design decisions so that the benefits of simulation can be maximized and, more importantly, so that the chances of first shot success are maximized. First shot success and better running processes contributes to less scrap and significantly better energy utilization by the process. This new technology was predicted to result in an average energy savings of 1.83 trillion BTUs/year over a 10 year period. Current (2011) annual energy saving estimates over a ten year period, based on commercial introduction in 2012, a market penetration of 30% by 2015 is 1.89 trillion BTUs/year by 2022. Along with these energy savings, reduction of scrap and improvement in yield will result in a reduction of the environmental emissions associated with the melting and pouring of the metal which will be saved as a result of this technology. The average annual estimate of CO2 reduction per year through 2022 is 0.037 Million Metric Tons of Carbon Equivalent (MM TCE).

  7. Framework See-Think as a Tool for Crowdsourcing Support - Case Study on Crisis Management (United States)

    Netek, R.; Panek, J.


    See-Think-Do is a framework originally used as an approach focused on a service and product marketing on the Internet. Customers can be classified into three groups according to their involvement from potential users to real customers. The article presents an idea of public involvement in community mapping in three levels: "See"—almost any user; "Think"—potential contributors; and "Do"—interested users. The case study implements the See-Think-Do framework as an awareness-based approach used for The Crisis Map of the Czech Republic. It is an Ushahidi-based crowdsourcing platform for sharing spatial and multimedia information during crisis situations, e.g. disaster floods in 2013. While the current crisis projects use public mapping just at the onset of the disaster, according to See-Think-Do any user can be considered as a potential contributor even during the dormant period. The focus is put on the "See" and "Think" groups of contributors, which are currently ignored. The objective of this paper is to summarize approaches (social networks, mass-media, emailing, gamification, …) and tools (GIT/GIS, ICT, multimedia) for increasing the awareness about the project within the resting phase. That recruits a higher number of both active and passive users during the disaster. It allows the training in ICT, cartographical, spatial and GIS skills in a non-stressful way and the targeting on specific operators. Volunteers from the "Think" group may be used for data processing or rectification, GIS professionals from the "Do" group for data verification. The results refer that contributors with already established skills and required literacy (interface, data uploading) provide data faster and more accurate, the usability of the project increases based on users' comments.

  8. A finite element head and neck model as a supportive tool for deformable image registration. (United States)

    Kim, Jihun; Saitou, Kazuhiro; Matuszak, Martha M; Balter, James M


    A finite element (FE) head and neck model was developed as a tool to aid investigations and development of deformable image registration and patient modeling in radiation oncology. Useful aspects of a FE model for these purposes include ability to produce realistic deformations (similar to those seen in patients over the course of treatment) and a rational means of generating new configurations, e.g., via the application of force and/or displacement boundary conditions. The model was constructed based on a cone-beam computed tomography image of a head and neck cancer patient. The three-node triangular surface meshes created for the bony elements (skull, mandible, and cervical spine) and joint elements were integrated into a skeletal system and combined with the exterior surface. Nodes were additionally created inside the surface structures which were composed of the three-node triangular surface meshes, so that four-node tetrahedral FE elements were created over the whole region of the model. The bony elements were modeled as a homogeneous linear elastic material connected by intervertebral disks. The surrounding tissues were modeled as a homogeneous linear elastic material. Under force or displacement boundary conditions, FE analysis on the model calculates approximate solutions of the displacement vector field. A FE head and neck model was constructed that skull, mandible, and cervical vertebrae were mechanically connected by disks. The developed FE model is capable of generating realistic deformations that are strain-free for the bony elements and of creating new configurations of the skeletal system with the surrounding tissues reasonably deformed. The FE model can generate realistic deformations for skeletal elements. In addition, the model provides a way of evaluating the accuracy of image alignment methods by producing a ground truth deformation and correspondingly simulated images. The ability to combine force and displacement conditions provides

  9. The USA-NPN Information Management System: A tool in support of phenological assessments (United States)

    Rosemartin, A.; Vazquez, R.; Wilson, B. E.; Denny, E. G.


    The USA National Phenology Network (USA-NPN) serves science and society by promoting a broad understanding of plant and animal phenology and the relationships among phenological patterns and all aspects of environmental change. Data management and information sharing are central to the USA-NPN mission. The USA-NPN develops, implements, and maintains a comprehensive Information Management System (IMS) to serve the needs of the network, including the collection, storage and dissemination of phenology data, access to phenology-related information, tools for data interpretation, and communication among partners of the USA-NPN. The IMS includes components for data storage, such as the National Phenology Database (NPD), and several online user interfaces to accommodate data entry, data download, data visualization and catalog searches for phenology-related information. The IMS is governed by a set of standards to ensure security, privacy, data access, and data quality. The National Phenology Database is designed to efficiently accommodate large quantities of phenology data, to be flexible to the changing needs of the network, and to provide for quality control. The database stores phenology data from multiple sources (e.g., partner organizations, researchers and citizen observers), and provides for integration with legacy datasets. Several services will be created to provide access to the data, including reports, visualization interfaces, and web services. These services will provide integrated access to phenology and related information for scientists, decision-makers and general audiences. Phenological assessments at any scale will rely on secure and flexible information management systems for the organization and analysis of phenology data. The USA-NPN’s IMS can serve phenology assessments directly, through data management and indirectly as a model for large-scale integrated data management.

  10. Tool supported modeling of sensor communication networks by using finite-source priority retrial queues

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tamas Berczes


    Full Text Available The main aim of the present paper is to draw the attention of the readers of this special issue to the modeling issues of sensor networks. The novelty of this investigation is the introduction of servers vacation combined with priority customers for finite-source retrial queues and its application to wireless sensor networks. In this paper we analyze a priority finite-source retrial queue with repeated vacations. Two types of priority customers are defined, customers with priority 1 (P1 go directly to an ordinary FIFO queue. However, if customers with priority 2 (P2 find the server in busy or unavailable state go to the orbit. These customers stay in the orbit and retry their request until find the server in idle and available state. We assume that P1 customers have non-preemptive priority over P2 customers. The server starts with a listening period and if no customer arrive during this period it will enter in the vacation mode. When the vacation period is terminated, then the node wakes up. If there is a P1 customer in the queue the server begin to serve it, and when there is no any P1 customer, the node will remain awake for exponentially distributed time period. If that period expires without arrivals the node will enter in the next sleeping period. All random variables involved in model construction are supposed to be independent and exponentially distributed ones. Our main interest is to give the main steady-state performance measures of the system computed by the help of the MOSEL tool. Several Figures illustrate the effect of input parameters on the mean response time.

  11. ProMot: a decision support tool for electric motor users; ProMot: ein Werkzeug zur Entscheidungsfindung fuer Motorenbetreiber

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tanner, T.


    Being supported by an international collaboration the project ProMot has developed and disseminated in the European Union a decision support tool for electric motor users helping them to choose energy efficient motor systems. During the first phase all necessary components to build the decision support tool have been selected, developed or improved and adapted. At the beginning it was assumed that the contribution of the author's company, Semafor would be the integration of the company's OPAL software components developed for pumps and variable speed drives (VSD) into the EuroDEEM package. In view of the deficiencies of EuroDEEM it was soon agreed to abandon this approach. Instead, the package IMSSA (International Motor Selection and Saving Analysis), developed at the Washington State University on the basis of MotorMaster was selected. IMSSA - which has been renamed to EuroDEEM International - and the pump and VSD module can now be used as standalone applications. The second phase integrated all collected and developed material into a comprehensive and user-friendly web site that was then demonstrated to key actors in the participating countries. Several requirements had to be considered. The platform had to allow the publication of the web pages in several languages and to enable the team members to place and modify their content without disturbing ongoing operation. It was therefore decided to evaluate a suitable Web Content Management System (CMS) which lead to Plone, a powerful and adaptable open-source system already in use at many web sites. The pages have then been created and published with this system. With some support from Semafor, German and French translations were created. Also a hardcopy brochure that gives an overview of the web site has been produced and distributed in the participating countries. (author)

  12. Modelling tools to support the harmonization of Water Framework Directive and Common Agricultural Policy (United States)

    Tediosi, A.; Bulgheroni, C.; Sali, G.; Facchi, A.; Gandolfi, C.


    After a few years from the delivery of the EU Water Framework Directive (WFD) the need to link agriculture and WFD has emerged as one of the highest priorities; therefore, it is important to discuss on how the EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) can contribute to the achievements of the WFD objectives. The recent CAP reform - known as Mid Term Review (MTR) or Fischler Reform - has increased the opportunities, offering to farmers increased support to address some environmental issues. The central novelty coming from the MTR is the introduction of a farm single payment which aims to the Decoupling of EU Agricultural Support from production. Other MTR important topics deal with the Modulation of the payments, the Cross-Compliance and the strengthening of the Rural Development policy. All these new elements will affect the farmers' behaviour, steering their productive choices for the future, which, in turn, will have consequences on the water demand for irrigation. Indeed, from the water quantity viewpoint, agriculture is a large consumer and improving water use efficiency is one of the main issues at stake, following the increasing impacts of water scarcity and droughts across Europe in a context of climate change. According to a recent survey of the European Commission the saving potential in the agricultural sector is 43% of present abstraction and 95% of it is concentrated in southern europe. Many models have been developed to forecast the farmers' behaviour as a consequence of agricultural policies, both at sector and regional level; all of them are founded on Mathematical Programming techniques and many of them use the Positive approach, which better fits the territorial dimension. A large body of literature also exists focusing on the assessment of irrigation water requirements. The examples of conjunctive modelling of the two aspects are however much more limited. The work presented has got some innovative aspects: not only does it couple an economical model

  13. Design support tools to sustain climate change adaptation at the local level: A review and reflection on their suitability

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Catherine Dubois


    Full Text Available For mid-latitude cities, higher summer temperatures due to climate change are a cause for concern because they aggravate the urban heat island phenomenon and reduce thermal comfort inside buildings. By acquiring the appropriate knowledge and skills, architects and urban designers can become key actors in adaptation to climate change. Two workshops bringing together architects and urban designers provided evidence of deficiencies in this area. We hypothesize that a design support tool (DST focused on the issue of adaptation of mid-latitude cities to rising summer temperatures could help improve knowledge and skills of professionals in the field. The first section presents the results taken from a review and classification of DSTs, which highlight the tools׳ features that are likely to reach this goal. Tools of the “hybrid” category seem most appropriate. To verify this, seven DSTs were selected and tested by fourteen students enrolled in a graduate-level architecture design studio. The second section presents the results from this test, including an analysis of the final projects, a web-based questionnaire and two focus groups. The relevance of hybrid approaches is established, but the results bring into question the capacity of a single DST to meet the individual and multiple needs of professionals.

  14. Analytical tools and functions of GIS in the process control and decision support of mining company

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Semrád Peter


    Full Text Available The development of computer techniques, the increase in demands for the professional and possible fastest data processing, as well as for the fluency and efficiency of information gaining, exchanging and providing has a strong influence on forming the new generation of information technologies - Geografic Information Systems (GIS that rose in the second half of the twentieth century.Advancement in this area is still progressing and GIS gradually find the enforcement in individual fields where they play a great role in the process control and decision support. Nowadays, there are applications in mining and geology, where are used especially at processing and evaluating of mining - geological documentation, optimalization of mining and technical processes, planning, distributing and managing of mining as well as economic analysis that are important in terms of investment decisions to mining business.GIS are the systems for the effective keeping, updating, processing, analysing, modelling, simulating and presenting geographically oriented information. We can identify them as computer systems helping to solve real problems that should be normally required to solve by human expert.Well equipped GIS have graphic ability and accordingly manage descriptive (attribute data. They are able to secure mutual connection between graphical and descriptive data and in addition to command countless number of functions that enable the execution of spatial analysis. This fact is very important in mining and geological application.There are exploited mostly geostatistical analysis (e. g. modelling of distribution valuable and harmful components of mineral resouce in a mineral deposit, surface modelling and surface model analysis (e. g. at modelling the subsidence of mining territory, different methods of creating spatial and attribute queries about database for seeking necessary data (e. g. to find all mining blocks of deposit that meet required conditions and to

  15. The Curriculum Customization Service: A Tool for Customizing Earth Science Instruction and Supporting Communities of Practice (United States)

    Melhado, L. C.; Devaul, H.; Sumner, T.


    Accelerating demographic trends in the United States attest to the critical need to broaden access to customized learning: reports refer to the next decade as the era of “extreme diversity” in K-12 classrooms, particularly in large urban school districts. This diverse student body possesses a wide range of knowledge, skills, and abilities in addition to cultural differences. A single classroom may contain students with different levels of quantitative skills, different levels of English language proficiency, and advanced students preparing for college-level science. A uniform curriculum, no matter how well designed and implemented, cannot possibly serve the needs of such diverse learners equally well. Research has shown positive learning outcomes when pedagogical strategies that customize instruction to address specific learner needs are implemented, with under-achieving students often benefiting most. Supporting teachers in the effective adoption and use of technology to meet these instructional challenges is the underlying goal of the work to be presented here. The Curriculum Customization Service (CCS) is an integrated web-based platform for middle and high school Earth science teachers designed to facilitate teachers’ instructional planning and delivery; enhancing existing curricula with digital library resources and shared teacher-contributed materials in the context of articulated learning goals. The CCS integrates interactive resources from the Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE) with an inquiry-based curriculum component developed by the American Geological Institute (EarthComm and Investigating Earth Systems). The digital library resources emphasize visualizations and animations of Earth processes that often challenge students’ understanding, offering multiple representations of phenomena to address different learning styles, reading abilities, and preconceived ideas. Teachers can access these materials, as well as those created or

  16. Social media as a beneficial tool to support preterm infants and parents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marjan Ghazisaeedi


    Full Text Available Home care, continuous follow-up, and endless post discharge support play vital role in preventing the emergence of mental and physical disabilities and death among preterm infants. Providing necessary care and support for such infants requires huge financial and human resources and exposes heavy costs on hygiene and health system. Internet and information sharing applications, particularly Web 2.0, and social media present innovative techniques to provide a convenient channel to exchange necessary information between infants, parents, and caregivers. Despite the increasingly expanding use of social media in health and medicine, such devices have rarely been applied in more specialized fields, such as the hygiene and health of preterm infants. Thus, the present study aims at investigating studies published on the experiences of parent in regard with the integration of social media in the improvement of preterm infant treatment, determining the function of social media in taking better care of preterm infants, and presenting suggestions for further practical researches in this area of knowledge. This review study was conducted in 2016. To conduct the study, published articles in the years 2005 to 2016, in English with an emphasis on Social media and Preterm infants were studied. Search was done in databases including Pubmed, Science Direct, Google Scholar, Proquest. The collected data were analyzed. The role of social media in three areas of preterm infants care, sharing the knowledge of clinical professionals, and sharing parenting experiences was clarified. Social media provide the necessary background for the distribution of the knowledge of medical experts; it also creates the opportunities of exchanging ideas, sharing parenting experiences, and expanding the knowledge of experts and educated individuals in addition to providing a stress free environment. The potential of social media in facilitating medical interventions for preterm infants


    Borchardt, G. C.


    The Simple Tool for Automated Reasoning program (STAR) is an interactive, interpreted programming language for the development and operation of artificial intelligence (AI) application systems. STAR provides an environment for integrating traditional AI symbolic processing with functions and data structures defined in compiled languages such as C, FORTRAN and PASCAL. This type of integration occurs in a number of AI applications including interpretation of numerical sensor data, construction of intelligent user interfaces to existing compiled software packages, and coupling AI techniques with numerical simulation techniques and control systems software. The STAR language was created as part of an AI project for the evaluation of imaging spectrometer data at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Programming in STAR is similar to other symbolic processing languages such as LISP and CLIP. STAR includes seven primitive data types and associated operations for the manipulation of these structures. A semantic network is used to organize data in STAR, with capabilities for inheritance of values and generation of side effects. The AI knowledge base of STAR can be a simple repository of records or it can be a highly interdependent association of implicit and explicit components. The symbolic processing environment of STAR may be extended by linking the interpreter with functions defined in conventional compiled languages. These external routines interact with STAR through function calls in either direction, and through the exchange of references to data structures. The hybrid knowledge base may thus be accessed and processed in general by either side of the application. STAR is initially used to link externally compiled routines and data structures. It is then invoked to interpret the STAR rules and symbolic structures. In a typical interactive session, the user enters an expression to be evaluated, STAR parses the input, evaluates the expression, performs any file input


    Borchardt, G. C.


    The Simple Tool for Automated Reasoning program (STAR) is an interactive, interpreted programming language for the development and operation of artificial intelligence (AI) application systems. STAR provides an environment for integrating traditional AI symbolic processing with functions and data structures defined in compiled languages such as C, FORTRAN and PASCAL. This type of integration occurs in a number of AI applications including interpretation of numerical sensor data, construction of intelligent user interfaces to existing compiled software packages, and coupling AI techniques with numerical simulation techniques and control systems software. The STAR language was created as part of an AI project for the evaluation of imaging spectrometer data at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Programming in STAR is similar to other symbolic processing languages such as LISP and CLIP. STAR includes seven primitive data types and associated operations for the manipulation of these structures. A semantic network is used to organize data in STAR, with capabilities for inheritance of values and generation of side effects. The AI knowledge base of STAR can be a simple repository of records or it can be a highly interdependent association of implicit and explicit components. The symbolic processing environment of STAR may be extended by linking the interpreter with functions defined in conventional compiled languages. These external routines interact with STAR through function calls in either direction, and through the exchange of references to data structures. The hybrid knowledge base may thus be accessed and processed in general by either side of the application. STAR is initially used to link externally compiled routines and data structures. It is then invoked to interpret the STAR rules and symbolic structures. In a typical interactive session, the user enters an expression to be evaluated, STAR parses the input, evaluates the expression, performs any file input

  19. A multimedia comprehensive informatics system with decision support tools for a multi-site collaboration research of stroke rehabilitation (United States)

    Wang, Ximing; Documet, Jorge; Garrison, Kathleen A.; Winstein, Carolee J.; Liu, Brent


    Stroke is a major cause of adult disability. The Interdisciplinary Comprehensive Arm Rehabilitation Evaluation (I-CARE) clinical trial aims to evaluate a therapy for arm rehabilitation after stroke. A primary outcome measure is correlative analysis between stroke lesion characteristics and standard measures of rehabilitation progress, from data collected at seven research facilities across the country. Sharing and communication of brain imaging and behavioral data is thus a challenge for collaboration. A solution is proposed as a web-based system with tools supporting imaging and informatics related data. In this system, users may upload anonymized brain images through a secure internet connection and the system will sort the imaging data for storage in a centralized database. Users may utilize an annotation tool to mark up images. In addition to imaging informatics, electronic data forms, for example, clinical data forms, are also integrated. Clinical information is processed and stored in the database to enable future data mining related development. Tele-consultation is facilitated through the development of a thin-client image viewing application. For convenience, the system supports access through desktop PC, laptops, and iPAD. Thus, clinicians may enter data directly into the system via iPAD while working with participants in the study. Overall, this comprehensive imaging informatics system enables users to collect, organize and analyze stroke cases efficiently.

  20. Meteorological tools in support to the railway security system on the Calabria region (United States)

    Laviola, Sante; Gabriele, Salvatore; Iovine, Giulio; Baldini, Luca; Chiravalloti, Francesco; Federico, Stefano; Miglietta, Marcello Mario; Milani, Lisa; Procopio, Antonio; Roberto, Nicoletta; Tiesi, Alessandro; Agostino, Mario; Niccoli, Raffaele; Stassi, Sergio; Rago, Valeria


    RAMSES (RAilway Meteorological SEcurity System) is a pilot project co-funded by the Italian Railway Company - RFI S.p.A. and conceived for the mitigation of the hydrological risk along the Calabria railways. RAMSES aims at improving the forecast of very short life-cycle convection systems, responsible of intense and localized rainfalls affecting small catchment areas, which are often underestimated by the numerical weather models and even non-adequately detected by the network of sparse raingauges. The RAMSES operational design is based on a synergistic and integrated architecture, providing a series of information able to identify the most active convective cells and monitoring their evolution in terms of vertical structure, rain intensity and geo-hydrological effects at ground (debris flow, landslides, collapses of bridges, erosion of the ballast). The RAMSES meteorological component is designed to identify and track the short-term evolution (15-60 min) of convective cells, by means of imaging techniques based on dual-polarization weather radar and Meteosat data. In support of this quasi-real time analysis, the numerical model WRF provides the weather forecast at 3-6 hours range by ingesting, through the assimilation system LAPS, the observational data (rain gauges, ground weather stations, radar, satellites) in order to improve the initial condition. Finally, the hydraulic flow modeling is used to assess the ground effects in terms of landslide susceptibility, rainfall-runoff intensity, debris impact on the drainage network and evaluate of risk along the railway track.

  1. SPIDERplan: A tool to support decision-making in radiation therapy treatment plan assessment. (United States)

    Ventura, Tiago; Lopes, Maria do Carmo; Ferreira, Brigida Costa; Khouri, Leila


    In this work, a graphical method for radiotherapy treatment plan assessment and comparison, named SPIDERplan, is proposed. It aims to support plan approval allowing independent and consistent comparisons of different treatment techniques, algorithms or treatment planning systems. Optimized plans from modern radiotherapy are not easy to evaluate and compare because of their inherent multicriterial nature. The clinical decision on the best treatment plan is mostly based on subjective options. SPIDERplan combines a graphical analysis with a scoring index. Customized radar plots based on the categorization of structures into groups and on the determination of individual structures scores are generated. To each group and structure, an angular amplitude is assigned expressing the clinical importance defined by the radiation oncologist. Completing the graphical evaluation, a global plan score, based on the structures score and their clinical weights, is determined. After a necessary clinical validation of the group weights, SPIDERplan efficacy, to compare and rank different plans, was tested through a planning exercise where plans had been generated for a nasal cavity case using different treatment planning systems. SPIDERplan method was applied to the dose metrics achieved by the nasal cavity test plans. The generated diagrams and scores successfully ranked the plans according to the prescribed dose objectives and constraints and the radiation oncologist priorities, after a necessary clinical validation process. SPIDERplan enables a fast and consistent evaluation of plan quality considering all targets and organs at risk.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. V. Denysenko


    Full Text Available The intensive process of education computerization confronts modern educators a number of economic, technical, social, psychological and educational problems that need to be solved. The use of computer technology in educational process opens enormous opportunities for the development of cognitive abilities – from sensory and perceptual to speech and mental forms. In broad dissemination and use of technical aids, optical and acoustic techniques, programmed education, cinema, television, computer, the modern scientists and researchers see one of the main factors to enhance education and upbringing level both at regular and higher education institutions. Unfortunately, the process of the organic combination of technical and pedagogical sciences in terms of theory and practice introducing computer (multimedia teaching aids is not as powerful as expected; and as it has been dictated by the needs of the modern society. The slow pace of computerization’s implementation of the learning process at high school has been caused by the reasons of different nature and scale. The main objective of the article is to highlight the problems of computer teaching aids using in teaching process at higher education institutions. The conducted analysis of studying computerization allowed us determining the impact and role in providing the university teacher’s basic functions. It has been established that the teacher is one of the management leading objects of educational and cognitive students’ activity and all its functions practically may have computer support.

  3. Using Mobile Tools to Support Meaningful Work-based Learning in Vocational Education

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hanna Vuojärvi


    Full Text Available This case study focused on meaningful work-based learning (WBL and the pedagogical use of mobile information and communication technologies (ICTs in vocational tourism education. The aim was to reveal how teaching/tutoring and learning are realized and how the use of smartphones supports the realization of meaningful learning characteristics during WBL periods in highly versatile environments. Within a design-based research framework, the data was collected through learning journals written by students and qualitative interviews. The results of thematic analysis were used to develop a practice-oriented pedagogical model for meaningful WBL. The model visualizes the roles of students, teachers, and companies involved in WBL, the meaningful learning characteristics that can be amplified through the use of mobile ICTs, and the outcomes for each stakeholder. The model suggests structuring WBL through four negotiations involving a student, a teacher, and a company to assure that each student has clearly formulated learning goals and possibilities to pursue those goals regardless of the mobility of their work or facilities during their WBL period.

  4. Decision Support Tool Evaluation Report for Coral Reef Early Warning System (CREWS) Version 7.0 (United States)

    D'Sa, Eurico; Hall, Callie; Zanoni, Vicki; Holland, Donald; Blonski, Slawomir; Pagnutti, Mary; Spruce, Joseph P.


    The Coral Reef Early Warning System (CREWS) is operated by NOAA's Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research as part of its Coral Reef Watch program in response to the deteriorating global state of coral reef and related benthic ecosystems. In addition to sea surface temperatures (SSTs), the two most important parameters used by the CREWS network in generating coral reef bleaching alerts are 1) wind speed and direction and 2) photosynthetically available radiation (PAR). NASA remote sensing products that can enhance CREWS in these areas include SST and PAR products from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) and wind data from the Quick Scatterometer (QuikSCAT). CREWS researchers are also interested in chlorophyll, chromophoric dissolved organic matter (CDOM), and salinity. Chlorophyll and CDOM are directly available as NASA products, while rainfall (an available NASA product) can be used as a proxy for salinity. Other potential NASA inputs include surface reflectance products from MODIS, the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer, and Landsat. This report also identifies NASA-supported ocean circulation models and products from future satellite missions that might enchance the CREWS DST.

  5. Development of Environmental Decision Support System: Unifying Cross-Discipline Data Access Through Open Source Tools (United States)

    Freeman, S.; Darmenova, K.; Higgins, G. J.; Apling, D.


    A common theme when it comes to accessing climate and environmental datasets is that it can be difficult to answer the five basic questions: Who, What, When, Where, and Why. Sometimes even the act of locating a data set or determining how it was generated can prove difficult. It is even more challenging for non-scientific individuals such as planners and policy makers who need to access and include such information in their work. Our Environmental Decision Support System (EDSS) attempts to address this issue by integrating several open source packages to create a simple yet robust web application for conglomerating, searching, viewing, and downloading environmental information for both scientists and decision makers alike. The system is comprised of several open source components, each playing an important role in the EDSS. The Geoportal web application provides an intuitive interface for searching and managing metadata ingested from data sets/data sources. The GeoServer and ncWMS web applications provide overlays and information for visual presentations of the data through web mapping services (WMS) by ingesting ESRI shapefiles, NetCDF, and HDF files. Users of the EDSS can browse the catalog of available products, enter a simple search string, or even constrain searches by temporal and spatial extents. Combined with a custom visualization web application, the EDSS provides a simple yet efficient means for users to not only access and manipulate climate and environmental data, but also trace the data source and the analytical methods used in the final decision aids products.

  6. The Impact of a Computerized Clinical Decision Support Tool on Inappropriate Clostridium difficile Testing. (United States)

    White, Duncan R; Hamilton, Keith W; Pegues, David A; Hanish, Asaf; Umscheid, Craig A


    OBJECTIVE To evaluate the effectiveness of a computerized clinical decision support intervention aimed at reducing inappropriate Clostridium difficile testing DESIGN Retrospective cohort study SETTING University of Pennsylvania Health System, comprised of 3 large tertiary-care hospitals PATIENTS All adult patients admitted over a 2-year period INTERVENTION Providers were required to use an order set integrated into a commercial electronic health record to order C. difficile toxin testing. The order set identified patients who had received laxatives within the previous 36 hours and displayed a message asking providers to consider stopping laxatives and reassessing in 24 hours prior to ordering C. difficile testing. Providers had the option to continue or discontinue laxatives and to proceed with or forgo testing. The primary endpoint was the change in inappropriate C. difficile testing, as measured by the number of patients who had C. difficile testing ordered while receiving laxatives. RESULTS Compared to the 1-year baseline period, the intervention resulted in a decrease in the proportion of inappropriate C. difficile testing (29.6% vs 27.3%; P=.02). The intervention was associated with an increase in the number of patients who had laxatives discontinued and did not undergo C. difficile testing (5.8% vs 46.4%; Ptesting (5.4% vs 35.2%; Ptesting and improving the timely discontinuation of laxatives. Infect Control Hosp Epidemiol 2017;38:1204-1208.

  7. Regional Coda 2-D P and S-wave Calibration, Support, and Coda Tool Development

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Mayeda, Kevin [Univ. of California, Berkeley, CA (United States)


    The following describes work completed between April 2014 through February 2016. As in past years, Dr. Mayeda is a point of contact for LLNL’s colleagues in Florida and provides calibration, troubleshooting support, integration of new coda-related products, and processing for events and regions of interest. He has been responsible for integrating new coda-related products from ongoing BAA projects with his LLNL counterparts. Over the past two years Dr. Mayeda visited with Florida scientists to spot check and validate 1-D coda calibrations for the YSKP, BARM, and Zagros regions. In addition, a new region of interest was identified and will be the subject of ongoing research into the next fiscal year. Dr. Mayeda is consulting with LLNL scientists on how best to transition and test 2-D coda calibrations for the broader Middle East region using GT source spectra as constraints. This region is laterally very complicated and initial coda studies show that variance reduction could be significant if 2-D path and envelope shape are incorporated.

  8. Decision support tool for early differential diagnosis of acute lung injury and cardiogenic pulmonary edema in medical critically ill patients. (United States)

    Schmickl, Christopher N; Shahjehan, Khurram; Li, Guangxi; Dhokarh, Rajanigandha; Kashyap, Rahul; Janish, Christopher; Alsara, Anas; Jaffe, Allan S; Hubmayr, Rolf D; Gajic, Ognjen


    At the onset of acute hypoxic respiratory failure, critically ill patients with acute lung injury (ALI) may be difficult to distinguish from those with cardiogenic pulmonary edema (CPE). No single clinical parameter provides satisfying prediction. We hypothesized that a combination of those will facilitate early differential diagnosis. In a population-based retrospective development cohort, validated electronic surveillance identified critically ill adult patients with acute pulmonary edema. Recursive partitioning and logistic regression were used to develop a decision support tool based on routine clinical information to differentiate ALI from CPE. Performance of the score was validated in an independent cohort of referral patients. Blinded post hoc expert review served as gold standard. Of 332 patients in a development cohort, expert reviewers (κ, 0.86) classified 156 as having ALI and 176 as having CPE. The validation cohort had 161 patients (ALI = 113, CPE = 48). The score was based on risk factors for ALI and CPE, age, alcohol abuse, chemotherapy, and peripheral oxygen saturation/Fio(2) ratio. It demonstrated good discrimination (area under curve [AUC] = 0.81; 95% CI, 0.77-0.86) and calibration (Hosmer-Lemeshow [HL] P = .16). Similar performance was obtained in the validation cohort (AUC = 0.80; 95% CI, 0.72-0.88; HL P = .13). A simple decision support tool accurately classifies acute pulmonary edema, reserving advanced testing for a subset of patients in whom satisfying prediction cannot be made. This novel tool may facilitate early inclusion of patients with ALI and CPE into research studies as well as improve and rationalize clinical management and resource use.

  9. Rainfall height stochastic modelling as a support tool for landslides early warning (United States)

    Capparelli, G.; Giorgio, M.; Greco, R.; Versace, P.


    intervals. More useful for this issue are the so-called DRIP (Disaggregated Rectangular Intensity Pulse) and NSRP (Neymann-Scott Rectangular Pulse) model [Heneker et al., 2001; Cowpertwait et al., 2002], usually adopted to generate synthetic point rainfall series. In this paper, the DRIP model approach is adopted in conjunction with FLAIR model to calculate the probability of flowslides occurrence. The final aim of the study is in fact to provide a useful tool to implement an early warning system for hydrogeological risk management. Model calibration has been carried out with hourly rainfall hieght data provided by the rain gauges of Campania Region civil protection agency meteorological warning network. So far, the model has been applied only to data series recorded at a single rain gauge. Future extension will deal with spatial correlation between time series recorded at different gauges. ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The research was co-financed by the Italian Ministry of University, by means of the PRIN 2006 PRIN program, within the research project entitled ‘Definition of critical rainfall thresholds for destructive landslides for civil protection purposes'. REFERENCES Box, G.E.P. and Jenkins, G.M., 1976. Time Series Analysis Forecasting and Control, Holden-Day, San Francisco. Cowpertwait, P.S.P., Kilsby, C.G. and O'Connell, P.E., 2002. A space-time Neyman-Scott model of rainfall: Empirical analysis of extremes, Water Resources Research, 38(8):1-14. Salas, J.D., 1992. Analysis and modeling of hydrological time series, in D.R. Maidment, ed., Handbook of Hydrology, McGraw-Hill, New York. Heneker, T.M., Lambert, M.F. and Kuczera G., 2001. A point rainfall model for risk-based design, Journal of Hydrology, 247(1-2):54-71. Versace, P., Sirangelo. B. and Capparelli, G., 2003. Forewarning model of landslides triggered by rainfall. Proc. 3rd International Conference on Debris-Flow Hazards Mitigation: Mechanics, Prediction and Assessment, Davos.

  10. SMART-COP: a tool for predicting the need for intensive respiratory or vasopressor support in community-acquired pneumonia. (United States)

    Charles, Patrick G P; Wolfe, Rory; Whitby, Michael; Fine, Michael J; Fuller, Andrew J; Stirling, Robert; Wright, Alistair A; Ramirez, Julio A; Christiansen, Keryn J; Waterer, Grant W; Pierce, Robert J; Armstrong, John G; Korman, Tony M; Holmes, Peter; Obrosky, D Scott; Peyrani, Paula; Johnson, Barbara; Hooy, Michelle; Grayson, M Lindsay


    Existing severity assessment tools, such as the pneumonia severity index (PSI) and CURB-65 (tool based on confusion, urea level, respiratory rate, blood pressure, and age >or=65 years), predict 30-day mortality in community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) and have limited ability to predict which patients will require intensive respiratory or vasopressor support (IRVS). The Australian CAP Study (ACAPS) was a prospective study of 882 episodes in which each patient had a detailed assessment of severity features, etiology, and treatment outcomes. Multivariate logistic regression was performed to identify features at initial assessment that were associated with receipt of IRVS. These results were converted into a simple points-based severity tool that was validated in 5 external databases, totaling 7464 patients. In ACAPS, 10.3% of patients received IRVS, and the 30-day mortality rate was 5.7%. The features statistically significantly associated with receipt of IRVS were low systolic blood pressure (2 points), multilobar chest radiography involvement (1 point), low albumin level (1 point), high respiratory rate (1 point), tachycardia (1 point), confusion (1 point), poor oxygenation (2 points), and low arterial pH (2 points): SMART-COP. A SMART-COP score of >or=3 points identified 92% of patients who received IRVS, including 84% of patients who did not need immediate admission to the intensive care unit. Accuracy was also high in the 5 validation databases. Sensitivities of PSI and CURB-65 for identifying the need for IRVS were 74% and 39%, respectively. SMART-COP is a simple, practical clinical tool for accurately predicting the need for IRVS that is likely to assist clinicians in determining CAP severity.

  11. Visualizing complex processes using a cognitive-mapping tool to support the learning of clinical reasoning. (United States)

    Wu, Bian; Wang, Minhong; Grotzer, Tina A; Liu, Jun; Johnson, Janice M


    Practical experience with clinical cases has played an important role in supporting the learning of clinical reasoning. However, learning through practical experience involves complex processes difficult to be captured by students. This study aimed to examine the effects of a computer-based cognitive-mapping approach that helps students to externalize the reasoning process and the knowledge underlying the reasoning process when they work with clinical cases. A comparison between the cognitive-mapping approach and the verbal-text approach was made by analyzing their effects on learning outcomes. Fifty-two third-year or higher students from two medical schools participated in the study. Students in the experimental group used the computer-base cognitive-mapping approach, while the control group used the verbal-text approach, to make sense of their thinking and actions when they worked with four simulated cases over 4 weeks. For each case, students in both groups reported their reasoning process (involving data capture, hypotheses formulation, and reasoning with justifications) and the underlying knowledge (involving identified concepts and the relationships between the concepts) using the given approach. The learning products (cognitive maps or verbal text) revealed that students in the cognitive-mapping group outperformed those in the verbal-text group in the reasoning process, but not in making sense of the knowledge underlying the reasoning process. No significant differences were found in a knowledge posttest between the two groups. The computer-based cognitive-mapping approach has shown a promising advantage over the verbal-text approach in improving students' reasoning performance. Further studies are needed to examine the effects of the cognitive-mapping approach in improving the construction of subject-matter knowledge on the basis of practical experience.

  12. A survey on the perceived need and value of decision-support tools for joint mitigation of air pollution and climate change in cities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erika von Schneidemesser


    Full Text Available Decision-support tools are increasingly popular for informing policy decisions linked to environmental issues. For example, a number of decision-support tools on transport planning provide information on expected effects of different measures (actions, policies, or interventions on air quality, often combined with information on noise pollution or mitigation costs. These tools range in complexity and scale of applicability, from city to international, and include one or several polluting sectors. However, evaluation of the need and utility of tools to support decisions on such linked issues is often lacking, especially for tools intended to support local authorities at the city scale. Here we assessed the need for and value of combining air pollution and climate change mitigation measures into one decision-support tool and the existing policy context in which such a tool might be used. We developed a prototype decision-support tool for evaluating measures for coordinated management of air quality and climate change; and administered a survey in which respondents used the prototype to answer questions about demand for such tools and requirements to make them useful. Additionally, the survey asked questions about participants’ awareness of linkages between air pollution and climate change that are crucial for considering synergies and trade-offs among mitigation measures. Participants showed a high understanding of the linkages between air pollution and climate change, especially recognizing that emissions of greenhouse gases and air pollutants come from the same source. Survey participants were: European, predominantly German; employed across a range of governmental, non-governmental and research organizations; and responsible for a diversity of issues, primarily involving climate change, air pollution or environment. Survey results showed a lack of awareness of decision-support tools and little implementation or regular use. However

  13. Life cycle assessment as development and decision support tool for wastewater resource recovery technology. (United States)

    Fang, Linda L; Valverde-Pérez, Borja; Damgaard, Anders; Plósz, Benedek Gy; Rygaard, Martin


    Life cycle assessment (LCA) has been increasingly used in the field of wastewater treatment where the focus has been to identify environmental trade-offs of current technologies. In a novel approach, we use LCA to support early stage research and development of a biochemical system for wastewater resource recovery. The freshwater and nutrient content of wastewater are recognized as potential valuable resources that can be recovered for beneficial reuse. Both recovery and reuse are intended to address existing environmental concerns, for example, water scarcity and use of non-renewable phosphorus. However, the resource recovery may come at the cost of unintended environmental impacts. One promising recovery system, referred to as TRENS, consists of an enhanced biological phosphorus removal and recovery system (EBP2R) connected to a photobioreactor. Based on a simulation of a full-scale nutrient and water recovery system in its potential operating environment, we assess the potential environmental impacts of such a system using the EASETECH model. In the simulation, recovered water and nutrients are used in scenarios of agricultural irrigation-fertilization and aquifer recharge. In these scenarios, TRENS reduces global warming up to 15% and marine eutrophication impacts up to 9% compared to conventional treatment. This is due to the recovery and reuse of nutrient resources, primarily nitrogen. The key environmental concerns obtained through the LCA are linked to increased human toxicity impacts from the chosen end use of wastewater recovery products. The toxicity impacts are from both heavy metals release associated with land application of recovered nutrients and production of AlCl3, which is required for advanced wastewater treatment prior to aquifer recharge. Perturbation analysis of the LCA pinpointed nutrient substitution and heavy metals content of algae biofertilizer as critical areas for further research if the performance of nutrient recovery systems such as

  14. FEMA's Earthquake Incident Journal: A Web-Based Data Integration and Decision Support Tool for Emergency Management (United States)

    Jones, M.; Pitts, R.


    For emergency managers, government officials, and others who must respond to rapidly changing natural disasters, timely access to detailed information related to affected terrain, population and infrastructure is critical for planning, response and recovery operations. Accessing, analyzing and disseminating such disparate information in near real-time are critical decision support components. However, finding a way to handle a variety of informative yet complex datasets poses a challenge when preparing for and responding to disasters. Here, we discuss the implementation of a web-based data integration and decision support tool for earthquakes developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as a solution to some of these challenges. While earthquakes are among the most well- monitored and measured of natural hazards, the spatially broad impacts of shaking, ground deformation, landslides, liquefaction, and even tsunamis, are extremely difficult to quantify without accelerated access to data, modeling, and analytics. This web-based application, deemed the "Earthquake Incident Journal", provides real-time access to authoritative and event-specific data from external (e.g. US Geological Survey, NASA, state and local governments, etc.) and internal (FEMA) data sources. The journal includes a GIS-based model for exposure analytics, allowing FEMA to assess the severity of an event, estimate impacts to structures and population in near real-time, and then apply planning factors to exposure estimates to answer questions such as: What geographic areas are impacted? Will federal support be needed? What resources are needed to support survivors? And which infrastructure elements or essential facilities are threatened? This presentation reviews the development of the Earthquake Incident Journal, detailing the data integration solutions, the methodology behind the GIS-based automated exposure model, and the planning factors as well as other analytical advances that

  15. New and Improved Remotely Sensed Products and Tools for Agricultural Monitoring Applications in Support of Famine Early Warning (United States)

    Budde, M. E.; Rowland, J.; Senay, G. B.; Funk, C. C.; Pedreros, D.; Husak, G. J.; Bohms, S.


    The high global food prices in 2008 led to the acknowledgement that there is a need to monitor the inter-connectivity of global and regional markets and their potential impacts on food security in many more regions than previously considered. The crisis prompted an expansion of monitoring by the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) to include additional countries, beyond those where food security has long been of concern. Scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center and the University of California Santa Barbara Climate Hazards Group have provided new and improved data products as well as visualization and analysis tools in support of this increased mandate for remote monitoring. We present a new product for measuring actual evapotranspiration (ETa) based on the implementation of a surface energy balance model and site improvements of two standard FEWS NET monitoring products: normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) and satellite-based rainfall estimates. USGS FEWS NET has implemented a simplified surface energy balance model to produce operational ETa anomalies for Africa. During the growing season, ETa anomalies express surplus or deficit crop water use which is directly related to crop condition and biomass. The expedited Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (eMODIS) production system provides FEWS NET with a much improved NDVI dataset for crop and rangeland monitoring. eMODIS NDVI provides a reliable data stream with a vastly improved spatial resolution (250-m) and short latency period (less than 12 hours) which allows for better operational vegetation monitoring. FEWS NET uses satellite rainfall estimates as inputs for monitoring agricultural food production. By combining high resolution (0.05 deg) rainfall mean fields with Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission rainfall estimates and infrared temperature data, we provide pentadal (5-day) rainfall fields suitable for crop

  16. Development of a Support Tool for Complex Decision-Making in the Provision of Rural Maternity Care (United States)

    Hearns, Glen; Klein, Michael C.; Trousdale, William; Ulrich, Catherine; Butcher, David; Miewald, Christiana; Lindstrom, Ronald; Eftekhary, Sahba; Rosinski, Jessica; Gómez-Ramírez, Oralia; Procyk, Andrea


    Context: Decisions in the organization of safe and effective rural maternity care are complex, difficult, value laden and fraught with uncertainty, and must often be based on imperfect information. Decision analysis offers tools for addressing these complexities in order to help decision-makers determine the best use of resources and to appreciate the downstream effects of their decisions. Objective: To develop a maternity care decision-making tool for the British Columbia Northern Health Authority (NH) for use in low birth volume settings. Design: Based on interviews with community members, providers, recipients and decision-makers, and employing a formal decision analysis approach, we sought to clarify the influences affecting rural maternity care and develop a process to generate a set of value-focused objectives for use in designing and evaluating rural maternity care alternatives. Setting: Four low-volume communities with variable resources (with and without on-site births, with or without caesarean section capability) were chosen. Participants: Physicians (20), nurses (18), midwives and maternity support service providers (4), local business leaders, economic development officials and elected officials (12), First Nations (women [pregnant and non-pregnant], chiefs and band members) (40), social workers (3), pregnant women (2) and NH decision-makers/administrators (17). Results: We developed a Decision Support Manual to assist with assessing community needs and values, context for decision-making, capacity of the health authority or healthcare providers, identification of key objectives for decision-making, developing alternatives for care, and a process for making trade-offs and balancing multiple objectives. The manual was deemed an effective tool for the purpose by the client, NH. Conclusions: Beyond assisting the decision-making process itself, the methodology provides a transparent communication tool to assist in making difficult decisions. While the

  17. Co-Production with Water Managers to Improve Applicability and Adoption of an Emerging Decision Support Tool (United States)

    Smith, R.; Kasprzyk, J. R.; Dilling, L.


    In water management, changes in the frequency and intensity of extreme events (especially droughts and floods) are likely to require modifications of management strategies and, in some cases, new infrastructure. In light of these and other challenges, there is a serious need to improve the applicability of water resources research to real-world decision making. Multiobjective Evolutionary Algorithms (MOEAs) have shown promise in being able to generate and evaluate new planning alternatives under these conditions, but there has not yet been work that seeks to use a co-production framework to extensively test their efficacy. A group of engineering, social science, and climate researchers collaborated with practitioners from two municipal water providers to design this interdisciplinary study. The focus of the research is to co-produce and test a MOEA-based decision tool directly with a group of water managers from six water utilities from Colorado's Front Range: Cities of Boulder, Aurora, and Fort Collins, Denver Water, Colorado Springs Utilities, and Northern Water. As part of the co-production of the MOEA testbed, managers provided critical insight on problem formulations, hydrology and demand scenarios, and a hypothetical water supply network using a workshop format. A problem formulation consists of objectives that measure performance, management options that decision makers can change, and constraints that represent acceptable limits for performance. The hypothetical network is based on feedback from our participating utilities and is representative of the water management context along the Front Range of Colorado. This presentation will focus on results from an initial workshop with water managers and provide insights on how our approach can help bridge the gap between decision support research and real-world water management. Our study seeks to inform a set of best practices for incorporating a MOEA-based decision tool in the decision making processes of

  18. Measuring the quality and quantity of professional intrapartum support: testing a computerised systematic observation tool in the clinical setting. (United States)

    Ross-Davie, Mary C; Cheyne, Helen; Niven, Catherine


    Continuous support in labour has a significant impact on a range of clinical outcomes, though whether the quality and quantity of support behaviours affects the strength of this impact has not yet been established. To identify the quality and quantity of support, a reliable means of measurement is needed. To this end, a new computerised systematic observation tool, the 'SMILI' (Supportive Midwifery in Labour Instrument) was developed.The aim of the study was to test the validity and usability of the 'Supportive Midwifery in Labour Instrument' (SMILI) and to test the feasibility and acceptability of the systematic observation approach in the clinical intrapartum setting. Systematic observation was combined with a postnatal questionnaire and the collection of data about clinical processes and outcomes for each observed labour.The setting for the study was four National Health Service maternity units in Scotland, UK. Participants in this study were forty five midwives and forty four women.The SMILI was used by trained midwife observers to record labour care provided by midwives. Observations were undertaken for an average of two hours and seventeen minutes during the active first stage of labour and, in 18 cases, the observation included the second stage of labour. Content validity of the instrument was tested by the observers, noting the extent to which the SMILI facilitated the recording of all key aspects of labour care and interactions. Construct validity was tested through exploration of correlations between the data recorded and women's feelings about the support they received. Feasibility and usability data were recorded following each observation by the observer. Internal reliability and construct validity were tested through statistical analysis of the data. One hundred and four hours of labour care were observed and recorded using the SMILI during forty nine labour episodes. The SMILI was found to be a valid and reliable instrument in the intrapartum setting

  19. Heat and Health in a Changing Climate: Building a Decision Support Tool for California Public Health Officials (United States)

    Steinberg, N.


    There is considerable interest in overlaying climate projections with social vulnerability maps as a mechanism for targeting community adaptation efforts. Yet the identification of relevant factors for adaptation- and resilience-based decisions remain a challenge. Our findings show that successful adaptation interventions are more likely when factors are grouped and spatially represented. By designing a decision-support tool that is focused on informing long-term planning to mitigate the public health impacts of extreme heat, communities can more easily integrate climate, land use, and population characteristics into local planning processes. The ability to compare risks and potential health impacts across census tracts may also position local practitioners to leverage scarce resources. This presentation will discuss the information gaps identified by planners and public health practitioners throughout California and illustrate the spatial variations of key health risk factors.

  20. Transmedia’s Implications of the use of RPG and Wargame as tools to support Vast Narratives of Medieval Fantasy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Leonardo Andrade


    Full Text Available Emerging in the 1970s, the Wargame Chainmail and the first RPG shared the medieval fantasy genre to explore interactive narratives. In this article, we’ll analyze the main vast narratives of the medieval fantasy genre involving RPG and Wargames and its transmedia’s implications. Some systems of rules have their game mechanics discussed, building the basis for the experience of using the RPG as a tool for creative support and cohesion of narrative in the scenario Shiang’s Lands. Using rules of both, RPG and Wargame, this article exposes the creative process and the transmedia’s implications of the expe-rience analyzed.

  1. An Agro-Climatological Early Warning Tool Based on the Google Earth Engine to Support Regional Food Security Analysis (United States)

    Landsfeld, M. F.; Daudert, B.; Friedrichs, M.; Morton, C.; Hegewisch, K.; Husak, G. J.; Funk, C. C.; Peterson, P.; Huntington, J. L.; Abatzoglou, J. T.; Verdin, J. P.; Williams, E. L.


    The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) focuses on food insecurity in developing nations and provides objective, evidence based analysis to help government decision-makers and relief agencies plan for and respond to humanitarian emergencies. The Google Earth Engine (GEE) is a platform provided by Google Inc. to support scientific research and analysis of environmental data in their cloud environment. The intent is to allow scientists and independent researchers to mine massive collections of environmental data and leverage Google's vast computational resources to detect changes and monitor the Earth's surface and climate. GEE hosts an enormous amount of satellite imagery and climate archives, one of which is the Climate Hazards Group Infrared Precipitation with Stations dataset (CHIRPS). The CHIRPS dataset is land based, quasi-global (latitude 50N-50S), 0.05 degree resolution, and has a relatively long term period of record (1981-present). CHIRPS is on a continuous monthly feed into the GEE as new data fields are generated each month. This precipitation dataset is a key input for FEWS NET monitoring and forecasting efforts. FEWS NET intends to leverage the GEE in order to provide analysts and scientists with flexible, interactive tools to aid in their monitoring and research efforts. These scientists often work in bandwidth limited regions, so lightweight Internet tools and services that bypass the need for downloading massive datasets to analyze them, are preferred for their work. The GEE provides just this type of service. We present a tool designed specifically for FEWS NET scientists to be utilized interactively for investigating and monitoring for agro-climatological issues. We are able to utilize the enormous GEE computing power to generate on-the-fly statistics to calculate precipitation anomalies, z-scores, percentiles and band ratios, and allow the user to interactively select custom areas for statistical time series comparisons and predictions.

  2. A Vision for Incorporating Environmental Effects into Nitrogen Management Decision Support Tools for U.S. Maize Production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kamaljit Banger


    Full Text Available Meeting crop nitrogen (N demand while minimizing N losses to the environment has proven difficult despite significant field research and modeling efforts. To improve N management, several real-time N management tools have been developed with a primary focus on enhancing crop production. However, no coordinated effort exists to simultaneously address sustainability concerns related to N losses at field- and regional-scales. In this perspective, we highlight the opportunity for incorporating environmental effects into N management decision support tools for United States maize production systems by integrating publicly available crop models with grower-entered management information and gridded soil and climate data in a geospatial framework specifically designed to quantify environmental and crop production tradeoffs. To facilitate advances in this area, we assess the capability of existing crop models to provide in-season N recommendations while estimating N leaching and nitrous oxide emissions, discuss several considerations for initial framework development, and highlight important challenges related to improving the accuracy of crop model predictions. Such a framework would benefit the development of regional sustainable intensification strategies by enabling the identification of N loss hotspots which could be used to implement spatially explicit mitigation efforts in relation to current environmental quality goals and real-time weather conditions. Nevertheless, we argue that this long-term vision can only be realized by leveraging a variety of existing research efforts to overcome challenges related to improving model structure, accessing field data to enhance model performance, and addressing the numerous social difficulties in delivery and adoption of such tool by stakeholders.

  3. GAPscreener: An automatic tool for screening human genetic association literature in PubMed using the support vector machine technique

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Khoury Muin J


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Synthesis of data from published human genetic association studies is a critical step in the translation of human genome discoveries into health applications. Although genetic association studies account for a substantial proportion of the abstracts in PubMed, identifying them with standard queries is not always accurate or efficient. Further automating the literature-screening process can reduce the burden of a labor-intensive and time-consuming traditional literature search. The Support Vector Machine (SVM, a well-established machine learning technique, has been successful in classifying text, including biomedical literature. The GAPscreener, a free SVM-based software tool, can be used to assist in screening PubMed abstracts for human genetic association studies. Results The data source for this research was the HuGE Navigator, formerly known as the HuGE Pub Lit database. Weighted SVM feature selection based on a keyword list obtained by the two-way z score method demonstrated the best screening performance, achieving 97.5% recall, 98.3% specificity and 31.9% precision in performance testing. Compared with the traditional screening process based on a complex PubMed query, the SVM tool reduced by about 90% the number of abstracts requiring individual review by the database curator. The tool also ascertained 47 articles that were missed by the traditional literature screening process during the 4-week test period. We examined the literature on genetic associations with preterm birth as an example. Compared with the traditional, manual process, the GAPscreener both reduced effort and improved accuracy. Conclusion GAPscreener is the first free SVM-based application available for screening the human genetic association literature in PubMed with high recall and specificity. The user-friendly graphical user interface makes this a practical, stand-alone application. The software can be downloaded at no charge.

  4. Demonstration of Decision Support Tools for Sustainable Development - An Application on Alternative Fuels in the Greater Yellowstone-Teton Region

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Shropshire, D.E.; Cobb, D.A.; Worhach, P.; Jacobson, J.J.; Berrett, S.


    The Demonstration of Decision Support Tools for Sustainable Development project integrated the Bechtel/Nexant Industrial Materials Exchange Planner and the Idaho National Engineering and Environmental Laboratory System Dynamic models, demonstrating their capabilities on alternative fuel applications in the Greater Yellowstone-Teton Park system. The combined model, called the Dynamic Industrial Material Exchange, was used on selected test cases in the Greater Yellow Teton Parks region to evaluate economic, environmental, and social implications of alternative fuel applications, and identifying primary and secondary industries. The test cases included looking at compressed natural gas applications in Teton National Park and Jackson, Wyoming, and studying ethanol use in Yellowstone National Park and gateway cities in Montana. With further development, the system could be used to assist decision-makers (local government, planners, vehicle purchasers, and fuel suppliers) in selecting alternative fuels, vehicles, and developing AF infrastructures. The system could become a regional AF market assessment tool that could help decision-makers understand the behavior of the AF market and conditions in which the market would grow. Based on this high level market assessment, investors and decision-makers would become more knowledgeable of the AF market opportunity before developing detailed plans and preparing financial analysis.

  5. Assessment of a Bayesian Belief Network-GIS framework as a practical tool to support marine planning. (United States)

    Stelzenmüller, V; Lee, J; Garnacho, E; Rogers, S I


    For the UK continental shelf we developed a Bayesian Belief Network-GIS framework to visualise relationships between cumulative human pressures, sensitive marine landscapes and landscape vulnerability, to assess the consequences of potential marine planning objectives, and to map uncertainty-related changes in management measures. Results revealed that the spatial assessment of footprints and intensities of human activities had more influence on landscape vulnerabilities than the type of landscape sensitivity measure used. We addressed questions regarding consequences of potential planning targets, and necessary management measures with spatially-explicit assessment of their consequences. We conclude that the BN-GIS framework is a practical tool allowing for the visualisation of relationships, the spatial assessment of uncertainty related to spatial management scenarios, the engagement of different stakeholder views, and enables a quick update of new spatial data and relationships. Ultimately, such BN-GIS based tools can support the decision-making process used in adaptive marine management. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. OCAM - A CELSS modeling tool: Description and results. [Object-oriented Controlled Ecological Life Support System Analysis and Modeling (United States)

    Drysdale, Alan; Thomas, Mark; Fresa, Mark; Wheeler, Ray


    Controlled Ecological Life Support System (CELSS) technology is critical to the Space Exploration Initiative. NASA's Kennedy Space Center has been performing CELSS research for several years, developing data related to CELSS design. We have developed OCAM (Object-oriented CELSS Analysis and Modeling), a CELSS modeling tool, and have used this tool to evaluate CELSS concepts, using this data. In using OCAM, a CELSS is broken down into components, and each component is modeled as a combination of containers, converters, and gates which store, process, and exchange carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen on a daily basis. Multiple crops and plant types can be simulated. Resource recovery options modeled include combustion, leaching, enzyme treatment, aerobic or anaerobic digestion, and mushroom and fish growth. Results include printouts and time-history graphs of total system mass, biomass, carbon dioxide, and oxygen quantities; energy consumption; and manpower requirements. The contributions of mass, energy, and manpower to system cost have been analyzed to compare configurations and determine appropriate research directions.

  7. INPRO Activities on Development of Advanced Tools to Support Judgment Aggregation for Comparative Evaluation of Nuclear Energy Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    V. Kuznetsov


    Full Text Available This paper presents first results of the INPRO Collaborative Project on Key Indicators for Innovative Nuclear Energy Systems, which has the objective to develop guidance and tools for comparative evaluation of the status, prospects, benefits, and risks associated with development of innovative nuclear technologies for a more distant future. Presented results illustrate expedience of application of the multicriteria decision analysis methods, which are able to provide the added value to comparative assessment of nuclear energy systems. First, the paper presents a short review of the multicriteria decision analysis methods appropriate to support judgment aggregation within comparative evaluations of nuclear energy systems based on key indicators and highlights the methodology to perform such assessments. Second, a set of key indicators elaborated in the INPRO Collaborative Project on Global Architecture of Innovative Nuclear Energy Systems Based on Thermal and Fast Reactors Including a Closed Fuel Cycle (GAINS were evaluated for comparative evaluation of nuclear energy system evolution scenarios. Third, a numerical example is presented of application of the selected key indicators, methods, and tools for judgment aggregation in comparative assessment of the GAINS nuclear energy systems.

  8. Multifactorial and functional mobility assessment tools for fall risk among older adults in community, home-support, long-term and acute care settings. (United States)

    Scott, Vicky; Votova, Kristine; Scanlan, Andria; Close, Jacqueline


    to conduct a systematic review of published studies that test the validity and reliability of fall-risk assessment tools for use among older adults in community, home-support, long-term and acute care settings. searches were conducted in EbscoHost and MEDLINE for published studies in the English language between January 1980 and July 2004, where the primary or secondary purpose was to test the predictive value of one or more fall assessment tools on a population primarily 65 years and older. The tool must have had as its primary outcome falls, fall-related injury or gait/balance. Only studies that used prospective validation were considered. thirty-four articles testing 38 different tools met the inclusion criteria. The community setting represents the largest number of studies (14) and tools (23) tested, followed by acute (12 studies and 8 tools), long-term care (LTC) (6 studies and 10 tools) and home-support (4 studies and 4 tools). Eleven of the 38 tools are multifactorial assessment tools (MAT) that cover a wide range of fall-risk factors, and 27 are functional mobility assessment tools (FMA) that involve measures of physical activity related to gait, strength or balance. fall-risk assessment tools exist that show moderate to good validity and reliability in most health service delivery areas. However, few tools were tested more than once or in more than one setting. Therefore, no single tool can be recommended for implementation in all settings or for all subpopulations within each setting.

  9. Development and Usability Testing of a Computer-Tailored Decision Support Tool for Lung Cancer Screening: Study Protocol. (United States)

    Carter-Harris, Lisa; Comer, Robert Skipworth; Goyal, Anurag; Vode, Emilee Christine; Hanna, Nasser; Ceppa, DuyKhanh; Rawl, Susan M


    Awareness of lung cancer screening remains low in the screening-eligible population, and when patients visit their clinician never having heard of lung cancer screening, engaging in shared decision making to arrive at an informed decision can be a challenge. Therefore, methods to effectively support both patients and clinicians to engage in these important discussions are essential. To facilitate shared decision making about lung cancer screening, effective methods to prepare patients to have these important discussions with their clinician are needed. Our objective is to develop a computer-tailored decision support tool that meets the certification criteria of the International Patient Decision Aid Standards instrument version 4.0 that will support shared decision making in lung cancer screening decisions. Using a 3-phase process, we will develop and test a prototype of a computer-tailored decision support tool in a sample of lung cancer screening-eligible individuals. In phase I, we assembled a community advisory board comprising 10 screening-eligible individuals to develop the prototype. In phase II, we recruited a sample of 13 screening-eligible individuals to test the prototype for usability, acceptability, and satisfaction. In phase III, we are conducting a pilot randomized controlled trial (RCT) with 60 screening-eligible participants who have never been screened for lung cancer. Outcomes tested include lung cancer and screening knowledge, lung cancer screening health beliefs (perceived risk, perceived benefits, perceived barriers, and self-efficacy), perception of being prepared to engage in a patient-clinician discussion about lung cancer screening, occurrence of a patient-clinician discussion about lung cancer screening, and stage of adoption for lung cancer screening. Phases I and II are complete. Phase III is underway. As of July 15, 2017, 60 participants have been enrolled into the study, and have completed the baseline survey, intervention, and first

  10. Quality tools and resources to support organisational improvement integral to high-quality primary care: a systematic review of published and grey literature. (United States)

    Janamian, Tina; Upham, Susan J; Crossland, Lisa; Jackson, Claire L


    To conduct a systematic review of the literature to identify existing online primary care quality improvement tools and resources to support organisational improvement related to the seven elements in the Primary Care Practice Improvement Tool (PC-PIT), with the identified tools and resources to progress to a Delphi study for further assessment of relevance and utility. Systematic review of the international published and grey literature. CINAHL, Embase and PubMed databases were searched in March 2014 for articles published between January 2004 and December 2013. GreyNet International and other relevant websites and repositories were also searched in March-April 2014 for documents dated between 1992 and 2012. All citations were imported into a bibliographic database. Published and unpublished tools and resources were included in the review if they were in English, related to primary care quality improvement and addressed any of the seven PC-PIT elements of a high-performing practice. Tools and resources that met the eligibility criteria were then evaluated for their accessibility, relevance, utility and comprehensiveness using a four-criteria appraisal framework. We used a data extraction template to systematically extract information from eligible tools and resources. A content analysis approach was used to explore the tools and resources and collate relevant information: name of the tool or resource, year and country of development, author, name of the organisation that provided access and its URL, accessibility information or problems, overview of each tool or resource and the quality improvement element(s) it addresses. If available, a copy of the tool or resource was downloaded into the bibliographic database, along with supporting evidence (published or unpublished) on its use in primary care. This systematic review identified 53 tools and resources that can potentially be provided as part of a suite of tools and resources to support primary care practices in

  11. Development of a resource modelling tool to support decision makers in pandemic influenza preparedness: The AsiaFluCap Simulator

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stein Mart


    Full Text Available Abstract Background Health care planning for pandemic influenza is a challenging task which requires predictive models by which the impact of different response strategies can be evaluated. However, current preparedness plans and simulations exercises, as well as freely available simulation models previously made for policy makers, do not explicitly address the availability of health care resources or determine the impact of shortages on public health. Nevertheless, the feasibility of health systems to implement response measures or interventions described in plans and trained in exercises depends on the available resource capacity. As part of the AsiaFluCap project, we developed a comprehensive and flexible resource modelling tool to support public health officials in understanding and preparing for surges in resource demand during future pandemics. Results The AsiaFluCap Simulator is a combination of a resource model containing 28 health care resources and an epidemiological model. The tool was built in MS Excel© and contains a user-friendly interface which allows users to select mild or severe pandemic scenarios, change resource parameters and run simulations for one or multiple regions. Besides epidemiological estimations, the simulator provides indications on resource gaps or surpluses, and the impact of shortages on public health for each selected region. It allows for a comparative analysis of the effects of resource availability and consequences of different strategies of resource use, which can provide guidance on resource prioritising and/or mobilisation. Simulation results are displayed in various tables and graphs, and can also be easily exported to GIS software to create maps for geographical analysis of the distribution of resources. Conclusions The AsiaFluCap Simulator is freely available software ( which can be used by policy makers, policy advisors, donors and other stakeholders involved in preparedness for

  12. Developing a Framework to Link Catchment Modelling tools to Decision Support Systems for Catchment Management and Planning (United States)

    Adams, Russell; Owen, Gareth


    Over the past few years a series of catchment monitoring studies in the UK have developed a wide range of tools to enable managers and planners to make informed decisions to target several key outcomes. These outcomes include the mitigation of diffuse pollution and the reduction of flood risk. Good progress has been but additional steps are still required to link together more detailed models that represent catchment processes with the decision support systems (often termed matrices; i.e. DSMs) which form the basis of these planning and management tools. Examples include: (i) the FARM tools developed by the PROACTIVE team at Newcastle University to assess different catchment management options for mitigating against flooding events, (ii) TOPMANAGE, a suite of algorithms that link with high resolution DEMs to enable surface flow pathways, having the potential to be mitigated by Natural Flood Management (NFM) features (in order to target diffuse pollution due to nutrients and sediments) to be identified. To date, these DSMs have not been underpinned by models that can be run in real-time to quantify the benefits in terms of measurable reductions in flood or nutrient pollution risks. Their use has therefore been mostly as qualitative assessment tools. This study aims to adapt an existing spreadsheet-based model, the CRAFT, in order for it to become fully coupled to a DSM approach. Previous catchment scale applications of the CRAFT have focussed on meso-scale studies where any management interventions at a local scale are unlikely to be detectable at the monitoring point (the catchment outlet). The model has however been reasonably successful in identifying potential flow and transport pathways that link the headwater subcatchments to the outlet. Furthermore, recent enhancements to the model enable features such as sedimentation ponds and lagoons that can trap and remove nutrients and sediments to be added, once data become available from different types of NFM

  13. Innovations in Primary Health Care: the use of communications technology and information tools to support local management. (United States)

    Pinto, Luiz Felipe; Rocha, Cristianne Maria Famer


    Social media has been used in different contexts as a way to streamline the flow of data and information for decision making. This has contributed to the issue of knowledge production in networks and the expansion of communication channels so that there is greater access to health services. This article describes the results of research done on 16 Information Technology and Communications Observatories in Health Care - OTICS Network in Rio - covering the Municipal Health Secretariat in Rio de Janeiro which supported the integration of primary health care and promoted the monitoring of health. It is a descriptive case study. The results relate to the support given to employees in training covering the dissemination of information, communication, training and information management in primary health care. This innovative means of communication in public health, with very little cost to the Unified Health System (SUS), allowed for a weekly registering of work processes for teams that worked in 193 primary health care units (APS) using blogs, whose total accesses reached the seven million mark in mid-2015. In the future there is a possibility that distance learning tools could be used to assist in training processes and in the continuing education of professionals in family health teams.

  14. Development of a Geographic Information System-Based Decision Support Tool for Evaluating Windfarm Sitings in Great Lakes Aquatic Habitats

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wehrly, Kevin E. [Michigan Dept. Natural Resources and Environment, Lansing, MI (United States); Rutherford, Edward S. [Great Lakes Environmental Research Lab., Ann Harbor, MI (United States); Wang, Lizhu [Michigan Dept. Natural Resources and Environment, Lansing, MI (United States); Breck, Jason [Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI (United States). School of Natural Resources and Environment (UM-SNRE); Mason, Lacey [Univ. of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI (United States). School of Natural Resources and Environment (UM-SNRE); Nelson, Scott [USGS Great Lakes Science Center, Ann Arbor, MI (United States)


    As an outcome of our research project, we developed software and data for the Lakebed Alteration Decision Support Tool (LADST), a web-based decision support program to assist resource managers in making siting decisions for offshore wind farms (as well as other lakebed-altering projects) in the United States' waters of the Great Lakes. Users of the LADST can create their own offshore wind farm suitability maps, based upon suitability criteria of their own choosing by visiting a public web site. The LADST can be used to represent the different priorities or values of different Great Lakes stakeholders for wind farm siting, as well as the different suitability requirements of wind farms (or different types of development projects) in a single suitability analysis system. The LADST makes this type of customized suitability analysis easily accessible to users who have no specialized software or experience with geographic information systems (GIS). It also may increase the transparency of the siting and permitting process for offshore wind farms, as it makes the suitability analysis equally accessible to resource managers, wind farm developers, and concerned citizens.

  15. Using augmented reality as a clinical support tool to assist combat medics in the treatment of tension pneumothoraces. (United States)

    Wilson, Kenneth L; Doswell, Jayfus T; Fashola, Olatokunbo S; Debeatham, Wayne; Darko, Nii; Walker, Travelyan M; Danner, Omar K; Matthews, Leslie R; Weaver, William L


    This study was to extrapolate potential roles of augmented reality goggles as a clinical support tool assisting in the reduction of preventable causes of death on the battlefield. Our pilot study was designed to improve medic performance in accurately placing a large bore catheter to release tension pneumothorax (prehospital setting) while using augmented reality goggles. Thirty-four preclinical medical students recruited from Morehouse School of Medicine performed needle decompressions on human cadaver models after hearing a brief training lecture on tension pneumothorax management. Clinical vignettes identifying cadavers as having life-threatening tension pneumothoraces as a consequence of improvised explosive device attacks were used. Study group (n = 13) performed needle decompression using augmented reality goggles whereas the control group (n = 21) relied solely on memory from the lecture. The two groups were compared according to their ability to accurately complete the steps required to decompress a tension pneumothorax. The medical students using augmented reality goggle support were able to treat the tension pneumothorax on the human cadaver models more accurately than the students relying on their memory (p augmented reality group required more time to complete the needle decompression intervention (p = 0.0684), this did not reach statistical significance. Reprint & Copyright © 2013 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  16. Using a configurable EMR and decision support tools to promote process integration for routine HIV screening in the emergency department. (United States)

    McGuire, Robert; Moore, Eric


    Given the clinical and public health benefits of routine Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) testing in the emergency department (ED) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations, Maricopa Medical Center, as part of Maricopa Integrated Health System, started Test, Educate, Support, and Treat Arizona (TESTAZ) and became the first and, to-date, only hospital in Arizona to implement routine, non-targeted, opt-out, rapid HIV screening in the ED. The authors describe the implementation of a universal, routine, opt-out HIV screening program in the adult ED of an urban safety-net hospital serving under-served populations, including the uninsured and under-insured. Through a controlled and collaborative process, the authors integrated custom documentation elements specific to HIV screening into the triage/intake process, implemented and utilized clinical decision support tools to guide clinicians in each step of the process, and used electronic data collection and reporting to drive new screening protocols that led to a significant increase in overall HIV testing rates. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the American Medical Informatics Association. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email:

  17. Development of an integrated economic decision-support tool for the remediation of contaminated sites. Overview note

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Samson, R.; Bage, G.


    This report concludes the first design phase of an innovative software tool which, when completed, will allow managers of contaminated sites to make optimal decisions with respect to site remediation. The principal objective of the project was to develop the foundations for decision-support software (SITE VII) which will allow a comprehensive and rigorous approach to the comparison of remediation scenarios for sites contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons. During this first phase of the project, the NSERC Industrial Chair in Site Remediation and Management of the Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal has completed four stages in the design of a decision-support tool that could be applied by any site manager using a simple computer. These four stages are: refinement of a technico-economic evaluation model; development of databases for five soil remediation technologies; design of a structure for integration of the databases with the technico-economic model; and simulation of the remediation of a contaminated site using the technico-economic model and a subset of the databases. In the interim report, the emphasis was placed on the development of the technico-economic model, supported by a very simple, single-technology simulation of remediation. In the present report, the priority is placed on the integration of the different components required for the creation of decision-support software based on the technico-economic model. An entire chapter of this report is devoted to elaborating the decision structure of the software. The treatment of information within the software is shown schematically and explained step-by-step. Five remediation technologies are handled by the software: three in-situ technologies (bio-venting, bio-slurping, bio-sparging) and two ex-situ technologies (thermal desorption, Bio-pile treatment). A technology file has been created for each technology, containing a brief description of the technology, its performance, its criteria of applicability

  18. Development of a decision support tool for seasonal water supply management incorporating system uncertainties and operational constraints (United States)

    Wang, H.; Asefa, T.


    A real-time decision support tool (DST) for water supply system would consider system uncertainties, e.g., uncertain streamflow and demand, as well as operational constraints and infrastructure outage (e.g., pump station shutdown, an offline reservoir due to maintenance). Such DST is often used by water managers for resource allocation and delivery for customers. Although most seasonal DST used by water managers recognize those system uncertainties and operational constraints, most use only historical information or assume deterministic outlook of water supply systems. This study presents a seasonal DST that incorporates rainfall/streamflow uncertainties, seasonal demand outlook and system operational constraints. Large scale climate-information is captured through a rainfall simulator driven by a Bayesian non-homogeneous Markov Chain Monte Carlo model that allows non-stationary transition probabilities contingent on Nino 3.4 index. An ad-hoc seasonal demand forecasting model considers weather conditions explicitly and socio-economic factors implicitly. Latin Hypercube sampling is employed to effectively sample probability density functions of flow and demand. Seasonal system operation is modelled as a mixed-integer optimization problem that aims at minimizing operational costs. It embeds the flexibility of modifying operational rules at different components, e.g., surface water treatment plants, desalination facilities, and groundwater pumping stations. The proposed framework is illustrated at a wholesale water supplier in Southeastern United States, Tampa Bay Water. The use of the tool is demonstrated in proving operational guidance in a typical drawdown and refill cycle of a regional reservoir. The DST provided: 1) probabilistic outlook of reservoir storage and chance of a successful refill by the end of rainy season; 2) operational expectations for large infrastructures (e.g., high service pumps and booster stations) throughout the season. Other potential use

  19. Dynamic metabolism modelling of urban water services--demonstrating effectiveness as a decision-support tool for Oslo, Norway. (United States)

    Venkatesh, G; Sægrov, Sveinung; Brattebø, Helge


    Urban water services are challenged from many perspectives and different stakeholders demand performance improvements along economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainability. In response, urban water utilities systematically give more attention to criteria such as water safety, climate change adaptation and mitigation, environmental life cycle assessment (LCA), total cost efficiency, and on how to improve their operations within the water-energy-carbon nexus. The authors of this paper collaborated in the development of a 'Dynamic Metabolism Model' (DMM). The model is developed for generic use in the sustainability assessment of urban water services, and it has been initially tested for the city of Oslo, Norway. The purpose has been to adopt a holistic systemic perspective to the analysis of metabolism and environmental impacts of resource flows in urban water and wastewater systems, in order to offer a tool for the examination of future strategies and intervention options in such systems. This paper describes the model and its application to the city of Oslo for the analysis time period 2013-2040. The external factors impacting decision-making and interventions are introduced along with realistic scenarios developed for the testing, after consultation with officials at the Oslo Water and Wastewater Works (Norway). Possible interventions that the utility intends to set in motion are defined and numerically interpreted for incorporation into the model, and changes in the indicator values over the time period are determined. This paper aims to demonstrate the effectiveness and usefulness of the DMM, as a decision-support tool for water-wastewater utilities. The scenarios considered and interventions identified do not include all possible scenarios and interventions that can be relevant for water-wastewater utilities. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Design and Testing of an EHR-Integrated, Busulfan Pharmacokinetic Decision Support Tool for the Point-of-Care Clinician.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susan M. Abdel-Rahman


    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Busulfan demonstrates a narrow therapeutic index for which clinicians routinely employ therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM. However, operationalizing TDM can be fraught with inefficiency. We developed and tested software encoding a clinical decision support tool (DST that is embedded into our electronic health record (EHR and designed to streamline the TDM process for our oncology partners. METHODS: Our development strategy was modeled based on the features associated with successful DSTs. An initial Requirements Analysis was performed to characterize tasks, information flow, user needs, and system requirements to enable push/pull from the EHR. Back-end development was coded based on the algorithm used when manually performing busulfan TDM. The code was independently validated in MATLAB using 10,000 simulated patient profiles. A 296-item heuristic checklist was used to guide design of the front-end user interface. Content experts and end-users (n=28 were recruited to participate in traditional usability testing under an IRB approved protocol. RESULTS: Decision support software was developed to systematically walk the point-of-care clinician through the TDM process. The system is accessed through the EHR which transparently imports all of the requisite patient data. Data are visually inspected and then curve fit using a model-dependent approach. Quantitative goodness-of-fit are converted to single tachometer where green alerts the user that the model is strong, yellow signals caution and red indicates that there may be a problem with the fitting. Override features are embedded to permit application of a model-independent approach where appropriate. Simulations are performed to target a desired exposure or dose as entered by the clinician and the DST pushes the user approved recommendation back into the EHR. Usability testers were highly satisfied with our DST and quickly became proficient with the software.CONCLUSIONS: With early and

  1. Connecting Education to Quality: Engaging Medical Students in the Development of Evidence-Based Clinical Decision Support Tools. (United States)

    Crabtree, Elizabeth A; Brennan, Emily; Davis, Amanda; Squires, Jerry E


    Evidence-based practice (EBP) skills are crucial for delivering high-quality patient care. It is essential that medical students learn EBP concepts through a practical, in-depth research project. To date, literature on preparing students in this manner is limited. In academic year 2014-2015, the Medical University of South Carolina's (MUSC's) Center for Evidence-Based Practice (now known as the Value Institute) partnered with College of Medicine faculty to revitalize the undergraduate medical student EBP curriculum. Without adding to the number of the lecture hours, the curriculum was restructured to be more process driven, project based, and clinically relevant. The resulting yearlong EBP course partnered small teams of medical students with interprofessional clinical teams to engage the students in developing evidence-based clinical decision support tools. The content developed during the EBP projects is currently being used to develop evidence-based clinical practice guidelines and accompanying order sets. It is likely that this model will serve as a new framework for guideline development and will greatly expand the breadth of evidence-based content currently produced and available for clinicians at the MUSC. It would be feasible to offer a similar course within the MUSC to other disciplines and colleges, or at other institutions, if there were support from administration, interest on the part of clinicians and medical faculty, and individuals with the required expertise available to develop the curriculum and facilitate the course. It is worth considering how to improve the course and evaluating opportunities to implement it within other settings.

  2. Opportunities and Challenges in Using Hydrologic Information and Decision Support Tools to Improve Livelihoods in Burkina Faso, West Africa (United States)

    Kirshen, P.; Jost, C.; Roncoli, M. C.; Hoogenboom, G.


    Burkina Faso is part of the Sahel-Sudan climatic zone south of the Sahara Desert. The rainfall of the region is characterized by extreme seasonal and annual temporal and spatial variability. Soils are generally of low fertility. The major livelihood activity in Burkina Faso, one of the lowest ranked countries in the world in the Human Development Index where 80 percent of the population rely on subsistence farming, is rainfed cultivation of cereal crops. Cotton is the dominant export crop and is mostly grown in the southwest. Livestock management is an important complement to farm activities, especially in the Sahelian zone. There are several major rivers flowing through the region and many ephemeral streams. Surface water resources are becoming more important to Burkina Faso as it tries to improve food security and water supplies, and increase energy production. One of the major opportunities to improve livelihoods in the region has been improvements in seasonal rainfall forecasting based upon global sea surface temperatures. In the past decade, the generation and use of forecasts in Burkina Faso has evolved from the nation just receiving forecasts almost as an after thought from USA and European meteorological services to the Burkina Faso Meteorological Services generating their own forecasts with support from these services. There is now also more focused international research on improving the forecasts for this region. The use of stochastic decision support tools (DST) that combine the seasonal forecasts with hydrologic and crop models, land conditions, and information on farmer and policy maker goals could improve both rainfed and irrigated agricultural systems. Their implementation requires overcoming many technical and socio-economic challenges. Examples include forecasting the start and end of rains, dissemination and explanation of forecasts, streamflow forecasting in data scarce regions, possible different incentives for subsistence and cash crop farmers

  3. Integrated Simulation Development and Decision Support Tool-Set for Utility Market and Distributed Solar Power Generation Electricore, Inc.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Daye, Tony [Green Power Labs (GPL), San Diego, CA (United States)


    This project will enable utilities to develop long-term strategic plans that integrate high levels of renewable energy generation, and to better plan power system operations under high renewable penetration. The program developed forecast data streams for decision support and effective integration of centralized and distributed solar power generation in utility operations. This toolset focused on real time simulation of distributed power generation within utility grids with the emphasis on potential applications in day ahead (market) and real time (reliability) utility operations. The project team developed and demonstrated methodologies for quantifying the impact of distributed solar generation on core utility operations, identified protocols for internal data communication requirements, and worked with utility personnel to adapt the new distributed generation (DG) forecasts seamlessly within existing Load and Generation procedures through a sophisticated DMS. This project supported the objectives of the SunShot Initiative and SUNRISE by enabling core utility operations to enhance their simulation capability to analyze and prepare for the impacts of high penetrations of solar on the power grid. The impact of high penetration solar PV on utility operations is not only limited to control centers, but across many core operations. Benefits of an enhanced DMS using state-of-the-art solar forecast data were demonstrated within this project and have had an immediate direct operational cost savings for Energy Marketing for Day Ahead generation commitments, Real Time Operations, Load Forecasting (at an aggregate system level for Day Ahead), Demand Response, Long term Planning (asset management), Distribution Operations, and core ancillary services as required for balancing and reliability. This provided power system operators with the necessary tools and processes to operate the grid in a reliable manner under high renewable penetration.

  4. Mapping Application for Penguin Populations and Projected Dynamics (MAPPPD): Data and Tools for Dynamic Management and Decision Support (United States)

    Humphries, G. R. W.; Naveen, R.; Schwaller, M.; Che-Castaldo, C.; McDowall, P.; Schrimpf, M.; Schrimpf, Michael; Lynch, H. J.


    The Mapping Application for Penguin Populations and Projected Dynamics (MAPPPD) is a web-based, open access, decision-support tool designed to assist scientists, non-governmental organizations and policy-makers working to meet the management objectives as set forth by the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) and other components of the Antarctic Treaty System (ATS) (that is, Consultative Meetings and the ATS Committee on Environmental Protection). MAPPPD was designed specifically to complement existing efforts such as the CCAMLR Ecosystem Monitoring Program (CEMP) and the ATS site guidelines for visitors. The database underlying MAPPPD includes all publicly available (published and unpublished) count data on emperor, gentoo, Adelie) and chinstrap penguins in Antarctica. Penguin population models are used to assimilate available data into estimates of abundance for each site and year.Results are easily aggregated across multiple sites to obtain abundance estimates over any user-defined area of interest. A front end web interface located at provides free and ready access to the most recent count and modelled data, and can act as a facilitator for data transfer between scientists and Antarctic stakeholders to help inform management decisions for the continent.

  5. AD-SISCOLO: a decision-support tool to aid the management of a cervical cancer screening program

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sulafa Yacoub Mohammed Ahmed


    Full Text Available AbstractIntroduction: This paper aims to develop a data warehouse (AD-SISCOLO in order to support the management of the cervical cancer screening program in the municipality of Rio de Janeiro/Brazil. As a part of the management process, the program managers of the municipality perform tedious manual work in order to calculate a series of performance indicators and then take decisions based on them. Methods AD-SISCOLO was implemented using the Pentaho BI Suite Business Intelligence Platform and the MySQL database management system. The indicators to be calculated and visualized in the tool were based on the municipal data of the cytopathology and histopathology tests from January 2012 until December 2014, which was obtained from the Information System of Cervical Cancer (SISCOLO after a record linkage process. The follow-up indicators were based on a simplified version of the Brazilian guidelines for the cervical cancer screening. Results AD-SISCOLO allows the visualization of a set of test-based and follow-up indicators from different views and dimensions, which enable managers to monitor all the phases of the screening process and to identify the process’ failures. Conclusions Compared with the current available environments in Brazil, AD-SISCOLO is unique in its visualization of the follow-up indicators of groups of women, according to their test results and age. Thereby it provides presentation flexibility to suit the program manager's needs.

  6. New observations on gametogenic development and reproductive experimental tools to support seed yield improvement in cowpea [Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp]. (United States)

    Salinas-Gamboa, Rigel; Johnson, Susan D; Sánchez-León, Nidia; Koltunow, Anna M G; Vielle-Calzada, Jean-Philippe


    Cowpea reproductive tools. Vigna unguiculata L. Walp. (cowpea) is recognized as a major legume food crop in Africa, but seed yields remain low in most varieties adapted to local conditions. The development of hybrid cowpea seed that could be saved after each generation, enabling significant yield increases, will require manipulation of reproductive development from a sexual to an asexual mode. To develop new technologies that could support the biotechnological manipulation of reproductive development in cowpea, we examined gametogenesis and seed formation in two transformable, African-adapted, day-length-insensitive varieties. Here, we show that these two varieties exhibit distinct morphological and phenological traits but share a common developmental sequence in terms of ovule formation and gametogenesis. We present a reproductive calendar that allows prediction of male and female gametogenesis on the basis of sporophytic parameters related to floral bud size and reproductive organ development, determining that gametogenesis occurs more rapidly in the anther than in the ovule. We also show that the mode of megagametogenesis is of the Polygonum-type and not Oenothera-type, as previously reported. Finally, we developed a whole-mount immunolocalization protocol and applied it to detect meiotic proteins in the cowpea megaspore mother cell, opening opportunities for comparing the dynamics of protein localization during male and female meiosis, as well as other reproductive events in this emerging legume model system.

  7. Decision Support Tool Evaluation Report for General NOAA Oil Modeling Environment(GNOME) Version 2.0 (United States)

    Spruce, Joseph P.; Hall, Callie; Zanoni, Vicki; Blonski, Slawomir; D'Sa, Eurico; Estep, Lee; Holland, Donald; Moore, Roxzana F.; Pagnutti, Mary; Terrie, Gregory


    NASA's Earth Science Applications Directorate evaluated the potential of NASA remote sensing data and modeling products to enhance the General NOAA Oil Modeling Environment (GNOME) decision support tool. NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) Hazardous Materials (HAZMAT) Response Division is interested in enhancing GNOME with near-realtime (NRT) NASA remote sensing products on oceanic winds and ocean circulation. The NASA SeaWinds sea surface wind and Jason-1 sea surface height NRT products have potential, as do sea surface temperature and reflectance products from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer and sea surface reflectance products from Landsat and the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflectance Radiometer. HAZMAT is also interested in the Advanced Circulation model and the Ocean General Circulation Model. Certain issues must be considered, including lack of data continuity, marginal data redundancy, and data formatting problems. Spatial resolution is an issue for near-shore GNOME applications. Additional work will be needed to incorporate NASA inputs into GNOME, including verification and validation of data products, algorithms, models, and NRT data.

  8. A decision support tool for the analysis of pricing, investment and regulatory processes in a decentralized electricity market

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pasaoglu Kilanc, Guzay; Or, Ilhan


    After the liberalization of the electricity generation industry, capacity expansion decisions are made by multiple self-oriented power companies. Unlike the centralized environment, decision-making of market participants is now guided by price signal feedbacks and by an imperfect foresight of the future market conditions (and competitor actions) that they will face. In such an environment, decision makers need to better understand long-term dynamics of the supply and demand sides of the power market. In this study, a system dynamics model is developed, to better understand and analyze the decentralized and competitive electricity market dynamics in the long run. The developed simulation model oversees a 20-year planning horizon; it includes a demand module, a capacity expansion module, a power generation module, an accounting and finance module, various competitors, a regulatory body and a bidding mechanism. Many features, singularities and tools of decentralized markets, such as; capacity withholding, enforced divestment, long-term contracts, price-elastic demands, incentives/disincentives, are also incorporated into the model. Public regulators and power companies are potential users of the model, for learning and decision support in policy design and strategic planning. Results of scenario analysis are presented to illustrate potential use of the model

  9. [Tools for junior scientists support from medical societies: survey amongst members organized in the Association of the Scientific Medical Societies (AWMF)]. (United States)

    Meybohm, Patrick; Lindau, Simone; Schürholz, Tobias; Larmann, Jan; Stehr, Sebastian N; Nau, Carla


    A decreasing number of young physicians go for an academic career. The most frequently cited reasons are deficient structures and a lack of perspectives. The German Research Foundation warned against supply gaps in the medical sciences and in 2010 published recommendations for the improvement of professional development at all levels of medical education. A systematic survey of existing support tools and their dissemination among the medical societies has not yet been conducted. Network members of the AWMF were contacted by e-mail and asked to answer 59 questions regarding the support of junior scientists in their respective societies. 28 out of 147 societies replied to the questionnaire. Most of the societies offer at least one of the following tools (multiple responses; selective topics): award for oral presentations (n=27), free attendance at conferences (n=15), financial research funding (n=19), assessment of any funding application (n=10), mentoring (n=6), support of students working on their doctoral thesis (n=26), support of studies abroad (n=16), training course on statistics/ laboratory methods (n=17), support with clinical studies (n=22). Here, we present our survey findings on established support tools for junior scientists for the first time. Apart from the medical schools, several medical-scientific societies have also started to provide tools of support for their junior scientists. However, to ensure that long-term perspectives and attractive conditions are provided in the field of medical science for junior scientists, broader support and interdisciplinary exchange of established tools are needed. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier GmbH.

  10. sandflyDST: a dynamic web-based decision support tool for the morphological identification of sandflies present in Anatolia and mainland Europe, and user study. (United States)

    Karakülah, G; Karakuş, M; Suner, A; Demir, S; Arserim, S K; Töz, S; Özbel, Y


    Species identification of sandflies is mainly performed according to morphological characters using classical written identification keys. This study introduces a new web-based decision support tool (sandflyDST) for guiding the morphological identification of sandfly species present in Anatolia and mainland Europe and classified in the Phlebotomus and Sergentomyia genera (both: Diptera: Psychodidae). The current version of the tool consists of 111 questions and 36 drawings obtained from classical written keys, and 107 photographs for the quick and easy identification of 26 species of the genus Phlebotomus and four species of the genus Sergentomyia. The tool guides users through a decision tree using yes/no questions about the morphological characters of the specimen. The tool was applied by 30 individuals, who then completed study questionnaires. The results of subsequent analyses indicated that the usability (x‾SUSScore=75.4) and users' level of appreciation (86.6%) of the tool were quite high; almost all of the participants considered recommending the tool to others. The tool may also be useful in training new entomologists and maintaining their level of expertise. This is a dynamic tool and can be improved or upgraded according to feedback. The tool is now available online at © 2016 The Royal Entomological Society.

  11. An attempt to implement tools to support examination of community-based activities for disaster mitigation: A case study in Toyokawa city, Japan (United States)

    Karashima, Kazuki; Ohgai, Akira


    Japan is a country with a high risk for earthquake disasters. The measures used to promote structures' seismic safety, such as reconstruction, widening narrow roads, and the response capacities to deal with huge earthquakes are important. Techniques to support the examination of countermeasures to huge earthquakes are required. To improve this capability, the authors developed tools to: (1) evaluate fire-spread risk, (2) evaluate the difficulty of emergency response and evacuation, and (3) evaluate capacities of neighborhood communities for disaster mitigation. The usefulness of the tools was clarified by the demonstration experiments of previous studies. The next step was implementation of the tools in community-based activities for disaster mitigation. This study aimed to clarify the usability and problems of implementing the tools in community-based activities. The tools were used at several workshops in actual community-based activities for disaster mitigation for one year. After the last workshop, interviews and a questionnaire were conducted on municipal staff and consultant staff. The results found that the tools visually showed the fire-spread risk, the difficulty of evacuation under current conditions and after improvements, and the effects of each disaster mitigation activity. The users could easily explore the draft plans to promote seismic safety of urban structures and response capabilities. The tools were positively incorporated into some community-based activities for disaster mitigation. Thus, the tools have the possibility of successful use at continuing community-based activities and the possibility of implementing the tools will be promoted.

  12. Route Availabililty Planning Tool - (United States)

    Department of Transportation — The Route Availability Planning Tool (RAPT) is a weather-assimilated decision support tool (DST) that supports the development and execution of departure management...

  13. No perfect tools: trade-offs of sustainability principles and user requirements in designing support tools for land-use decisions between greenfields and brownfields. (United States)

    Bartke, Stephan; Schwarze, Reimund


    The EU Soil Thematic Strategy calls for the application of sustainability concepts and methods as part of an integrated policy to prevent soil degradation and to increase the re-use of brownfields. Although certain general principles have been proposed for the evaluation of sustainable development, the practical application of sustainability assessment tools (SATs) is contingent on the actual requirements of tool users, e.g. planners or investors, to pick up such instruments in actual decision making. We examine the normative sustainability principles that need to be taken into account in order to make sound land-use decisions between new development on greenfield sites and the regeneration of brownfields - and relate these principles to empirically observed user requirements and the properties of available SATs. In this way we provide an overview of approaches to sustainability assessment. Three stylized approaches, represented in each case by a typical tool selected from the literature, are presented and contrasted with (1) the norm-oriented Bellagio sustainability principles and (2) the requirements of three different stakeholder groups: decision makers, scientists/experts and representatives of the general public. The paper disentangles some of the inevitable trade-offs involved in seeking to implement sustainable land-use planning, i.e. between norm orientation and holism, broad participation and effective communication. It concludes with the controversial assessment that there are no perfect tools and that to be meaningful the user requirements of decision makers must take precedence over those of other interest groups in the design of SATs. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. The development of Operational Intervention Levels (OILs) for Soils - A decision support tool in nuclear and radiological emergency response (United States)

    Lee Zhi Yi, Amelia; Dercon, Gerd; Blackburn, Carl; Kheng, Heng Lee


    In the event of a large-scale nuclear accident, the swift implementation of response actions is imperative. For food and agriculture, it is important to restrict contaminated food from being produced or gathered, and to put in place systems to prevent contaminated produce from entering the food chain. Emergency tools and response protocols exist to assist food control and health authorities but they tend to focus on radioactivity concentrations in food products as a means of restricting the distribution and sale of contaminated produce. Few, if any, emergency tools or protocols focus on the food production environment, for example radioactivity concentrations in soils. Here we present the Operational Intervention Levels for Soils (OIL for Soils) concept, an optimization tool developed at the IAEA to facilitate agricultural decision making and to improve nuclear emergency preparedness and response capabilities. Effective intervention relies on the prompt availability of radioactivity concentration data and the ability to implement countermeasures. Sampling in food and agriculture can be demanding because it may involve large areas and many sample types. In addition, there are finite resources available in terms of manpower and laboratory support. Consequently, there is a risk that timely decision making will be hindered and food safety compromised due to time taken to sample and analyse produce. However, the OILs for Soils concept developed based on experience in Japan can help in this situation and greatly assist authorities responsible for agricultural production. OILs for Soils - pre-determined reference levels of air dose rates linked to radionuclide concentrations in soils - can be used to trigger response actions particularly important for agricultural and food protection. Key considerations in the development of the OILs for Soils are: (1) establishing a pragmatic sampling approach to prioritize and optimize available resources and data requirements for

  15. Dynamic Bayesian Networks as a Decision Support tool for assessing Climate Change impacts on highly stressed groundwater systems (United States)

    Molina, José-Luis; Pulido-Velázquez, David; García-Aróstegui, José Luis; Pulido-Velázquez, Manuel


    SummaryBayesian Networks (BNs) are powerful tools for assessing and predicting consequences of water management scenarios and uncertain drivers like climate change, integrating available scientific knowledge with the interests of the multiple stakeholders. However, among their major limitations, the non-transient treatment of the cause-effect relationship stands out. A Decision Support System (DSS) based on Dynamic Bayesian Networks (DBNs) is proposed here aimed to palliate that limitation through time slicing technique. The DSS comprises several classes (Object-Oriented BN networks), especially designed for future 5 years length time steps (time slices), covering a total control period of 30 years (2070-2100). The DSS has been developed for assessing impacts generated by different Climate Change (CC) scenarios (generated from several Regional Climatic Models (RCMs) under two emission scenarios, A1B and A2) in an aquifer system (Serral-Salinas) affected by intensive groundwater use over the last 30 years. A calibrated continuous water balance model was used to generate hydrological CC scenarios, and then a groundwater flow model (MODFLOW) was employed in order to analyze the aquifer behavior under CC conditions. Results obtained from both models were used as input for the DSS, considering rainfall, aquifer recharge, variation of piezometric levels and temporal evolution of aquifer storage as the main hydrological components of the aquifer system. Results show the evolution of the aquifer storage for each future time step under different climate change conditions and under controlled water management interventions. This type of applications would allow establishing potential adaptation strategies for aquifer systems as the CC comes into effect.

  16. Randomized Controlled Trial of a Video Decision Support Tool for Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Decision Making in Advanced Cancer (United States)

    Volandes, Angelo E.; Paasche-Orlow, Michael K.; Mitchell, Susan L.; El-Jawahri, Areej; Davis, Aretha Delight; Barry, Michael J.; Hartshorn, Kevan L.; Jackson, Vicki Ann; Gillick, Muriel R.; Walker-Corkery, Elizabeth S.; Chang, Yuchiao; López, Lenny; Kemeny, Margaret; Bulone, Linda; Mann, Eileen; Misra, Sumi; Peachey, Matt; Abbo, Elmer D.; Eichler, April F.; Epstein, Andrew S.; Noy, Ariela; Levin, Tomer T.; Temel, Jennifer S.


    Purpose Decision making regarding cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is challenging. This study examined the effect of a video decision support tool on CPR preferences among patients with advanced cancer. Patients and Methods We performed a randomized controlled trial of 150 patients with advanced cancer from four oncology centers. Participants in the control arm (n = 80) listened to a verbal narrative describing CPR and the likelihood of successful resuscitation. Participants in the intervention arm (n = 70) listened to the identical narrative and viewed a 3-minute video depicting a patient on a ventilator and CPR being performed on a simulated patient. The primary outcome was participants' preference for or against CPR measured immediately after exposure to either modality. Secondary outcomes were participants' knowledge of CPR (score range of 0 to 4, with higher score indicating more knowledge) and comfort with video. Results The mean age of participants was 62 years (standard deviation, 11 years); 49% were women, 44% were African American or Latino, and 47% had lung or colon cancer. After the verbal narrative, in the control arm, 38 participants (48%) wanted CPR, 41 (51%) wanted no CPR, and one (1%) was uncertain. In contrast, in the intervention arm, 14 participants (20%) wanted CPR, 55 (79%) wanted no CPR, and 1 (1%) was uncertain (unadjusted odds ratio, 3.5; 95% CI, 1.7 to 7.2; P < .001). Mean knowledge scores were higher in the intervention arm than in the control arm (3.3 ± 1.0 v 2.6 ± 1.3, respectively; P < .001), and 65 participants (93%) in the intervention arm were comfortable watching the video. Conclusion Participants with advanced cancer who viewed a video of CPR were less likely to opt for CPR than those who listened to a verbal narrative. PMID:23233708

  17. Greenhouse Gases Life Cycle Assessment (GHGLCA) as a decision support tool for municipal solid waste management in Iran. (United States)

    Mahmoudkhani, Rouhallah; Valizadeh, Behzad; Khastoo, Hamidreza


    One of the most problems in developing countries is the integrated waste management and the effects on Greenhouse Gases (GHG) emission, Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is used in this paper as a decision supporting tool in planning Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) managements. In this paper the EPA's Waste Reduction Model (WARM) that provide GHG emission factors for waste stream components that are based on life Cycle Inventory (LCI) framework were used and The MSW management methods comprised in seven scenarios. The amount of GHG which was generated from Iran's waste sector estimated about 17836079 Metric Tons of Carbon dioxide Equivalents (MT CO2e) in this study. The lowest amount of GHG was generated by LFG capture system with energy recovery (557635 MT CO2e), while Incineration of materials being sent to landfill (1756823 MT CO2e), Landfill Gas (LFG) capture system with flaring (2929150 MT CO2e) and Improved source reduction and recycling (4780278 MT CO2e) emitted fewer GHG than the other scenarios. Lowest levels of gross energy consumption occur in source reduction with recycling and composting (-89356240 Mega British Thermal Unit, M BTU), recycling and composting (-86772060 M BTU) as well as Improved source reduction with recycling and composting (-54794888 M BTU). It appears that recycling and composting each offer significant GHG emissions and energy consumption reductions (scenarios 4, 5 and 6). Upon of the GHG emission and energy consumption results concluded that improved source reduction and recycling scenario has been the Balanced and appropriate technology for handling the solid waste streams in municipalities.

  18. New tools for an old trade: a socio-technical appraisal of how electronic decision support is used by primary care practitioners. (United States)

    Peiris, David; Usherwood, Tim; Weeramanthri, Tarun; Cass, Alan; Patel, Anushka


    This article explores Australian general practitioners' (GPs) views on a novel electronic decision support (EDS) tool being developed for cardiovascular disease management. We use Timmermans and Berg's technology-in-practice approach to examine how technologies influence and are influenced by the social networks in which they are placed. In all, 21 general practitioners who piloted the tool were interviewed. The tool occupied an ill-defined middle ground in a dialectical relationship between GPs' routine care and factors promoting best practice. Drawing on Lipsky's concept of 'street-level bureaucrats', the tool's ability to process workloads expeditiously was of greatest appeal to GPs. This feature of the tool gave it the potential to alter the structure, process and content of healthcare encounters. The credibility of EDS tools appears to be mediated by fluid notions of best practice, based on an expert scrutiny of the evidence, synthesis via authoritative guidelines and dissemination through trusted and often informal networks. Balanced against this is the importance of 'soft' forms of knowledge such as intuition and timing in everyday decision-making. This resonates with Aristotle's theory of phronesis (practical wisdom) and may render EDS tools inconsequential if they merely process biomedical data. While EDS tools show promise in improving health practitioner performance, the socio-technical dimensions of their implementation warrant careful consideration. © 2011 The Authors. Sociology of Health & Illness © 2011 Foundation for the Sociology of Health & Illness/Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

  19. Supporting Scientific Modeling Practices in Atmospheric Sciences: Intended and Actual Affordances of a Computer-Based Modeling Tool (United States)

    Wu, Pai-Hsing; Wu, Hsin-Kai; Kuo, Che-Yu; Hsu, Ying-Shao


    Computer-based learning tools include design features to enhance learning but learners may not always perceive the existence of these features and use them in desirable ways. There might be a gap between what the tool features are designed to offer (intended affordance) and what they are actually used (actual affordance). This study thus aims at…

  20. Web tools concerning performance analysis and planning support for solar energy plants starting from remotely sensed optical images

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morelli, Marco; Masini, Andrea; Ruffini, Fabrizio; Potenza, Marco Alberto Carlo


    We present innovative web tools, developed also in the frame of the FP7 ENDORSE (ENergy DOwnstReam SErvices) project, for the performance analysis and the support in planning of solar energy plants (PV, CSP, CPV). These services are based on the combination between the detailed physical model of each part of the plants and the near real-time satellite remote sensing of incident solar irradiance. Starting from the solar Global Horizontal Irradiance (GHI) data provided by the Monitoring Atmospheric Composition and Climate (GMES-MACC) Core Service and based on the elaboration of Meteosat Second Generation (MSG) satellite optical imagery, the Global Tilted Irradiance (GTI) or the Beam Normal Irradiance (BNI) incident on plant's solar PV panels (or solar receivers for CSP or CPV) is calculated. Combining these parameters with the model of the solar power plant, using also air temperature values, we can assess in near-real-time the daily evolution of the alternate current (AC) power produced by the plant. We are therefore able to compare this satellite-based AC power yield with the actually measured one and, consequently, to readily detect any possible malfunctions and to evaluate the performances of the plant (so-called “Controller” service). Besides, the same method can be applied to satellite-based averaged environmental data (solar irradiance and air temperature) in order to provide a Return on Investment analysis in support to the planning of new solar energy plants (so-called “Planner” service). This method has been successfully applied to three test solar plants (in North, Centre and South Italy respectively) and it has been validated by comparing satellite-based and in-situ measured hourly AC power data for several months in 2013 and 2014. The results show a good accuracy: the overall Normalized Bias (NB) is − 0.41%, the overall Normalized Mean Absolute Error (NMAE) is 4.90%, the Normalized Root Mean Square Error (NRMSE) is 7.66% and the overall