NASA Support – Dr. Kirk Borne of George Mason University

The Arts and Entertainment Magazine (an unlikely source for me) published TAEM Interview with Dr. Kirk Borne of George Mason University, which is a delightful interview to generate support for NASA.

Of particular interest, Dr. Kirk Borne says:

My current research is focused on outlier detection, which I prefer to call Surprise Discovery – finding the unknown unknowns and the unexpected patterns in the data. These discoveries may reveal data quality problems (i.e., problems with the experiment or data processing pipeline), but they may also reveal totally new astrophysical phenomena: new types of galaxies or stars or whatever. That discovery potential is huge within the huge data collections that are being generated from the large astronomical sky surveys that are taking place now and will take place in the coming decades. I haven’t yet found that one special class of objects or new type of astrophysical process that will win me a Nobel Prize, but you never know what platinum-plated needles may be hiding in those data haystacks.

Topic maps are known for encoding knowns and known patterns in data.

How would you explore a topic map to find “…unknown unknowns and the unexpected patterns in the data?”

BTW, Dr. Borne invented the term “astroinformatics.”

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