Scientists based at Maynooth University are leading a European project on creative computing, which has created novel research idea that is now being developed into a research publication. The new research idea was created by computationally creative system called “Dr Inventor” and has been adopted and developed by researchers based at Bournemouth University.  Dr Inventor took a number of connected ideas from one paper and applied those ideas to solve in a problem described in a second paper.  Researchers in Bournemouth University from the resulting blend of problem and solution so interesting that they have explored and developed the initial research hypothesis and are hoping to develop the result into a published research paper.

Dr Diarmuid O’Donoghue from a Maynooth University is senior scientific officer for the Dr Inventor project, exploring the use of computational creativity to create a tool for use by practising research scientists. Together with Dr Donny Hurley and Dr Yalemisew Abgaz, the Maynooth University team are developing the creativity engine at the heart of Dr Inventor that aims to discover novel similarities between research publications, offering novel and interesting insights into existing problems.drinventor

Information Overload: Global increases in research output have led to a deluge of papers that academics must sift through and evaluate for potential relevance to their discipline.  Now we must researchers tackle the growing number of publications in their own field, but they also need to keep an eye on other disciplines for ideas that they may adopt in use in their own work.  These factors have led to a growing burden on researchers trying to stay at the cutting edge of their discipline.  When existing web based services from Google scholar to Microsoft academic search help find a publications that uses same terminology are that cite the same reference material, we don’t help identify potentially useful research in other disciplines.

Harvesting Ideas: Harvest ideas from research publications using a combination of text processing and lexical analysis. This include more detailed analysis to text to resolve referents, so “it” may be effectively replaced by a second instance of the relevant term. In this way, we can better identifying the central items within a publication.

Working with UB & BU and collected a corpus of 1500 research publications on computer graphics. UB 7 BU help not only with guiding the project from an expert users perspective, but are also central to the evaluation process.

Ad hoc transfer of new knowledge between ontologically distant domains is a further challenge.

Creativity Model, cognitive computing
“Dr Inventor” is an example of cognitive computing that is focused on one specific human ability – the ability to think and reason using analogical comparisons.  This ability to think and reason using comparisons has been studied heavily by psychologists and others over the last year for decades and many of the insights gained from these studies have contributed to the Dr Inventor project.

Dr Inventor combines advances in: text processing, lexical analysis, cognitive modelling, information visualisation, topic modelling and others.

User evaluation trials begin next week at the SIGGRAPH conference in Los Angeles, CA, focused on expert users from the discipline of computer graphics. Two partner institutions on this European funded project are leaders in computer graphics and contributed to its development. This includes CASA at Bournemouth University, UK — Graduates from CASA have been awarded several Oscars for their ground breaking work on recent movies.

Our initial evaluations highlighted some very surprising findings, especially which more senuior and experience researchers got greater value from Dr Inventor than early stage researchers.

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