Tag Archives: Lost Person Behavior

The Lognormal Distance Model

Eric Cawi

A logical extension of the Distance Rings model is to fit a smooth function to the distribution of data found in ISRID. Examining the Euclidean Distance data for different categories, it was found that a lognormal curve roughly captured the shape of the data. The Log-Normal (LN) is a two parameter distribution which assumes that the logarithm of your data follows a normal distribution. The probability density function of the LN curve is given by, where are the mean and standard deviation of the logarithm of distance.

Child 4-6 lognormal plot

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MapScore Updates

The MapScore site has been updated! The most exciting new feature is Batch Upload.

  • Batch Upload!  In one fell swoop, upload and re-score all your models and cases (or as many as necessary).  No more clicking around or messing with “active” vs “inactive” cases.  (Unless you want to...)
MapScore batch upload screen. New Nov. 2013.

MapScore batch upload screen. New Nov. 2013.

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Paul Doherty's Research Page

Just a quick note to highlight Paul Doherty's new research page.  It includes:

  • Overview of his research
  • Publications list
  • Software & Datasets page, including links to MapSAR and discussion groups.
  • Linkspage with a SAR & GIS bibliography including the memorably titled
    • Heggie, Travis W, and Michael E Amundson. 2009. “Dead Men Walking: Search and Rescue in US National Parks.” Wilderness & Environmental Medicine.
    • And the humorously mangled:  Is, Information, Releasable To, and Foreign Nationals. “Search and Rescue Optimal Planning System ( SAROPS ).” Training 2.
    • And three articles it sounds like I should read soon:
      • Jobe, T.R., and P.S. White. 2009. “A New Cost-distance Model for Human Accessibility and an Evaluation of Accessibility Bias in Permanent Vegetation Plots in Great Smoky Mountains National Park , USA.” Journal of Vegetation Science: 1099–1109.
      • Miller, Harvey J., and Scott a. Bridwell. 2009. “A Field-Based Theory for Time Geography.” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 99 (1) (January 8): 49–75. link
      • Pingel, Thomas J. 2011. “Estimating an Empirical Hiking Function from GPS Data.” Sports Medicine: 1–3.

At Mason we're collaborating with Paul to test a Watershed-Distance model developed by his research group.  Based on 58 tests run so far by Elena Sava on MapScore, this simple model scores 0.55.  Not bad for a model that doesn't yet discriminate by category (or any other feature).  Elena just finished a multivariate model combining Watersheds with the more usual crows'-flight distance, and we will begin testing that soon.

 

MapScore public leaderboard, from October 2012.

MapScore: A Portal for Scoring Probability Maps

The SARBayes MapScore server has been running for a month now at http://mapscore.sarbayes.org.  It's a portal for scoring probability maps, so researchers like us can measure how well we are doing, and see which approaches work best for which situations.  Take a look.  (And if you have a model, register and start testing it!)

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lanny_map_sm

Bayesian Motion Models of LPB

Lin & Goodrich at Brigham Young are working on Bayesian motion models for generating probability maps. They have an interesting model, but need GPS tracks to train it. It's a nice complement to our approach, and it will be interesting to see how they compare.

~Originally a very cool review published in the first half of 2010. The review led to phone calls and a very productive collaboration on MapScore and other work.

Partly reconstructed March 2012.

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Syrotuck's Data

Syrotuck's main study is his 1976, with N=242. But he gives much more detail about distance travelled in his 1975 paper, breaking distance down every 0.2 miles. Unfortunately, he only reports probabilities, not numbers, and doesn't even report total N. We know he got more data between 1975 and 1976, but didn't know how much. Is the 1975 breakdown representative of the 1976 data? Unfortunately, no one has Syrotuck's original data. But we re-created it. (Spreadsheets available!)

 

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Australian SAR data

We have been collecting data on land SAR incidents in Australia since 2000. In November 2003 we wrote a draft report that was presented at the NATSAR council but not generally released. It was styled after the U.K. report. In June 2006 we released the final version (see below), which has evolved its own style.

Our data was collected using the form available below (or an earlier version thereof). The form itself helps define what is meant by each term or category, and is essential to interpreting the data. We have also prepared a definition key in the report, to explain our terms more precisely. The UK report gave us the idea, but there are some differences in definition.

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Data Analysis Update

Early 2003: Charles Twardy plans to reanalyze the Virginia data, correcting for some problems in last year's run. In February, we will analyze the Australian data for the draft report.

Dec 2001: In preparation for the Australian data, Adam Golding analyzed the Virginia data. Cluster analysis revealed only 4 or 5 types of lost person, assuming Gaussian (bell-shaped curve) types.

Adam Golding and Luke Hope then tested several machine-learned models, Syrotuck's model, and a simple model estimated by Rik Head. There were strong differences in predictive accuracy, but negligible differences in a more meaningful score, information reward. The most recent presentation of this work was in Charles Twardy's presentation to the NASAR 2002 conference in Charlotte, NC (June 2002).

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Data Collection

Data Collection

11 Dec 2002: We have 271 entries comprising about 200 separate cases from all states except New South Wales (and the Australian Capital Territory). We have sent each state a copy of their data and a request for corrections. We intend to release a draft report at the end of February 2003 summarizing the data. We expect a final report about six months later.

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