Proceedings of the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI-05) in Edinburgh, Scotland, 2005. We use a transition system approach to reason about the evolution of an agent’s beliefs as actions are executed. Some actions cause an agent to perform belief revision and some actions cause an agent to perform belief update, but the interaction between revision and update can be nonelementary. We present a set of basic postulates describing the interaction of revision and update, and we introduce a new belief evolution operator that gives a plausible interpretation to alternating sequences of revisions and updates., Conference paper, Published.
In action domains where agents may have erroneous beliefs, reasoning about the effects of actions involves reasoning about belief change. In this paper, we use a transition system approach to reason about the evolution of an agent's beliefs as actions are executed. Some actions cause an agent to perform belief revision while others cause an agent to perform belief update, but the interaction between revision and update can be non-elementary. We present a set of rationality properties describing the interaction between revision and update, and we introduce a new class of belief change operators for reasoning about alternating sequences of revisions and updates. Our belief change operators can be characterized in terms of a natural shifting operation on total pre-orderings over interpretations. We compare our approach with related work on iterated belief change due to action, and we conclude with some directions for future research., Peer-reviewed article, Published.
Background : Concrete structures can be damaged by many chemical or physical processes. Where such damages affect appearance, serviceability or structural integrity, repair may be required. 10 decommissioned concrete ships form a massive floating breakwater on the Malaspina Strait in the City of Powell River in British Columbia, Canada. The ships are subjected to extremely onerous conditions, namely in the salt water splash zone under seasonal freeze-thaw cycling. This paper provides anecdotal evidence based on condition assessments after repairs were car-ried out, on how a well-matched repair concrete can significantly extend the service life of these and similar sorts of marine structures.
Methods: Condition assessment was carried out using sounding, visual examination, photo and video documentation, compressive strength testing, splitting tensile strength testing, chloride ion concentration testing, and half-cell potential testing.
Results: It was found that the areas which had been repaired had fared very well, with no observable de-terioration. The non-repaired areas of the structures had continued to deteriorate, particularly in non-submerged areas, close to the waterline, along with new impact damage.
Conclusion: Durable concrete repairs can be achieved even for concrete exposed to extreme environ-mental conditions. Key conditions for such repairs are: complete removal of the deteriorated portions of the original concrete, removal of all loose corrosion products from exposed reinforcing steel, prepara-tion of a clean, firm, rough, surface dry but partially or fully water saturated, substrate surface, selection of a compatible repair material, use of an application technique which facilitates high bond strength between substrate and repair material, adequate curing, and protection of the repair material while immature., Peer-reviewed article, Published. Received: September 12, 2015; Revised: December 19, 2015; Accepted: June 28, 2016.
Proceedings from the International High Performance Buildings Conference 2010. In spite of the progress in the development of methods and tools to support sustainable building design, there is still a lack of a formal method to bridge the “no man’s land” gap between the traditional building engineering disciplines, and between these and the architecture, to achieve the level of building integration required for sustainability. The framework described in this paper is an attempt to develop such a method. The framework, grounded on building science, facilitates a comprehensive assessment of the life-cycle performance of buildings and building systems, by enabling multiple function-performance factors of a building to be addressed iteratively. Quantitative methods and test protocols can be incorporated into the framework for assessing the long-term viability of proposed solutions. The organization of the underlying principles of building life-cycle performance described in this paper will hopefully conduct to a more integrated treatment of buildings in research, education, and practice., Peer reviewed, Conference proceeding, Published.
The spectrum of a first-order sentence is the set of cardinalities of its finite models. Given a spectrum S and a function f, it is not always clear whether or not the image of S under f is also a spectrum. In this paper, we consider questions of this form for functions that increase very quickly and for functions that increase very slowly. Roughly speaking, we prove that the class of all spectra is closed under functions that increase arbitrarily quickly, but it is not closed under some natural slowly increasing functions., Peer-reviewed article, Published.
Proceedings of 2010 IEEE Transforming Engineering Education: Creating Interdisciplinary Skills for Complex Global Environments, Dublin, Ireland, 6-9 April 2010. Most engineering careers will require engineers to work in multi-disciplinary teams. It is necessary for post-secondary institutions to provide opportunities for engineering students to work in multi-disciplinary teams during their education so that they can function and thrive in these environments upon graduation. One model for introducing and sustaining multi-disciplinary engineering education has been to link a number of the British Columbia Institute of Technology's (BCIT) engineering and technology capstone projects with the hub of multi-disciplinary researchers at the BCIT Technology Centre., Conference paper, Published.
Proceedings of 2016 14th Annual Conference on Privacy, Security and Trust (PST) in Auckland, New Zealand 12-14 Dec. 2016. We discuss two related forms of trust. One form of trust is related to the perceived knowledge of other agents; we accept the information that another agent provides if we believe they have sufficient expertise in a particular domain. The second form is related to action; we trust another agent to act on our behalf if we believe they will choose acceptable actions. In this paper, we explore the relationship between these two forms of trust. In particular, we use an existing model of trust to demonstrate how trust over knowledge can determine when trust over actions is appropriate. We take a formal approach to this problem, using logic-based tools for representing and reasoning about actions and beliefs to characterize trust over action. While our primary aim is to develop a formal methodology that permits trust over actions to be defined in terms of trust over knowledge, we also consider applications that are both practical and speculative. On the practical side, we consider how our methods can be used to reason about trusted third parties in communication protocols. On the speculative side, we suggest that models of trust have a role to play in the development of ethical decision-making agents., Conference paper, Published.
Study Design: Secure, web-based survey. Objectives: Elicit specific information about sexual function from men with spinal cord injuries (SCI). Setting: World-wide web. Methods: Individuals 18 years or older living with SCI obtained a pass-code to enter a secure website and then answered survey questions. Results: The presence of genital sensation was positively correlated with the ability to feel a build up of sexual tension in the body during sexual stimulation and in the feeling that mental arousal translates to the genitals as physical sensation. There was an inverse relationship between developing new areas of arousal above the level of lesion and not having sensation or movement below the lesion. A positive relationship existed between the occurrence of spasticity during sexual activity and erectile ability. Roughly 60% of the subjects had tried some type of erection enhancing method. Only 48% had successfully achieved ejaculation postinjury and the most commonly used methods were hand stimulation, sexual intercourse, and vibrostimulation. The most commonly cited reasons for trying to ejaculate were for pleasure and for sexual intimacy. Less than half reported having experienced orgasm postinjury and this was influenced by the length of time postinjury and sacral sparing. Conclusion: SCI not only impairs male erectile function and ejaculatory ability, but also alters sexual arousal in a manner suggestive of neuroplasticity. More research needs to be pursued in a manner encompassing all aspects of sexual function., Peer-reviewed article, Published.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the potential use of wood shavings as a raw material for the low consistency (LC) refining at the primary refining stage to significantly reduce electrical energy consumption. It was possible to produce wood shavings with longer fibre length than wood chips. Oxalic acid, followed by alkaline peroxide, was applied to both wood shavings and wood chips before LC refining. LC refined wood shavings were found to be a low energy raw material. The refining energy was reduced by about 33% using wood shavings compared to wood chips at a given freeness, and oxalic acid pretreatment of wood shavings further reduced the refining energy by approximately 57%. Tensile strength and brightness of LC refined wood shavings was found to be higher than high-consistency refined wood chips. Oxalic acid pretreatment further improved the tensile strength of LC refined wood shavings, but not the brightness. This study demonstrates the potential to develop a novel mechanical pulping process that produces high tensile, high brightness pulp with half the electrical energy consumption. Both wood chips and wood shavings produced in the laboratory were used as a feeding material in HC and LC refining processes, respectively. Fibre length of wood shavings was longer than that of wood chips. As refining proceeded, fibre length of LC refined wood shavings was reduced more than that of HC refined wood chips. Oxalic acid pretreatment further reduced the fibre length of LC refined wood shavings. A great advantage of using wood shavings was found in reducing refining energy over wood chips. LC refined wood shavings reduced the refining energy about 33% compared to HC refined wood chips at a given freeness. Oxalic acid followed by alkaline peroxide pretreatment of wood shavings further reduced refining energy by approximately 57%., Peer-reviewed article, Published.
Proceeding of IEEE 8th Conference on PowerElectronics, Jeju Island, South Korea, June 2011.
A strategy is proposed to introduce a limited set of monitoring and control functions into a legacy low voltage distribution substation, and as such integrate it into a larger command and control architecture of a smart Microgrid. The focus of the work shall be on the retrofit strategy of some of the key components for measurement, monitoring, protection and control systems of the substation. Also Volt/VAR optimization of the feeder shall be considered as a part of the design. The article discusses the structure of the substation under study, followed by the actual design of IEC 61850 subsystems for the substation. A simulation model of the pilot project and its results is also included in the paper., Conference paper, Published.
Background & aims: Lycopene has been credited with a number of health benefits including a decrease in prostate cancer risk. Our study investigates the molecular mechanism underlying anti-cancer activity of lycopene-based products in androgen-responsive (LNCaP) and androgen-independent (PC3) cells.
Methods: The effect of lycopene-based agents on prostate cancer growth and survival were examined using proliferation assays, bromodeoxyuridine incorporation and flow cytometric analysis of cellular DNA content. Biochemical effects of lycopene treatment were investigated by immunoblotting for changes in the absolute levels and phosphorylation states of cell cycle regulatory and signalling proteins.
Results: LNCaP and PC3 cells treated with the lycopene-based agents undergo mitotic arrest, accumulating in G0/G1 phase. Immunoblot screening indicated that lycopene's antiproliferative effects are likely achieved through a block in G1/S transition mediated by decreased levels of cyclins D1 and E and cyclin dependent kinase 4 and suppressed Retinoblastoma phosphorylation. These responses correlated with decreased insulin-like growth factor-I receptor expression and activation, increased insulin-like growth factor binding protein 2 expression and decreased AKT activation. Exposure to lycopene at doses as low as 10nM for 48h induced a profound apoptotic response in LNCaP cells. In contrast PC3 cells were resistant to apoptosis at doses up to 1μM.
Conclusions: Lycopene exposure can suppress phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase-dependent proliferative and survival signalling in androgen-responsive LNCaP and androgen-independent PC3 cells suggesting that the molecular mechanisms for the cytostatic and cytotoxic actions of lycopene involve induction of G0/G1 cell cycle arrest. This study supports further examination of lycopene as a potential agent for both the prevention and treatment of prostate cancer., Peer-reviewed article, Published.
This study describes the generation and test of a genetic resource suited to identify determinants of cell biological traits in plants. The use of quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping for a better genetic understanding of cell biological traits is still at an early stage, even for biotechnologically important cell properties, such as the dimensions of fiber cells. A common strategy, the mapping of QTLs in recombinant inbred line (RIL) populations, is limited by the fact that the existing RIL populations exploit only a small fraction of the existing natural variation. Here, we report the mapping of QTLs impacting on the length of fiber cells in Arabidopsis inflorescence stems in a newly generated RIL population derived from a cross between the accessions Berkeley and the little known Lz-0. Through inbreeding of individual F(2) plants, a total of 159 new F8 lines were produced and genotyped with a set of 49 single nucleotide polymorphism markers. The population was successfully used not only for the mapping of three QTLs controlling fiber length, but also to map five QTL controlling flowering time under short and long-day conditions. Our study demonstrates the usefulness of this new genetic resource by mapping in it QTLs underlying a poorly explored cellular trait as well as an already better explored regulatory pathway. The new RIL population and an online platform for the continuous supplementation of genetic markers will be generally available to substantially broaden the genetic diversity through which loci with impact on plant quantitative traits can be identified., Peer-reviewed article, Published. Received: 1 October 2012, Accepted: 25 January 2014; Published online: 15 February 2014.