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    29377 research outputs found

    Using shape entropy as a feature to lesion boundary segmentation with level sets

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    Accurate lesion segmentation in retinal imagery is an area of vast research. Of the many segmentation methods available very few are insensitive to topological changes on noisy surfaces. This paper presents an extension to earlier work on a novel stopping mechanism for level sets. The elementary features scheme (ELS) in [5] is extended to include shape entropy as a feature used to ’look back in time’ and find the point at which the curve best fits the real object. We compare the proposed extension against the original algorithm for timing and accuracy using 50 randomly selected images of exudates with a database of clinician demarcated boundaries as ground truth. While this work is presented applied to medical imagery, it can be used for any application involving the segmentation of bright or dark blobs on noisy images

    Determination of ethanol in beverages by flow injection, pervaporation and density measurements

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    A fast, clean and easy to automate flow injection-pervaporation method for the determination of ethanol in different beverages using density measurements is proposed. The method is based on separation of the ethanol from the sample using a pervaporation module, thus obtaining in the acceptor chamber of the pervaporator a water-alcohol mixture, the density of which is measured. After optimisation by either the univariate or multivariate approach as required, a linear range between 0-40% was established. Then, the assessment of the method versus a reference one was studied in terms of repeatability (0.12% v/v), reproducibility (0.32% v/v), detection limit (0.11% v/v) and traceability. The sample throughput was 15 samples h-1. The method was in agreement with the reference methods used in the European Union

    FPGA implementation of real-time human motion recognition on a reconfigurable video processing architecture

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    In recent years, automatic human motion recognition has been widely researched within the computer vision and image processing communities. Here we propose a real-time embedded vision solution for human motion recognition implemented on a ubiquitous device. There are three main contributions in this paper. Firstly, we have developed a fast human motion recognition system with simple motion features and a linear Support Vector Machine(SVM) classifier. The method has been tested on a large, public human action dataset and achieved competitive performance for the temporal template (eg. ``motion history image") class of approaches. Secondly, we have developed a reconfigurable, FPGA based video processing architecture. One advantage of this architecture is that the system processing performance can be reconfigured for a particular application, with the addition of new or replicated processing cores. Finally, we have successfully implemented a human motion recognition system on this reconfigurable architecture. With a small number of human actions (hand gestures), this stand-alone system is performing reliably, with an 80% average recognition rate using limited training data. This type of system has applications in security systems, man-machine communications and intelligent environments

    Going beyond Google: the invisible web in teaching and learning

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    Review of: Devine, J. and Egger-Sider, F. (2009) Going beyond Google: the invisible web in teaching and learning. London: Facet Publishing (ISBN 978-1-85604-658-9

    Regional variation in the flexural properties of the equine hoof wall

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    The equine hoof wall is a hard, keratinous structure that transmits forces generated when the hoof connects the ground to the skeleton of the horse. During locomotion the hoof capsule is known to deform, resulting in an inward curvature of the dorsal wall and expansion of the heels. However, while researchers have studied the tensile and compressive properties, there is a lack of data on the flexural properties of the hoof wall in different locations around the hoof capsule. In this study, the flexural properties and hydration status of the hoof wall were investigated in two orthogonal directions, in different locations around the hoof capsule. The hoof was divided into three regions: the dorsal-most aspect (toe), the medial and lateral regions (quarters) and the heels caudally. Beams were cut both perpendicular (transverse) and parallel (longitudinal) to the orientation of the tubules. Differences in the mechanical properties were then investigated using three-point bending tests. There were considerable differences in the flexural properties around the hoof capsule; transverse beams from the heel were 45% more compliant than those from the toe region. This corresponded with changes in the hydration of the hoof wall; beams from the heel region were more hydrated (28.2 ± 0.60%) than those from the toe (24.2 ± 0.44%; P < 0.01). Regional variation in the water content is thought to help explain differences in the flexural properties. Mechanical data are further discussed in relation to variation in the structure and loading of the hoof wall

    A health needs assessment of offenders on probation caseloads in Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire - report of a pilot study

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    This study was commissioned by the Care Services Improvement Partnership (CSIP) in the East Midlands to investigate the health needs of a sample group offenders managed by The Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Probation Services

    The relationship between mental toughness and affect intensity

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    Mentally tough athletes are conceptualized as being able to function effectively in stressful situations and recent research has found small to moderate correlations between mental toughness and coping. Despite this no research has thus far examined the possibility that mentally tough athletes experience less intense emotions. This paper tested the relationship between mental toughness and affect intensity to determine whether mentally tough athletes generally experienced more or less intense emotions. A sample of 112 sport performers (55 men and 57 women) aged between 18 and 51 years (M = 29.3, s = 10.3) acted as participants, and ranged from recreational to national level in a variety of sports. Mental toughness and affect intensity were found to be unrelated. This is an important finding because it suggests participants with high or low levels of mental toughness do not characteristically experience more or less intense emotions. Thus there is no evidence to suggest the ability of mentally tough athletes to remain relatively unaffected by pressure or adversity is due to lower levels of affect intensity. More research is required to understand how mentally tough athletes (in comparison to less tough athletes) maintain control and high levels of performance in stressful circumstances

    Trends in teenage pregnancy in England and Wales: how can we explain them?

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    Teenage pregnancy is associated with adverse social and physical outcomes for both mother and child. We drew on various sources-birth and abortion statistics from the Office for National Statistics, data from the National Survey of Sexual Attitudes and Lifestyles, and routinely collected data from family planning clinics-to identify trends in England and Wales and their possible determinants. The rate of teenage sexual activity has increased steadily and consistently over the past four decades, whilst the rate of teenage fertility has shown greater variation. When the teenage fertility rate is calculated against the denominator of sexually active women, rather than the total sample of teenage women, the underlying trend in teenage fertility over the past four decades has been downwards, though not consistently so. Fluctuations in the teenage fertility rate seem to track intervention-related factors such as access to, and use of, contraceptive services and the general climate surrounding the sexual health of young people

    Staff training in integrated sexual health services

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    Coordination of family planning and GUM services has the potential to boost the effectiveness of bot

    Anxiety and depression: a model for assessment and therapy in primary care

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    Patients who feel anxious and depressed often turn to primary care for initial professional help. However, systematic service evaluations allege poor standards of diagnosis and treatment, resulting in disappointing clinical outcomes. All the same, special educational and quality improvement initiatives have not raised standards significantly. Why this should be so and possible remedies are suggested by this article, on the basis that the empirical evidence base for criticising primary care standards is weaker than commonly acknowledged. Systematic clinical trials are often premised by assumptions that are not relevant to primary care, they tend to select subject populations unrepresentative of those typically seen by general practitioners and results are often compromised by a series of methodological flaws. This article proposes an alternative conceptualisation of anxiety and depression apposite to primary care assessment and therapy. It draws on an emergent evidence base within psychobiology that recognises that these reactions have two adaptive functions. Firstly, they are responses evoked by actual personal adversity, secondly they have the function of prompting communication to self and to others of the need for practical remedial action to be taken independently, or with assistance, to improve the quality of the recovery environment. A table summarises the phased stages of anxiety and depression and lists their adaptive and communicative functions along with some phase-appropriate primary care interventions. This new model of assessment and therapy is offered to stimulate discussion and inspire future research that is appropriate for primary care service improvement


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