Mike Finegold

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I am interested in applying statistical methods to solve practical real-world problems - almost all of my research is motivated this way. These real-world problems come from consulting clients (currently in legal cases and edcuational testing); from my appointment with LARC (Living Analytics Research Centre); from other departments at CMU (Six Degrees of Francis Bacon, for example); and from the wide world beyond our doors (including a statistical method for adaptive keyboard design).

While this leads to a variety of research projects, one common theme is network inference. From different data types (gene expression levels, digitized texts, chat messages, transactions histories, etc.) what can we infer about the existence, strength, and type of relationship between various entities (usually people - but sometimes genes, for example - and usually living people - but not always. Francis Bacon, for one, is dead).

Project Descriptions
Six Degrees of Francis Bacon is an interdisciplinary project, partially funded by a Google Faculty Research Award, to recreate the early modern social network in Britain. Very preliminary results can be found on the project website, articles are forthcoming, and I will be presenting at Digital Humanities 2013 in July.

I am currently visiting LARC (Living Analytics Research Centre), to work on big data problems related to networks and experimental design. I have worked on relationship strength in social networks; experimental design for measuring the impact of interventions in social networks (one article in process, another to be presented at ICWSM 2013); click fraud analysis (under review) and ad targeting in mobile ad networks (long way to go).

Previous work on statistical methodology for inference of gene networks can be found on arXiv, the Annals of Applied Statistics, and the Proceedings of the 25th Conference on Uncertainty in Artificial Intelligence.