Research


List of Collaborators

Daniel Kirk

Ronaldo Menezes

Scott D. Swain

Richard Griffith

Andrew English

Andrew Cudmor

Tatyana Shadieva

Nibir K. Ghosh

Fawzi Alghamdi

Talal Puri

Amina Tariq

Sultan Altukhaim

Muhammad Noman Zafar

S. M. Akber Zaidi

Binish Bhagwanee

Aisha Azhar

Imran Khanzada

Salman Khan

Eyosias Imana

Omer Idrees

Saadia Hassan

Lynette Chua

Shahid Abrar Awan

BlastSim – Simulation of Suicide Bombing

Suicide Bombing becomes the most lethal and favorite modus-operandi of terrorist organizations around the world. This simulation sets to answer questions like: How we can predict the number of casualties and injuries given number of persons, their formation style, number of suicide bombers and the weight of their explosives? What architectural and geometric changes we can plan to reduce the number of casualties and injuries? How to measure the shockwave over-pressure and its effects on human body in given time and distance? What is the co-relation between variant crowd densities and formations with the weight (and overpressure) of explosives? This paper explores and estimates the impact of suicide bombers across multiple crowd formations and their respective densities through a virtual simulation. The dynamics of shockwave and overpressure is derived from the general attenuation law of spherical shock wave. The ultimate goal of our simulated analysis is to determine the optimal crowd formation to reduce the deaths and/or injuries of individuals in the crowd. Specific simulation inputs are the number of individuals in the vicinity, walking speed of attacker, time associated with the trigger, setting (crowd formation), and the total weight of TNT. Results indicated that the worst crowd formation is a circular one (e.g. concerts), with a 51% death rate, 42% injury rate, thus reaching a 93% effectiveness measure. Vertical rows (e.g. mosques) were found to be the best crowd formation for reducing the effectiveness of an attack, with a 20% death rate, 43% injury rate, reaching a 63% effectiveness measure. Simulation results were compared and validated by the real-life incidents and found to be realistic. Line-of-sight with the attacker, rushing towards the exit, and stampede were found to be the most lethal choices both during the attack and post-explosion. These findings, although preliminary, may have implications for emergency response and counter terrorism.

How Much We Worth?

How much is a life worth?, despite its controversy and callousness, is an ever-green question for public policy, health administration, war and crimes, governments and the United Nations, environmental analysts and labor unions, lawyers and actuaries, risk managers and safety regulators, and individuals and the society. There are dozens of methods and approaches to answer this question of how much people value their lives in their private decisions. This work asks the same question from country’s perspective, how good you are for your country and what is your economical contribution to the country you live in? How much country will lose without you? And where you stand as a global citizen (in general) and as a countryman (in particular). This work introduces the Personal worth Index (PWI) to calculate the average worth of any citizen in the world through unified criteria. The results, although preliminary, offer interesting insights for the total loss of the country’s economy due to terrorism events like suicide bombing, or natural disasters like tsunami and earthquake. The findings can also be easily incorporated to calculate the economical loss of injured Vs dead soldier, capital punishment Vs lifetime prison, health expenditures Vs living will, expense to productivity ratio and the brain drain.

Relative Ranking

Reviewers’ ratings has become one of the most influential parameters when decide to purchase or rent the product or service from the online vendor. Star rating system is the de-facto standard to do that with the visual advantage it offers to customers for understand. Any system which is not as visually good as star system will have a chance of rejection by online business community based on its visual weakness. This paper argues and suggests a novel approach of Relative Ranking within the boundaries of Star rating system to overcome few inherent disadvantages the former system comes with.

Internet Age

How Old Are You on the Internet?Human age in their lives is surrounded by assumed set of rules and behaviors imposed by local culture and society they live in. This paper introduced a software that counts the presence of a person on the internet and examines the activities he/she do online. The paper answers the questions like how old are you on the internet?, How soon a newbie can be exposed to adult websites? How long it will take for a new internet user to know about social networking sites? And how many years a user has to surf online to celebrate his/her first birthday of internet presence? Paper findings come from the database of 62 school students which contains their every click of first 24 hours of internet usage. Paper suggests valuable insights for Internet Marketing, ethics, Internet business and the mapping of Internet life with real life.

Swarm-Shopping – The Simulation of Herd Behavior

This work asks a new question: how we can intervene in the collective shopping behavior of self-organized group of customers in the supermarket. And then how we can measure it’s influence on overall shopping pattern. We try to answer the question by proposing a simulation model with the help of animats (artificial customers), whereby animats become aware of other animats’ real-time shopping inventory and may hence be influenced by their purchases and the levels of purchases. This simulation sets to provide the answers of questions like the percentage of increase in sales given real-time purchase information to other customers, and a platform to generate herd behavior. This paper provides several dimensions to look for influencing customers via feedback, real-time marketing, target advertisement and on-demand promotions. Several other parameters have been discussed including the herd behavior, fake customers, privacy, and optimality of sales-price margin to name a few.

T+ Nations – A Case of a Country Infected by Terror

Virus can be defined as a corrupting influence on life, whether it is a HIV virus corrupting and damaging the immune system or Malaria, a Bird Flu virus or an Anger generated by some incident resulting in violent reaction. When, we see the social contagion of the virus, we think about its epidemiological spread and measures to prevent it. For example, growing infections of HIV+ in India will lead to counter measures of safe-sex education, reducing prostitution and the isolated facilities to take care of infected victims. Killing, all of the HIV+ in that area is not going to eliminate the virus. Likewise, think of terrorism as a transnational virus, by killing terrorist only is not sufficient to stop the epidemics. This paper is set to define a test for a country to check if it is Terror Positive (T+) nation or not. And if yes, then what measures should we take to gradually reduce the spread of Terrorism. The test can also provide insights on how likely a given nation is going to be T+. Defining the symptoms for T+ is a complex task, now days, every act of violence and killing readily termed as terrorism, whether it is a sectarian violence, shooting followed by a robbery, genocide, or a suicide bombing. This paper offers a comparative analysis of terrorism with other problems of the country – like lack of medical facilities, poor education, poverty, injustice, mafia and inequitable distribution of national resources to name a few – to help recommending the measures to reduce or eliminate the root causes that attract the virus of terrorism to certain society. We have used Pakistan as a test case for our hypothesis and there are several interesting insights, only if we are ready to consider terrorism as a virus.

The Graffiti of Terror

Writing on walls is one of the oldest traditions of human beings. It can be found as ancient historical notes on papyrus scrolls or hieroglyphic images on pyramids of Egypt, on stones of old caves or graffiti on the tombs and temples. Humans are good to preserve the history or actions of their governments in whatever way they can. In developing countries like Pakistan, Wall-Chalking is the cheapest and fastest medium of communication and publicity, where Internet is still a luxury for majority (83%) of population who lives under 2$ a day. Governments use it for their election campaigns, politicians use it to disgrace their competitors, corporations use it for advertising their products and services, and others use it for almost all purposes including the propagation of hatred towards the USA and the Western world, and appreciation for martyrs and suicide bombers. This paper analysis the writings on non-traditional mediums like walls, banners, and body of vehicles as a medium to propagate terror and shape the behavior of community. There exist, a co-relation between the messages of wall-chalking and the behavioral pattern of that neighborhood. For example, the rate of domestic violence in the community with black magic advertisements and violent writings is 34% higher compared to the nearby community in the same city without those writings. This study offers various interesting findings that can be used for security measures, psychological and social experiments. The Wall-chalking can also offer some clues about the influential groups in the community or future events, for example, neighborhood with advertisement of particular party on all of its walls is a clear indication of who is controlling the area. There are also few cases, where Wall-chalking directed the masses on particular area for riots and suicide bombing attacks. Research findings, although preliminary, are important to understand how terror diffuse in the society and what are the bi-products of Terror Mindset – that is thinking under the influence of terror.