Qatar University research teams win first and second places at TREC 2016

 09 Jan 2017 - 1:12

Qatar University research teams win first and  second places at TREC 2016
Maram Hasanain

The Peninsula

Qatar University (QU) research teams have won first and second places in the Real-time Summarisation track at the 25th annual Text Retrieval Conference (TREC 2016) which was recently organized by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in Maryland, USA.
The research team, which is led by Dr Tamer Elsayed, Assistant Professor of Computer Science at QU College of Engineering (CENG) and which included second year PhD student in Computer Science Maram Hasanain and second year MSc student in Computing Reem Suwaileh, has achieved the first place in the mobile notification task among 19 international teams, and the second place in the email digest task among 15 international teams.
The competition in the Real-time Summarization track brought 19 research teams from universities and research labs in Qatar, Australia, Canada, China, France, Hong Kong, India, and USA. QU team is the only team from an Arabic country to participate in the competition this year.
The team developed a real-time software system that processes a stream of live tweets.
The user of the system describes a topic of interest and the system notifies him/her whenever a novel and relevant tweet to the topic is posted.
The system pushes the tweets to the user’s mobile (push notification task) or sends him/her an email of all interesting tweets at the end of the day (email digest task). More than 50 topics were tested during 10 days. The system’s output was judged accurately by a group of judges from NIST.
Dr Tamer said, “We are proud of our students’ achievement, which is the result of their dedication and hard work. Being part of such an international competition is a motivating experience for our students and drives them to apply their skills beyond the classroom. This underlines our commitment to provide our students with opportunities to meet and interact with their peers and world-class researchers to share and advance their knowledge and research skills. It also demonstrates our continuous efforts to offer them a wide range of activities that unlock their potential and help them invest their talents in the spirit of competition, shared knowledge and teamwork.”