Daniel B. Neill Daniel B. Neill
Dean's Career Development Professor
and Associate Professor of Information Systems
Director, Event and Pattern Detection Laboratory
H.J. Heinz III College
Carnegie Mellon University
Hamburg Hall #2105B, x8-3885

neill @ cs.cmu.edu

I am an Associate Professor of Information Systems in the Heinz College at Carnegie Mellon University, where I hold the H.J. Heinz III College Dean's Career Development Professorship. I also hold courtesy appointments in the Machine Learning Department and Robotics Institute in CMU's School of Computer Science, and an adjunct appointment in the Department of Biomedical Informatics at the University of Pittsburgh. I received my Ph.D. in Computer Science from CMU in 2006. Before that, I received my B.S.E. from Duke University, M.Phil. from Cambridge University, and M.S. from Carnegie Mellon. At CMU, I direct the Event and Pattern Detection Laboratory, and co-direct the Healthcare Information Technology thrust of Heinz College's iLab.

LATEST NEWS: Our Event and Pattern Detection Laboratory has a new web site! Please update your pointers to http://epdlab.heinz.cmu.edu.


Teaching:

I am currently teaching four courses at the Heinz College. Course descriptions, sample syllabi, and lecture slides can be obtained by clicking on the course names below, and current course materials are available on Blackboard.

Statistics for IT Managers (95-796) is the core statistics course for students in the Master of Information Systems Management program.

Large Scale Data Analysis for Public Policy (90-866) is a master's level course which focuses on the application of artificial intelligence and machine learning methods to real-world policy problems.

I am also teaching two Ph.D.-level seminar courses, intended for doctoral students (and qualified master's students) from Heinz College, the Machine Learning Department, and other university departments who wish to engage in cutting-edge research at the intersection of machine learning and public policy. The Research Seminar in Machine Learning and Policy (90-904, cross-listed in MLD as 10-830) is a half-semester course which covers a broad range of MLP topics. Special Topics in Machine Learning and Policy (90-921, cross-listed in MLD as 10-831) is a half-semester course which will explore a single MLP topic in detail. Topics covered include Event and Pattern Detection (Spring 2010 and Spring 2014), Machine Learning for the Developing World (Spring 2011), Harnessing the Wisdom of Crowds (Spring 2012), and Mining Massive Datasets (Spring 2013).

I am also coordinating the new Joint Ph.D. Program in Machine Learning and Public Policy, offered jointly by the Heinz College and Machine Learning Department at CMU. Information about this program is available here.


Research:

Please see our new Event and Pattern Detection Laboratory web site, http://epdlab.heinz.cmu.edu, for the most up to date descriptions of our ongoing research projects, and links to our publications and presentations.

My research is focused on novel statistical and computational methods for discovery of emerging events and other relevant patterns in complex and massive datasets, applied to real-world policy problems ranging from medicine and public health to law enforcement and security. Application areas include disease surveillance (e.g., using electronically available public health data such as hospital visits and medication sales to automatically identify and characterize emerging outbreaks), law enforcement (e.g., detection and prediction of crime patterns using offense reports and 911 calls), and health care (e.g., detecting anomalous patterns of care which significantly impact patient outcomes).

I was recently featured in IEEE Intelligent Systems Magazine, as one of their "ten artificial intelligence researchers to watch". A more detailed description of my research (updated July 2011) is available here, and my 2011 CSD/MLD immigration course talk is available here.

*** I am currently seeking Heinz and SCS Ph.D. students for research on the following funded projects: ***

NSF IIS-0953330, CAREER: Machine Learning and Event Detection for the Public Good (summary) (NSF page) (project page).

NSF IIS-0916345, Fast Subset Scan for Anomalous Pattern Detection (summary) (NSF page) (project page).

NSF IIS-0911032, Discovering Complex Anomalous Patterns (summary) (NSF page) (project page).

John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Evaluating Machine Learning Methods and Tools for Use in Human Rights Work (with CMU's Center for Human Rights Science). We will develop new machine learning methods for early detection and advance prediction of conflict events, and evaluate the potential utility of these methods for enabling proactive responses to outbreaks of violence and human rights abuses.

Bloomberg Philanthropies, The Chicago SmartData Platform. We are collaborating with the City of Chicago to develop new methods for event prediction and apply these methods to improve operations across all of the city's departments, including law enforcement, public health, sanitation/rodent control, emergency services, transportation, etc.

In general, my research focuses on the development of new statistical and computational techniques for accurate and efficient pattern detection in massive, high-dimensional datasets. While most previous data mining work has focused on detection and classification of single records, pattern detection extends these methods to groups of records, in order to detect and identify patterns not visible from any individual record alone. A key idea of our work is that pattern detection can often be transformed into a subset scan problem, in which we search over subsets of the data records to find those groups that are likely to correspond to some probabilistically modeled pattern type. However, this idea creates two main challenges: the statistical problem of evaluating the "interestingness" of a given subset (whether it corresponds to some specific pattern, is anomalous, etc.) and the computational problem of efficiently searching a massive dataset for the most interesting subsets (finding a "needle in the haystack").

Our past work has focused primarily on detection of emerging events (e.g. outbreaks of disease) in multivariate spatial time series data. We have developed a variety of new statistical methods which achieve more timely and accurate event detection through better use of spatial and temporal information, integration of multiple data streams, and incorporation of prior knowledge.

Some current research topics include: Primary application areas include disease surveillance, monitoring of water quality and food safety, detection and prediction of crime patterns, network intrusion detection, fraud detection, and scientific discovery. We are currently involved in the development and deployment of several large-scale systems for health and crime surveillance. These collaborations will provide exciting opportunities to work with real-world data, interact with law enforcement and public health officials, and directly contribute to the public good by improving health, safety, and security.


Here are links to some recent papers. A complete list of publications is available in my CV.

EVENT AND PATTERN DETECTION

Feng Chen and Daniel B. Neill. Non-parametric scan statistics for event detection and forecasting in heterogeneous social media graphs. Proceedings of the 20th ACM SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, in press, 2014.

Edward McFowland III, Skyler Speakman, and Daniel B. Neill. Fast generalized subset scan for anomalous pattern detection. Journal of Machine Learning Research, 14: 1533-1561, 2013. (pdf)

Skyler Speakman, Yating Zhang, and Daniel B. Neill. Dynamic pattern detection with temporal consistency and connectivity constraints. Proc. 13th IEEE International Conference on Data Mining, 697-706, 2013. (pdf)

Sriram Somanchi and Daniel B. Neill. Discovering anomalous patterns in large digital pathology images. Proc. 8th INFORMS Workshop on Data Mining and Health Informatics, 2013. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill, Edward McFowland III, and Huanian Zheng. Fast subset scan for multivariate event detection. Statistics in Medicine 32: 2185-2208, 2013. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Fast subset scan for spatial pattern detection. Journal of the Royal Statistical Society (Series B: Statistical Methodology) 74(2): 337-360, 2012. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. New directions in artificial intelligence for public health surveillance. IEEE Intelligent Systems 27(1): 56-59, 2012. (pdf)

Kan Shao, Yandong Liu, and Daniel B. Neill. A generalized fast subset sums framework for Bayesian event detection. Proceedings of the 11th IEEE International Conference on Data Mining, 617-625, 2011. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Fast Bayesian scan statistics for multivariate event detection and visualization. Statistics in Medicine 30(5): 455-469, 2011. (pdf)

Daniel Oliveira, Daniel B. Neill, James H. Garrett Jr., and Lucio Soibelman. Detection of patterns in water distribution pipe breakage using spatial scan statistics for point events in a physical network. Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering 25(1): 21-30, 2011. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill and Gregory F. Cooper. A multivariate Bayesian scan statistic for early event detection and characterization. Machine Learning 79: 261-282, 2010. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill and Weng-Keen Wong. A tutorial on event detection. Presented at the 15th ACM SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, 2009. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. An empirical comparison of spatial scan statistics for outbreak detection. International Journal of Health Geographics 8: 20, 2009. (pdf) (open access)

Daniel B. Neill. Expectation-based scan statistics for monitoring spatial time series data. International Journal of Forecasting 25: 498-517, 2009. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill, Gregory F. Cooper, Kaustav Das, Xia Jiang, and Jeff Schneider. Bayesian network scan statistics for multivariate pattern detection. In J. Glaz, V. Pozdnyakov, and S. Wallenstein, eds., Scan Statistics: Methods and Applications, 221-250, 2009. (pdf)

Kaustav Das, Jeff Schneider, and Daniel B. Neill. Anomaly pattern detection in categorical datasets. Proceedings of the 14th ACM SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, 169-176, 2008. (pdf)

Maxim Makatchev and Daniel B. Neill. Learning outbreak regions in Bayesian spatial scan statistics. Proceedings of the ICML/UAI/COLT Workshop on Machine Learning for Health Care Applications, 2008. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Detection of spatial and spatio-temporal clusters. Ph.D. thesis, Carnegie Mellon University, Department of Computer Science, Technical Report CMU-CS-06-142, 2006. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill, Andrew W. Moore, and Gregory F. Cooper. A Bayesian spatial scan statistic. In Y. Weiss, et al., eds. Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 18, 1003-1010, 2006. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill, Andrew W. Moore, Maheshkumar Sabhnani, and Kenny Daniel. Detection of emerging space-time clusters. Proceedings of the 11th ACM SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, 218-227, 2005. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill and Andrew W. Moore. Anomalous spatial cluster detection. Proceedings of the KDD 2005 Workshop on Data Mining Methods for Anomaly Detection, 2005. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill, Andrew W. Moore, Francisco Pereira, and Tom Mitchell. Detecting significant multidimensional spatial clusters. In L.K. Saul, et al., eds. Advances in Neural Information Processing Systems 17, 969-976, 2005. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill and Andrew W. Moore. Rapid detection of significant spatial clusters. Proceedings of the 10th ACM SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, 256-265, 2004. (pdf)

DISEASE SURVEILLANCE

Xia Jiang, Gregory F. Cooper, and Daniel B. Neill. Generalized AMOC curves for evaluation and improvement of event surveillance. Proceedings of the American Medical Informatics Association Annual Symposium, 281-285, 2009. (pdf)

Maheshkumar R. Sabhnani, Daniel B. Neill, Andrew W. Moore, Fu-Chiang Tsui, Michael M. Wagner, and Jeremy U. Espino. Detecting anomalous patterns in pharmacy retail data. Proceedings of the KDD 2005 Workshop on Data Mining Methods for Anomaly Detection, 2005. (pdf)

M. Wagner, F.-C. Tsui, J. Espino, W. Hogan, J. Hutman, J. Hersh, D. Neill, A. Moore, G. Parks, C. Lewis, and R. Aller. A national retail data monitor for public health surveillance. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 53: 40-42, 2004. (pdf)

HEALTH CARE INFORMATION SYSTEMS

Daniel B. Neill. Using artificial intelligence to improve hospital inpatient care. IEEE Intelligent Systems 28(2): 92-95, 2013. (pdf)

Christopher A. Harle, Daniel B. Neill, and Rema Padman. Information visualization for chronic disease risk assessment. IEEE Intelligent Systems 27(6): 81-85, 2012. (pdf)

Sharique Hasan, George T. Duncan, Daniel B. Neill, and Rema Padman. Automatic detection of omissions in medication lists. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association 18(4): 449-458, 2011. (pdf)

Huanian Zheng, Rema Padman, Sharique Hasan, and Daniel B. Neill. A comparison of collaborative filtering methods for medication reconciliation. Proceedings of the 13th International Congress on Medical Informatics, 2010. (pdf)

Sharique Hasan, George T. Duncan, Daniel B. Neill, and Rema Padman. Towards a collaborative filtering approach to medication reconciliation. Proceedings of the American Medical Informatics Association Annual Symposium, 288-292, 2008. (pdf)

Christopher A. Harle, Daniel B. Neill, and Rema Padman. An information visualization approach to classification and assessment of diabetes risk in primary care. Proceedings of the 3rd INFORMS Workshop on Data Mining and Health Informatics, 2008. (pdf)

GAME THEORY

Daniel B. Neill. Cascade effects in heterogeneous populations. Rationality and Society 17(2): 191-241, 2005. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Evolutionary stability for large populations. Journal of Theoretical Biology 227(3): 397-401, 2004. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Evolutionary dynamics with large aggregate shocks. Dept. of Computer Science, Technical Report CMU-CS-03-197, 2003. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Cooperation and coordination in the Turn-Taking Dilemma. Proceedings of the Ninth Conference on Theoretical Aspects of Rationality and Knowledge: 231-244, 2003. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Optimality under noise: higher memory strategies for the Alternating Prisoner's Dilemma. Journal of Theoretical Biology 211(2): 159-180, 2001. (pdf)

NATURAL LANGUAGE PROCESSING

Paul Hsiung, Andrew Moore, Daniel Neill, and Jeff Schneider. Alias detection in link data sets. Proceedings of the First International Conference on Intelligence Analysis, 2005. (pdf)

Daniel B. Neill. Fully automatic word sense induction by semantic clustering. Cambridge University, masters thesis, M.Phil. in Computer Speech, 2002. (pdf)


Links:

Event and Pattern Detection Laboratory
My Poetry
Google
CNN.com
The Onion
Arts and Letters Daily