Students help NASA find landslides by training computers to read Reddit

According to the World Health Organization, landslides are more widespread than any other geological event. Credit: NASA

University of British Columbia graduate students have trained computers to “read” news articles about landslides on Reddit to bolster a NASA database, which could improve predictions of when and where these natural disasters will occur.

For their Master of Data Science in Computational Linguistics capstone project, Badr Jaidi and his team, the Social Landslides group, trained computers to automatically extract useful information from relevant news articles about landslides that were posted to Reddit. In this Q&A, he discusses how this tool …

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