On Thursday, April 18, students showcased their work at the Student Research and Creative Works Expo and EIT Open House. Guests viewed displays of capstone projects, theses, dissertations, and other research. COSMOS was well-presented by Kiran Kumar Bandeli, Nihal Hussain, Thomas Marcoux, Billy Spann, Richard Young, Michael DiCicco, Tuja Khaund, Karen Watts and Adewale Obadimu who showcased their work. Our team members were presented with numerous awards at the 2019 Student Research and Creative Works Expo Awards Ceremony and the EIT Open House Awards Ceremony: Student Research and Creative Works Expo – First Place: Zachary Stine Student Research and Creative Works Expo – Second Place: TujaRead More →

Ph.D. candidate Adewale (Wale) Obadimu participated in the 2019 CRA URMD Grad Cohort Workshop which took place March 22-23, 2019 in Waikoloa, Hawaii.  The two-day event was hosted by the Computing Research Association (CRA), an organization dedicated to bringing industry, government and academia together to support research and advanced education in computing. This year, the CRA Grad Cohort for Underrepresented Minorities and Persons with Disabilities (URMD) Workshop attracted twice the amount of participants than the inaugural workshop in 2018. CRA covered the travel expenses for all selected students that collectively represent a diverse set of computing-related research areas and institutions. 158 accepted applicants from 78Read More →

COSMOS director and Arkansas Research Alliance fellow Dr. Nitin Agarwal spoke about deviant online behavior at UA Little Rock Downtown on Wednesday, March 13.  This behavior includes, but is not limited to, deviant mobs of the Internet, disinformation campaigns, bots, trolls and computational propaganda techniques. Dr. Agarwal presented examples of how the spread of misinformation online affects the real world from fueling hatred that leads to violence to spreading incorrect medical information that will result in health risks. The spread of “fake news” can also influence voters, create confusion during disasters and cause hysteria of the masses.   Deviant online behavior spreads over many platforms.Read More →

COSMOS research about the evolution of botnets is featured in a seven book set titled “Large Scale Combat Operations” published by the Army University Press. In chapter 10 of the book “Perceptions Are Reality: Historical Case Studies of Information Operations in Large-Scale Combat Operations”, authors Rick Galeano, Katrin Galeano, Dr. Samer Al-khateeb, Dr. Nitin Agarwal, and James Turner examine social media botnets and their evolving behaviors. Through detailed analysis of botnet use in Ukraine and the Baltics, they demonstrate that bots can be used to spread narratives, alter perceptions of viewpoint popularity, and ultimately trigger behavior supportive to military end states. “Over the past fewRead More →

A paper presented by COSMOS director Dr. Nitin Agarwal, and co-authored by Muhammad Nihal Hussain, Kiran Kumar Bandeli, Serpil Tokdemir, and Samer Al-khateeb, has been selected for the best paper award during the eighth international conference on Social Media Technologies, Communication, and Informatics (SOTICS 2018), held in Nice, France, in October 2018. Titled “Understanding Digital Ethnography: Socio-computational Analysis of Trending YouTube Videos,” the paper’s authors have been recognized with the best paper award four years in a row. The paper describes the team’s research on behavioral analysis of YouTube’s digital societies.  The researchers studied the top 200 YouTube videos trending daily for a 40-day period separately in the United States of America (USA) andRead More →

Dr. Nitin Agarwal was invited to conduct a panel on Emerging Digital Services in Cyber Environments during the IARIA Eighth International Conference on Social Media Technologies, Communication, and Informatics (SOTICS 2018) in Nice, France. On Tuesday, October 16, Dr. Agarwal moderated the panel that featured subject matter experts from the Institute of Information Systems at Hof University (GER), Paraíba State University (BRA), Politehnica University of Bucharest (ROU), and University of Gloucestershire (UK).Read More →

Dr. Nitin Agarwal, Maulden-Entergy Endowed Chair and Distinguished Professor in the Department of Information Science and director of the Collaboratorium of Social Media and Online Behavioral Studies (COSMOS), was inducted as a fellow of the Arkansas Academy of Computing for his contributions to computing in Arkansas on Nov. 2 in Fayetteville. “It is an honor to be recognized as a fellow of the Arkansas Academy of Computing,” Agarwal said. “I am looking forward to collaborating with the great thinkers, innovators, entrepreneurs, and computational scientists to advance the discipline of computing and contribute towards innovation in the state of Arkansas.” Founded in 2006, the Arkansas Academy of ComputingRead More →

Moving from a humanities discipline as an undergraduate into a STEM field for graduate school was not exactly easy. I am hesitant to recommend this academic trajectory generally, but have found that my undergraduate training in the humanities has been a great source of help, even in a field that seems completely unrelated. When I first started college, I had no idea what subject I wanted to major in. I had just decided to switch from an out-of-state school, where I had been accepted into their music composition program, to a smaller in-state school after deciding against music composition. In my first semester, I tookRead More →

Briefly, introducing myself here. I am Kiran Kumar Bandeli, a doctoral candidate in Information Science and work with COSMOS as a Graduate Research Assistant. I am part of several research and development projects. I am in a phase where I am working on my dissertation proposal. I am hopeful that I can graduate at the end of spring or summer 2019.   So, what do I do in the COSMOS lab? I can definitely say, I wear several hats as part of my work schedule. One such role is Teaching Assistant (TA) for Dr. Agarwal’s courses, where I switch gears from being a student toRead More →