Motor Vehicle Crashes and Complex Event Processing

The Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) coordinates Department of Transportation’s (DOT) research programs.  RITA’s mission is to advance the deployment of multi-disciplinary technologies to improve transportation system in the U.S.

Shaw-Pin Miaou, Joon Jin Song and Bani K. Mallick wrote a detailed paper, Roadway Traffic Crash Mapping: A Space-Time Modeling Approach, in RITA’s Journal of Transportation and Statistics.    In their paper, the authors state that, “motor vehicle crashes are complex events involving the interactions of five major factors: drivers, traffic, roads, vehicles, and the environment.”

Maiou, Song and Mallick go on to say that “studies have shown that risk estimation using hierarchical Bayes models has several advantages over estimation using classical methods.”    They also point out that “the overall strength of the Bayesian approach is its ability to structure complicated models, inferential goals, and analyses. Among the hierarchical Bayes methods, three are most popular in disease mapping studies: empirical Bayes (EB), linear Bayes (LB), and full Bayes methods.”

Maiou, Song and Mallick directly reference two important problems that David Luckham recently mentioned during his keynote presentation at the 2007 Gartner Event Processing Symposium, traffic congestion management and global epidemic warning systems.  In addition, Jean Bacon, professor of distributed systems in Cambridge University’s computer laboratory, was recently mentioned in the article Fusing data to manage traffic.

As Maiou, Song and Mallick point out, motor vehicle crashes are complex events requiring the correlation of five situational objects (drivers, traffic, roads, vehicles, and the environment).  Each one of these five situational objects may also be a complex event.  The representation of each object requires complex event processing.

We often see these discussions and articles across the wire, for example, “Is BAM (Business Activity Monitoring) Dead?”  or “Is it CEP or Operational BI (Business Intelligence)?” or “Is it Event-Driven SOA or Just Plain Old SOA?”  Frankly speaking, these debates and discussions are red-herrings.

What is important to solving real problems, indicated by the complex event processing paper by Maiou, Song and Mallick, are real solutions not buzzwords and three letter acronyms.  Please keep this in mind when using the term “complex event processing.”  


2 Responses to Motor Vehicle Crashes and Complex Event Processing

  1. Opher Etzion says:

    Hi Tim. Happy New Year (is the new year celebrated in Thailand?)

    I have a Master student who is doing his thesis on use of CEP and analytical models for dynamic setting of traffic light policies, he is also discussing it with the Israeli transportation ministry. I hope that we’ll be able to expose this work in DEBS 2008 (but not sure yet).



  2. Tim Bass says:

    Hi Opher,

    Happy New Year!

    Yes, New Years is a big holiday here in Thailand. So is Chinese New Year and the Thai Buddhist New Year!

    As a matter of fact, almost every culture’s holiday seems to be celebrated here in the land of smiles. Especially the ones that stimulate commerce and tourism 🙂

    It’s Thailand, where almost anything goes!

    Today I spent New Years Day merit making at Wat Arun Temple:

    Yours sincerely, Tim

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