16 - 1st TRUSS ITN Workshop (24th May 2017, Lloyd's Register, London)

Hi crew, I hope you are doing great!
After this long weekend in England, here I am with a new post for my blog. Today I want to share with you the amazing experience of attending the 1st TRUSS ITN Workshop (24th May 2017, London).
Honestly, it was a success. International experts with different backgrounds joined the event and introduced their perspective on the topic of risk assessment and associated decision-making process related to structural safety and management of infrastructure. It was another chance for all the ESRs to learn from top managers, engineers, researchers, and professors in the field. A chance to discuss innovative methods and solutions developed nowadays in industry and academia to tackle the latest challenges in engineering. A chance to meet old and new friends and start collaboration on common concerns.
A beautiful day spent in a magnificent venue as the offices of Lloyd’s Register.
Please, for more information about this and next events organized by TRUSS, do not for…

15 - TIS Congress 2017 & Pavement LCA 2017

Hello crew!
How are you doing? I hope you had a wonderful Easter break with your family and friends.
Today, I have great news for you. I am just back from Italy where I spent my Easter break with my girlfriend and my relatives and attended my first International Conference on behalf of TRUSS ITN. The event was the 1st International Congress on Transport Infrastructures & Systems (TIS) 2017 organized in Rome (Italy) by the AIIT (Italian Association of Transport Engineers) in collaboration with many public and private international sponsors. It was great, and it was attended by experts from all over the world. For me, it was the opportunity for introducing the initial findings of my study, receiving their comments and suggestions about the current work and future development of the project. I presented my work related to road asset management in the Session 17 of the congress. The title of the work presented in Rome is: “A big data approach to assess the influence of road pavement …

14 - Seminar: Optimization of Traffic Signal Control using Machine Learning

Hi crew,
Are you alright?
Today I want to talk with you one more time about Machine Learning (ML). In fact, last week I attended an interesting seminar about possible applications of these techniques. The seminar has been given by the TRL Academy, here in TRL, and for me, it was a good opportunity to introduce myself, my project, and to share ideas about possible optimization algorithms and techniques, for a topic which is completely new for road asset management. In my previous posts, I showed you how ML works, giving particular attention to Artificial Neural Networks and Random Forests. As I already mentioned, these techniques are used nowadays in a number of applications in Science, and actually, also lots of apps installed on our mobiles use similar methods to make our life easier. In fact, based on the ability of these techniques to recognize patterns in large datasets, weather forecasts, banks, social media, among many others, use ML to improve precision and reliability of the …

13 - My secondment in TRL

Hi crew,
I hope you are doing well!
Have you noticed that I changed a bit the layout of the blog? Do you like the new style?
However, let’s focus now on the topic of this new (and amazing!) post! Today I want to share with you my experience of the first weeks of secondment that I spent in TRL Ltd… moreover, I would like also to discuss with you a bit about Italian food. Tasty?? Ehm, interesting eh?
But let’s start from the main topic of the post: my secondment in TRL. As you probably know, this is my second experience in secondment (the first one was in Microlise last year) and it is part of my PhD project. This experience will be useful for me and my research, for improving my knowledge about road conditions monitoring, road maintenance strategies, road pavements life-cycle assessment, and for the interpretation of the results of my study so far.
TRL is the acronym of Transportation Research Laboratory. In TRL engineers, consultants and technical specialists collaborate to shape the…

12 - A brief introduction to Random Forests

Hi crew!
Today an amazing post introducing the Random Forests method is waiting for you to be read! Yep, I know, I promised this post a long time ago but seriously crew: I had no time for it!
Random Forest is a machine learning method mainly used for classification and regression purposes. These kind of statistics basically learns from a training set of data and gives answers associated to new data based on what the algorithm learnt. Yep crew it sounds very similar to what Artificial Neural Networks do. In fact, also Artificial Neural Networks is a machine learning method used for regression analysis. However the two methods are based on slightly different concepts.
From the historical point of view, the first concepts behind the theory of "Random Forests" are introduced for the first time by Ho in 1995 [2][3], but it is only in 2001 that they are defined as we currently know them by Breimann [1]. The algorithm itself is based on the theory of Decision Trees … Oh, you never…

11 – 2nd TRUSS ITN Training Week!

Hi crew!
Here I am with another post for my blog! I hope you are all doing well, that you spent nice holidays with people you care, and that your 2017 started in the best of ways! So far, the start of 2017 was a quite busy period for me, however, lot of work causes also lots of news for you crew. Therefore I am sorry for the delay with keep you update but because of meetings, deadlines and holidays, it was really difficult for me to write anything on the blog. My apologies crew!
Last week for example I went in Barcelona. Did you know that? … No, crew it was not for holidays… It was because of work! Actually I should say that we went in Barcelona. In fact, it was the 2ndTRUSS ITN training week organized at the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, and all the ESRs attended the meeting. We presented the latest achievements in our projects and it was also the opportunity to share ideas within researchers and experts. We attended many lectures focused on seismic analysis, mathematical mo…

10 – My Secondment in Microlise: a new experience

Hey crew,
Are you alright? Are you ready for reading a new post? Alright, let’s start then!
Almost a month ago I started my secondment in Microlise Ltd. As I already mentioned in the past: Microlise is one of the two companies that is involved within my project. They are experts in truck fleet management and they collect and analyse data from large truck fleets for helping their customer in maximising utilisation, increasing efficiency, and improving economy and safety for their fleets.

Fig.1 – The Microlise Ltd logo.
How is it going here in Microlise? Well, I have to say that working in the company has pros and cons. The cons are mainly related to the timing: I have to wake up at 6:00am every morning and it takes 1 hour-ish by bus to get to  Eastwood, where Microlise is located. Then, I go back home very late (sometimes I come back home after 6:30pm).

Fig. 2 – No crew, it is not that terrible! ;)
This means that quite often I’m tired, and that when I have French and German classes at …