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Small Things Matter

Mizuki Oka | TEDxTokyo 2012

Can anybody make sense of all the random data rampaging through the cloud? Mizuki Oka, a post-doc researcher at the University of Tokyo’s Center for Knowledge Structuring, leads a project called pingpong devised to make the data beast sit up and speak. While pingpong’s primary aim is to structure knowledge on design processes by developing a new design platform and method, its tools can also be used to extract and extrapolate human behavior specifically from Twitterverse posts̶ and even analyze texts to map natural phenomena, such as where and how much pollen is in the air. Mizuki also found time to help initiate Tokyo University’s i.school as an assistant director and as a technical advisor to Ohma, which operates a people search engine called SPYSEE. Her many honors include winning Tsukuba University’s Excellent Graduate Student Award twice and the 2009 Incentive Award at the 4th NLP Symposium for Young Researchers, Japan.