Dorothea Blostein (née Dorothea Haken)
Professor, School of Computing at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario.

Dorothea Blostein
School of Computing
Goodwin Hall 720
Queen's University
Kingston, Ontario, Canada
K7L 2N8
(613) 533-6537

Dr. Blostein received computer science degrees from the University of Illinois (B.Sc. in 1978, Ph.D. in 1987) and Carnegie Mellon University (M.Sc. in 1980). Since 1988 she has been a faculty member in the School of Computing at Queen's University.

Table of contents for this web page
      Biomechanics and Adaptive Tensegrity
      Graphics Recognition and Document Classification

Student Supervision
      Graduate Theses Supervised
      Undergraduate Theses and Projects


Biomechanics and Adaptive Tensegrity

In a tensegrity structure, isolated components under compression are held in place by components under tension. Tensegrity structures are strong and flexible due to the dynamic interplay of tension and compression forces. Tom Flemons' models of leg, arm, torso, mast demonstrate the ability of relatively simple tensegrity structures to capture complex aspects of force transmission through a human body; for discussion see the websites of biotensegrity researchers Tom Flemons, Graham Scarr, and Steve Levin.

My research interests are as follows.

My students are extending two software platforms -- the NASA Tensegrity Robotics Toolkit (NTRT) and PushMePullMe -- in order to create simulations necessary for this research.


Graphics Recognition and Document Classification

I have a long-standing research program in pattern recognition, document analysis, and document classification. The main research goal is to smooth the interface between paper and electronic versions of documents. My students and I have worked on developing computer technology to read, write, and edit diagram notations such as music notation, math notation, maps, schematics, and architectural drawings. The text portions of scanned documents can be analyzed with OCR (Optical Character Recognition), but further processing is required to extract the information contained in diagram notations. My students and I investigate the use of techniques such as graph transformation and tree transformation, in order to construct an interpretation of the 2D arrangement of symbols in a diagram. Other research topics include document classification (applied to biomedical documents and software engineering documents), the use of internet searches to validate document recognition results, and the relationship between diagram generation and diagram recognition.

I coauthored the Lime Music Notation Software. Both Macintosh and IBM PC versions are available for free trial use.

I was a plenary speaker at CICM 2009 and Chair of GREC2001, the Fourth IAPR International Workshop on Graphics Recognition, Kingston, Ontario, in September, 2001.

Classification and Mining of Software Engineering Documents

Classification of Biomedical Documents

Holographic Reduced Representations

Formulating and Evaluating Recognition Algorithms using the Recognition Strategy Language

Validation and Performance Evaluation of Document Recognition Algorithms

Surveys on Topics in Diagram Recognition and Document Classification

Recognition of Mathematics Notation Using Tree Transformation

Graph Transformation and Application to Diagram Recognition

Lime Music Notation Software

Computer Vision

Student Supervision

Current Graduate Students

Nuwan PereraStarting MSc Sept 2017Topic: Machine learning applied to tensegrity structures

Graduate Theses Supervised

Undergraduate Theses and Projects


Current Courses
CISC 859 Pattern Recognition. Fall 2017, 2014, 2013, 2011, 2008 and previous years
CISC 324 Operating Systems. Winter 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2009 and previous years

Other Courses I have Taught
CISC 365 Algorithms I. Fall 2010. Also Winter 2003 and previous years.
CISC 124 Introduction to Computing Science II. Fall 2002.
    Here is Java image manipulation code used in this course. This code can be used as a starting point by anyone wishing to write image manipulations in Java.

CISC 352 Artificial Intelligence. Fall 2003.
CISC 221 and CISC 231. Computer Architecture. Winter 1997 and previous years.