The Effect of Natural Language Processing in Bioinspired Design
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Bioinspired design methods are a new and evolving collection of techniques used to extract biological principles from nature to solve engineering problems. The application of bioinspired design methods is typically confined to existing problems encountered in new product design or redesign. A primary goal of this research is to utilize existing bioinspired design methods to solve a complex engineering problem to examine the versatility of the method in solving new problems. Here, current bioinspired design methods are applied to seek a biologically inspired solution to geoengineering. Bioinspired solutions developed in the case study include droplet density shields, phosphorescent mineral injection, and reflective orbiting satellites. The success of the methods in the case study indicates that bioinspired design methods have the potential to solve new problems and provide a platform of innovation for old problems. A secondary goal of this research is to help engineers use bioinspired design methods more efficiently by reducing post-processing time and eliminating the need for extensive knowledge of biological terminology by applying natural language processing techniques. Using the complex problem of geoengineering, a hypothesis is developed that asserts the usefulness of nouns in creating higher quality solutions. A designation is made between the types of nouns in a sentence, primary and spatial, and the hypothesis is refined to state that primary nouns are the most influential part of speech in providing biological inspiration for high quality ideas. Through three design experiments, the author determines that engineers are more likely to develop a higher quality solution using the primary noun in a given passage of biological text. The identification of primary nouns through part of speech tagging will provide engineers an analogous biological system without extensive analysis of the results. The use of noun identification to improve the efficiency of bioinspired design method applications is a new concept and is the primary contribution of this research.
Burns, Madison Suzann 1987- (2012). The Effect of Natural Language Processing in Bioinspired Design. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from