Meta-search finds Katrina-displaced people

September 14, 2005

Louisiana Technical University scientists say they are helping relatives locate Hurricane Katrina victims by using meta-search technology.

Dr. Box Leangsuksun, an associate professor of computer science, along with five computer science graduate students, has created a Web site that helps locate people displaced by the hurricane.

Box said other Web sites perform similar tasks, but users often become stymied because the sites contain so much information. He said the Louisiana Tech-developed site helps streamline the search process.

Leangsuksun and the school's Extreme Computing Research Group began working on www.searchkatrina.org Sept. 2, and it was running five days later.

The site combs numerous databases containing lists of evacuees. Users can also register their information with the site. In some cases, the school's Web site can provide locations of people and an update on their safety.

Leangsuksun said the site has recorded nearly 1,000 hits since its launch and he hopes updating it will allow more victims to be located.

Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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