Please come join us for the first Metroplex Math Circle of 2009. On January 17 we will have Dr. Vincent Ng from UT Dallas talk to us about an exciting new field of applied mathematics as well as a new Olympiad with national and international competitions.
Statistical Natural Language Processing and the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad
People have long believed that technology will eventually produce a machine that can speak to us. Natural language processing (NLP), one of most fascinating subfields of artificial intelligence, is devoted to enabling computers to use human languages both as input and as output. However, more than fifty years have passed since the inception of artificial intelligence, and we still have not been able to construct such a “talking machine.” In the first part of this talk, we will examine why NLP is so difficult, and take a look at how statistics have revolutionized the way computers understand human languages.
In the second part of the talk, we will give an overview of the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad (NACLO), an international contest that aims to stimulate high-school students’ interest in natural language processing by having them solve linguistic puzzles. A local contest will be held at the University of Texas at Dallas on February 4, 2009. Interested high-school students can now register through the NACLO website (www.naclo.cs.cmu.edu).