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Colloquium: Dr. Regina Barzilay (MIT), "Learning to Behave by Reading," Monday, September 26, 3:30pm, CL128 (Expired)

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Regina Barzilay of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) will give a seminar on Monday, September 26th from 3:30 pm-4:30 pm in CL128.  Note that this is a different room than most of our seminars.  Please mark your calendars today so as to keep this time slot available.


 Learning to Behave by Reading


The problem of guiding and controlling robots through unconstrained human language has long been considered a foundational problem in artificial intelligence.  Past work in this area, however, has met with limited success due to the large amount of task specific training data necessary to achieve reasonable results. In contrast, our work grounds language semantics in the control application purely by interacting with the environment, thereby eliminating the need for manual annotations. Our results demonstrate that, across a range of control tasks, knowledge automatically extracted from text can dramatically improve performance on the target applications, including self-maintaining computer systems and multi-agent planning.

Our recent application of these techniques to automatic game playing gained wide coverage on technical and general news media, including WSJ, Wired, Forbes, Washington Post.


Her talk will be based on the material discussed in this Wired article:




Regina Barzilay is an associate professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT and a member of the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. Her research interests are in natural language processing. She is a recipient of various awards including of the NSF Career Award, the MIT Technology Review TR-35 Award, and Best Paper Awards in top NLP conferences. She is a PC co-chair for EMNLP 2011 and associate editor of Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research.

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