Peter Norvig, director of research at Google, Inc., will deliver a public lecture, “The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Data,” on Friday, September 17, 2-3 p.m., at New York University’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences, 251 Mercer Street [at Mercer and West 4th Streets], Room 109 [enter on Gould Plaza at West 4th and Greene Streets]). For more information, call 212.998.3342. To RSVP for this event, please email email@example.com.
Reporters wishing to attend the lecture must RSVP to James Devitt, NYU’s Office of Public Affairs, at 212.998.6808 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
In decades past, models of human language were wrought from the sweat and pencils of linguists. In the modern day, it is more common to think of language modeling as an exercise in probabilistic inference from data: we observe how words and combinations of words are used, and from that build computer models of what the phrases mean. This approach is hopeless with a small amount of data, but somewhere in the range of millions or billions of examples, we pass a threshold, and the hopeless suddenly becomes effective, and computer models sometimes meet or exceed human performance. This talk will give examples of the data available in large repositories of text, images, and videos, and shows some tasks that can be accomplished with the resulting models.
The event is organized by NYU’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences and the Games for Learning Institute (G4LI), a joint research endeavor of Microsoft Research and a consortium of universities. G4LI studies the educational use of digital games and investigates their socio-cultural, cognitive, and emotional impact.
Norvig, director of research at Google, Inc. since 2005, is co-author of Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach, the leading textbook in the field. Previously, he was head of Computational Sciences at NASA and a faculty member at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of Southern California.
The Courant Institute for Mathematical Sciences
New York University’s Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences is a leading center for research and education. Established under the leadership of Richard Courant in 1935, the Courant Institute has contributed to U.S. and international science and engineering by promoting an integrated view of mathematics and computer science. The Institute is engaged in broad research activities, applying these disciplines to problems in biology, chemistry, physics, economics, and atmosphere-ocean science. The Courant Institute has played a central role in the development of applied mathematics, analysis, and computer science, and is comprised of a faculty which has received numerous national and international awards in recognition of their extraordinary research accomplishments. For more information please visit www.cims.nyu.edu.
The Games for Learning Institute
The G4LI is a joint research endeavor of Microsoft Research and a consortium of universities. The partners include: Columbia University, the City University of New York (CUNY), Dartmouth College, Parsons, Polytechnic Institute of NYU, the Rochester Institute of Technology, Chile’s Pontifical Catholic University, and Teachers College as well as NYU. The Institute’s aim is to identify which qualities of computer games engage students and develop relevant, personalized teaching strategies that can be applied to the learning process. http://g4li.org.