In April the third workshop on Predicting and Improving Text Readability for Target Reader Populations was held in Gothenberg Sweden. Lots of interesting work was presented ranging from highlighting the key words in text for dyslexic readers to using genetic algorithms to classify texts as easy or not to read. I presented some of my work using information theoretic measures of sentence processing difficulty to predict eye movements during reading. Hopefully we can use some of this in making the output of the Sassy software easier for people to understand.
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I had a great time talking to kids (2-7 years old) about the “super powers” technology gives researchers. Together with other science superheros, we inspired 132 children to imagine themselves as scientists in the future (70 girls and 62 boys)!
Nava Tintarev taking part in Discovery Day at the Satrosphere Science Centre on the 22nd March.
Come along and meet some real life science super heroes, find out about their scientific super powers and make a pledge to save the world from the ‘knowledge thieves’! Suitable for all ages, children and families.
Admission Free, no need to book. The event runs throughout the day from 10am to 4pm.
This event is part of National Science and Engineering Week – see the full programme: NSEW 2014 Aberdeen brochure
Just a reminder that Roman will be demonstrating a new and improved version of the SAsSy system at the next DEMOfest!
When? 11th of February, 2014
Where? Aberdeen (at Robert Gordon University)
DEMOfest is a technology showcase of leading Informatics and Computer Science research from Scottish Universities and offers the opportunity for industry partners and academics to come together for:
- collaborative innovation
- studentships & placements
- technology licensing & consultancy
- feasibility & proof of concepts
The SAsSy project is progressing to a stage when we can demonstrate how various technologies fit together to achieve the ultimate goal of the project – to demonstrate how natural language and argumentation allow people to better understand a computer’s reasoning
DEMOfest is a technology showcase organised by the Scottish Informatics & Computer Science Alliance, Informatics Ventures and ScotlandIS. It serves as a an opportunity for people from industry and academia to come together and potentially move some of the new and exciting technologies from proofs of concept to cutting-edge products of near feature. Naturally, we jumped on the opportunity to show other researchers and entrepreneurs the fruits of our labour and to get some valuable feedback, as well to find potential partners for future work.
I personally found the DEMOfest to be a well organised and useful event. I had the opportunity to see what projects are being undertaken at various universities throughout Scotland and it was amazing to see the breadth of the presented projects. One could find projects focusing on mobile devices, human-computer interaction, security, natural language, artificial intelligence and other interesting topics. I also engaged with number of visitors from industry who were interested in SAsSy and the technologies used in the project. Some of the discussions I had lead to interesting ideas that we might consider pursuing within the SAsSy project.
The next DEMOfest is scheduled for 11th of February here in Aberdeen (at the Robert Gordon University) and I am looking forward to present new and improved version of our software.
On Monday I gave a talk at TechFest titled “Are you talking to me? What to say when you are talking to Robots?”.
I spoke about what autonomous systems are and how they are different from robots. They do a lot of the same things, but
don’t have a physical form like Honda’s helper robot ASIMO, or even a Furby.
They operate independently of people, and can communicate between themselves and us people.
These systems are everywhere, in our tills, satellites, sometimes even in our copy machines (sorry, I meant multi-functional devices!). Some of these systems are pretty powerful, like self-driving cars and drones, and so it’s really important to keep people in the loop. We need to be able to understand what is going on `under the hood’, ask why certain things are happening, and be
able to change or override system behavior when it’s appropriate.
This is where explanations like the ones we are developing in SAsSY come in – we help people understand complex plans,
and the various reasons (and counter-arguments for them, and the counter arguments for the first counter-arguments…) for
why things are done a certain way. I’ve posted the slides online, and feel free to get in touch if you have any questions about the talk.