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Machine Learning Meetup: Finding and Telling Stories at Internet Scale

Modified: February 20, 2017

Thursday, February 23
Room L324
Northwestern Technological Institute
4:00 PM CT
Northwestern University

Northwestern Machine Learning is a club consisting of more than 1,000 students, techies, members of industry, and entrepreneurs interested in machine learning and data science. Machine Learning Meetup is part of Northwestern’s IDEAS program. Find out more about the club here.

They are excited to host Professor Larry Birnbaum from Northwestern at their next meet up. Larry is a professor in the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science department, and is co-director of the Intelligent Information Laboratory, which has the mission of making information access relevant to the specific moment and task at hand by constructing systems that connect users with information, services, people, and community on the basis of the context of their in-the-moment activity. 


The astounding growth in data gathering, processing, storage, and networking capabilities over the past decade have opened the prospect of revolutionary advances in everything from medicine to media — if these data can actually be exploited properly.  A key bottleneck is providing insight and understanding based on these data to people who need to make decisions using them.  This talk will outline our work on finding important and interesting patterns in data (especially social media); on the automation of editorial judgment; and on automatically generating stories based on those data to convey insights to people.  I’ll focus particularly on applications to journalism, and on the technology, originally developed at Northwestern, that has led to our start-up Narrative Science.


Larry Birnbaum is Professor of Computer Science and of Journalism at Northwestern University, Head of the Computer Science Division of its EECS Department, and Co-Director of its Intelligent Information Laboratory.  He is also Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Advisor of Narrative Science Inc.  Larry’s research focuses on applied Artificial Intelligence, natural language processing, social media data analytics, and automatic content generation.  Together with colleagues and students, he has published more than 140 papers on these topics and holds 32 U.S. patents.  Larry received his BS and PhD degrees in Computer Science from Yale University, and was on the faculty there before joining Northwestern.

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