[Elsnet-list] EMNLP 2013 Newsletter No. 2

Anna Korhonen alk23 at cam.ac.uk
Thu Oct 3 00:23:46 CEST 2013


       EMNLP 2013 NEWSLETTER NO. 2
         (October 1, 2013)

:: Important Dates

Online registration ends October 11, 2013 (11:59PM EDT)

On-site registration opens October 18, 2013

Workshops: October 18, 2013

Main conference: October 19–21, 2013

:: Table of Contents

1. EMNLP 2013 in Seattle, USA
2. Registration
3. Main Conference: Programme
4. Invited Speakers
5. Workshops
6. Please download the EMNLP proceedings prior to arriving in Seattle
7. Local information: Transportation, Restaurants and Attractions
8. Invitation Letter for US Visa Application
9. Sponsorship status

:: 1. EMNLP 2013 in Seattle, USA

The Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)
is one of the largest and most competitive conferences in computational
Organized by SIGDAT (the Association for Computational Linguistics special
interest group for linguistic data and corpus-based approaches to natural
processing), it features papers on all areas of interest to the SIGDAT
community and aligned fields.

EMNLP will be held in Seattle, USA, October 18-21, 2013. The conference
will take place at the Grand Hyatt Seattle, in the heart of downtown
Seattle, just blocks
from the famous Pike's Market.

Organizing committee

General Chair:
David Yarowsky, Johns Hopkins University

Program Chairs:
Tim Baldwin, The University of Melbourne
Anna Korhonen, University of Cambridge

Workshops Chair:
Karen Livescu, Toyota Technological Institute at Chicago

Publication Chair:
Steven Bethard, University of Alabama at Birmingham

Local Organization Chair:
Priscilla Rasmussen, ACL

The EMNLP 2013 website is available at:


:: 2. Registration

You can find registration fees and the registration site at:


Early registration: ended September 25, 2013

Late registration: ends October 11, 2013 (11:59PM EDT)

On-site registration: opens October 18, 2013

If you have any questions about the registration form or pricing, please
contact Priscilla Rasmussen at acl at aclweb.org.

:: 3. Main Conference: Programme

The main conference full programme is now available at


If you have any questions, please contact the program co-chairs at:

emnlp-2013 at cl.cam.ac.uk

:: 4. Invited Speakers

We are delighted to announce our invited speakers for EMNLP 2013:

Dr Fernando Pereira, Research Director at Google

Meaning in the Wild

This meeting was founded on the premise that analytical approaches to
computational linguistics could be beneficially replaced by machine
learning from large
corpora exhibiting the linguistic behaviors of interest. The successes of
that program have been most notable in speech recognition and machine
translation, where
the behavior of interest is plentiful in the wild: people transcribe speech
and translate texts for practical reasons, creating a voluminous record
from which our
algorithms can learn.

However, when people understand what they are told or what they read, the
output of the process is a hidden mental state change, only accessible
partially from
whatever observable actions are triggered by the change: the desired
input-output behavior is not available in the wild, even accepting the
dubious assumption that
the output can be abstracted away from the mental state where it came
about. The standard escape route of enlisting linguists to create annotated
training data is
hard enough for parsing, and it quickly falls apart for semantics, even for
seemingly “constrained” tasks like co-reference.

Nevertheless, meaning is all around us, in how people ask and respond to
search queries, in how they write text so that it can be understood by
others, in how they
annotate their text with hyperlinks, and in many other common behaviors
that are to some extent observable in the Web. We also have a growing body
of structured
text organized so that computers can use it meaningfully, such as WordNet
and Freebase. I will take you on a tour of examples from search,
coreference, and
information extraction that show small successes and big failures in
understanding, asking questions about the potential and limitations of our
current approaches
along the way. I'll not give you a complete recipe for machine
understanding, but I hope you’ll find the examples and research questions
fun and useful.

Dr Andrew Ng, Co-CEO and Co-founder of Coursera

The Online Revolution: Education for Everyone

In 2011, Stanford University offered three online courses, which anyone in
the world could enroll in and take for free.  Together, these three courses
had enrollments of around 350,000 students, making this one of the largest
experiments in online education ever performed.  Since the beginning of
2012, we have transitioned this effort into a new venture, Coursera, a
social entrepreneurship company whose mission is to make high-quality
education accessible to everyone by allowing the best universities to offer
courses to everyone around the world, for free.  Coursera classes provide a
real course experience to students, including video content, interactive
exercises with meaningful feedback, using both auto-grading and
peer-grading, and a rich peer-to-peer interaction around the course
materials.  Currently, Coursera has 80 university and other partners, and
3.6 million students enrolled in its nearly 400 courses.  These courses
span a range of topics including computer science, business, medicine,
science, humanities, social sciences, and more.

In this talk, I'll report on this far-reaching experiment in education, and
why we believe this model can provide both an improved classroom experience
for our on-campus students, via a flipped classroom model, as well as a
meaningful learning experience for the millions of students around the
world who would otherwise never have access to education of this quality.

:: 5. Workshops

The following 3 workshops will be held at EMNLP 2013:

TextGraphs-8 — Graph-based Methods for Natural Language Processing
PC Chairs: Zornitsa Kozareva, Irina Matveeva, Gabor Melli, Vivi Nastase
Website: http://www.textgraphs.org/ws13

SPMRL-2013 — 4th Workshop on Statistical Parsing of Morphologically Rich
PC Chairs: Yoav Goldberg, Ines Rehbein, Yannick Versley
Website: http://www.spmrl.org/spmrl2013.html

Twenty Years of Bitext
PC Chairs: Chris Dyer, Noah A. Smith, Phil Blunsom
Website: http://sites.google.com/site/20yearsofbitext/

:: 6. Please download the EMNLP proceedings prior to arriving in Seattle

EMNLP has decided not to distribute the proceedings on a USB Key.  Instead
we will make the proceedings available online, both by publishing all
individual papers
in the ACL Anthology (at http://www.aclweb.org/anthology/), and as a
gzipped tarball via the conference website at

We encourage you to download the proceedings before arriving at the
conference and and bringing them with you, to avoid overloading the WiFi
network at the hotel.

:: 7. Local information: Transportation, Restaurants and Attractions



Visiting Seattle:


Seattle activities:


Guide to Seattle Food, Beverages, and Restaurants
Things to do in Seattle
(generously put together by our local expert Bob Moore!):


:: 8. Invitation letter for US Via Application

Since US visa applications can take 1-4 months to be approved, we strongly
encourage prospective participants to apply for a US visa well in advance
of the conference. If you require an invitation letter for your visa
application, please contact the ACL Business Manager, Priscilla Rasmussen (
acl at aclweb.org), including the following information:

your full name
your address
if you have an accepted paper, the title of the paper and whether it is a
main conference or workshop paper

Invitation letters can be requested prior to receipt of paper notifications
and also for prospective participants without papers. For authors who have
papers accepted, it is also possible to request a second invitation letter
which verifies that the paper has been accepted.

Ms. Rasmussen will send on the invitation letter via email as a signed MS
Word document. If you additionally require a hard copy, please indicate
this in your invitation letter request.

:: 9. Sponsorship

Amazon.com (Platinum Sponsor)

Google (Gold Sponsor)

The Allen Institute of Artificial Intelligence (Gold Sponsor)

Inome (Bronze Sponsor)

IBM Research (Bronze Sponsor)

John Hopkins University Human Language Technology Center of Excellence

Anyone interested in becoming a sponsor or finding out more about
sponsorship, exhibiting, advertising or other opportunities is encouraged
to contact Priscilla
Rasmussen (acl at aclweb.org).

Contacts: emnlp-2013 at cl.cam.ac.uk
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