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Here is someone who’s been inspiring me quite a bit lately. In fact, I would like to be influenced by his book and lecture much much more, carrying out more of his advice in my every day life. The video (below) of his “Last Lecture” is great, but I highly recommend the book, The Last Lecture.



I both fear and look forward to my first semester of “real” teaching.

I am teaching 1.33 courses next semester. The “1” is for a graduate AI course, and the “.33” is for an advanced undergraduate course that I am co-teaching with two colleagues. I have been thinking about the .33 course lately because we are drafting a course outline for it. The course will be called something like “CS and Probability” or “probabilistic (statistical?) methods in CS”, and as the name suggests, will cover probabilistic (statistical) methods used in solving problems in computer science. We decided to offer this new course because we felt the undergraduates needed a fun introduction to some of the current topics in AI research. (I know that the title does not sound very fun.)

My part of the course will be on statistical NLP. I plan to introduce some interesting problems in natural language processing, present a few empirical approaches, and have the students implement some of the well-known algorithms. There are two nice courses at CMU that I will use as references, though those courses, spanning 2 semesters for master’s level students, cover much much more than I will attempt. Thanks to Roni and Noah for the valuable course material.

Language & Statistics

Language & Statistics II