Department Events & Announcements

Events

  • Oct
    9

    CS Colloquium - Yejin Choi - The Enigma of Neural Text Degeneration as the First Defense Against Neural Fake News

    Department of Computer Science

    2:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

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    Abstract

    Despite considerable advances in deep neural language models, the enigma of neural text degeneration persists when these models are used as text generators—especially when used for open-ended long-form text generation. Nonetheless, there has been a growing concern about the potential misuse of neural language models, in particular, potential mass production of neural fake news. How can we effectively address the major limitations of neural text generation, while also getting better prepared against potential misuse?

    In this talk, I will introduce GROVER, a fake news generator (and a detector) that can generate fake news with remarkable coherence and quality that sometimes appeal better to human readers than human-written propaganda. Perhaps counter-intuitively however, the best defense against neural fake news turns out to be the generator itself. Why is this the case? In order to answer this question, I will first share another seemingly counter-intuitive observation that even though the use of likelihood as training objective leads to high quality models for a broad range of language understanding tasks, using likelihood as a decoding objective leads to text that is bland and strangely repetitive. I will then reveal surprising distributional differences between human text and machine text, and propose Nucleus Sampling, a simple but effective approach that can dramatically improve neural text generation. Despite the remarkable improvement however, neural text leaves distinct distributional signature that is easy to detect to machines, especially the generator itself. I will conclude the talk by discussing the importance of threat modeling and platform-based approaches to be better prepared against neural fake news. I will also discuss the fundamental limits of current neural language models for robust text generation and advocate the need for "knowledge models” to represent the true understanding about how the physical and social world works, with distinct emphasis on commonsense knowledge.

    Bio

    Yejin Choi is an associate professor at the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Washington and also a senior research manager at AI2 overseeing the project Mosaic. Her research interests include language grounding with vision, physical and social commonsense knowledge, language generation with long-term coherence, conversational AI, and AI for social good. She was a recepient of Borg Early Career Award (BECA) in 2018, among the IEEE’s AI Top 10 to Watch in 2015, a co-recipient of the Marr Prize at ICCV 2013, and a faculty advisor for the Sounding Board team that won the inaugural Alexa Prize Challenge in 2017. Her work on detecting deceptive reviews, predicting the literary success, and interpreting bias and connotation has been featured by numerous media outlets including NBC News for New York, NPR Radio, New York Times, and Bloomberg Business Week. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from Cornell University.

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    TIME Wednesday, October 9, 2019 at 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Oct
    23

    CS Colloquium - Ágnes Horvát - "The Science of Sharing and the Sharing of Science: Diffusion of Scientific Articles across Online Platforms"

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

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    TIME Wednesday, October 23, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Oct
    23

    Dean's Seminar Series: Heather Stern - Addressing the Gender Gap in Brand and Design Leadership

    McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science

    4:00 PM Hive Studio (2-350), Ford Motor Company Engineering Design Center

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    TIME Wednesday, October 23, 2019 at 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

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    CONTACT Northwestern Engineering Events    mccormick-events@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science

  • Oct
    25

    Homecoming: Prototype Purple

    Segal Design Institute

    3:30 PM Ford Motor Company Engineering Design Center

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    TIME Friday, October 25, 2019 at 3:30 PM - 5:30 PM

    LOCATION Ford Motor Company Engineering Design Center    map it

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    CONTACT Victoria Williams    victoria.williams@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Segal Design Institute

  • Oct
    28

    CS Colloquium - Kathi Fisler - "In Defense of Little Code"

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

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    TIME Monday, October 28, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Nov
    4

    CS Colloquium - Jessica Hullman

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Monday, November 4, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Nov
    6

    CS Colloquium - Leana Golubchik - "Deconstructing Distributed Deep Learning"

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

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    TIME Wednesday, November 6, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Nov
    11

    CS Colloquium - Kate Compton - "Casual Creators: Powering-Up Creativity with AI"

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

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    TIME Monday, November 11, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Nov
    18

    CS Colloquium - Maya Ackerman

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

    EVENT DETAILSmore info

    TIME Monday, November 18, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Nov
    20

    CS Colloquium - Victoria Stodden

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

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    TIME Wednesday, November 20, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Nov
    27

    Thanksgiving vacation begins 6 p.m.

    University Academic Calendar

    All Day

    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Wednesday, November 27, 2019

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    CONTACT Office of the Registrar    nu-registrar@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR University Academic Calendar

  • Nov
    28

    Thanksgiving Day

    University Academic Calendar

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    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Thursday, November 28, 2019

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    CONTACT Office of the Registrar    nu-registrar@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR University Academic Calendar

  • Dec
    2

    Fall Classes resume 8 a.m.

    University Academic Calendar

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    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Monday, December 2, 2019

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    CONTACT Office of the Registrar    nu-registrar@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR University Academic Calendar

  • Dec
    7

    Fall classes end

    University Academic Calendar

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    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Saturday, December 7, 2019

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    CONTACT Office of the Registrar    nu-registrar@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR University Academic Calendar

  • Dec
    9

    Fall examinations begin

    University Academic Calendar

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    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Monday, December 9, 2019

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    CONTACT Office of the Registrar    nu-registrar@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR University Academic Calendar

  • Dec
    9

    Distinguished Seminar - Jens Palsberg

    Department of Computer Science

    12:00 PM 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)

    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Monday, December 9, 2019 at 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

    LOCATION 3514, Mudd Hall ( formerly Seeley G. Mudd Library)    map it

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    CONTACT Brianna White    brianna.mello@northwestern.edu EMAIL

    CALENDAR Department of Computer Science

  • Dec
    14

    Winter Break Begins

    University Academic Calendar

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    EVENT DETAILS

    TIME Saturday, December 14, 2019

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