Summary: Language Technology & Society

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  • 1 Introduction, 'smart' technology, ethics and AI

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  • What is the focus of lecture 1: introduction, 'smart' technology, ethics and AI?

    What kinds of language technology are there?
    What is the impact of this technology on you? 
  • Why are there no books for this course?

    There are only recent papers, as language technology changes every time. Some of the reading materials are not even published yet.
  • What book gives you a nice overview, introduction and implications of AI technology?

    Artificial Intelligence, a guide for thinking humans by Melanie Mitchell
  • What do you need to do to pass the Language Technology & Society course?

    Attend the lectures and seminars
    Read the assigned articles before the lectures and prepare questions
    Ask questions and post discussions on the discussion board
    Active participation
  • 1.1 Hypes and Techs

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  • What do "hype" and "panic" form together?

    A feedback loop, which reinforces the hype.
  • To what extent do filter bubbles affect us?

    There are many ways of studying this:
    - you ask/interview people. Sometimes there are interviews with people who are in rabbit holes and their children are also sucked into conspiracy theories. You can see how it affects their lives by checking their internet history.

    - You can also make a fake profile and see where the algorithm takes you. This is something we are going to talk about in this course.
  • How can we find the right balance between hype and panic? And how can we assess the true effects and capabilites of smart technology?

    For lack of a better term: AI realism
  • Which historical developments took place before the AI winter?

    - 1950: Alan Turing publishes his “computing machinery and intelligence” proposing what is now known as the turing test
    - 1956: the Dartmouth summer workshop on artificial intelligence
    -1966: joseph weizenbaum publishes eliza, the first chatbot (you can still google and chat with it)
    - Until 1970s: optimism! About AI and smart computers
  • What makes it interesting for researchers when people tell personal stories to chatbots like ELIZA?

    Some people trusted these chatbots with very personal stories. And that’s interesting because someone for example said that he could look up what people wrote and ELIZA was very offended.
  • What happened during and after the AI winter?

    1973: Lighthill report, the start of the first AI winter (a phrase that people use to refer to something and a negative idea to AI research) many researchers quit with AI developing as they didn’t get any further with their research.

    1980s: careful optimism again
    late 1980s, early 1990s: second AI winter.
    people were disappointed because there was again a AI winter and no people who invested in AI.

    1990S, 2000s: rise of machine learning
    2010s: rise of Deep Learning à popular approach
    mid-2010s – now: optimism…. But until when?

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