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Teaching Machines to Read: Processing Text with NLP

Using natural language processing to analyze and understand human language data is an important problem in data science. Coming in March to Baltimore, we are pleased to have several expert speakers discuss how natural language processing allows us to further understand and work with human languages to solve many interesting problems.

For those interested in learning more about NLP, we have posted a recommended resource list.

  • 6:30 PM -- Networking and Pizza
  • 7:00 PM -- Author Attribution in US Supreme Court Decisions - Craig Pfeifer
  • 7:30 PM -- Deep Semantic Analysis of Big Data - Dr. Jesse English
  • 8:00 PM -- Phrase Extraction in the Real World - Robert Mealey
  • 8:45 PM -- Drinks at Thorton's Pub



Google maps does a good job of pinpointing the exact building location based on the address above.

Parking is not an issue. You can park on the street nearby or you can take up any Visitor spot that you can find. Also, feel free to park in the employee parking lot but not in spaces marked Under Armour or Reserved.


Thorton's Pub

1538 E. Clement Street, Locust Point, Maryland  21230


Craig Pfeifer is a Principal Artificial Intelligence Engineer at the MITRE Corp

Dr. Jesse English
is CSO and Partner of Unbound Concepts, Inc., a Maryland-based educational technology company aiming to improve literacy rates by helping match students with appropriately leveled content.  Jesse holds a PhD in computer science from UMBC and has specialized in natural language processing, machine learning and machine reading.  At Unbound Concepts, Jesse's focuses on automatic extraction of semantically rich meaning from literature, and application of that knowledge to the company's big-data driven machine learning algorithm.  Before his work at Unbound Concepts, Jesse worked as a research associate at UMBC, focusing on automatically bridging the knowledge acquisition bottleneck through machine reading, as well as developing agent-based conversation systems.

oration in Annapolis Junction, MD. He works in natural language processing; extraction and text classification, primarily. Craig is a pursing a PhD in Computer Science at UMBC with Dr. Tim Oates.

Robert Mealey works as a data scientist at DC-based social media analytics start-up newBrandAnalytics, surfacing disruptive and actionable findings from messy and disparate data sources for organizations and companies large and small across many different sectors. He tweets at @robbymeals and blogs at He has a BA in Political Science from St. Michael College and an MS in Applied Economics from Johns Hopkins.


Author Attribution in US Supreme Court Decisions - Author attribution is the process of determining the author of a document using natural language processing. This task can be used to in a variety of applications such as determining who is behind an anonymous Twitter account, or who wrote the Federalist Papers or Shakespeare's plays. US Supreme Court decisions are a natural author attribution corpus, since the author of each decision is clear from the content of the document. Craig will discuss his experiments with supervised machine learning techniques to label each document with one of the nine possible Justices.



Unbound Concepts - Through in-hand, knowledge-gathering tools such as BookLeveler, Unbound Concepts seeks to build a corpus of accurately leveled K-12 digital books and content, and to facilitate a powerful, data-backed dialogue between instructors and those who create the content those instructors use to teach students.

newBrandAnalytics - The global leader in Social Market Intelligence, helps service-focused industries extract intelligence from online conversations in order to drive customer loyalty. Our innovative solutions decipher reams of unstructured online feedback, distilling them into data-driven, actionable insights. More than 10,000 businesses partner with newBrandAnalytics to drive continuous operational improvements at the brand, regional and local level resulting in a superior customer experience. The company is headquartered in Washington, D.C.

Join or login to comment.

  • Benjamin B.

    Sean, Jason, Matt -- you guys have pulled off another spectacular event! Also if anyone out there is interested in the open source package for WIMs, please let me know -- Jesse and I are still trying to figure out the best way to release it, so if you have an opinion it will be taken into consideration!

    March 15, 2013

  • Anna

    Great meetup! Very interesting speakers!

    March 15, 2013

  • Tony O.

    Amazing. Well worth the hour and a half drive. Great job guys!

    March 15, 2013

  • Charlie G.

    Great talks, great venue, great conversations afterwards at the local watering hole. Bravo!

    March 14, 2013

  • Michael N.

    Both talks were really great. Impresssive attendance for a second meeting of this group. great space;, yummy pizza.

    March 14, 2013

  • Jonathan B.

    Sorry, not going to make it in the end. Are slides going to be available?

    March 14, 2013

  • Sean M.

    PARKING UPDATE - Most of the visitors parking immediately surrounding our building (Ivory) will most likely be blocked off due to some heavy construction going on. Our entrance is still open. Folks can park in the employee only lots – the facilities contacts have been notified and confirmed. We have two – one at the intersection of key hwy and hull street and one off of key hwy across from Domino Sugar. Of course, if they can find visitors parking they are more than welcome there. Have them follow signs for the Ivory building when walking on the campus.

    March 14, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I love to come; but seems like will not have a ride to come from Georgetown to this place in Maryland. My regrets, ana

    March 13, 2013

  • Ari C.

    hope to get in

    March 13, 2013

  • Steven W.

    Where can I park?

    February 11, 2013

  • Matt R.

    This is Pi Day.

    February 4, 2013

    • Bill B.

      or more accurately, at 4:00 pm ;0)

      March 11, 2013

  • Kelvin

    online NLP book:

    February 13, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    How can Data Science be differentiated from Information Science and Knowledge Science? Activities related to NL and NLP sound interesting!

    February 11, 2013

  • Matt M.

    Interesting blog post dealing with NLP:

    February 10, 2013

  • Michael B

    Really interested in learning Algorithms...

    February 4, 2013

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