Monday, March 17, 2008

The Ling-O-Sphere Revisited

In December I posted about an idea regarding my desire to see a linguistics blog aggregator that "automatically checks a given set of linguistics websites, then updates a topic cloud which clusters posts according to relevance for a particular topic" (see my full post and relevant comments here ).

I see now that William Cohen at his Cranial Darwinism blog has recently posted two new academic papers on the automatic discovery of blog topics (aka, latent topic modeling) as well automatic methods of modeling blog influence. Daume has posted on related topics in the past as well (see here for one relevant post).

Having skimmed the first paper a bit, I see lots of scary words and phrases like "Latent Dirichlet Allocation" and "probabilistic framework"; I'm neck deep in finishing my dissertation (or failing to finish it; I'll be able to distinguish the two in about 3 weeks), so my interest in struggling through challenging papers is low, but they look well worth the read ... someday ... sigh.

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NLPers: How would you characterize your linguistics background?

That was the poll question my hero Professor Emily Bender posed on Twitter March 30th. 573 tweets later, a truly epic thread had been cre...