Thursday, September 18, 2008

"Machine" translation/vision (Stanford AI courses online)

The Stanford Engineering school has put up videos and course materials for several programming, AI, and optimization courses online. They did get some of the ones that are taught by excellent lecturers -- e.g. introductory programming (the CS dept has craploads of money, so can afford to hire specialist lecturers, which results in very good courses), and Brad Osgood on the FFT (he's just such a good lecturer).

Main link, minor link.

I was looking through the transcript of Chris Manning's introductory lecture for CS224N, Natural Language Processing, last year. (SEE link; actual website link.) I took this same course years ago as a sophomore, and this part sounded familiar:


So if you look at the early history of NLP, NLP essentially started in the 1950s. It started just after World War II in the beginning of the Cold War. And what NLP started off as is the field of machine translation, of can you use computers to translate automatically from one language to another language? Something that’s been noticed about the field of computing actually is that you can tell the really old parts of computing because the old parts of computer science are the ones that have machine in the name.


I wonder if it's in the zeitgeist and I heard it from somewhere else? Sounds right though.

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