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Events for May 01, 2023

  • PhD Thesis Defense - Ehsan Qasemi

    Mon, May 01, 2023 @ 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM

    Thomas Lord Department of Computer Science

    University Calendar


    PhD Thesis Defense - Ehsan Qasemi

    Title: Multi-Modal Preconditioned Inference of Commonsense Knowledge

    Committee Members: Muhao Chen, Aiichiro Nakano, Daniel O Leary, Fred Morstatter, Luis Garcia

    Abstract: Humans can seamlessly reason with circumstantial preconditions of commonsense knowledge. We understand that a glass is used for drinking water, unless the glass is broken or the water is toxic. Despite state-of-the-art (SOTA) models impressive performance in inferring commonsense knowledge, it is unclear whether they understand the circumstantial preconditions. In this dissertation, I initially propose a novel challenge of reasoning with preconditions attributed to commonsense knowledge, design three tasks based on the challenge in text-only setup, and show there is a significant gap between SOTA language models performance and humans on our tasks. I then use weak supervision in a combination of targeted fine-tuning strategies to improve the language models performance on the preconditioned inference task. Finally, I go beyond the text-only setup and investigate the problem of preconditioned inference in a multi-modal setup when the model is challenged to infer the preconditions from an image.

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Melissa Ochoa

    Event Link: https://usc.zoom.us/j/98769460750

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  • MoBI Seminar: Dr Daniel Toker

    Mon, May 01, 2023 @ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr Daniel Toker, Post-doctoral Fellow, Department of Psychology | Department of Neurology, University of California, Los Angeles

    Talk Title: Criticality supports thalamocortical information processing during conscious states

    Series: MoBI Seminar Series

    Abstract: Mounting evidence suggests that during conscious states, neural electrodynamics are poised near a critical point or phase transition, and that this near-critical behavior supports the vast flow of information through thalamocortical networks during waking states. We identify a mathematically specific critical point near which waking neural electrodynamics operate, which is known as the edge-of-chaos critical point, or the boundary between stability and chaos. Our evidence suggests that both the information-richness of cortical activity and the transfer of information between the cortex and thalamus is disrupted during diverse states of unconsciousness because of a transition of low-frequency thalamocortical electric oscillations away from this critical point. Conversely, we show that psychedelics may increase the information-richness of cortical activity and enhance communication between the thalamus and cortex by tuning low-frequency thalamocortical electrodynamics closer to this critical point.


    Biography: Daniel Toker, PhD is a post-doctoral fellow in UCLA\'s Departments of Psychology and Neurology. He uses human and animal electrophysiology, mathematical modeling, and human brain organoids to study mechanisms underlying the loss and recovery of consciousness from anesthesia, generalized seizures, and coma.


    Host: Dr Richard Leahy, leahy@sipi.usc.edu | Dr Karim Jerbi, karim.jerbi.udem@gmail.com

    Webcast: https://usc.zoom.us/j/99475118848?pwd=ekJELzlxR1FPamwxRFp4cEgrNktRZz09

    More Information: MoBI Seminar Flyer - 05.01.2023 Daniel Toker.pdf

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - EEB 132

    WebCast Link: https://usc.zoom.us/j/99475118848?pwd=ekJELzlxR1FPamwxRFp4cEgrNktRZz09

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Miki Arlen

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  • Atoms Bits & Cells Finals

    Mon, May 01, 2023 @ 02:00 PM - 04:00 PM

    Viterbi Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship

    Receptions & Special Events


    Atoms Bit & Cells is an undergrad competition and program to innovation and develop solutions in three areas:

    Atoms â“ engineering hardware products
    Bits â“ digital projects, such as mobile and web apps, including AI, ML applications
    Cells â“ biomedical or bioengineering projects

    Come and hear from the ABC teams as they present their technology and business. While the compete for a 1k prize towards their business.

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 132

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Viterbi TIE

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  • PhD Dissertation Defense - Wenxuan Zhou

    Mon, May 01, 2023 @ 04:00 PM - 05:00 PM

    Thomas Lord Department of Computer Science

    University Calendar


    PhD Dissertation Defense - Wenxuan Zhou

    Title: Robust and Generalizable Knowledge Acquisition from Text

    Committee members: Muhao Chen (chair), Laurent Itti, Tianshun Sun, Robin Jia, Jonathan May

    Abstract: With large amounts of digital text generated every day, it is important to acquire structured knowledge automatically from the text. In my thesis, I will present my work during my Ph.D. from two perspectives: (1) Improving the robustness of knowledge acquisition, especially against bias from training corpus; and (2) building data-efficient knowledge acquisition models in low-resource scenarios, which is important for tasks in high-stake domains. After these, I will discuss challenges and future directions for both (1) and (2).

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Melissa Ochoa

    Event Link: https://usc.zoom.us/j/6915039300

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