Towards Conceptual Story Understanding - Dr Lea Frermann

Title: Towards Conceptual Story Understanding

Speaker: Dr Lea Frermann

Time: 1-2PM

Date: Tuesday 12 Nov

Location: Latham Theatre (Room 102 Redmond Barry Building, University of Melbourne)

Abstract:
Stories are fundamental to our culture and communication, and humans can draw on substantial conceptual and common sense knowledge to recognize central relations and events (e.g., to summarize plots), and to reason or answer questions about them. Despite recent advances in automatic story understanding, the most successful techniques fundamentally build on the ability to capture intricate superficial co-occurrence patterns, resulting in methods that are not interpretable and of limited  generalizability. Can we draw inspiration from human conceptual learning and understanding to develop more flexible and interpretable methods automatic story understanding?

In the first part of this talk, I will present our recent work on automatic book and movie understanding, illustrating current approaches and their strengths and weaknesses. The second part of the talk will cover our work on understanding how humans learn and represent conceptual knowledge at scale, using large naturalistic datasets and computational cognitive modeling. I will conclude with discussing ideas on how to integrate insights from human conceptual learning and representation into automatic language understanding.