Predicting and learning

Predicting and learning

If I’m hurriedly packing to go home to Blighty for a few days, I’ll likely pull out a raincoat. It’s a safe bet, right? But if I have a little more time on my hands, I might look up the detailed forecast, and find that it’s more likely to snow (a rare event in the...
Slow is good

Slow is good

The best things in life take time. That’s what we’ve been seeing again and again as we dig into the way that we pull information from memory during language processing. Three new papers show this in quite different ways. Back in the day, I was enamored of showing that...
Now for something completely different

Now for something completely different

A conversation in a subway station with a senior professor when I was a frustrated graduate student really stuck with me. I think I must have been lamenting my bad fortunes in the conference submission game. I figured that the star professor didn’t have to deal with...
My ideal workshop

My ideal workshop

I’ve been to many events called “workshops”. The name rarely fits, and looking back over the years, they generally don’t leave much of a mark. A couple of weeks ago I took part in a workshop that really deserved the name, and it was simply fantastic. It also had the...
A grading method from hell

A grading method from hell

Here’s a method for grading students’ work that seems ludicrous. But it’s essentially what we subject ourselves to as researchers all the time. Forget presidents’ salaries and predatory publishers; the most egregious waste in research...
Akira Omaki receives NSF grant

Akira Omaki receives NSF grant

Excellent news for Akira Omaki (2010 PhD) – the National Science Foundation is supporting his research on the development of language processing mechanisms in children, to the tune of $390,000. The project is on “Development and adaptation of active...
Extreme Makeover – Homepage Edition

Extreme Makeover – Homepage Edition

I spent a lot of time this summer working with colleagues on designing new websites for the LSC and Langscape (new versions go live in Sept). This made it clear that my own home on the internet had become painfully primitive. I was ahead of the curve when I built my...
Raise a glass for Drs Lago and Parker

Raise a glass for Drs Lago and Parker

Congrats to Dr Dan Parker and Dr Sol Lago, who have finished their PhDs and are moving onwards and upwards. Dan’s dissertation is The Cognitive Basis for Encoding and Navigating Linguistic Structure. He’ll be moving one state away and a couple of hundred...
Kiplin Hall Workshop

Kiplin Hall Workshop

Kiplin Hall in North Yorkshire, England, is the ancestral home of the Calvert family, founders of Maryland, and owners of the plantation where the University of Maryland was created. We are looking forward to holding a workshop on language and memory there on Aug 31...