Experimental Creative Writing with Natural Language Processing

I am organizing a 2-day workshop on experimental creative writing with natural language processing on 21-22 Nov 2018. See here for details:

As part of the Humans and IT research programme (HIT), Digital Aesthetics Research Center (DARC) has invited Allison Parrish, a programmer, poet and educator, to give a two days hands-on workshop regarding the state of the art of natural language processing, exploring the relationship between art, culture, creativity, programming practice, computational thinking and artificial intelligence.

We will use Python as the main programming language, a high-level, interpreted and general-purpose dynamic programming language that focuses on code readability. Python can be run and used in multiple operating systems including Windows, Mac and Linux. No prior programming skills is required but you should be expected to get your hand dirty to tinker with code and use the command-line interface. The workshop will be relevant for those who are interested in textual/data/information analysis and creative computing across disciplines, such as software studies, digital humanities, STS, digital design, electronic literature, media studies, aesthetics and language studies, computer science and beyond.

DETAILS:

Date:

Day 1- 21/11: 0900-1600 (include breaks and lunch)
Day 2- 22/11: 0900-13.00 (include breaks and lunch)

Fees: FREE but there is a limitation of max 15 participants. Priority will be given to faculty members and PhD students at Aarhus University and for those who can participate the two dates together.

Venue: Aarhus University, Helsingforsgade 14, Building 5342, room 333 (ADA-building), 8200 Aarhus N, Denmark

Registration: Please sign up here. You will be contacted for the detailed arrangement on/before Nov, 2018. (Deadline for registration 10-Oct-2018)

Workshop Description:

Natural Language Processing (or NLP) is an area that is a confluence of Artificial Intelligence and linguistics. It involves intelligent analysis of written language. In this hands-on workshop, we’ll investigate the state of the art of natural language processing with an eye toward using the sometimes-unintuitive abstractions of language produced by computational models to make programs that create surprising and poetic creative writing. Through a series of pre-written but easily modifiable programs, participants will be introduced to text analysis and language generation with the Python programming language. We’ll make automated “big Dada” cut-ups, undertake poor digital humanities based on word counts and part-of-speech tagging, and exploit vector arithmetic to write poetry like we’re using guitar pedals. Workshop participants will develop a number of small projects in text analysis and poetics using public domain texts of their choice. In becoming familiar with contemporary techniques for computational language analysis, information/data/literature/media studies, critics and researchers will be able to reason better about language-based media on the Internet. Designers, artists and writers, meanwhile, might just learn a few new techniques to add to their creative palette.

Bio:
Allison is a computer programmer, poet, educator and game designer whose teaching and practice address the unusual phenomena that blossom when language and computers meet, with a focus on artificial intelligence and computational creativity. She is a Teacher at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, where she earned her master’s degree in 2008.

Named “Best Maker of Poetry Bots” by the Village Voice in 2016, Allison’s computer-generated poetry has recently been published in Ninth Letter and Vetch. She is the author of “@Everyword: The Book” (Instar, 2015), which collects the output of her popular long-term automated writing project that tweeted every word in the English language. The word game “Rewordable,” designed by Allison in collaboration with Adam Simon and Tim Szetela, was published by Penguin Random House in August 2017 after a successful round of Kickstarter funding. Her first full-length book of computer-generated poetry, “Articulations,” was published by Counterpath in 2018.
More info: https://www.decontextualize.com/