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What is a conversational interface?

What is a conversational interface? A conversational interface is a user interface that mimics human conversation. By now, you’ve most likely interacted with a conversational interface. If you own a phone, you may have interacted with a virtual assistant like Siri, Cortana, Alexa, or Google Assistant. If you enjoy online shopping, you may have interacted with a conversational interface called a bot. Bots can find you makeup, help...

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EVOLANG XII (2018): Call for Papers

The 12th International Conference on the Evolution of Language invites substantive contributions relating to the evolution of human language. IMPORTANT DATES Abstract submission: 1 September 2017 Add deadline to calendar Notification of acceptance: 1 December 2017 Early-bird fee: 31 December 2017 Conference: 16-19 April 2018 Submission Information Submissions may be in any relevant discipline, including, but not limited to:...

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Call for Posters – Minds, Mechanisms and Interaction in the Evolution of Language

The workshop “Minds, Mechanisms and Interaction in the Evolution of Language” will be hosted at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics in Nijmegen, the Netherlands on 21st-22nd September 2017. The workshop will include a poster session on topics related to the themes of the meeting. We are interested in contributions investigating the emergence and evolution of language, specifically in relation to interaction. We are...

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2 PhD positions available with Bart de Boer in Brussels!

Two PhD positions are available in the AI lab at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel with Bart de Boer. One position is on modelling an emerging sign language: We are looking for a PhD student to work on modeling the emergence of sign languages, with a focus on modeling the social dynamics underlying existing signing communities.  The project relies on specialist expertise of the Kata Kolok signing community that has emerged in a...

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Monkey vocal tracts are speech-ready

A new paper in Science Advances (Fitch, de Boer, Mathur & Ghazanfar, 2016) uses models informed by x-rays of macaque vocal tracts to claim that monkeys have the tools neccessary to make enough speech sounds to create a productive spoken language. This means that the evolution of speech is likely to be primarily dependent on cognitive adaptation, rather than adaptation of the vocal tract. Abstract here: For four decades, the...