Nature, Language, Process

me
Links
Blazing Hyphens
Personal blog (mostly Hebrew), not often updated
Dagesh Kal
Collaborative linguablog (Hebrew)
My Github
Miscellaneous projects
My Scholarly Work
As indexed by Google
My LinkedIn
Banner Photo
Dientes de Navarino, Chile. Feb 2012.
Photo by Yuval Pinter (CC-BY-SA 3.0)




  About
I'm Yuval, a Computer Science PhD student in the School of Interactive Computing at Georgia Institute of Technology. I work on Natural Language Processing (NLP) at Prof. Jacob Eisenstein's lab. During the summer of 2017, I was a research intern at The Home Depot's Text Mining team.

Before moving to the States, I worked as a Research Engineer at Yahoo Labs and as a Computational Linguist at Ginger Software, and before that I got my BSc in Computer Science and Math and my MA in Linguistics via the Adi Lautman Interdisciplinary Program for Outstanding Students at Tel Aviv University.

A full CV is available here. And here is my affiliation color timeline for the 2000s:

My interests within NLP are broad. They include Lexical Semantics, Word Representation, Morphology, Syntactic Parsing, social factors affecting language, User-Generated Content, Machine Learning approaches to NLP, application of NLP in Information Retrieval, and more.


  Research

At Georgia Tech

My main area of current research is word embeddings, exploring (a) how sub-word information can be used to create better word representations, as well as predict representations for words unseen during training; and (b) how to incorporate semantic analysis into embeddings so that they exhibit better similarity properties.

2017: Yuval Pinter, Robert Guthrie, Jacob Eisenstein. Mimicking Word Embeddings using Subword RNNs. Proceedings of EMNLP. PDF. Slides. Code.

At Yahoo

Most of my research at Yahoo involved analysis of the web search process, specifically within the domain of Community Question Answering sites (like Yahoo Answers, StackOverflow, Quora, etc.), from both an Information Retrieval (IR) perspective and a linguistic / NLP-y one.

2016: Yuval Pinter, Roi Reichart, Idan Szpektor. Syntactic Parsing of Web Queries with Question Intent. Proceedings of NAACL-HLT. PDF. Talk. Data Release Notes. Data available to researchers via the Webscope program.
2016: Gilad Tsur, Yuval Pinter, Idan Szpektor, David Carmel. Identifying Web Queries with Question Intent. Proceedings of WWW. PDF.
2014: David Carmel, Avihai Mejer, Yuval Pinter, Idan Szpektor. Improving Term Weighting for Community Question Answering Search using Syntactic Analysis. Proceedings of CIKM. PDF. Blog post.

Our team, with collaborators from Academia and Government, started the TREC LiveQA Challenge which has so far been run three times at considerable success. In short: participants write a server which has to answer real questions coming into the Yahoo Answers feed, within 1 minute, for one entire day. Details in the overview papers:

2017: (Forthcoming).
2016: Eugene Agichtein, David Carmel, Dan Pelleg, Yuval Pinter, Donna Harman. Overview of the TREC 2016 LiveQA Track. PDF.
2015: Eugene Agichtein, David Carmel, Donna Harman, Dan Pelleg, Yuval Pinter. Overview of the TREC 2015 LiveQA Track. PDF. Blog post.
Code for creating a server.

Pet Projects

In 2015, I pursued a hypothesis regarding Israeli media bias: Is it possible to predict which news outlet a headline is from, based on relatively few examples and using only simple textual features? The answer, in so many words, is yes. I presented my preliminary results in:
2015: Yuval Pinter, Oren Persico, Shuki Tausig. Exploring Israeli News Website Bias using Simple Textual Analysis. ISCOL. Extended Abstract (PDF). PPTX (Hebrew).
I have not since followed up on this (but I'm still planning to). The code and data are available here.

Since 2001 I've been looking into the various suggestions to reform the Hebrew script. Here's one of my latest installations, and here's a video of a talk I gave about the subject in 2011. All in Hebrew.

I have some other things up my sleeve. Once I get them into presentable form I'll add them here - stay tuned.

Days of Linguistics

In 2011 I contributed a chapter to the book Hebrew Online by Carmel Vaisman and Illan Gonen. It's in Hebrew, and you can buy it here from the publisher.
Dr. Vaisman and I gave a talk about the subject of this chapter - the dynamics of group and authority in Hebrew Wikipedia and the Hebrew Facebook translation project - at the 2012 meeting of the Israeli Association for the Study of Language and Society. Video (Hebrew).
There's a forthcoming journal paper (in English).

My MA thesis from 2014, about the semantics of nonveridical BEFORE, is available here (PDF). I presented parts of it at IGDAL (the first Israeli ling grad student conf) in 2011 with these slides that go right-to-left in each row. It's not a good summary for the completed thesis though.

In 2010 I presented a modification for graded modality comparison. Slides. Seminar Paper this was based on.

Much smaller-scale explorations, for class projects and seminars: Hypercorrection in Hebrew conjunctions; Linguistic exploration of Text messages in Hebrew (Hebrew); Comparing usage of the Hebrew few/little (PPT, Hebrew); Can the acceptance rate of Hebrew neologisms be predicted using Optimality Theory? (tl;dr - NO.) (Hebrew).


To sum, here's my Google Scholar page. My Erdős number is at most 4.

  Miscellaneous
I have a personal blog, mainly in Hebrew, not often updated nowadays.

I contribute to a communal Linguistics Blog in Hebrew, Dagesh Kal, also not often updated but with a "Hall of Fame" section that I feel comfortable recommending to Hebrew readers who want a decent but laid-back intro to some topics in linguistic research, a-la Language Log. I also gave a short talk (Hebrew again) about peevology, based on our writings.

I co-operate the Fake Noam Chomsky Twitter account (not very active these days).

I translated Jabberwocky into Hebrew.

I've run a couple of marathons. My personal best is 3:51:32 hours (Tiberias, 2015).

Media (Professional)

In February 2017 I was interviewed on Israeli radio about Google Translate's algorithmic upgrade. Recording + Hebrew writeup, Google-Translated English version that's not half bad.

Media (Personal)

My 15-minutes include Some participation on BBC's WHYS, and a train-delay project that got me a front page headline on Israel's main news website and an invitation to a Knesset hearing.

I've been on four Israeli trivia game shows between 2002 and 2008. Don't ask me how much I've won. Unfortunately, no videos are available online, but one day I might feel like converting the VHS tapes I have them on. More media appearances are linked in my personal blog.


  Contact Information
Email: u then v then p, no spaces, at gatech dot edu

Physical:  School of Interactive Computing
     Georgia Institute of Technology
     801 Atlantic Drive NW, Atlanta, GA 30308

Last Modified: September 9, 2017