Newsletter Ed. May 2019

Don't miss the  HONORS THESIS WORKSHOP  tomorrow! 

Interested in the CogSci Honors program? Want to learn about it from Honors students and faculty? Come out to our Honors Program Info event this Wednesday 5/15 at 6pm in the Snake Path Room (next to Kaplan). A current honors student as well as a CogSci professor will discuss the program and their own project. You will also have a chance to ask them questions you may have. This is a great opportunity to learn about the benefits and requirements of the program. We will also have food from RED Sambusas. We hope to see you there! 
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Week 7: 

MAY 15th (Wed) 
Honors Thesis Workshop
@Snake Path Room
6- 8pm

Learn more about the CogSci Honors program at this information session. Hear from an Honors student and professor about their projects. There will be food from RED Sambusas!

Week 8:

MAY 20th (Mon)
Study Jam
@CSB 180

Come study together with other CogSci students and CSSA members. There will be snacks :)

MAY 26th (Sun)
CSSA Banquet for Executive and Extended Boards:

@Dolores Huerta Room (OSC)  4:30-6:30pm

Banquet Agenda:

  • Check-In
  • Introduction
  • Trivia with prizes:  score points on CogSci trivia and win fun prizes!
  • Who is CSSA? :Learn more about CSSA as we introduce our club and share updates on the events we held throughout the year
  • Awards for dedicated committee members
  • Meet Next Year’s Board 
  • Senior Send-Off 
  • Advisor Appreciation 
  • Conclusions 
...We'll also have Games, Desserts, and a Senior Panel!


Don't miss out on the fun, SAVE THE DATE!

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What's new in the Cog-Sci world?

Can AI systems analyze social networks in literary works? 

    What do books like 1984 and Game of Thrones have in common?  While they both possess intricate worlds and an interesting plot, a recent study was interested in whether their social networks were similar, regardless of when they were published. Additionally, they tested whether some language tools were able to hold up to today’s standards. 
 To analyze this, a machine-learning program was trained to identify text patterns and recognize relationships between characters based on how often they were mentioned. AAfterward this program was run against various science fiction literature, on novels from the 17th to 21st century. 
 The results showed that there were no significant differences between old and modern novels, in terms of being able to analyze their social networks. However, the data also highlighted gaps in the tools used; For instance, while nicknames like “Dany” for “Daenerys Targaryen” could be identified, apostrophe names like “d’Artagnan” could not. While data like this could be used to potentially develop a culturally-aware AI, it’s clear it’ll take some time before computers can accurately “read text.” 


Read full article
Looking into the brains of Pokémon experts 

   Researchers analyzed the brains of 11 Pokémon experts and 11 regular adults in a lab in order to identify systematic differences in how Pokémon experts store and recollect information about Pokémon. By looking at MRI scans, researchers found that Pokémon experts develop a unique brain representation for Pokémon in their visual cortex and the location of that brain response to Pokémon is consistent across individuals. In other words, there is a systematic difference in the types of specialized brain representations present in people who played Pokémon in their childhood in comparison to those who didn’t. This research helps pinpoint which theory of brain organization is most responsible for determining the development of one’s visual cortex. Ultimately, this study demonstrates the extent to which childhood experiences can influence the plasticity of the human brain.  
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