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Associate Professor Nate Chambers is the 2020 recipient of the “Class of 1951 Civilian Faculty Excellence in Research Award”

  POSTED ON: Thursday, June 25, 2020 9:58 AM by

As a member of the Department of Computer Science, Associate Professor Nate Chambers researches the machine understanding of human languages, a subfield of Artificial Intelligence usually referred to as Natural Language Processing. His core research focuses on how computers can acquire commonsense knowledge about the world in order to provide a basis for intelligent systems to reason like humans. His research revived an early theory in AI called scripts that was infeasible when first proposed by philosophers and cognitive scientists in the 1970’s.

nate-enigma.jpgAssociate Professor Nate Chambers with a WW2 enigma machine.

He was the first to combine modern machine learning models with massive text processing to learn about events by simply “reading” news articles. His pioneering research helped to spawn a new subfield of research, and made him a finalist for the 'Test of Time Award' from a leading international research organization. 

This past year, Chambers and several midshipmen received the 'Best Paper Award' for their publication in the Workshop on Noisy User-Generated Text on identifying phone numbers in text to prevent human sex trafficking.

umbc-research-mtg.jpgChambers participating in a research meeting at UMBC.

DARPA recently created a new $40 million program that builds on Dr. Chambers’ ideas and successes. Dr. Chambers has 48 published papers, including 18 midshipmen co-authors. His work has been cited 4,000 times and he leads midshipmen every summer to research internships at supercomputer sites. He is the co-founder of the USNA Center for High Performance Computing. He helped purchase a Cray supercomputer for USNA, a system now used by faculty across many departments. In only eight years, he helped bring $2.6 million in research funds to USNA.


Category: Academics, General Interest, Press Releases, People, Research