Hungry to expand the limits of her MIT-centric perspective of AI, Priya became a visiting researcher, building AI to interpret social scenarios in Spain.
Building AI in Madrid, living in Madrid, is a beautiful counterpoint to my studies at MIT.

At MIT, Priya built artificial intelligence systems modeling aspects of human language processing. Then, hungry to expand the limits of her MIT-centric perspective, she became a visiting researcher with the Natural Interaction based on Language Group at University Complutense of Madrid.

Computational Interpretation of Social Scenarios In Madrid, motivated by previous NIL group work, Priya proposed a computational model for interpreting social scenarios described in text.

In particular, Priya wanted her model to interpret social scenarios by probabilistically deducing the affinity and hostility between the scenarios’ characters. Drawing upon her computer science training, Priya was able to build, rapidly iterate, and evaluate the model she envisioned. After only a few months, Priya and the NIL group director Pablo Gervas were co-authoring a paper on this work. And when their paper was accepted into the International Conference on Agents and Artificial Intelligence, Priya flew to Porto, Portugal, where she presented their work, discussed emerging directions of AI, and explored the picturesque streets of Porto.

Beyond the Lab Priya’s days are rich with Spanish culture.

Priya has gotten to know the lab over long lunches and tapas; and she has gotten to know students at salsa and bachata classes. With friends, Priya has picnicked in the famous Retiro park and gone to local markets at the outdoor arts center El Matadero. When NIL group director Pablo hosted a small dinner at his home, Priya brought cake from a famous Madrid bakery, Pablo and his family cooked, and the guests read from an anthology of Spanish poetry generated by Pablo's own AI systems. “Already,” Priya says, “this is a beautiful counterpoint to my studies at MIT.” Priya will continue to work on AI narrative understanding and narrative generation with the NIL group until the fall of 2017, when she will begin pursuing a PhD at Stanford University.

  • Spain
  • Internship
  • EECS