What can statistical text analysis tell us about society?
I develop practical
and scientifically rigorous
that can help answer social science
I'm generally interested in machine learning and natural language processing,
especially when informed by or applied to areas like
political science or sociolinguistics.
My work often uses text data from news and social media.
I'm a 5th year Machine Learning Ph.D. student at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU)'s School of Computer Science, in Noah's ARK research group.
I have also been a
Visiting Fellow at Harvard IQSS,
an intern on the Facebook Data Science team.
Before grad school,
I worked on crowdsourced annotations at CrowdFlower / Dolores Labs,
as well as
I was an undergrad at Stanford
with a BS/MS in Symbolic Systems (cognitive science or so).
Videos from past presentations
Selected recent publications
(See also Google Scholar.)
Other papers on my CV or
arXiv:1310.1975, Oct 2013.
Data Analysis Project report, Machine Learning Department, CMU.
In Linguistic Annotation Workshop, 2013.
In First Monday 17.3, March 2012.
In NIPS Workshop on Comptuational Social Science and the Wisdom of Crowds, Sierra Nevada, Spain, December 2011.
In ACL-2011 (short paper).
In NIPS-2010 Workshop on Machine Learning and Social Computing.
In EMNLP-2010 (presentation).
- Press coverage:
New York Times,
All Things Considered,
Wall Street Journal,
San Francisco Chronicle,
In ICWSM-2010 (presentation).
In ICWSM-2010 (demo track).
In Beautiful Data, ed. Toby Segaran and Jeff Hammerbacher. O'Reilly Media. 2009.
In EMNLP-2008 (presentation).
- Oct 9, 2013: invited talk at Univ. of Maryland at College Park,
CLIP Colloquium (host: Philip Resnik). [slides]
- Summer 2013: attended SOCS, NAACL, and ACL. See publications list for presentations/posters.
- Apr 9: Thesis proposal has been proposed: "Statistical Text Analysis for Social Science." Committee: Noah Smith, Tom Mitchell, Alex Smola, Cosma Shalizi, and external member Gary King.
- Mar 22: invited speaker, Northeastern (Lazer Lab; host David Lazer)
- Feb 25: invited speaker, Columbia NLP group (abstract)
- November 16, 2012: invited speaker, UChicago Computational Social Science Workshop seminar series (host: Forest Gregg)
- October 4, 2012: invited speaker, UMass Amherst Machine Learning and Friends Lunch and Computational Social Science seminar (host: Hanna Wallach)
- May 2012 - invited panelist at the American Association for Public Opinion Research conference, for the panel "Survey Responses vs. Tweets: New Choices for Social Measurement." Talk: "From Tweets to Polls: Linking Text Sentiment to Public Opinion Time Series."
- April 2012 - invited speaker, New Faces in Political Methodology V workshop, Political Science Department, Penn State. Talk: "Corpus Analysis and Unsupervised Frame Learning from Text."
Commandline, R, Python, Ruby, Scala, etc.
- ARKref, a coreference resolution system.
(With Michael Heilman.)
- ParseViz - quick and dirty parse tree/dependency visualization via graphviz.
- Inactive demos
Elsewhere on the Internet
My PGP key
There are many Brendan O'Connors in the world.
If this is the wrong webpage, you may be interested in another Brendan O'Connor,
My awesome sister, Maureen O'Connor, is a writer in New York.