The NEW Cottage

Greetings my friends! It has been too long since our last Cottage dinner. Therefore, I give you,

The (not) Cottage Dinner of October 8th, 2010

Friday, October 8th at 7:30 at Elsa-Bet Cafe (1270 Amsterdam, between 122nd and 123rd)

Due to popular demand, we’re going to be trying out some new locations this year for out “cottage” dinners. Elsa-bet is a new Ethiopian restaurant (the menu includes vegetarian options and, if you’re somehow not a fan of Ethiopian food, they also have burgers, sandwiches and salads). So come hang out, talk about language and eat delicious food! Please RSVP to Liz or on the CLS Facebook event page no later than Thursday at 8pm.


First Cottage Dinner of the Year!

Hello Linguists!

It is my pleasure to first of all introduce myself and Kayla Wieche as this year’s CLS presidents. We are Columbia College and Barnard College seniors, respectively, both majoring in Linguistics. We’re really excited and we think we’re going to be able to bring in some great speakers this year. That said, we also want to thank last year’s board for their amazing work and their unbelievable lineup of speakers. Hopefully we’ll be able to do their work credit.

Please feel free to email us with any questions or suggestions, and come to lots of events! The first of which being dinner at Columbia Cottage. It will be this Friday, September 17th, at 7:30 pm at Columbia Cottage (at the corner of 111th and Amsterdam). Please RSVP to me at

See you soon!

Liz Pipal

First Cottage dinner of 2010!

We will be meeting at the Cottage for dinner this Friday (1/29) at 7:30. Get excited. That, and please RSVP on Facebook.

Upcoming Events

Friday, 11/13/09
7:30 pm
Dinner at the Columbia Cottage. Join us for food and conversation – all are welcome! RSVP on Facebook.

Friday, 11/20/09
3 pm (location TBA)
A computational linguistics/natural language processing presentation by Nizar Habash of the Center for Computational Learning Systems:

Automatic Diacritization of Arabic Text

Arabic is written without certain orthographic symbols, called diacritics, which represent among other things short vowels. The restoration of diacritics to written Arabic is an important processing step for several computational linguistic applications, including training language models for automatic speech recognition, text-to- speech generation, and so on. We present here a new diacritization system for written Arabic based on a new combination of known techniques: a lexical resource for morphological analysis, a multi-classifier tagger and a lexeme language model. This new diacritization system outperforms the best previously published results by reducing the word error rate to 14.9% and reducing the diacritic error rate to 4.8%. The presentation includes a detailed error analysis classifying the type of errors resolved by each of the different modules used.

Friday, 12/11/09
Time and location TBA
Peter Connor of Barnard College will give a lecture on translation. More details to come.

Coming events: October – December


2:00 PM Jennifer Pardo of the Human Communication Lab at Columbia will speak about her research. THIS EVENT HAS BEEN POSTPONED.

7:30 PM Dinner at the Columbia Cottage


4:10 PM Mark Janse of Ghent University will give a talk on Cappadocian Greek: “Dead or Alive? The Resurrection of Cappadocian (Asia Minor Greek).”


4:00 PM Seiichi Makino of Princeton University will speak about the difficulties of translation:”What Will Be Almost Permanently Lost in Translation? A Cognitive Linguistic View”


3:00 PM Nizar Habash of the Center for Computational Learning systems at Columbia will give a talk on Natural Language Processing. THIS EVENT HAS BEEN MOVED TO 11/20, 3PM.

7:30 PM Dinner at the Columbia Cottage


Time TBA Peter Connor of Barnard College will give a talk about translation.

7:30 PM Dinner at the Columbia Cottage

October and November Events

Here is an overview of our upcoming events for October and November: mark your calendars and get excited!

Information may be added or changed in the coming weeks, so we will update this post accordingly.


Friday, 10/16

What:    Daniel Everett: lecture on Pirahã language and culture
When:    3pm – 5pm
Where:    TBA

What:    Dinner at the Columbia Cottage!
When:    7:30pm – 9 pm
Where:    111th and Amsterdam

Friday, 10/30

What:    Dinner at the Columbia Cottage!
When:    7:30 pm – 9 pm
Where:    111th and Amsterdam


Wednesday, 11/4

What:    Mark Janse: lecture on Cappadocian Greek (please RSVP!)
When:    4 pm – 6 pm
Where:    703 Hamilton

Friday, 11/13

What:    Nizar Habash: lecture on Natural Language Processing.
When:    3 pm – 5 pm
Where:    TBA

What:    Dinner at the Columbia College!
When:    7:30 pm – 9 pm
Where:    111th and Amsterdam

Check back for updates!

This Friday: club meeting + Cottage!

Boa noite a todos. This Friday, the Society will meet to chat and hear student presentations on personal research and experiences. All are welcome – come to learn more about linguistics, more about the club, and more about what you can do with linguistics at Columbia!

When: Friday, September 18, 2:30-4pm
Where: 703 Hamilton

Later Friday evening (6 pm) we will head out to the Columbia Cottage for our first dinner of the new year. You can RSVP on facebook here.