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Doing science in Alexa

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Abstract: What sort of science happens behind the scenes when you have a conversation with Alexa? What role do computer and language scientists play in the Alexa experience? In this talk I’ll give an overview of some of the technologies fuelling Amazon Alexa and Polly services, with the focus on Text-to-Speech (TTS). For those who are considering a career in the industry, this will give you an idea of the kind of work and challenges scientists deal with everyday at Alexa. I’ll also share my experience of moving from PhD and academia to the industry and what I find to be some of the key considerations.

Bio: Ewa Muszynska is an Applied Scientist at Amazon Alexa, working on Text-to-Spech (TTS) research. Originally from Poland, she studied Natural Sciences (Physics) at Downing College in Cambridge since 2011, but swapped to Computer Science Part III for her Master’s degree. She wrote her thesis on semantic chunking under the supervision of Prof Ann Copestake and continued that work during her PhD (Clare Hall). In 2020 Ewa finished her thesis and joined Amazon in 2020, where she acts as a technical lead for a cross-functional team of scientists, linguists and software engineers.

Lunch will be provided at 12.30 in front of the CL Stores.

This talk is part of the Women@CL Events series.

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