David Reitter

How does the mind work? I would like to understand what makes us intelligent, and why we make mistakes at times. As a computional cognitive scientist, I study language processing, dialogue, and decision-making. My work is computational in two ways. (1) I use data science techniques for inference from large-scale datasets and experiments. (2) I create computational, cognitive and statistical models to contribute to a unified theory of cognition. My work in cognitive science is aided by computational linguistics; my research in computer science is inspired by cognition.

My research group is primarily supported by the National Science Foundation (several recent projects).

David Reitter
what's new?
  • NSF grant funded (Perception, Action&Cognition + Robust Intelligence): Inference of the syntactic and semantic relationships between words from an untagged corpus using a distributional model of semantics derived from human memory theory (co-authored by post-doc Matthew Kelly)
  • Alex Ororbia, paper to appear in Neural Computation (with T. Mikolov and D. Reitter), "Learning Simpler Language Models with the Delta Recurrent Neural Network Framework."
  • Yafei Wang: PhD defense 4/2017. Now: IBM Research.
  • SBP-BRiMS 2017 papers: Is Word Adoption a Grassroots Process? An Analysis of Reddit Communities (Cole/Ghafurian/Reitter), and How Emotional Support and Informational Support Relate to Linguistic Alignment
  • ACL 2017 paper by Yang Xu: Spectral Analysis of Information Density in Dialogue Predicts Collaborative Task Performance
  • Cognition paper to appear by Yang Xu: Entropy in conversation: Towards an information-theoretic model of dialogue
  • 2017 TopiCS issue out on Computational Models of Memory
  • The book is out: Big Data in Cognitive Science (M. Jones, ed.) - with a chapter on studies in computational psycholinguistics.
  • ACL 2016 paper accepted "Entropy converges between dialogue participants: explanations from an information-theoretic perspective" (Xu, Reitter)
  • PLOS ONE paper accepted "Crowdsourcing the Measurement of Interstate Conflict" (D'Orazio, Kenwick, Lane, Palmer, Reitter)
  • ACL 2016 paper accepted "Convergence of Syntactic Complexity..." (Xu, Reitter)
  • Social Science Research Institute funds Carlson/Putnam/Reitter to model syntactic processing in bilinguals
  • Talk and Paper at Designing Interactive Systems, Brisbane '16 (Ghafurian, Reitter)
  • I am at SBP-BRiMS as program co-chair, at ACL '16 as area chair
  • ICCM 2016 is coming to Penn State (Ritter and Reitter, general chairs)
  • NSF funding $1M (social/economic): Updating the Militarized Dispute Data Through Crowdsourcing
  • NSF funding CRII (computer science): Alignment in web-forum discourse
Penn State, 2012-:   Asst. Professor, Information Sciences
Carnegie Mellon, 2008-11:  Post-doc, Psychology
Edinburgh, 2008:  PhD, Informatics/Cognitive Science
U. C. Dublin, 2004:  MSc, Computer Science
Potsdam, 2002:  Dipl., Linguistics
Founder, 2005-:  Aquamacs Emacs