Hi! My name is Li Zilles (they/them). I live in Seattle, WA with my partner and my cat, who are indeed two distinct entities.

Some roles I have identified with over the years include: creative technologist, language hacker, bot maker, grad student, AI researcher, and computer co-conspirator.

Some other roles I have occasionally assumed are: gig worker, audio engineer, and game developer.

If you would like to say hello, feel free to drop me a line at li@entangled.one.

Space and Time

I grew up in upstate New York, majored in computer science and Russian at a tiny liberal arts college just outside Philadelphia, and moved to Seattle in 2012 to research natural language processing at the University of Washington. In 2017, I left graduate school to explore opportunities outside of academia.

Talks and Presentations

Events that I've publicly spoken at, where the talks also happened to be recorded for posterity.

Reflective, Not Objective: Intentionality in AI (2016)
AlterConf – Portland, OR

I discuss the many ways in which there is no such thing as “unbiased” data or code, talk about the real-world ramifications of this, and argue that it is critical for software engineers and researchers to acknowledge and address the responsibility they take on when working in machine learning and AI.

Found Lexicons, Generated Grammars: The Dynamic Possibilities of Twitter Bots (2015)
PROCJAM – The Internet

I discuss remixing and repurposing language mined from the internet for Twitter bots and other generative text applications.

Seven on Seven 2015: Empathy and Disgust — Presentation with Hannah Black (2015)
Seven on Seven – Rhizome, New York, NY

Hannah Black and my laptop lead with a performance of an essay by Hannah in conversation with a program I wrote, responding to her words in real time. We then follow up with a short discussion on our collaboration, which took place over just 24 hours.

Fun with Corpora Manipulation (2014)
Bot Summit – Boston, MA

I talk about some of the characteristics I look for when mining text for Twitter bots, and methods I use for transforming the text in fun and interesting ways.

Academic Publications

Conference publications from my time in academia.

The Effect of Different Writing Tasks on Linguistic Style: A Case Study of the ROC Story Cloze Task by R. Schwartz, M. Sap, I. Konstas, L. Zilles, Y. Choi, N. A. Smith. CoNLL 2017.
Joint Coreference Resolution and Named-Entity Linking with Multi-Pass Sieves by H. Hajishirzi, L. Zilles, D. S. Weld, L. Zettlemoyer. EMNLP 2013.