November 2011 Newsletter

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

New Corpora

2006 NIST Speaker Recognition Evaluation Training Set

2006 NIST/USF Evaluation Resources for the VACE Program - Meeting Data Test Set Part 2

Chinese Gigaword Fifth Edition

Announcements

Spring 2012 LDC Data Scholarship Program

Applications are now being accepted through January 15, 2012 for the Spring 2012 LDC Data Scholarship program! The LDC Data Scholarship program provides university students with access to LDC data at no-cost. This program is open to students pursuing both undergraduate and graduate studies in an accredited college or university. LDC Data Scholarships are not restricted to any particular field of study; however, students must demonstrate a well-developed research agenda and a bona fide inability to pay. The selection process is highly competitive.

The application consists of two parts:

(1)  Data Use Proposal. Applicants must submit a proposal describing their intended use of the data. The proposal must contain the applicant's name, university, and field of study. The proposal should state which data the student plans to use and contain a description of their research project.

Applicants should consult the LDC Corpus Catalog for a complete list of data distributed by LDC. Due to certain restrictions, a handful of LDC corpora are restricted to members of the Consortium. Applicants are advised to select a maximum of one to two data sets; students may apply for additional data sets during the following cycle once they have completed processing of the initial data sets and publish or present work in some juried venue.

(2) Letter of Support. Applicants must submit one letter of support from their thesis adviser or department chair. The letter must confirm that the department or university lacks the funding to pay the full Non-member Fee for the data and verify the student's need for data.

For further information on application materials and program rules, please visit the LDC Data Scholarship page.

Students can email their applications to the LDC Data Scholarship program. Decisions will be sent by email from the same address.

The deadline for the Spring 2012 program cycle is January 15, 2012.

Invitation to join for Membership Year (MY) 2012

Membership Year (MY) 2012, our 20th Anniversary Year, is open for joining! We would like to invite all current and previous members of LDC to renew their membership as well as welcome new organizations to join the consortium. For MY2012, LDC is pleased to maintain membership fees at last year’s rates – membership fees will not increase.  Additionally, LDC will extend discounts on membership fees to members who keep their membership current and who join early in the year.

The details of our early renewal discounts for MY2012 are as follows:

(1) Organizations who joined for MY2011 will receive a 5% discount when renewing. This discount will apply throughout 2012, regardless of time of renewal. MY2011 members renewing before March 1, 2012 will receive an additional 5% discount, for a total 10% discount off the membership fee.

(2) New members as well as organizations who did not join for MY2011, but who held membership in any of the previous MYs (1993-2010), will also be eligible for a 5% discount provided that they join/renew before March 1, 2012.

Publications for MY2012 are still being planned; here are the working titles of data sets we intend to provide:
ARRAU 1.2 (Anaphor Resolution  and Underspecification)
TORGO Dysarthic Speech
Arabic Treebank BN (broadcast news)

GALE data – all phases and tasks
Digital Archive of Southern Speech
Chinese Dependency Treebank

In addition to receiving new publications, current year members of the LDC also enjoy the benefit of licensing older data at reduced costs; current year for-profit members may use most data for commercial applications.

This past year,  LDC members who joined early or kept their membership current saved almost US$70,000 collectively on membership fees. Be sure to keep an eye on your mail - all previous and current LDC members will be sent an invitation to join letter and renewal invoice for MY2012. Renew early for MY2012 to save today!

Why become an LDC member?

LDC is offering early renewal discounts on membership fees for Membership Year 2012 making now a good time to consider joining or renewing membership.   LDC membership has the following advantages:

    * LDC membership provides cost-effective access to an extensive and growing catalog that spans 20 years and includes over 500 multilingual speech, text, and video resources. Even if your organization only needs a few datasets from a given membership year, membership is often the most economical way to obtain  current corpora. Additionally, the generous discounts that member organizations receive on older corpora reduce the cost of acquiring such datasets.

    * All members enjoy unlimited use of LDC data within their organizations. For universities, there is no difference in cost between a departmental membership and one that is university-wide. Departments can therefore combine resources and establish one LDC membership for use by the entire university community. Likewise, for-profit members with multiple branches can maintain one membership for use by their entire organization.

For-profit organizations are reminded that an LDC membership is a pre-requisite for obtaining a commercial license to almost all LDC databases. Non-member organizations, including non-member for-profit organizations, cannot use LDC data to develop or test products for commercialization, nor can they use LDC data in any commercial product or for any commercial purpose. LDC data users should consult corpus-specific license agreements for limitations, including commercial restrictions, on the use of certain corpora. In the case of a small group of corpora, commercial licenses must be obtained separately from the owners of the data.

LDC to Close for Thanksgiving Break

LDC would like to inform our customers that we will be closed on Thursday, November 24, 2011 and Friday, November 25, 2011 in observance of the US Thanksgiving Holiday.  Our offices will reopen on Monday, November 28, 2011.