LUV August Meeting - Python NLTK + The Internet Filter

Aug 3 2010 19:00

The Buzzard Lecture Theatre. Evan Burge Building, Trinity College, Melbourne University Main Campus, Parkville.

  • Brian Walters, Liberty Victoria - Keeping Senator Conroy out of my computer
  • Brianna Laugher - Discovering Interesting Things with Python's Natural Language Tool Kit

Keeping Senator Conroy out of my computer by Brian Walters, Liberty Victoria

Senator Conroy has announced a deferral of the internet filter proposal. He did not announce that it was abandoned, but rather said it would still proceed after an inquiry, involving the States, into the controversial "Refused Classification" category. Australia's 3 largest ISPs will implement a voluntary filter targeted only at child abuse material - something they've offered for years. Will this mean an end to the misleading claims that the internet filter will tackle child pornography? This was a missed chance for Senator Conrory to admit that the whole compulsory internet filter was a failed policy - and abandon it. Free speech is one of the most important human rights, and in defiance of international norms it is not recognised and protected as a human right in Australia.

Why is it important? And how would the mandatory filter affect it?

Brian Walters SC is a Melbourne Senior Counsel and human rights advocate who has appeared in many high profile cases, and who has written and spoken widely on human rights issues. He is a past president of Liberty Victoria and was Vice President of Free Speech Victoria for many years. He co-founded "Wild" - Australia's wilderness adventure magazine - which won the Victorian Small Business Award. He is also the author of "Slapping on the Writs" - about the use of litigation to stifle free speech.


Discovering Interesting Things with Python’s Natural Language Tool Kit by Brianna Laugher

If information is power, then analysis, synthesis and summary must be super-powers. If we cannot have wisdom then at least give us shiny statistics. And when it comes to information sets that mostly consist of language data, for example, mailing lists, it’s Python’s Natural Language ToolKit (NLTK) to the rescue. Learn how to scale great archives of text in a single leap, or at least attempt to find evidence that the golden era of bottom-posting really did exist at some point. Suitable for beginners to both Python and language hacking.

Brianna Laugher is a member of the LUV committee and a fan of significant whitespace, computational linguistics, Wiki[mp]edia and software freedom. She spends her days removing exec statements from a ten-year-old program and occasionally blogs at


The Buzzard Lecture Theatre, Evan Burge Building, Trinity College Main Campus Parkville Melways Map: 2B C5

Notes: Trinity College's Main Campus is located off Royal Parade. The Evan Burge Building is located near the Tennis Courts. See our Map of Trinity College. Additional maps of Trinity and the surrounding area (including its relation to the city) can be found at

Parking can be found along or near Royal Parade, Grattan Street, Swanston Street and College Crescent. Parking within Trinity College is unfortunately only available to staff.

For those coming via Public Transport, the number 19 tram (North Coburg - City) passes by the main entrance of Trinity College (Get off at Morrah St, Stop 12). This tram departs from the Elizabeth Street tram terminus (Flinders Street end) and goes past Melbourne Central Timetables can be found on-line at:

Before and/or after each meeting those who are interested are welcome to join other members for dinner. We are open to suggestions for a good place to eat near our venue. Maria's on Peel Street in North Melbourne is currently the most popular place to eat after meetings.

LUV would like to acknowledge Red Hat for their help in obtaining the Buzzard Lecture Theatre venue and VPAC for hosting!


Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <b> <dd> <dl> <dt> <i> <img> <li> <ol> <u> <ul> <pre> <br> <blockquote> <hr> <code><sup><sup><p><em><strong> <h2> <cite> <code> <tt> <h1><table><tr><th><td>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

More information about formatting options

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.