Need to get up to speed on AI and its use in the information community? On Monday, February 12 (1:00–5:00 pm ET), the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) will host a pre-conference, “Introduction to AI and Machine Learning in Scholarly Communications.” The in-person educational event will take place at the Hyatt Regency Inner Harbor in Baltimore, just one day prior to the fifth anniversary NISO Plus Baltimore conference.

Since the launch of ChatGPT earlier this year, stories about AI have dominated the media. Everyone knows it’s important, but the current and potential impacts on individual roles and organizations are still unclear to many of us. How is AI being used on campuses and in publishing organizations? What are the ethical or legal implications to consider? This 101-style introduction to AI and its many applications in our community is designed for any information professional—librarians, publishers, researchers, or service providers—seeking an introduction to this timely topic. No technical background is necessary to attend.

The half-day workshop will familiarize attendees with the current state of AI and machine learning systems. Facilitators will set the stage by tracing the history leading up to today’s technologies and explore what the current state-of-the-art machine learning services (both analytical and generative AI) can do. In the second half of the pre-conference, attendees will learn more about these systems through demos and actively engaging with a variety of tools. Participants will come away with a thorough understanding of machine learning services and systems and the ability to critically evaluate their potential, capabilities, and risks.

“The idea for an introductory level pre-conference on artificial intelligence arose during our NISO Plus Forum event last October, said Jason Griffey, NISO Director of Strategic Initiatives. “In speaking with industry leaders about AI, we realized there was a need for more education on this emerging technology. So much of the media coverage emphasizes AI’s pitfalls and ethical concerns, which are important, but we also want to help people understand its potential to solve problems.” 

Attendees of the NISO Plus pre-conference are not required to register for the main meeting, although they are highly encouraged to attend both—AI is a featured track on the NISO Plus program, so the two events complement each other. The program also features tracks on open scholarship, metadata, and information standards as well as keynotes from industry leaders, so it’s well worth sticking around!

At $100, tickets for the pre-conference are very affordable, ensuring a broad range of participation (including from students and early career professionals). We thank the generous sponsors who have helped to make this possible: Silverchair, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), Bowker, EBSCO, figshare (our repository host), Atla, CHORUS, the Modern Language Association, Open Athens, Project MUSE, SPIE, Stony Brook University Libraries, UC Berkeley Library, Crossref, and the journal Information Services and Use

We hope you’ll take this unique opportunity to learn about the emerging technology shaping our industry! Reserve your space now and remember, the early bird deadline for the NISO Plus conference is January 8.

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