<img style="float:right; PADDING-LEFT:10px; PADDING-BOTTOM: 5px" src="https://stanford.edu/~mtessler/donuts_Mht.JPG" width="250px"> It is a remarkable fact that so much is learned from ideas expressed vaguely in words. We tend to know what people mean when they talk to us, despite the difficulty in precisely defining our terms. What do the words we say mean? And how does communicating our ideas, even vaguely, spur the evolution of culture? I am a graduate student in the [Department of Psychology](https://psychology.stanford.edu) at [Stanford](http://stanford.edu), working with [Noah Goodman](http://cocolab.stanford.edu/ndg.html) and the [CoCoLab](https://psychology.stanford.edu). I am interested in cognition, language, and learning. I view language through the lens of psychology, and psychology through the lens of computer science and statistics. I am also interested in the philosophy of science, particularly with respect to statistical inference. I occasionally write [stories about travels](https://mhtess.blogspot.com). You can email me at `mtessler@stanford.edu` + [Github: mhtess](https://github.com/mhtess) + [Twitter: mhtessler](https://twitter.com/mhtessler) + [Project library: mhtess](https://mhtess.github.io) #### Events + On May 20th, 2017, there was [A Generic Workshop](http://stanford.edu/~mtessler/generic-wrkshp/generic-wrkshp.html) at Stanford ### Manuscripts + **Tessler, M. H.** & Goodman, N. D. [A pragmatic theory of generic language.](http://arxiv.org/abs/1608.02926) *arXiv:1608.02926* (under review). + Ouyang, L.\*, **Tessler, M. H.**\*, Ly D.\*, & Goodman, N. D. [Practical optimal experiment design with probabilistic programs.](http://arxiv.org/abs/1608.05046) *arXiv:1608.05046* ### Conference proceedings and posters + **Tessler, M. H.**, Lopez-Brau, M. & Goodman, N. D. [Warm (for winter): Comparison class understanding in vague language](http://stanford.edu/~mtessler/papers/Tessler2017-cogsci-final.pdf) (to appear). *Proceedings of the 39th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.* + Yoon, E. J., **Tessler, M. H.**, Goodman, N. D., & Frank, M. C. ["I won't lie, it wasn't amazing": Modeling polite indirect speech.](http://langcog.stanford.edu/papers_new/yoon-2017-underrev.pdf) (under review). *Proceedings of the 39th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.* + **Tessler, M. H.** & Goodman, N. D. [Communicating generalizations about events.](http://stanford.edu/~mtessler/papers/Tessler2016-cogsci.pdf) (2016). *Proceedings of the 38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.* + Yoon, E. J.\*, **Tessler, M. H.**\*, Goodman, N. D., & Frank, M. C. [Talking with tact: Politeness as a balance between informativity and kindness.](http://stanford.edu/~mtessler/papers/YoonTessler2016-cogsci.pdf) (2016). *Proceedings of the 38th annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.* * Franke, M., Dablander, F., Scholler, A., Bennett, E., Degen, J., **Tessler, M. H.**, Kao, J., & Goodman, N. D. [What does the crowd believe? A hierarchical approach to estimating subjective beliefs from empirical data.](http://www.sfs.uni-tuebingen.de/~mfranke/Papers/FrankeDablander_2016_What_does_the_crowd_believe.pdf) (2016). *Proceedings of the 38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.* + **Tessler, M. H.** & Goodman, N. D. [Talking in generalizations: A pragmatic theory of generic and habitual language.](http://stanford.edu/~mtessler/papers/spp-tessler-generics-2016.pdf) (2016). *Poster presented at 42nd Annual Meeting of the Society for the Philosophy and Psychology.* + **Tessler, M. H.** [Understanding *belief bias* by measuring prior beliefs for a Bayesian model of syllogistic reasoning.](http://stanford.edu/~mtessler/papers/Tessler2015-esslli.pdf) (2015). *Student Session of the 27th European Summer School in Logic, Language, and Information (ESSLLI).* + Degen, J., **Tessler, M. H.**, & Goodman, N. D. [Wonky worlds: Listeners revise world knowledge when utterances are odd.](http://cocolab.stanford.edu/papers/DegenEtAl2015-Cogsci.pdf) (2015). *Proceedings of the 37th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.* + **Tessler, M. H.** & Goodman, N. D. [Some arguments are probably valid: Syllogistic reasoning as communication.](https://web.stanford.edu/~ngoodman/papers/cogsci14-syllogisms_tessler.pdf) (2014). *Proceedings of the 36th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society.* ### Pedagogy + In the Autumn of 2016, I lectured on [Bayesian Data Analysis](https://probmods.org/v2/chapters/14-bayesian-data-analysis.html) as part of Noah Goodman's course on [Probabilistic Models of Cognition](https://probmods.org/v2/). + In the Summer of 2016, I taught a course at Stanford on [Bayesian Statistics for Psychologists](https://psych201s.stanford.edu). + In the Summer of 2016, I lectured on [Bayesian Data Analysis](http://probmods.github.io/ppaml2016/chapters/5-data.html) as part of a week-long course on [probabilistic programming using WebPPL](http://probmods.github.io/ppaml2016/). + In the Summer of 2016, I helped teach [a course at ESSLLI on Probabilistic Language Understanding](http://gscontras.github.io/ESSLLI-2016/). + In the Spring of 2015, I created a lecture on [Bayesian Data Analysis](http://forestdb.org/models/bayesian-data-analysis.html) for Noah Goodman's course on [probabilistic models of cognition](https://probmods.org/). ### Misc. tools and content + [RWebPPL](https://github.com/mhtess/rwebppl): An R package for WebPPL + [WebPPL tutorials](https://github.com/mhtess/webppl-tutorials): Simple tutorials for WebPPL + [WebPPL OED](https://github.com/mhtess/webppl-oed): Optimal Experiment Design for WebPPL models