Strategies for Natural Language Processing

By Wendy G. Lehnert; Martin H. Ringle | Go to book overview

generation. It shows what can be done in a fairly complete system that understands natural language (typed or spoken), answers questions and performs various actions, and responds in natural language (typed and spoken).

Problems that arose in the design of HWIM were precursors of those that are central issues in AI research today. For example, the speech-act issues for HWIM are similar to those studied by Cohen ( 1978), Cohen and Perrault ( 1979), and Allen ( 1979). Questions of knowledge representation closely related to those faced in HWIM have been pursued by Bobrow and Winograd ( 1977), Brachman ( 1979), and Fahlman ( 1979). (Also see Brachman & Smith, 1980). Language generation in a discourse context similar to HWIM's has been studied by McDonald ( 1980) and others. Finally, the issue of interactions among syntax, semantics, and pragmatics is crucial in the work of Schank and Abelson ( 1977), Bobrow ( 1978), Woods ( 1980), and others.

The characteristics of HWIM reflect the goal of natural communication between a person and a computer assistant. Even in its limited domain, it illustrates the extent to which natural communication depends on diverse kinds of knowledge in both communicants. The structure of HWIM can provide a useful framework for obtaining a better understanding of natural communication.


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

HWIM was developed over a 5-year period as the BBN speech -understanding system. This chapter, which draws from Volume 5 of the final report on HWIM ( Woods et al., 1976), focuses on the component of the system embodying semantic and pragmatic knowledge. Many people worked on the system; those specifically involved with the parts of the system discussed here included Bonnie Webber, Bill Woods, Laura Gould, Greg Harris, Craig Cook, Lyn Bates, Geff Brown, and David Grabel. For discussions of other speech understanding systems, see Erman et al. ( 1980), Lea ( 1980), and Walker ( 1978).

Bill Woods, Bonnie Webber, Scott Fertig, Andee Rubin, Ron Brachman, Marilyn Adams, Phil Cohen, Allan Collins, and Marty Ringle contributed useful suggestions and criticisms to this chapter. Cindy Hunt helped in the preparation. The system development and much of the writing was supported by the Advanced Research Projects Agency of the Department of Defense and was monitored by ONR under Contract No. N00014-75-C 0533. Additional work on the chapter itself was supported by the National Institute of Education under Contract No. US-NIE-C-400-76-0116. Views and conclusions contained here are those of the author and should not be interpreted as representing the official opinion or policy of DARPA, NIE, the U.S. Government, or any other person or agency connected with them.


REFERENCES

Allen J. A plan-based approach to speech act recognition (Tech. Rep. No. 131/79). Toronto: Department of Computer Science, University of Toronto, 1979.

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Strategies for Natural Language Processing
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Preface xiii
  • Abstracts xvii
  • I - Introduction 1
  • 1 - The State of the Art In Natural-Language Understanding 3
  • Acknowledgments 30
  • References 30
  • II - Implementation Issues 33
  • 2 - Realistic Language Comprehension 37
  • References 53
  • 3 - Natural Communication Between Person and Computer 55
  • Acknowledgments 86
  • References 86
  • 4 - Parsing and Comprehending With Word Experts (a Theory And Its Realization) 89
  • Acknowledgments 147
  • References 147
  • 5 - An Overview of the Frump System 149
  • Acknowledgments 175
  • References 175
  • 6 - A Framework for Conceptual Analyzers 177
  • References 196
  • III - Conversation And Discourse 199
  • 7 - Conversation Failure 203
  • References 220
  • 8 - Towards an Understanding Of Coherence in Discourse 223
  • Acknowledgments 242
  • References 242
  • 9 - Beyond Question Answering 245
  • Acknowledgments 271
  • References 271
  • 10 - Adversary Arguments and The Logic of Personal Attacks 275
  • Acknowledgments 293
  • References 294
  • IV - Knowledge Representation 295
  • 11 - Inference and Learning In Computer Model of The Development of Language Comprehension in a Young Child 299
  • Acknowledgments 325
  • References 325
  • 12 - Inferring Building Blocks For Knowledge Representation 327
  • Acknowledgments 343
  • References 343
  • 13 - Points: A Theory of the Structure Of Stories in Memory 345
  • References 373
  • 14 - Plot Units: a Narrative Summarization Strategy 375
  • Acknowledgments 411
  • References 411
  • V - Theoretical Issues 413
  • 15 - Metaphor: an Inescapable Phenomenon In Natural-Language Comprehension 415
  • Acknowledgments 432
  • References 433
  • 16 - Context Recognition In Language Cornprehension 435
  • Acknowledgments 453
  • References 453
  • 17 - Reminding and Memory Organization: an Introduction To Mops 455
  • Acknowledgments 493
  • References 493
  • 18 - Some Thoughts on Procedural Semantics 495
  • Acknowledgments 515
  • Notes on Contributors 517
  • Subject Index 523
  • Index 529
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