Generating Referring Expressions: Constructing Descriptions in a Domain of Objects and Processes

Overview

Robert Dale presents a detailed description of the development of algorithms for the generation of referring expressions, and of the underlying structures that motivate these algorithms, in a dynamic domain. He provides a number of novel results in both knowledge representation and natural language generation that should have straightforward applications in other domains.

Dale describes EPICURE, a natural language generating system, and its capacity to create referring ...

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Overview

Robert Dale presents a detailed description of the development of algorithms for the generation of referring expressions, and of the underlying structures that motivate these algorithms, in a dynamic domain. He provides a number of novel results in both knowledge representation and natural language generation that should have straightforward applications in other domains.

Dale describes EPICURE, a natural language generating system, and its capacity to create referring expressions in a domain embodying several interesting features: The entities in the domain consist of masses and sets as well as the more usual singular individuals; during the development of a discourse, the entities may take on new properties, existing entities may be destroyed, and new entities may be created; and the discourses within which the entities appear are hierarchically structured, allowing for the integration of discourse-structural constraints on the use of anaphoric expressions.

EPICURE is designed to generate text from underlying plans. Dale uses cooking recipes as examples, showing how the system must determine what level of explanation is required and how the events in the plan must be modeled to ensure that the references generated are accurate.

Robert Dale is Lecturer in the Centre for Cognitive Science and Department of Artificial Intelligence at the University of Edinburgh.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Robert Dale is Professor in the Department of Computing in the Division of Information and Communication Sciences at Macquarie University, and Director of the Centre for Language Technology.
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Table of Contents

Preface
Notational Conventions
1 Introduction 1
1.1 What This Book Is About 1
1.2 The Phenomena Considered 2
1.3 The Aims of the Work 3
1.4 Starting Points 5
1.5 An Overview of the System 12
1.6 Structure of the Book 13
2 The Representation of Entities 17
2.1 Some Ontological Problems in Recipes 17
2.2 A Survey of Objects in Recipes 22
2.3 Generalized Physical Objects 31
2.4 Eventualities 48
2.5 The Representation Language Summarized 61
2.6 Limitations 64
3 The Generation of Connected Discourse 69
3.1 An Overview of EPICURE 69
3.2 Deciding What to Say 74
3.3 Discourse Generation and Domain Modeling 89
3.4 Generating Clauses 98
4 Generating Referring Expressions 115
4.1 Introduction 115
4.2 Referring 115
4.3 Building Noun Phrases 120
4.4 Initial Reference 138
5 Generating Anaphoric References 169
5.1 The Pronominalization Decision 169
5.2 Subsequent Reference 186
5.3 One-Anaphora 215
5.4 The Referring Expression Algorithm Summarized 229
6 A Worked Example 233
6.1 The Target Recipe 233
6.2 The Ingredients of Recipe Generation 236
6.3 Generating the Discourse Specification 246
6.4 Generating the Text 248
6.5 Conclusions 255
Bibliography 259
Name Index 269
Subject Index 273
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