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Re: [ontolog-forum] Context and Inter-annotator agreement

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: Michael Brunnbauer <brunni@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Fri, 2 Aug 2013 17:57:11 +0200
Message-id: <20130802155711.GA13258@xxxxxxxxxxxx>

Hello Patrick,    (01)

On Fri, Aug 02, 2013 at 10:38:29AM -0400, Patrick Cassidy wrote:
>   In cooperative communication (excluding poetry and intentionally vague or
> emotionally evocative language) any word senses that are not part of a
> previously agreed and mutually understood lexicon may be very difficult to
> grasp, defeating the point of communication.  Of course, new words or senses
> may be defined in a communication.    Perhaps you have some examples of "new
> senses" that are not already part of the existing English lexicon that will
> actually be *accurately* understood by the listener or reader?       (02)

I am not an expert but let me try.    (03)

In order to understand a sentence, it is not enough to pick the right word
sense. You have to understand the sense and how it can modify other senses. 
You need context, background knowledge and the ability for abstraction and
generalization. You need to be able to follow the line of thinking of the
author.    (04)

The word much has only one meaning in Wordnet: "a great amount or extent".
Great is defined by Wordnet as "relatively large in size or number or extent".
How do you get a machine to understand the sentence "I ate much" without the
knowledge that "I" refers to a human and how much humans usually eat ?    (05)

Or take the sentence "Soldiers are potential murderers". The sense of "murderer"
is modified by "potential" to be something completely different.    (06)

Or take my own sentence:    (07)

>When you put words together, you often create completely new senses that
>cannot be grasped by looking at indidual word senses only.    (08)

How do you get from "put" and "together" to "put together" ? There are
many senses for "looking" in Wordnet but I cannot find the right one. It is
not used literally here.    (09)

> For the purpose of research on language understanding, it seems to be a good
> idea to first try to solve the base problem, which has a great deal of
> practical utility, which is to understand a communication that the speaker
> *intends* to be understood accurately.  That is my current focus.   People
> are really good at doing that, and I am concerned about how to get machines
> to do that too.  That is where a common set of semantic primitives
> represented  in a common foundation ontology is, I expect, likely to serve
> very well.    (010)

How about a dictionary without circular definitions ? I do not know of such a
thing and I bet it is not because of ignorance on my part.    (011)

The failure of the Cyc project also should be closely related to this problem.
Maybe the people familiar with Cyc have more and better examples of the 
problems you would face.    (012)

My opinion is that understanding of natural language is not possible without 
true intelligence. It may also be a bit the other way round.    (013)

Regards,    (014)

Michael Brunnbauer    (015)

++  Michael Brunnbauer
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++  Prokurist: Dipl. Kfm. (Univ.) Markus Hendel    (016)

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