I hope I am not butting in with your email to John.
Your work sounds very useful to me. However, it is not
necessary to have a "dictionary" with "meaning" defined for
the words. What is useful is the repetitive patterns that can be found in
text. The clustering of sentences related to the individual words under
research is usually good enough for my purposes so far. Later, it would be
nice to have interpretable definitions, but horse first, cart second in my own
controlled English analysis.
[mailto:ontolog-forum-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Adrian
Sent: Tuesday, February 24, 2015 7:10 PM
Subject: Re: [ontolog-forum] Semantics for interoperable systems
As always, good to debate with
English" system surely contains a dictionary of English.
When you want such a system to handle new jargon (say, government acronyms) you
have to extend and maintain the dictionary, and a grammar of English -- also a
In Executable English, on the
other hand, there is no need to maintain a dictionary or grammar. This
sounds radically different and almost impossible, but the system is online with
many examples, and it works.
If EE is to stay under the
Controlled English heading in your excellent web page, perhaps you could add a
footnote saying that the technology is open vocabulary and largely open syntax?
Thanks, - Adrian
Executable Open English / Internet Business Logic
Online at www.reengineeringllc.com
Shared use is free, and there are no advertisements
On Tue, Feb 24, 2015 at 1:31 PM, John F Sowa <sowa@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Adrian and Kingsley,
> the system really needs a category other than "controlled
> The rather radical design [of Executable English] is intended to avoid
> the brittleness/high-maintenance aspects of more conventional NL systems.
The term 'controlled NL' is a moving target. It's impossible to state
necessary and sufficient conditions that distinguish everything called
a CNL from notations that are not called a CNL. For example,
By Rolf Schwitter, http://www.aclweb.org/anthology/C10-2128 :
> One way to bridge the gap between a natural language and a formal
> language is the use of a controlled natural language (CNL) that can
> mediate between these languages. CNLs are engineered subsets of
> natural languages whose grammar and vocabulary have been restricted
> in a systematic way in order to reduce both ambiguity and complexity
> of full natural languages.
This statement covers Aristotle's syllogisms, Weizenbaum's ELIZA
system, all or nearly all NL-like interfaces to computer systems
(including Siri and her friends), and your Executable English.
Re Siri: To maximize ease of use, Siri has a very forgiving
front end that tries to interpret anything thrown at it. But
every Siri response is strictly controlled by a CNL -- with
a vocabulary that can be expanded by looking up words in a
dictionary or by using simple machine-learning techniques.
> When writing an app, the vocabulary is open, and so to a large
> extent is the syntax.
That's true of many CNLs. The templates used to specify the EE
patterns can be recognized by a finite-state grammar. The pattern
matcher in ELIZA would be sufficient to parse them.
> Perhaps "uncontrolled English" ?
That term sounds like 'unrestricted English', which is used for
the kind of English that everybody speaks and/or writes.
>> The web page on Semantics for Interoperable Systems
>> addresses theoretical issues of logic, ontology, and methodologies.
>> The four section headings indicate the topics:
> ... It should simply be a case of putting the following to use:
> 1. Identifying Agents using HTTP URIs that resolve to Agent Profile
> 2. Associating Identities with Identity Cards Claims (e.g., Public Key)
> and Storage Location Preferences using Relations defined in
> 3. Protocol for Reading and Writing content over an HTTP network.
> 4. Document Content creation using RDF Statements that constrained
> by Access Controls (based on relations defined in an
> 5. Protocol for Reading and Writing content over an HTTP network.
That is a very useful approach for supporting an important kind
But it doesn't meet all requirements for intelligent systems
(as stated by McCarthy), for the Semantic Web (by Tim B-L), for
the 8 challenges for computable logic (by Alan Robinson), or the
"great divide" between computer science and IT (by Joseph Goguen).
As I keep saying, I don't want to stop anyone from developing useful
systems while the theoreticians are debating "pie in the sky".
But I wanted to lay out the full range of diverse possibilities,
both theoretical and practical.
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