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Re: Is there a word for this?

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  • Gary Shannon
    ... Nope. Consider the template: The box fell ____. Which set is isotactic to that template? Maybe: { over down slowly quickly immediately suddenly ... } When
    Message 1 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
      On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 10:11 AM, Patrick Dunn <pwdunn@...> wrote:
      > Determiner
      >

      Nope. Consider the template: The box fell ____.

      Which set is isotactic to that template?

      Maybe: { over down slowly quickly immediately suddenly ... }

      When you say "determiner" you have named one SPECIFIC isotactic set.
      Clearly the above isotactic set is more like "adverb" than
      "determiner", yet "adverb" doesn't map the same semantic space I'm
      seeking to map with this template.

      And what about the template: The box ____ down.

      That isotactic set might include: { falls fell tumbled crashed broke
      was ...} Also not "determiner", or "adverb" either. Nor is it "verb"
      because "The box spoke down." doesn't work, so the verb "spoke" is not
      in that particular isotactic set.

      That's why I'm not looking for words like "verb", "noun",
      "determiner", ... I'm looking for a term that applies to ALL isotaxis,
      or to the concept of isotaxis in general.

      --gary


      >
      > On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:02 AM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
      >
      >> Working with my conlang machine translation project, I'm playing with
      >> the tagger code and I found a useful way to classify words during the
      >> process of tagging, and I'm wondering if there is a term for this
      >> already.
      >>
      >> Consider a template sentence with an empty slot: ___box fell.
      >>
      >> Now consider the set of words than can be put in that location in the
      >> template:
      >>
      >> { a the my our your his her its their one some this that every
      >> each }
      >>
      >> I want to say that the set has property X with respect to template Y.
      >> From the Greek roots for "same" and "location" I came up with
      >> "isotaxis" and called the set "isotaxic" WRT sentence Y.
      >>
      >> A different template might generate a different "isotaxic" set:
      >>
      >> Sentence template: ___ boxes fell.
      >>
      >> Isotaxic set = { the my our your his her its their some these those
      >> many few two }
      >>
      >> Is there already a word for this property, and if not, does "isotaxis"
      >> sound right? Or can anyone suggest a better term?
      >>
      >> thanks.
      >>
      >> --gary
      >>
      >
      >
      >
      > --
      > Second Person, a chapbook of poetry by Patrick Dunn, is now available for
      > order from Finishing Line
      > Press<http://www.finishinglinepress.com/NewReleasesandForthcomingTitles.htm>
      > and
      > Amazon<http://www.amazon.com/Second-Person-Patrick-Dunn/dp/1599249065/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1324342341&sr=8-2>.
    • René Uittenbogaard
      selma o? http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/selma%27o René
      Message 2 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
        selma'o?

        http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/selma%27o

        René


        2013/1/18 Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...>:
        > On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 10:11 AM, Patrick Dunn <pwdunn@...> wrote:
        >> Determiner
        >>
        >
        > Nope. Consider the template: The box fell ____.
        >
        > Which set is isotactic to that template?
        >
        > Maybe: { over down slowly quickly immediately suddenly ... }
        >
        > When you say "determiner" you have named one SPECIFIC isotactic set.
        > Clearly the above isotactic set is more like "adverb" than
        > "determiner", yet "adverb" doesn't map the same semantic space I'm
        > seeking to map with this template.
        >
        > And what about the template: The box ____ down.
        >
        > That isotactic set might include: { falls fell tumbled crashed broke
        > was ...} Also not "determiner", or "adverb" either. Nor is it "verb"
        > because "The box spoke down." doesn't work, so the verb "spoke" is not
        > in that particular isotactic set.
        >
        > That's why I'm not looking for words like "verb", "noun",
        > "determiner", ... I'm looking for a term that applies to ALL isotaxis,
        > or to the concept of isotaxis in general.
        >
        > --gary
        >
        >
        >>
        >> On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:02 AM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
        >>
        >>> Working with my conlang machine translation project, I'm playing with
        >>> the tagger code and I found a useful way to classify words during the
        >>> process of tagging, and I'm wondering if there is a term for this
        >>> already.
        >>>
        >>> Consider a template sentence with an empty slot: ___box fell.
        >>>
        >>> Now consider the set of words than can be put in that location in the
        >>> template:
        >>>
        >>> { a the my our your his her its their one some this that every
        >>> each }
        >>>
        >>> I want to say that the set has property X with respect to template Y.
        >>> From the Greek roots for "same" and "location" I came up with
        >>> "isotaxis" and called the set "isotaxic" WRT sentence Y.
        >>>
        >>> A different template might generate a different "isotaxic" set:
        >>>
        >>> Sentence template: ___ boxes fell.
        >>>
        >>> Isotaxic set = { the my our your his her its their some these those
        >>> many few two }
        >>>
        >>> Is there already a word for this property, and if not, does "isotaxis"
        >>> sound right? Or can anyone suggest a better term?
        >>>
        >>> thanks.
        >>>
        >>> --gary
        >>>
        >>
        >>
        >>
        >> --
        >> Second Person, a chapbook of poetry by Patrick Dunn, is now available for
        >> order from Finishing Line
        >> Press<http://www.finishinglinepress.com/NewReleasesandForthcomingTitles.htm>
        >> and
        >> Amazon<http://www.amazon.com/Second-Person-Patrick-Dunn/dp/1599249065/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1324342341&sr=8-2>.
      • Garth Wallace
        ... Why not? On its own it doesn t make a lot of sense, but in the right context it could be meaningful. For example, in a fantasy story where the box is
        Message 3 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
          On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:04 AM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
          > On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 10:11 AM, Patrick Dunn <pwdunn@...> wrote:
          >> Determiner
          >>
          >
          > Nope. Consider the template: The box fell ____.
          >
          > Which set is isotactic to that template?
          >
          > Maybe: { over down slowly quickly immediately suddenly ... }
          >
          > When you say "determiner" you have named one SPECIFIC isotactic set.
          > Clearly the above isotactic set is more like "adverb" than
          > "determiner", yet "adverb" doesn't map the same semantic space I'm
          > seeking to map with this template.
          >
          > And what about the template: The box ____ down.
          >
          > That isotactic set might include: { falls fell tumbled crashed broke
          > was ...} Also not "determiner", or "adverb" either. Nor is it "verb"
          > because "The box spoke down." doesn't work, so the verb "spoke" is not
          > in that particular isotactic set.

          Why not? On its own it doesn't make a lot of sense, but in the right
          context it could be meaningful. For example, in a fantasy story where
          the box is anthopomorphised.

          > That's why I'm not looking for words like "verb", "noun",
          > "determiner", ... I'm looking for a term that applies to ALL isotaxis,
          > or to the concept of isotaxis in general.

          "Part of speech". Or "word class", or "lexical category", etc. At
          least if I'm understanding you correctly.
        • Gary Shannon
          ... I m referring more to the method of collecting sets. Besides, each of those terms is already loaded down with specific meanings, so if I use them to
          Message 4 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
            On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:23 AM, Garth Wallace <gwalla@...> wrote:

            ---snip---
            >
            > "Part of speech". Or "word class", or "lexical category", etc. At
            > least if I'm understanding you correctly.

            I'm referring more to the method of collecting sets. Besides, each of
            those terms is already loaded down with specific meanings, so if I use
            them to describe something different there will be no end of
            confusion.

            And apparently I'm not doing too good a job of getting my idea across.
            Things like "part of speech" are similar, but the criteria for placing
            a word in one part of speech or another is different. If I said that a
            possessive pronoun and a definite article were the same part of speech
            people would think I was incredibly stupid. But I CAN say that with
            respect a particular specified template possessive pronouns and
            definite articles CAN BE isotactic. So "part of speech" doesn't cut
            it.

            Also, I'm interested in sets of words that are BOTH grammatically AND
            semantically _sensible_ in the specified context. "Part of speech" and
            "word class" don't cut it, because a given word which has a single
            "part of speech" in English could well belong to many different
            isotactic sets. And that's also not how "part of speech" works.

            ================================================

            On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:10 AM, René Uittenbogaard <ruittenb@...> wrote:
            > selma'o?
            >
            > http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/selma%27o
            >
            > René
            >

            Yes, that's close. I don't like that word, though. ;-)

            --gary
          • Garth Wallace
            ... But you can say that they re both specifiers and be entirely correct. If you treat classes as a flat, mutually exclusive categorization scheme, of course
            Message 5 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
              On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 12:15 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
              > On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:23 AM, Garth Wallace <gwalla@...> wrote:
              >
              > ---snip---
              >>
              >> "Part of speech". Or "word class", or "lexical category", etc. At
              >> least if I'm understanding you correctly.
              >
              > I'm referring more to the method of collecting sets. Besides, each of
              > those terms is already loaded down with specific meanings, so if I use
              > them to describe something different there will be no end of
              > confusion.
              >
              > And apparently I'm not doing too good a job of getting my idea across.
              > Things like "part of speech" are similar, but the criteria for placing
              > a word in one part of speech or another is different. If I said that a
              > possessive pronoun and a definite article were the same part of speech
              > people would think I was incredibly stupid.

              But you can say that they're both specifiers and be entirely correct.

              If you treat classes as a flat, mutually exclusive categorization
              scheme, of course it doesn't work. But I don't think there's any
              reason to do so. Langauges have all sorts of subclasses that restrict
              the possible syntactic contexts they can appear in beyond those of the
              larger categories, or allow exceptional syntactic contexts:
              intrasitive vs. transitive verbs, verbs requiring certain oblique
              arguments, verbs requirinf "quirky subjects", deponents, mass vs.
              count nouns, pluralia tantum, prepositions with different valency (if
              you accept that theory), and so on. You can even allow for some
              overlap, for example the "specifier" class in English contains
              articles, demonstratives, and possessive NPs.

              > But I CAN say that with
              > respect a particular specified template possessive pronouns and
              > definite articles CAN BE isotactic. So "part of speech" doesn't cut
              > it.
              >
              > Also, I'm interested in sets of words that are BOTH grammatically AND
              > semantically _sensible_ in the specified context.

              "Semantically sensible" is pretty nebulous. It can depend on any
              number of other words in the sentence, and even on information outside
              of the sentence. Even the audience is part of the context. I'm not
              sure that, even given all of that, you could always strictly say that
              a word is or is not semantically sensible (possibly more or less
              semantically sensible). It'd be tough to come up with useful
              generalizations if that's a criterion.
            • Alex Fink
              ... Sure. But choosing the classes you re going to enshrine as classes, and not merely subclasses or whatever else, is a matter of analysis, and I take Gary s
              Message 6 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
                On Fri, 18 Jan 2013 14:23:14 -0800, Garth Wallace <gwalla@...> wrote:

                >On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 12:15 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
                >> On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 11:23 AM, Garth Wallace <gwalla@...> wrote:
                >>
                >> ---snip---
                >>>
                >>> "Part of speech". Or "word class", or "lexical category", etc. At
                >>> least if I'm understanding you correctly.
                >>
                >> I'm referring more to the method of collecting sets. Besides, each of
                >> those terms is already loaded down with specific meanings, so if I use
                >> them to describe something different there will be no end of
                >> confusion.
                >>
                >> And apparently I'm not doing too good a job of getting my idea across.
                >> Things like "part of speech" are similar, but the criteria for placing
                >> a word in one part of speech or another is different. If I said that a
                >> possessive pronoun and a definite article were the same part of speech
                >> people would think I was incredibly stupid.
                >
                >But you can say that they're both specifiers and be entirely correct.
                >
                >If you treat classes as a flat, mutually exclusive categorization
                >scheme, of course it doesn't work. But I don't think there's any
                >reason to do so. Langauges have all sorts of subclasses that restrict
                >the possible syntactic contexts they can appear in beyond those of the
                >larger categories, or allow exceptional syntactic contexts:
                >intrasitive vs. transitive verbs, verbs requiring certain oblique
                >arguments, verbs requirinf "quirky subjects", deponents, mass vs.
                >count nouns, pluralia tantum, prepositions with different valency (if
                >you accept that theory), and so on. You can even allow for some
                >overlap, for example the "specifier" class in English contains
                >articles, demonstratives, and possessive NPs.

                Sure. But choosing the classes you're going to enshrine as classes, and not merely subclasses or whatever else, is a matter of analysis, and I take Gary's point to be the reasonable one that it would do to have a name for the basic cooccurrential facts on which the analysis into classes is predicated. Insisting that "part of speech" and its synonyms are enough seems akin to insisting that we do phonetics using only the terms "phoneme" and "allophone" and eschew the simple "phone".

                There are isotactic sets which I don't think anyone would be inclined to call classes. For example, there are ones which are (approximate) unions of many classes: "he was ___" --> {president, home, swarthy, eating, murdered, fifty, here, out, ...}

                I honestly expected someone to have chipped in with the standard word that's used in computational natural language processing by now, with respect to the problem of part of speech inference. Is there not one?

                Alex
              • Gary Shannon
                ... Yes, but other things that are also classifiers would not fit into either of my proposed classes. And the class classifiers is not useful for tagging
                Message 7 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
                  On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 2:23 PM, Garth Wallace <gwalla@...> wrote:
                  > On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 12:15 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                  >>
                  >> And apparently I'm not doing too good a job of getting my idea across.
                  >> Things like "part of speech" are similar, but the criteria for placing
                  >> a word in one part of speech or another is different. If I said that a
                  >> possessive pronoun and a definite article were the same part of speech
                  >> people would think I was incredibly stupid.
                  >
                  > But you can say that they're both specifiers and be entirely correct.

                  Yes, but other things that are also "classifiers" would not fit into
                  either of my proposed classes. And the class "classifiers" is not
                  useful for tagging and parsing _using the algorithm I am experimenting
                  with_.

                  >
                  > If you treat classes as a flat, mutually exclusive categorization
                  > scheme, of course it doesn't work.

                  No, not mutually exclusive, but overlapping sets.
                  ---snip---

                  Keep in mind that my motive has nothing to do with the study of
                  linguistics and everything to do with the engineering of a
                  computerized conlang translation program. The reason for the method is
                  code efficiency in C++, not "understanding" parts of speech. It's a
                  wrench, not a microscope.

                  For programming purposes the method is extremely useful, but for the
                  purpose of describing the algorithm I can't use existing terms like
                  "parts of speech" without misleading the reader. Thus the need for a
                  new term.

                  So the question is not "does the method work?" For programming
                  purposes, it does. The questions is, what shall I call it?

                  ---snip---

                  >>
                  >> Also, I'm interested in sets of words that are BOTH grammatically AND
                  >> semantically _sensible_ in the specified context.
                  >
                  > "Semantically sensible" is pretty nebulous. It can depend on any
                  > number of other words in the sentence, and even on information outside
                  > of the sentence. Even the audience is part of the context. I'm not
                  > sure that, even given all of that, you could always strictly say that
                  > a word is or is not semantically sensible (possibly more or less
                  > semantically sensible). It'd be tough to come up with useful
                  > generalizations if that's a criterion.

                  That's true, for a scientist. An engineer is much less concerned with
                  that and more concerned with what "works" in the majority of cases.

                  --gary
                • MorphemeAddict
                  ... Blank filler? stevo
                  Message 8 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
                    On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 12:02 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                    > Working with my conlang machine translation project, I'm playing with
                    > the tagger code and I found a useful way to classify words during the
                    > process of tagging, and I'm wondering if there is a term for this
                    > already.
                    >
                    > Consider a template sentence with an empty slot: ___box fell.
                    >
                    > Now consider the set of words than can be put in that location in the
                    > template:
                    >
                    > { a the my our your his her its their one some this that every
                    > each }
                    >
                    > I want to say that the set has property X with respect to template Y.
                    > From the Greek roots for "same" and "location" I came up with
                    > "isotaxis" and called the set "isotaxic" WRT sentence Y.
                    >
                    > A different template might generate a different "isotaxic" set:
                    >
                    > Sentence template: ___ boxes fell.
                    >
                    > Isotaxic set = { the my our your his her its their some these those
                    > many few two }
                    >
                    > Is there already a word for this property, and if not, does "isotaxis"
                    > sound right? Or can anyone suggest a better term?
                    >

                    Blank filler?

                    stevo

                    >
                    > thanks.
                    >
                    > --gary
                    >
                  • Roger Mills
                    ... Not sure this is relevant, but... Kenneth Pike s Tagmemic Grammar dealt (as best I recall, since I never studied it, and it was already way passé by the
                    Message 9 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
                      On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 12:02 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                      > Working with my conlang machine translation project, I'm playing with
                      > the tagger code and I found a useful way to classify words during the
                      > process of tagging, and I'm wondering if there is a term for this
                      > already.
                      >
                      > Consider a template sentence with an empty slot: ___box fell.
                      >
                      > Now consider the set of words than can be put in that location in the
                      > template:
                      >
                      >         { a the my our your his her its their one some this that every
                      > each }
                      >
                      > I want to say that the set has property X with respect to template Y.
                      > From the Greek roots for "same" and "location" I came up with
                      > "isotaxis" and called the set "isotaxic" WRT sentence Y.
                      >
                      > A different template might generate a different "isotaxic" set:
                      >
                      >         Sentence template: ___ boxes fell.
                      >
                      >         Isotaxic set = { the my our your his her its their some these those
                      > many few two }
                      >
                      > Is there already a word for this property, and if not, does "isotaxis"
                      > sound right? Or can anyone suggest a better term?
                      >
                      -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                      Not sure this is relevant, but... Kenneth Pike's "Tagmemic Grammar" dealt (as best I recall, since I never studied it, and it was already way passé by the 1970s)  with this sort of thing. It was an offshoot of structuralism, which had a sort of "one from column A, one from column B" approach to this sort of sprt of thing. A lot of early grammatical descriptions written by SIL members used his model; I think even SIL has gone beyond it. Don't know what you might find online.

                      Blank filler?

                      stevo

                      >
                      > thanks.
                      >
                      > --gary
                      >
                    • Garth Wallace
                      ... Ahh, okay. Then I did misunderstand what you were getting at.
                      Message 10 of 29 , Jan 18, 2013
                        On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 2:53 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
                        > On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 2:23 PM, Garth Wallace <gwalla@...> wrote:
                        >> On Fri, Jan 18, 2013 at 12:15 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
                        >
                        >>>
                        >>> And apparently I'm not doing too good a job of getting my idea across.
                        >>> Things like "part of speech" are similar, but the criteria for placing
                        >>> a word in one part of speech or another is different. If I said that a
                        >>> possessive pronoun and a definite article were the same part of speech
                        >>> people would think I was incredibly stupid.
                        >>
                        >> But you can say that they're both specifiers and be entirely correct.
                        >
                        > Yes, but other things that are also "classifiers" would not fit into
                        > either of my proposed classes. And the class "classifiers" is not
                        > useful for tagging and parsing _using the algorithm I am experimenting
                        > with_.
                        >
                        >>
                        >> If you treat classes as a flat, mutually exclusive categorization
                        >> scheme, of course it doesn't work.
                        >
                        > No, not mutually exclusive, but overlapping sets.
                        > ---snip---
                        >
                        > Keep in mind that my motive has nothing to do with the study of
                        > linguistics and everything to do with the engineering of a
                        > computerized conlang translation program. The reason for the method is
                        > code efficiency in C++, not "understanding" parts of speech. It's a
                        > wrench, not a microscope.
                        >
                        > For programming purposes the method is extremely useful, but for the
                        > purpose of describing the algorithm I can't use existing terms like
                        > "parts of speech" without misleading the reader. Thus the need for a
                        > new term.
                        >
                        > So the question is not "does the method work?" For programming
                        > purposes, it does. The questions is, what shall I call it?


                        Ahh, okay. Then I did misunderstand what you were getting at.
                      • Ralph DeCarli
                        On Fri, 18 Jan 2013 14:53:18 -0800 ... Who would your audience be? Confusing them least would depend on their background. I did something (possibly) similar
                        Message 11 of 29 , Jan 19, 2013
                          On Fri, 18 Jan 2013 14:53:18 -0800
                          Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                          > ---snip---
                          >
                          > Keep in mind that my motive has nothing to do with the study of
                          > linguistics and everything to do with the engineering of a
                          > computerized conlang translation program. The reason for the
                          > method is code efficiency in C++, not "understanding" parts of
                          > speech. It's a wrench, not a microscope.
                          >
                          > For programming purposes the method is extremely useful, but for
                          > the purpose of describing the algorithm I can't use existing terms
                          > like "parts of speech" without misleading the reader. Thus the
                          > need for a new term.
                          >
                          > So the question is not "does the method work?" For programming
                          > purposes, it does. The questions is, what shall I call it?
                          >
                          > ---snip---
                          >
                          Who would your audience be? Confusing them least would depend on
                          their background.

                          I did something (possibly) similar and ended up with
                          'Objects' (mostly nouns) 'Descriptors' (mostly adjectives and
                          adverbs) and 'Relationships' (everything else, including verbs). One
                          might guess that I have a background in data modeling.

                          I don't know if this will help, but you can see the upshot here.

                          http://instrumentation.conlang.org/instspeak.html#syntax

                          Ralph

                          --
                          Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                          They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                        • Gary Shannon
                          ... Realistically, my main audience would probably be my own future self, when I go back in ten years to try to understand the code. ... That looks
                          Message 12 of 29 , Jan 19, 2013
                            On Sat, Jan 19, 2013 at 3:37 PM, Ralph DeCarli <omnivore@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > --snip--
                            > > For programming purposes the method is extremely useful, but for
                            > > the purpose of describing the algorithm I can't use existing terms
                            > > like "parts of speech" without misleading the reader. Thus the
                            > > need for a new term.
                            > >
                            > > So the question is not "does the method work?" For programming
                            > > purposes, it does. The questions is, what shall I call it?
                            > >
                            > > ---snip---
                            > >
                            > Who would your audience be? Confusing them least would depend on
                            > their background.

                            Realistically, my main audience would probably be my own future self,
                            when I go back in ten years to try to understand the code.

                            > I did something (possibly) similar and ended up with
                            > 'Objects' (mostly nouns) 'Descriptors' (mostly adjectives and
                            > adverbs) and 'Relationships' (everything else, including verbs). One
                            > might guess that I have a background in data modeling.
                            >
                            > I don't know if this will help, but you can see the upshot here.

                            That looks interesting.

                            I was wondering too how useful it might be to go to the opposite
                            extreme of what I had proposed and just tag words as "part of a noun
                            phrase" (which would include nouns, pronouns, adjectives, articles,
                            quantifiers, demonstratives,...), or "part of a verb phrase"
                            (including verbs, adverbs, auxiliaries,,,). Beyond that, the third
                            part of speech might be "connectors" like pronouns, conjunctions,
                            commas, and some other stuff (?)

                            So there would only be three parts of speech: Nouny, Verby, and
                            Connectors. A tagged sentence might look like:

                            All/N sorts/N of/C strange/N articles/N were/V arranged/V on/C the/N shelves/N


                            In fact, it seems like no meaning is lost when the contiguous
                            like-tagged groups are permuted (internally):

                            Sorts/N all/N of/C articles/N strange/N arranged/V were/V on/C shelves/N the/N

                            I notice in your web page you included the prepositional phrase "with
                            a fork" as part of the verb. I think I might apply it as a global
                            modifier to the whole sentence:

                            Bob eats asparagus [with a fork] [in the park] [under the elm tree]
                            [beside his friend Sally]

                            That way the prepositional phrases all get tacked to the sentence with
                            "connectors" as in:

                            NVN CN CN CN CN

                            --gary
                          • Ralph DeCarli
                            On Sat, 19 Jan 2013 19:32:39 -0800 Gary Shannon wrote: I had to think about this for a bit. I would be worried that Bob eats asparagus
                            Message 13 of 29 , Jan 21, 2013
                              On Sat, 19 Jan 2013 19:32:39 -0800
                              Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                              I had to think about this for a bit. I would be worried that "Bob
                              eats asparagus [with a fork]" might imply that bob was eating the
                              fork. In this sentence the meaning is clear, but those university
                              cops drinking after midnight a few days back might be a bit confused.

                              Also, if I automate sentence construction, I want the user to
                              completely describe the subject before moving to the verb and
                              completely describe the verb before moving to the object.

                              Your method, of course, would depend on your goal.

                              Ralph
                              > On Sat, Jan 19, 2013 at 3:37 PM, Ralph DeCarli
                              > <omnivore@...> wrote:
                              > >
                              > > --snip--
                              > > > For programming purposes the method is extremely useful, but
                              > > > for the purpose of describing the algorithm I can't use
                              > > > existing terms like "parts of speech" without misleading the
                              > > > reader. Thus the need for a new term.
                              > > >
                              > > > So the question is not "does the method work?" For programming
                              > > > purposes, it does. The questions is, what shall I call it?
                              > > >
                              > > > ---snip---
                              > > >
                              > > Who would your audience be? Confusing them least would depend on
                              > > their background.
                              >
                              > Realistically, my main audience would probably be my own future
                              > self, when I go back in ten years to try to understand the code.
                              >
                              > > I did something (possibly) similar and ended up with
                              > > 'Objects' (mostly nouns) 'Descriptors' (mostly adjectives and
                              > > adverbs) and 'Relationships' (everything else, including verbs).
                              > > One might guess that I have a background in data modeling.
                              > >
                              > > I don't know if this will help, but you can see the upshot here.
                              >
                              > That looks interesting.
                              >
                              > I was wondering too how useful it might be to go to the opposite
                              > extreme of what I had proposed and just tag words as "part of a
                              > noun phrase" (which would include nouns, pronouns, adjectives,
                              > articles, quantifiers, demonstratives,...), or "part of a verb
                              > phrase" (including verbs, adverbs, auxiliaries,,,). Beyond that,
                              > the third part of speech might be "connectors" like pronouns,
                              > conjunctions, commas, and some other stuff (?)
                              >
                              > So there would only be three parts of speech: Nouny, Verby, and
                              > Connectors. A tagged sentence might look like:
                              >
                              > All/N sorts/N of/C strange/N articles/N were/V arranged/V
                              > on/C the/N shelves/N
                              >
                              >
                              > In fact, it seems like no meaning is lost when the contiguous
                              > like-tagged groups are permuted (internally):
                              >
                              > Sorts/N all/N of/C articles/N strange/N arranged/V were/V
                              > on/C shelves/N the/N
                              >
                              > I notice in your web page you included the prepositional phrase
                              > "with a fork" as part of the verb. I think I might apply it as a
                              > global modifier to the whole sentence:
                              >
                              > Bob eats asparagus [with a fork] [in the park] [under the
                              > elm tree] [beside his friend Sally]
                              >
                              > That way the prepositional phrases all get tacked to the sentence
                              > with "connectors" as in:
                              >
                              > NVN CN CN CN CN
                              >
                              > --gary


                              --
                              omnivore@... ==> Ralph L. De Carli

                              Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                              They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                            • George Corley
                              ... First of all, it would be pragmatically unusual to think someone ate a fork -- you probably wouldn t jump to that conclusion without more information. If
                              Message 14 of 29 , Jan 21, 2013
                                On Mon, Jan 21, 2013 at 6:43 PM, Ralph DeCarli <omnivore@...>wrote:

                                > On Sat, 19 Jan 2013 19:32:39 -0800
                                > Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
                                >
                                > I had to think about this for a bit. I would be worried that "Bob
                                > eats asparagus [with a fork]" might imply that bob was eating the
                                > fork. In this sentence the meaning is clear, but those university
                                > cops drinking after midnight a few days back might be a bit confused.
                                >

                                First of all, it would be pragmatically unusual to think someone ate a fork
                                -- you probably wouldn't jump to that conclusion without more information.
                                If you really care about this particular ambiguity for some reason, the
                                easy way to deal with it is separate "instrumental" with (indicating an
                                instrument used to complete a task), from "commitative" with (indicating a
                                relationship with another NP). This happens all the time in natural
                                languages, so it's not that big a deal.


                                > Also, if I automate sentence construction, I want the user to
                                > completely describe the subject before moving to the verb and
                                > completely describe the verb before moving to the object.
                                >
                                > Your method, of course, would depend on your goal.
                                >

                                Do you consider the instrument or other prepositional elements inherently
                                part of the verb?
                              • Ralph DeCarli
                                On Mon, 21 Jan 2013 20:20:30 -0600 ... In this specific case I consider the fork to be a data element of the eating predicate, if that makes any sense. I
                                Message 15 of 29 , Jan 22, 2013
                                  On Mon, 21 Jan 2013 20:20:30 -0600
                                  George Corley <gacorley@...> wrote:

                                  >
                                  > Do you consider the instrument or other prepositional elements
                                  > inherently part of the verb?
                                  >
                                  In this specific case I consider the fork to be a data element of
                                  the 'eating' predicate, if that makes any sense. I tend to think of
                                  the language in data modeling terms.

                                  A given prepositional phrase could modify the subject, the object or
                                  the predicate, but it can't modify the entire sentence. I think this
                                  actually stems from my general fear of 'global variables'.

                                  In other words, I'm really still more of a programmer and a "data
                                  bigot" than a linguist, so my conlang (or con-patois, more
                                  accurately) is going to reflect my learned habits.

                                  Ralph
                                  --

                                  Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                                  They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                                • Jeff Sheets
                                  I m surprised nobody has mentioned constituent yet. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constituent_(linguistics) The set of all constituents then, is all phrases
                                  Message 16 of 29 , Jan 25, 2013
                                    I'm surprised nobody has mentioned "constituent" yet.

                                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constituent_(linguistics)

                                    The set of all constituents then, is all phrases and single words in the
                                    language. As the context becomes more known, the set of potential
                                    constituents is reduced to a subset. Note, however:

                                    The box ___ down.

                                    does not offer a constituent in the technical meaning of the word, but I
                                    still think that that is as close as you are likely to get. About all that
                                    fits there is the subset of verbs that function and fit with the adverb
                                    down, though I'm not putting too much thought into that. However, if you
                                    start with:

                                    The box ___.

                                    You know that any of the following will fit:

                                    came in the mail today.
                                    fell down.
                                    is really rather large and ungainly to transport across the distance of 16
                                    miles by foot both uphill an downhill.

                                    The context allows a much broader set of constituents. However, below
                                    constituents are just the parts of speech. The reason why verbs like
                                    "spoke" don't fit in the first sentence is that they lack some features.
                                    Some verbs will be transitive, and thus require a direct object. Some verbs
                                    are ditransitive and require both a direct and indirect object. In this
                                    case, the feature is more that the verbs must describe movement.

                                    The box slides down.
                                    The box fell down.
                                    The box ran down.
                                    The box jumped down.
                                    The box teleported down.
                                    * The box spoke down.
                                    * The box thought down.
                                    * The box befriended down.
                                    x The box ascended down.

                                    That last sentence feels grammatical to me, though obviously it makes no
                                    sense, but the three marked with * are very much syntactically incorrect
                                    for me. The key thing is that slides, fell, ran, jumped, teleported, and
                                    ascended are all verbs which have the feature of describing motion.

                                    One question I have is, how are you defining/describing the grammar and
                                    lexicon of your language? Are you using a formal grammar notation like the
                                    following?

                                    S -> NP VP
                                    NP -> (Det) N
                                    NP -> NP PP
                                    NP -> Adj NP
                                    PP -> Prep NP
                                    VP -> V
                                    VP -> VP Adv
                                    etc.

                                    You may want to identify that adverbs like "down" must modify a verb with
                                    the feature of "motion", and then for every motion verb, add that feature
                                    to a list of features. Other features you should probably have is the
                                    transitivity of the verb.


                                    On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 8:57 PM, Ralph DeCarli <omnivore@...>wrote:

                                    > On Mon, 21 Jan 2013 20:20:30 -0600
                                    > George Corley <gacorley@...> wrote:
                                    >
                                    > >
                                    > > Do you consider the instrument or other prepositional elements
                                    > > inherently part of the verb?
                                    > >
                                    > In this specific case I consider the fork to be a data element of
                                    > the 'eating' predicate, if that makes any sense. I tend to think of
                                    > the language in data modeling terms.
                                    >
                                    > A given prepositional phrase could modify the subject, the object or
                                    > the predicate, but it can't modify the entire sentence. I think this
                                    > actually stems from my general fear of 'global variables'.
                                    >
                                    > In other words, I'm really still more of a programmer and a "data
                                    > bigot" than a linguist, so my conlang (or con-patois, more
                                    > accurately) is going to reflect my learned habits.
                                    >
                                    > Ralph
                                    > --
                                    >
                                    > Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                                    > They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                                    >
                                  • Gary Shannon
                                    This is very interesting. Thanks for posting that link. I ll have to spend some more time looking into that. As for my formal grammar, I m using a
                                    Message 17 of 29 , Jan 25, 2013
                                      This is very interesting. Thanks for posting that link. I'll have to
                                      spend some more time looking into that.

                                      As for my formal grammar, I'm using a parenthetical notation that
                                      allows me to tag/parse a sentence, and then extract both the
                                      production rules and the lexicon directly from a collection of tagged
                                      sentences. Something like this:

                                      Sentence: Bravely the wounded soldier struggled on.

                                      Tagged/parsed:

                                      SNT(RB(Bravely) SNT(ND(DT(the) NJ(JJ(wounded) NN(soldier)))
                                      VBP(VB(struggled) RBP(on))))

                                      Words removed:

                                      SNT(RB SNT(ND(DT NJ(JJ NN)) VBP(VB RBP)))

                                      Rules extracted:

                                      ND(DT NJ)
                                      NJ(JJ NN)
                                      SNT(ND VBP)
                                      SNT(RB SNT)
                                      VBP(VB RBP)

                                      Lexicon extracted:

                                      DT(the)
                                      JJ(wounded)
                                      NN(soldier)
                                      RB(bravely)
                                      RBP(on)
                                      VB(struggled)

                                      Sorted by word:

                                      bravely RB
                                      on RBP
                                      soldier NN
                                      struggled VB
                                      the DT
                                      wounded JJ

                                      And, of course, when the same word shows up with different parts of
                                      speech, all those alternatives would appear in the lexicon. My tags
                                      are borrowed from the Brown Corpus tag set, with several modifications
                                      to fit my specific application. (
                                      http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/ccalas/tagsets/brown.html )

                                      --gary


                                      On Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 11:14 AM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...> wrote:
                                      > I'm surprised nobody has mentioned "constituent" yet.
                                      >
                                      > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constituent_(linguistics)
                                      >
                                      > The set of all constituents then, is all phrases and single words in the
                                      > language. As the context becomes more known, the set of potential
                                      > constituents is reduced to a subset. Note, however:
                                      >
                                      > The box ___ down.
                                      >
                                      > does not offer a constituent in the technical meaning of the word, but I
                                      > still think that that is as close as you are likely to get. About all that
                                      > fits there is the subset of verbs that function and fit with the adverb
                                      > down, though I'm not putting too much thought into that. However, if you
                                      > start with:
                                      >
                                      > The box ___.
                                      >
                                      > You know that any of the following will fit:
                                      >
                                      > came in the mail today.
                                      > fell down.
                                      > is really rather large and ungainly to transport across the distance of 16
                                      > miles by foot both uphill an downhill.
                                      >
                                      > The context allows a much broader set of constituents. However, below
                                      > constituents are just the parts of speech. The reason why verbs like
                                      > "spoke" don't fit in the first sentence is that they lack some features.
                                      > Some verbs will be transitive, and thus require a direct object. Some verbs
                                      > are ditransitive and require both a direct and indirect object. In this
                                      > case, the feature is more that the verbs must describe movement.
                                      >
                                      > The box slides down.
                                      > The box fell down.
                                      > The box ran down.
                                      > The box jumped down.
                                      > The box teleported down.
                                      > * The box spoke down.
                                      > * The box thought down.
                                      > * The box befriended down.
                                      > x The box ascended down.
                                      >
                                      > That last sentence feels grammatical to me, though obviously it makes no
                                      > sense, but the three marked with * are very much syntactically incorrect
                                      > for me. The key thing is that slides, fell, ran, jumped, teleported, and
                                      > ascended are all verbs which have the feature of describing motion.
                                      >
                                      > One question I have is, how are you defining/describing the grammar and
                                      > lexicon of your language? Are you using a formal grammar notation like the
                                      > following?
                                      >
                                      > S -> NP VP
                                      > NP -> (Det) N
                                      > NP -> NP PP
                                      > NP -> Adj NP
                                      > PP -> Prep NP
                                      > VP -> V
                                      > VP -> VP Adv
                                      > etc.
                                      >
                                      > You may want to identify that adverbs like "down" must modify a verb with
                                      > the feature of "motion", and then for every motion verb, add that feature
                                      > to a list of features. Other features you should probably have is the
                                      > transitivity of the verb.
                                      >
                                      >
                                      > On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 8:57 PM, Ralph DeCarli <omnivore@...>wrote:
                                      >
                                      >> On Mon, 21 Jan 2013 20:20:30 -0600
                                      >> George Corley <gacorley@...> wrote:
                                      >>
                                      >> >
                                      >> > Do you consider the instrument or other prepositional elements
                                      >> > inherently part of the verb?
                                      >> >
                                      >> In this specific case I consider the fork to be a data element of
                                      >> the 'eating' predicate, if that makes any sense. I tend to think of
                                      >> the language in data modeling terms.
                                      >>
                                      >> A given prepositional phrase could modify the subject, the object or
                                      >> the predicate, but it can't modify the entire sentence. I think this
                                      >> actually stems from my general fear of 'global variables'.
                                      >>
                                      >> In other words, I'm really still more of a programmer and a "data
                                      >> bigot" than a linguist, so my conlang (or con-patois, more
                                      >> accurately) is going to reflect my learned habits.
                                      >>
                                      >> Ralph
                                      >> --
                                      >>
                                      >> Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                                      >> They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                                      >>
                                    • Jeff Sheets
                                      Interesting choices for the names of categories/tags. I m a bit too used to Phrase Structure Rules to have figured that say RB means adverb, or that JJ means
                                      Message 18 of 29 , Jan 26, 2013
                                        Interesting choices for the names of categories/tags. I'm a bit too used to
                                        Phrase Structure Rules to have figured that say RB means adverb, or that JJ
                                        means adjective. But how you name your tags isn't important so long as the
                                        system is consistent.

                                        Some other links for you. The first is a link to a Coursera online class on
                                        natural language processing, which I think most closely matches your
                                        interest. Might give you an idea of how academics are approaching the
                                        problem today. NLP is without doubt an extremely difficult task for
                                        computers.

                                        https://www.coursera.org/course/nlangp

                                        This next link is a crash course to Phrase Structure Rules. It gives an
                                        idea of how I approach syntax, and also shows just how ambiguous natural
                                        languages can be, and thus how difficult it can be to translate them
                                        automatically with computers.

                                        http://people.umass.edu/afarudi/Phrase%20Structure%20Rules-Kyle%20Johnson.pdf

                                        If you have some money you can afford to spend, less than $50, I highly
                                        recommend the following textbook:

                                        http://www.amazon.com/Grammar-as-Science-Richard-Larson/dp/026251303X

                                        It's a thorough read on how syntax is approached on its own, including how
                                        to deal with features of words and phrases in a grammar (such as verbs of
                                        motion as a feature, locative, dative, accusative in noun phrases, etc.)
                                        and how to deal with movement of constituents in a sentence. Don't let its
                                        cartoony diagrams fool you, either. It gets into the really complex
                                        syntactic structures just as much as it does simplistic ones. Available in
                                        paperback and a kindle version, and used versions at quite a low price.

                                        Now, I wish there was a nice, concise, definitive, and standardized list of
                                        English phrase structure rules... but as far as I know, there is no such
                                        compilation. Primarily because linguists don't necessarily agree on how to
                                        deal with the really complex issues of English syntax.


                                        On Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 2:34 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                                        > This is very interesting. Thanks for posting that link. I'll have to
                                        > spend some more time looking into that.
                                        >
                                        > As for my formal grammar, I'm using a parenthetical notation that
                                        > allows me to tag/parse a sentence, and then extract both the
                                        > production rules and the lexicon directly from a collection of tagged
                                        > sentences. Something like this:
                                        >
                                        > Sentence: Bravely the wounded soldier struggled on.
                                        >
                                        > Tagged/parsed:
                                        >
                                        > SNT(RB(Bravely) SNT(ND(DT(the) NJ(JJ(wounded) NN(soldier)))
                                        > VBP(VB(struggled) RBP(on))))
                                        >
                                        > Words removed:
                                        >
                                        > SNT(RB SNT(ND(DT NJ(JJ NN)) VBP(VB RBP)))
                                        >
                                        > Rules extracted:
                                        >
                                        > ND(DT NJ)
                                        > NJ(JJ NN)
                                        > SNT(ND VBP)
                                        > SNT(RB SNT)
                                        > VBP(VB RBP)
                                        >
                                        > Lexicon extracted:
                                        >
                                        > DT(the)
                                        > JJ(wounded)
                                        > NN(soldier)
                                        > RB(bravely)
                                        > RBP(on)
                                        > VB(struggled)
                                        >
                                        > Sorted by word:
                                        >
                                        > bravely RB
                                        > on RBP
                                        > soldier NN
                                        > struggled VB
                                        > the DT
                                        > wounded JJ
                                        >
                                        > And, of course, when the same word shows up with different parts of
                                        > speech, all those alternatives would appear in the lexicon. My tags
                                        > are borrowed from the Brown Corpus tag set, with several modifications
                                        > to fit my specific application. (
                                        > http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/ccalas/tagsets/brown.html )
                                        >
                                        > --gary
                                        >
                                        >
                                        > On Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 11:14 AM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...>
                                        > wrote:
                                        > > I'm surprised nobody has mentioned "constituent" yet.
                                        > >
                                        > > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constituent_(linguistics)
                                        > >
                                        > > The set of all constituents then, is all phrases and single words in the
                                        > > language. As the context becomes more known, the set of potential
                                        > > constituents is reduced to a subset. Note, however:
                                        > >
                                        > > The box ___ down.
                                        > >
                                        > > does not offer a constituent in the technical meaning of the word, but I
                                        > > still think that that is as close as you are likely to get. About all
                                        > that
                                        > > fits there is the subset of verbs that function and fit with the adverb
                                        > > down, though I'm not putting too much thought into that. However, if you
                                        > > start with:
                                        > >
                                        > > The box ___.
                                        > >
                                        > > You know that any of the following will fit:
                                        > >
                                        > > came in the mail today.
                                        > > fell down.
                                        > > is really rather large and ungainly to transport across the distance of
                                        > 16
                                        > > miles by foot both uphill an downhill.
                                        > >
                                        > > The context allows a much broader set of constituents. However, below
                                        > > constituents are just the parts of speech. The reason why verbs like
                                        > > "spoke" don't fit in the first sentence is that they lack some features.
                                        > > Some verbs will be transitive, and thus require a direct object. Some
                                        > verbs
                                        > > are ditransitive and require both a direct and indirect object. In this
                                        > > case, the feature is more that the verbs must describe movement.
                                        > >
                                        > > The box slides down.
                                        > > The box fell down.
                                        > > The box ran down.
                                        > > The box jumped down.
                                        > > The box teleported down.
                                        > > * The box spoke down.
                                        > > * The box thought down.
                                        > > * The box befriended down.
                                        > > x The box ascended down.
                                        > >
                                        > > That last sentence feels grammatical to me, though obviously it makes no
                                        > > sense, but the three marked with * are very much syntactically incorrect
                                        > > for me. The key thing is that slides, fell, ran, jumped, teleported, and
                                        > > ascended are all verbs which have the feature of describing motion.
                                        > >
                                        > > One question I have is, how are you defining/describing the grammar and
                                        > > lexicon of your language? Are you using a formal grammar notation like
                                        > the
                                        > > following?
                                        > >
                                        > > S -> NP VP
                                        > > NP -> (Det) N
                                        > > NP -> NP PP
                                        > > NP -> Adj NP
                                        > > PP -> Prep NP
                                        > > VP -> V
                                        > > VP -> VP Adv
                                        > > etc.
                                        > >
                                        > > You may want to identify that adverbs like "down" must modify a verb with
                                        > > the feature of "motion", and then for every motion verb, add that feature
                                        > > to a list of features. Other features you should probably have is the
                                        > > transitivity of the verb.
                                        > >
                                        > >
                                        > > On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 8:57 PM, Ralph DeCarli <omnivore@...
                                        > >wrote:
                                        > >
                                        > >> On Mon, 21 Jan 2013 20:20:30 -0600
                                        > >> George Corley <gacorley@...> wrote:
                                        > >>
                                        > >> >
                                        > >> > Do you consider the instrument or other prepositional elements
                                        > >> > inherently part of the verb?
                                        > >> >
                                        > >> In this specific case I consider the fork to be a data element of
                                        > >> the 'eating' predicate, if that makes any sense. I tend to think of
                                        > >> the language in data modeling terms.
                                        > >>
                                        > >> A given prepositional phrase could modify the subject, the object or
                                        > >> the predicate, but it can't modify the entire sentence. I think this
                                        > >> actually stems from my general fear of 'global variables'.
                                        > >>
                                        > >> In other words, I'm really still more of a programmer and a "data
                                        > >> bigot" than a linguist, so my conlang (or con-patois, more
                                        > >> accurately) is going to reflect my learned habits.
                                        > >>
                                        > >> Ralph
                                        > >> --
                                        > >>
                                        > >> Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                                        > >> They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                                        > >>
                                        >
                                      • Gary Shannon
                                        Interesting links. Thank you. I ordered a used copy of that book (Grammar as Science). Are you familiar with Link Grammars? I wrote a parser based on a link
                                        Message 19 of 29 , Jan 26, 2013
                                          Interesting links. Thank you. I ordered a used copy of that book
                                          (Grammar as Science).

                                          Are you familiar with Link Grammars? I wrote a parser based on a link
                                          grammar several years ago. Here's a good introduction:
                                          http://www.cs.cmu.edu/afs/cs.cmu.edu/project/link/pub/www/papers/ps/LG-IWPT93.pdf

                                          --gary

                                          On Sat, Jan 26, 2013 at 12:24 PM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...> wrote:
                                          > Interesting choices for the names of categories/tags. I'm a bit too used to
                                          > Phrase Structure Rules to have figured that say RB means adverb, or that JJ
                                          > means adjective. But how you name your tags isn't important so long as the
                                          > system is consistent.
                                          >
                                          > Some other links for you. The first is a link to a Coursera online class on
                                          > natural language processing, which I think most closely matches your
                                          > interest. Might give you an idea of how academics are approaching the
                                          > problem today. NLP is without doubt an extremely difficult task for
                                          > computers.
                                          >
                                          > https://www.coursera.org/course/nlangp
                                          >
                                          > This next link is a crash course to Phrase Structure Rules. It gives an
                                          > idea of how I approach syntax, and also shows just how ambiguous natural
                                          > languages can be, and thus how difficult it can be to translate them
                                          > automatically with computers.
                                          >
                                          > http://people.umass.edu/afarudi/Phrase%20Structure%20Rules-Kyle%20Johnson.pdf
                                          >
                                          > If you have some money you can afford to spend, less than $50, I highly
                                          > recommend the following textbook:
                                          >
                                          > http://www.amazon.com/Grammar-as-Science-Richard-Larson/dp/026251303X
                                          >
                                          > It's a thorough read on how syntax is approached on its own, including how
                                          > to deal with features of words and phrases in a grammar (such as verbs of
                                          > motion as a feature, locative, dative, accusative in noun phrases, etc.)
                                          > and how to deal with movement of constituents in a sentence. Don't let its
                                          > cartoony diagrams fool you, either. It gets into the really complex
                                          > syntactic structures just as much as it does simplistic ones. Available in
                                          > paperback and a kindle version, and used versions at quite a low price.
                                          >
                                          > Now, I wish there was a nice, concise, definitive, and standardized list of
                                          > English phrase structure rules... but as far as I know, there is no such
                                          > compilation. Primarily because linguists don't necessarily agree on how to
                                          > deal with the really complex issues of English syntax.
                                          >
                                          >
                                          > On Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 2:34 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
                                          >
                                          >> This is very interesting. Thanks for posting that link. I'll have to
                                          >> spend some more time looking into that.
                                          >>
                                          >> As for my formal grammar, I'm using a parenthetical notation that
                                          >> allows me to tag/parse a sentence, and then extract both the
                                          >> production rules and the lexicon directly from a collection of tagged
                                          >> sentences. Something like this:
                                          >>
                                          >> Sentence: Bravely the wounded soldier struggled on.
                                          >>
                                          >> Tagged/parsed:
                                          >>
                                          >> SNT(RB(Bravely) SNT(ND(DT(the) NJ(JJ(wounded) NN(soldier)))
                                          >> VBP(VB(struggled) RBP(on))))
                                          >>
                                          >> Words removed:
                                          >>
                                          >> SNT(RB SNT(ND(DT NJ(JJ NN)) VBP(VB RBP)))
                                          >>
                                          >> Rules extracted:
                                          >>
                                          >> ND(DT NJ)
                                          >> NJ(JJ NN)
                                          >> SNT(ND VBP)
                                          >> SNT(RB SNT)
                                          >> VBP(VB RBP)
                                          >>
                                          >> Lexicon extracted:
                                          >>
                                          >> DT(the)
                                          >> JJ(wounded)
                                          >> NN(soldier)
                                          >> RB(bravely)
                                          >> RBP(on)
                                          >> VB(struggled)
                                          >>
                                          >> Sorted by word:
                                          >>
                                          >> bravely RB
                                          >> on RBP
                                          >> soldier NN
                                          >> struggled VB
                                          >> the DT
                                          >> wounded JJ
                                          >>
                                          >> And, of course, when the same word shows up with different parts of
                                          >> speech, all those alternatives would appear in the lexicon. My tags
                                          >> are borrowed from the Brown Corpus tag set, with several modifications
                                          >> to fit my specific application. (
                                          >> http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/ccalas/tagsets/brown.html )
                                          >>
                                          >> --gary
                                          >>
                                          >>
                                          >> On Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 11:14 AM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...>
                                          >> wrote:
                                          >> > I'm surprised nobody has mentioned "constituent" yet.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constituent_(linguistics)
                                          >> >
                                          >> > The set of all constituents then, is all phrases and single words in the
                                          >> > language. As the context becomes more known, the set of potential
                                          >> > constituents is reduced to a subset. Note, however:
                                          >> >
                                          >> > The box ___ down.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > does not offer a constituent in the technical meaning of the word, but I
                                          >> > still think that that is as close as you are likely to get. About all
                                          >> that
                                          >> > fits there is the subset of verbs that function and fit with the adverb
                                          >> > down, though I'm not putting too much thought into that. However, if you
                                          >> > start with:
                                          >> >
                                          >> > The box ___.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > You know that any of the following will fit:
                                          >> >
                                          >> > came in the mail today.
                                          >> > fell down.
                                          >> > is really rather large and ungainly to transport across the distance of
                                          >> 16
                                          >> > miles by foot both uphill an downhill.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > The context allows a much broader set of constituents. However, below
                                          >> > constituents are just the parts of speech. The reason why verbs like
                                          >> > "spoke" don't fit in the first sentence is that they lack some features.
                                          >> > Some verbs will be transitive, and thus require a direct object. Some
                                          >> verbs
                                          >> > are ditransitive and require both a direct and indirect object. In this
                                          >> > case, the feature is more that the verbs must describe movement.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > The box slides down.
                                          >> > The box fell down.
                                          >> > The box ran down.
                                          >> > The box jumped down.
                                          >> > The box teleported down.
                                          >> > * The box spoke down.
                                          >> > * The box thought down.
                                          >> > * The box befriended down.
                                          >> > x The box ascended down.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > That last sentence feels grammatical to me, though obviously it makes no
                                          >> > sense, but the three marked with * are very much syntactically incorrect
                                          >> > for me. The key thing is that slides, fell, ran, jumped, teleported, and
                                          >> > ascended are all verbs which have the feature of describing motion.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > One question I have is, how are you defining/describing the grammar and
                                          >> > lexicon of your language? Are you using a formal grammar notation like
                                          >> the
                                          >> > following?
                                          >> >
                                          >> > S -> NP VP
                                          >> > NP -> (Det) N
                                          >> > NP -> NP PP
                                          >> > NP -> Adj NP
                                          >> > PP -> Prep NP
                                          >> > VP -> V
                                          >> > VP -> VP Adv
                                          >> > etc.
                                          >> >
                                          >> > You may want to identify that adverbs like "down" must modify a verb with
                                          >> > the feature of "motion", and then for every motion verb, add that feature
                                          >> > to a list of features. Other features you should probably have is the
                                          >> > transitivity of the verb.
                                          >> >
                                          >> >
                                          >> > On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 8:57 PM, Ralph DeCarli <omnivore@...
                                          >> >wrote:
                                          >> >
                                          >> >> On Mon, 21 Jan 2013 20:20:30 -0600
                                          >> >> George Corley <gacorley@...> wrote:
                                          >> >>
                                          >> >> >
                                          >> >> > Do you consider the instrument or other prepositional elements
                                          >> >> > inherently part of the verb?
                                          >> >> >
                                          >> >> In this specific case I consider the fork to be a data element of
                                          >> >> the 'eating' predicate, if that makes any sense. I tend to think of
                                          >> >> the language in data modeling terms.
                                          >> >>
                                          >> >> A given prepositional phrase could modify the subject, the object or
                                          >> >> the predicate, but it can't modify the entire sentence. I think this
                                          >> >> actually stems from my general fear of 'global variables'.
                                          >> >>
                                          >> >> In other words, I'm really still more of a programmer and a "data
                                          >> >> bigot" than a linguist, so my conlang (or con-patois, more
                                          >> >> accurately) is going to reflect my learned habits.
                                          >> >>
                                          >> >> Ralph
                                          >> >> --
                                          >> >>
                                          >> >> Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                                          >> >> They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                                          >> >>
                                          >>
                                        • Jeff Sheets
                                          I have never seen Link Grammars before. I ve generally approached natural and constructed languages from the linguistics side of things. It s definitely an
                                          Message 20 of 29 , Jan 27, 2013
                                            I have never seen Link Grammars before. I've generally approached natural
                                            and constructed languages from the linguistics side of things. It's
                                            definitely an interesting way of going about parsing, and it definitely has
                                            a more computer science-y feel to it than I'm used to (in languages). Seems
                                            to work quite well, but I'm inherently wary of anything which doesn't
                                            explicitly state the rules of grammar separately from the lexicon. I'm
                                            biased, I suppose, but I'd prefer the grammar stand separate for my own
                                            conlanging. My reasoning is simple: linguists are fairly certain that
                                            grammar and lexicon are separate in the brain. Also, if the grammar is
                                            separate, the number of grammatical rules will be minimized, leaving only
                                            context clues in the lexicon.


                                            On Sat, Jan 26, 2013 at 3:37 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                                            > Interesting links. Thank you. I ordered a used copy of that book
                                            > (Grammar as Science).
                                            >
                                            > Are you familiar with Link Grammars? I wrote a parser based on a link
                                            > grammar several years ago. Here's a good introduction:
                                            >
                                            > http://www.cs.cmu.edu/afs/cs.cmu.edu/project/link/pub/www/papers/ps/LG-IWPT93.pdf
                                            >
                                            > --gary
                                            >
                                            > On Sat, Jan 26, 2013 at 12:24 PM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...>
                                            > wrote:
                                            > > Interesting choices for the names of categories/tags. I'm a bit too used
                                            > to
                                            > > Phrase Structure Rules to have figured that say RB means adverb, or that
                                            > JJ
                                            > > means adjective. But how you name your tags isn't important so long as
                                            > the
                                            > > system is consistent.
                                            > >
                                            > > Some other links for you. The first is a link to a Coursera online class
                                            > on
                                            > > natural language processing, which I think most closely matches your
                                            > > interest. Might give you an idea of how academics are approaching the
                                            > > problem today. NLP is without doubt an extremely difficult task for
                                            > > computers.
                                            > >
                                            > > https://www.coursera.org/course/nlangp
                                            > >
                                            > > This next link is a crash course to Phrase Structure Rules. It gives an
                                            > > idea of how I approach syntax, and also shows just how ambiguous natural
                                            > > languages can be, and thus how difficult it can be to translate them
                                            > > automatically with computers.
                                            > >
                                            > >
                                            > http://people.umass.edu/afarudi/Phrase%20Structure%20Rules-Kyle%20Johnson.pdf
                                            > >
                                            > > If you have some money you can afford to spend, less than $50, I highly
                                            > > recommend the following textbook:
                                            > >
                                            > > http://www.amazon.com/Grammar-as-Science-Richard-Larson/dp/026251303X
                                            > >
                                            > > It's a thorough read on how syntax is approached on its own, including
                                            > how
                                            > > to deal with features of words and phrases in a grammar (such as verbs of
                                            > > motion as a feature, locative, dative, accusative in noun phrases, etc.)
                                            > > and how to deal with movement of constituents in a sentence. Don't let
                                            > its
                                            > > cartoony diagrams fool you, either. It gets into the really complex
                                            > > syntactic structures just as much as it does simplistic ones. Available
                                            > in
                                            > > paperback and a kindle version, and used versions at quite a low price.
                                            > >
                                            > > Now, I wish there was a nice, concise, definitive, and standardized list
                                            > of
                                            > > English phrase structure rules... but as far as I know, there is no such
                                            > > compilation. Primarily because linguists don't necessarily agree on how
                                            > to
                                            > > deal with the really complex issues of English syntax.
                                            > >
                                            > >
                                            > > On Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 2:34 PM, Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:
                                            > >
                                            > >> This is very interesting. Thanks for posting that link. I'll have to
                                            > >> spend some more time looking into that.
                                            > >>
                                            > >> As for my formal grammar, I'm using a parenthetical notation that
                                            > >> allows me to tag/parse a sentence, and then extract both the
                                            > >> production rules and the lexicon directly from a collection of tagged
                                            > >> sentences. Something like this:
                                            > >>
                                            > >> Sentence: Bravely the wounded soldier struggled on.
                                            > >>
                                            > >> Tagged/parsed:
                                            > >>
                                            > >> SNT(RB(Bravely) SNT(ND(DT(the) NJ(JJ(wounded) NN(soldier)))
                                            > >> VBP(VB(struggled) RBP(on))))
                                            > >>
                                            > >> Words removed:
                                            > >>
                                            > >> SNT(RB SNT(ND(DT NJ(JJ NN)) VBP(VB RBP)))
                                            > >>
                                            > >> Rules extracted:
                                            > >>
                                            > >> ND(DT NJ)
                                            > >> NJ(JJ NN)
                                            > >> SNT(ND VBP)
                                            > >> SNT(RB SNT)
                                            > >> VBP(VB RBP)
                                            > >>
                                            > >> Lexicon extracted:
                                            > >>
                                            > >> DT(the)
                                            > >> JJ(wounded)
                                            > >> NN(soldier)
                                            > >> RB(bravely)
                                            > >> RBP(on)
                                            > >> VB(struggled)
                                            > >>
                                            > >> Sorted by word:
                                            > >>
                                            > >> bravely RB
                                            > >> on RBP
                                            > >> soldier NN
                                            > >> struggled VB
                                            > >> the DT
                                            > >> wounded JJ
                                            > >>
                                            > >> And, of course, when the same word shows up with different parts of
                                            > >> speech, all those alternatives would appear in the lexicon. My tags
                                            > >> are borrowed from the Brown Corpus tag set, with several modifications
                                            > >> to fit my specific application. (
                                            > >> http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/ccalas/tagsets/brown.html )
                                            > >>
                                            > >> --gary
                                            > >>
                                            > >>
                                            > >> On Fri, Jan 25, 2013 at 11:14 AM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...>
                                            > >> wrote:
                                            > >> > I'm surprised nobody has mentioned "constituent" yet.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constituent_(linguistics)
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > The set of all constituents then, is all phrases and single words in
                                            > the
                                            > >> > language. As the context becomes more known, the set of potential
                                            > >> > constituents is reduced to a subset. Note, however:
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > The box ___ down.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > does not offer a constituent in the technical meaning of the word,
                                            > but I
                                            > >> > still think that that is as close as you are likely to get. About all
                                            > >> that
                                            > >> > fits there is the subset of verbs that function and fit with the
                                            > adverb
                                            > >> > down, though I'm not putting too much thought into that. However, if
                                            > you
                                            > >> > start with:
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > The box ___.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > You know that any of the following will fit:
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > came in the mail today.
                                            > >> > fell down.
                                            > >> > is really rather large and ungainly to transport across the distance
                                            > of
                                            > >> 16
                                            > >> > miles by foot both uphill an downhill.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > The context allows a much broader set of constituents. However, below
                                            > >> > constituents are just the parts of speech. The reason why verbs like
                                            > >> > "spoke" don't fit in the first sentence is that they lack some
                                            > features.
                                            > >> > Some verbs will be transitive, and thus require a direct object. Some
                                            > >> verbs
                                            > >> > are ditransitive and require both a direct and indirect object. In
                                            > this
                                            > >> > case, the feature is more that the verbs must describe movement.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > The box slides down.
                                            > >> > The box fell down.
                                            > >> > The box ran down.
                                            > >> > The box jumped down.
                                            > >> > The box teleported down.
                                            > >> > * The box spoke down.
                                            > >> > * The box thought down.
                                            > >> > * The box befriended down.
                                            > >> > x The box ascended down.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > That last sentence feels grammatical to me, though obviously it makes
                                            > no
                                            > >> > sense, but the three marked with * are very much syntactically
                                            > incorrect
                                            > >> > for me. The key thing is that slides, fell, ran, jumped, teleported,
                                            > and
                                            > >> > ascended are all verbs which have the feature of describing motion.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > One question I have is, how are you defining/describing the grammar
                                            > and
                                            > >> > lexicon of your language? Are you using a formal grammar notation like
                                            > >> the
                                            > >> > following?
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > S -> NP VP
                                            > >> > NP -> (Det) N
                                            > >> > NP -> NP PP
                                            > >> > NP -> Adj NP
                                            > >> > PP -> Prep NP
                                            > >> > VP -> V
                                            > >> > VP -> VP Adv
                                            > >> > etc.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > You may want to identify that adverbs like "down" must modify a verb
                                            > with
                                            > >> > the feature of "motion", and then for every motion verb, add that
                                            > feature
                                            > >> > to a list of features. Other features you should probably have is the
                                            > >> > transitivity of the verb.
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> > On Tue, Jan 22, 2013 at 8:57 PM, Ralph DeCarli <
                                            > omnivore@...
                                            > >> >wrote:
                                            > >> >
                                            > >> >> On Mon, 21 Jan 2013 20:20:30 -0600
                                            > >> >> George Corley <gacorley@...> wrote:
                                            > >> >>
                                            > >> >> >
                                            > >> >> > Do you consider the instrument or other prepositional elements
                                            > >> >> > inherently part of the verb?
                                            > >> >> >
                                            > >> >> In this specific case I consider the fork to be a data element of
                                            > >> >> the 'eating' predicate, if that makes any sense. I tend to think of
                                            > >> >> the language in data modeling terms.
                                            > >> >>
                                            > >> >> A given prepositional phrase could modify the subject, the object or
                                            > >> >> the predicate, but it can't modify the entire sentence. I think this
                                            > >> >> actually stems from my general fear of 'global variables'.
                                            > >> >>
                                            > >> >> In other words, I'm really still more of a programmer and a "data
                                            > >> >> bigot" than a linguist, so my conlang (or con-patois, more
                                            > >> >> accurately) is going to reflect my learned habits.
                                            > >> >>
                                            > >> >> Ralph
                                            > >> >> --
                                            > >> >>
                                            > >> >> Have you heard of the new post-neo-modern art style?
                                            > >> >> They haven't decided what it looks like yet.
                                            > >> >>
                                            > >>
                                            >
                                          • Gary Shannon
                                            I agree for conlang purposes. Link grammars are kind of fun to play with, though. They do have some problems, especially using conjunctions. A sentence like
                                            Message 21 of 29 , Jan 27, 2013
                                              I agree for conlang purposes. Link grammars are kind of fun to play
                                              with, though. They do have some problems, especially using
                                              conjunctions. A sentence like "He stole the tarts and ran away." can't
                                              be parsed with their link grammar because "ran" doesn't have a subject
                                              that can be linked without crossing lines. So they have to make a
                                              special "cheat" pass to resolve those kinds of problems. That makes it
                                              less than elegant as far as I'm concerned.

                                              --gary

                                              On Sun, Jan 27, 2013 at 1:59 PM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...> wrote:
                                              > I have never seen Link Grammars before. I've generally approached natural
                                              > and constructed languages from the linguistics side of things. It's
                                              > definitely an interesting way of going about parsing, and it definitely has
                                              > a more computer science-y feel to it than I'm used to (in languages). Seems
                                              > to work quite well, but I'm inherently wary of anything which doesn't
                                              > explicitly state the rules of grammar separately from the lexicon. I'm
                                              > biased, I suppose, but I'd prefer the grammar stand separate for my own
                                              > conlanging. My reasoning is simple: linguists are fairly certain that
                                              > grammar and lexicon are separate in the brain. Also, if the grammar is
                                              > separate, the number of grammatical rules will be minimized, leaving only
                                              > context clues in the lexicon.
                                            • Leonardo Castro
                                              How old is the link grammar concept? My conlang works this way but I wasn t aware this already existed as a concept. Até mais! Leonardo
                                              Message 22 of 29 , Jan 28, 2013
                                                How old is the "link grammar" concept? My conlang works this way but I
                                                wasn't aware this already existed as a concept.

                                                Até mais!

                                                Leonardo


                                                2013/1/27 Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...>:
                                                > I agree for conlang purposes. Link grammars are kind of fun to play
                                                > with, though. They do have some problems, especially using
                                                > conjunctions. A sentence like "He stole the tarts and ran away." can't
                                                > be parsed with their link grammar because "ran" doesn't have a subject
                                                > that can be linked without crossing lines. So they have to make a
                                                > special "cheat" pass to resolve those kinds of problems. That makes it
                                                > less than elegant as far as I'm concerned.
                                                >
                                                > --gary
                                                >
                                                > On Sun, Jan 27, 2013 at 1:59 PM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...> wrote:
                                                >> I have never seen Link Grammars before. I've generally approached natural
                                                >> and constructed languages from the linguistics side of things. It's
                                                >> definitely an interesting way of going about parsing, and it definitely has
                                                >> a more computer science-y feel to it than I'm used to (in languages). Seems
                                                >> to work quite well, but I'm inherently wary of anything which doesn't
                                                >> explicitly state the rules of grammar separately from the lexicon. I'm
                                                >> biased, I suppose, but I'd prefer the grammar stand separate for my own
                                                >> conlanging. My reasoning is simple: linguists are fairly certain that
                                                >> grammar and lexicon are separate in the brain. Also, if the grammar is
                                                >> separate, the number of grammatical rules will be minimized, leaving only
                                                >> context clues in the lexicon.
                                              • And Rosta
                                                ... I first encountered Link Grammar in the 90s. It makes used of Dependency Grammar, whose origins go back to the Middle Ages (see a study by Michael
                                                Message 23 of 29 , Jan 28, 2013
                                                  On Jan 28, 2013 10:19 AM, "Leonardo Castro" <leolucas1980@...> wrote:
                                                  >
                                                  > How old is the "link grammar" concept? My conlang works this way but I
                                                  > wasn't aware this already existed as a concept.

                                                  I first encountered Link Grammar in the 90s. It makes used of Dependency
                                                  Grammar, whose origins go back to the Middle Ages (see a study by Michael
                                                  Covington on this), and Lexicalism, which dates back to a famous work by
                                                  Chomsky from the early 70s whose title my ageing brain is not recalling for
                                                  me. (Ah, I remember now: Remarks on nominalization.)

                                                  > 2013/1/27 Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...>:
                                                  > > I agree for conlang purposes. Link grammars are kind of fun to play
                                                  > > with, though. They do have some problems, especially using
                                                  > > conjunctions. A sentence like "He stole the tarts and ran away." can't
                                                  > > be parsed with their link grammar because "ran" doesn't have a subject
                                                  > > that can be linked without crossing lines. So they have to make a
                                                  > > special "cheat" pass to resolve those kinds of problems. That makes it
                                                  > > less than elegant as far as I'm concerned.

                                                  I don't know that that's a problem with the Link Grammar approach per se.
                                                  Rather the problem is with a parse that will build structure consisting
                                                  only of nodes uniquely expressed by a phonological word. If "he" is subject
                                                  of a word whose complement is "stole the cakes and ran away", the crossing
                                                  links go away.

                                                  > > On Sun, Jan 27, 2013 at 1:59 PM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...>
                                                  wrote:
                                                  > >> I have never seen Link Grammars before. I've generally approached
                                                  natural
                                                  > >> and constructed languages from the linguistics side of things. It's
                                                  > >> definitely an interesting way of going about parsing, and it
                                                  definitely has
                                                  > >> a more computer science-y feel to it than I'm used to (in languages).
                                                  Seems
                                                  > >> to work quite well, but I'm inherently wary of anything which doesn't
                                                  > >> explicitly state the rules of grammar separately from the lexicon. I'm
                                                  > >> biased, I suppose, but I'd prefer the grammar stand separate for my own
                                                  > >> conlanging. My reasoning is simple: linguists are fairly certain that
                                                  > >> grammar and lexicon are separate in the brain. Also, if the grammar is
                                                  > >> separate, the number of grammatical rules will be minimized, leaving
                                                  only
                                                  > >> context clues in the lexicon.

                                                  Even if we accept your reasoning, this doesn't entail a rejection of
                                                  lexicalism, because the part of the lexical entry specifying valency
                                                  (subcategorization) might still be located in the grammar zone of the brain.

                                                  It's not at all true that linguists reject lexicalism. Indeed, most
                                                  cognitive linguists probably accept it; I'm thinking particularly of
                                                  usage-based theories.

                                                  --And.
                                                • Jeff Sheets
                                                  ... You re correct. I should ve added some before linguists are fairly certain... Ultimately, I believe it s useful to distinguish between syntactic rules
                                                  Message 24 of 29 , Jan 28, 2013
                                                    On Mon, Jan 28, 2013 at 10:21 AM, And Rosta <and.rosta@...> wrote:

                                                    > > > On Sun, Jan 27, 2013 at 1:59 PM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...>
                                                    > wrote:
                                                    > > >> I have never seen Link Grammars before. I've generally approached
                                                    > natural
                                                    > > >> and constructed languages from the linguistics side of things. It's
                                                    > > >> definitely an interesting way of going about parsing, and it
                                                    > definitely has
                                                    > > >> a more computer science-y feel to it than I'm used to (in languages).
                                                    > Seems
                                                    > > >> to work quite well, but I'm inherently wary of anything which doesn't
                                                    > > >> explicitly state the rules of grammar separately from the lexicon. I'm
                                                    > > >> biased, I suppose, but I'd prefer the grammar stand separate for my
                                                    > own
                                                    > > >> conlanging. My reasoning is simple: linguists are fairly certain that
                                                    > > >> grammar and lexicon are separate in the brain. Also, if the grammar is
                                                    > > >> separate, the number of grammatical rules will be minimized, leaving
                                                    > only
                                                    > > >> context clues in the lexicon.
                                                    >
                                                    > Even if we accept your reasoning, this doesn't entail a rejection of
                                                    > lexicalism, because the part of the lexical entry specifying valency
                                                    > (subcategorization) might still be located in the grammar zone of the
                                                    > brain.
                                                    >
                                                    > It's not at all true that linguists reject lexicalism. Indeed, most
                                                    > cognitive linguists probably accept it; I'm thinking particularly of
                                                    > usage-based theories.
                                                    >
                                                    > --And.
                                                    >

                                                    You're correct. I should've added "some" before "linguists are fairly
                                                    certain..." Ultimately, I believe it's useful to distinguish between
                                                    syntactic rules and lexical features, since doing so will tend to greatly
                                                    reduce the number of times a particular syntactic rule needs to be stated.
                                                    Perhaps the brain stores the rule in some fashion multiple times for each
                                                    lexeme that uses it, but I don't feel that an extremely complex, only
                                                    partially understood, microscopic parallel processing device such as the
                                                    brain should be my sole guide to studying language. Especially when a
                                                    simpler grammar of syntactic rules can account for what we see in produced
                                                    speech.

                                                    Then again, this is veering quite a bit off of the original topic, namely,
                                                    what to call a section of a sentence that is missing, and perhaps, how to
                                                    decide what can possibly be in that position. Constituent is the closest I
                                                    can think of to that concept, though it is loaded with additional notions
                                                    that don't quite match what Gary is looking for. Perhaps "node" may make
                                                    more sense, but that presupposes looking at the structure of a sentence as
                                                    a tree, and in Gary's context of programming, doesn't seem particularly
                                                    enlightening to his future-self audience. Maybe "potential node" or
                                                    "potential set"? Also, good luck, Gary. A quick perusal of Google Translate
                                                    (and other automated translator) results will indicate that the state of
                                                    the art of computer translation is still sketchy at best. Here's hoping you
                                                    make a breakthrough!
                                                  • Gary Shannon
                                                    ... I doubt I ll make any breakthroughs. I m still aiming at a conlang into which I can auto-translate from English. Since I can engineer the language to fit
                                                    Message 25 of 29 , Jan 28, 2013
                                                      On Mon, Jan 28, 2013 at 8:46 AM, Jeff Sheets <sheets.jeff@...> wrote:

                                                      > ...Also, good luck, Gary. A quick perusal of Google Translate
                                                      > (and other automated translator) results will indicate that the state of
                                                      > the art of computer translation is still sketchy at best. Here's hoping you
                                                      > make a breakthrough!

                                                      I doubt I'll make any breakthroughs. I'm still aiming at a conlang
                                                      into which I can auto-translate from English. Since I can engineer the
                                                      language to fit my machine translation needs it makes the problem a
                                                      LOT simpler than machine translations into languages that I can't just
                                                      change to make them easier for the computer. For one thing, my conlang
                                                      will, by design, have NO idioms. Every statement in the conlang will
                                                      be literal.

                                                      --gary
                                                    • Leonardo Castro
                                                      ... Interesting! I think I was first indirectly exposed to this concept by means of Lojban. Then, in my conlang, I decided that each verb could have only 2
                                                      Message 26 of 29 , Jan 28, 2013
                                                        2013/1/28 And Rosta <and.rosta@...>:
                                                        > On Jan 28, 2013 10:19 AM, "Leonardo Castro" <leolucas1980@...> wrote:
                                                        >>
                                                        >> How old is the "link grammar" concept? My conlang works this way but I
                                                        >> wasn't aware this already existed as a concept.
                                                        >
                                                        > I first encountered Link Grammar in the 90s. It makes used of Dependency
                                                        > Grammar, whose origins go back to the Middle Ages (see a study by Michael
                                                        > Covington on this), and Lexicalism, which dates back to a famous work by
                                                        > Chomsky from the early 70s whose title my ageing brain is not recalling for
                                                        > me. (Ah, I remember now: Remarks on nominalization.)

                                                        Interesting!

                                                        I think I was first indirectly exposed to this concept by means of
                                                        Lojban. Then, in my conlang, I decided that each verb could have only
                                                        2 slots ("subject" and "object"). The main goal is to have the passive
                                                        voice of each verb unambiguously.

                                                        In the book "Inferências Lexicais e Interpretação de Redes de
                                                        Predicados" (the second author of this book was my professor), they
                                                        apply the Graph Theory (from Maths) to predicates, considering all
                                                        language relations as "directed graphs". They even define figures of
                                                        speech by means of mathematics-like functions.
                                                      • Ralph DeCarli
                                                        You might find Apertium helpful in your term search. http://wiki.apertium.org/wiki/Main_Page The Apertium translation system uses an intermediate wrapper
                                                        Message 27 of 29 , Jan 28, 2013
                                                          You might find Apertium helpful in your term search.

                                                          http://wiki.apertium.org/wiki/Main_Page

                                                          The Apertium translation system uses an intermediate 'wrapper' layer
                                                          for translating between romance languages. Their descriptions of the
                                                          meta-grammatical categories might help.

                                                          Their wrapper layer was one of the sources of inspiration for my
                                                          conlang. They have a similar, yet different wrapper for every language pair
                                                          and the classic way to avoid the proliferation wrappers is to create
                                                          a single intermediate format that can comprehend all languages.

                                                          I know that's not possible, but it was an influence.

                                                          Ralph
                                                          ------------
                                                          On Mon, 28 Jan 2013 09:03:55 -0800
                                                          Gary Shannon <fiziwig@...> wrote:

                                                          > On Mon, Jan 28, 2013 at 8:46 AM, Jeff Sheets
                                                          > <sheets.jeff@...> wrote:
                                                          >
                                                          > > ...Also, good luck, Gary. A quick perusal of Google Translate
                                                          > > (and other automated translator) results will indicate that the
                                                          > > state of the art of computer translation is still sketchy at
                                                          > > best. Here's hoping you make a breakthrough!
                                                          >
                                                          > I doubt I'll make any breakthroughs. I'm still aiming at a conlang
                                                          > into which I can auto-translate from English. Since I can engineer
                                                          > the language to fit my machine translation needs it makes the
                                                          > problem a LOT simpler than machine translations into languages
                                                          > that I can't just change to make them easier for the computer. For
                                                          > one thing, my conlang will, by design, have NO idioms. Every
                                                          > statement in the conlang will be literal.
                                                          >
                                                          > --gary

                                                          --

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