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2005 Milner Lecture

Design of a computational linguistics platform


GĂ©rard Huet, Institut National de Recherche en Informatique et en Automatique (INRIA)


Linguistics modelling by computer is a tough challenge. Several complex structures interact, for phonology, morphology, syntax and ultimately semantics. Relevant tools from automata theory, lambda calculus and denotational semantics as well as constraint satisfaction algorithms give a logical handle on the design of these interfaces, but statistical methods must be used to curb overgeneration. The trade-off between linguistic assistants using the expertise of a human and fully automated corpus analysers is similar to the one between proof assistants and automated theorem provers. The lecture will present recent work on the design of a computational linguistics platform for the Sanskrit language based on functional programming to illustrate these issues.

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