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Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The (futile?) quest for an automatic paraphrase engine

by kiat (Vicar)
on May 17, 2004 at 08:27 UTC ( #353890=note: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

in reply to Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: The (futile?) quest for an automatic paraphrase engine
in thread The (futile?) quest for an automatic paraphrase engine

Humans can use lots of contextual cues to disambiguate the particular meaning of a sentence. For instance, if "John saw the man with a telescope" were to appear in the context of a photograph with a man holding a telescope and looking at the distance, it would easy for humans to associate John with the man holding the telescope.

Programs and machines aren't that good at reading that sort of cues.

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Re: The (futile?) quest for an automatic paraphrase engine
by BrowserUk (Pope) on May 17, 2004 at 09:20 UTC

    It would be equally valid to assume that John was not in the photograph.

    The man in the picture is the man with the telescope that John saw.

    Of course, if the only context is a photograph, then a perl based text manipulating program won't have access to that context, so saying that the program failed to disambiguate the text is wrong.

    Another human being who cannot see the photograph would be similarly unable to perform the impossible.

    Examine what is said, not who speaks.
    "Efficiency is intelligent laziness." -David Dunham
    "Think for yourself!" - Abigail

      Interestingly, I did a small test on Microsoft Grammatic Check a few years ago to see how it works. I gave the following two sentences:

      (1) He drives to work yesterday.

      (2) Mary was attacked by a dog.

      No complaints about (1) but an advisory to change (2) to the active.

      I didn't have to do any more test :)

      I don't have the latest Microsoft Word now. Otherwise, I'll be curious to see if things have changed.

        It's all an evil conspiracy to keep English class in public school. I say "good!" for defective grammar checkers, all the sooner than can be removed. Maybe we can teach kids to do Algebra without graphing calculators too...

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