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Inference in Natural Language Processing (talk recording available)

Dr. Jerry Hobbs

Tuesday, October 21, 2014, 01:00pm - 02:00pm

University of Southern California, Information Sciences Institute

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We understand natural language discourse so well because we know so much. We are able to draw the inferences necessary to tie the various parts of a discourse together, and how we do this is perhaps the central problem in natural language understanding. In this talk, I will first show that many representational problems can be bypassed by reifying states and events, resulting in a very simple picture of compositional semantics. Then I will show how abduction, or finding the best explanation for the content of a text, solves a wide range of pragmatics problems, including coreference resolution, the interpretation of metonymy and metaphor, and discovering discourse structure. Finally, I will discuss an effort to build an adequate knowledge base for natural language understanding, by both manual and automatic means, in two areas -- the structure of events and goal-directed behavior.

To view a recording of this talk click here (You will need a Rutgers NetID and password)

Dr. Jerry Hobbs