LINGUIST List 10.1943

Wed Dec 15 1999

Calls: ANLP/NAACL 2000, Language Change

Editor for this issue: Jody Huellmantel <>

As a matter of policy, LINGUIST discourages the use of abbreviations or acronyms in conference announcements unless they are explained in the text.


  1. Priscilla Rasmussen, ANLP/NAACL 2000 Workshop - Call for Papers
  2. D. Eric Holt, Session on Optimal Approaches to Language Change-Final Call

Message 1: ANLP/NAACL 2000 Workshop - Call for Papers

Date: Tue, 14 Dec 99 18:28:29 EST
From: Priscilla Rasmussen <>
Subject: ANLP/NAACL 2000 Workshop - Call for Papers

Syntactic and Semantic Complexity in Natural Language Processing Systems

The last decade has seen an explosion in the work done in the
development of robust natural language processing systems. A common
methodology used in building these systems has been to analyze a
sample of the data available (either manually, or automatically for
training statistical systems), build statistical/heuristical schemas
based upon the analysis, and test the system on a blind sample of the
data. Due to this commonly used paradigm, an important area of
research that has not been given the attention it deserves is the
estimation of syntactic and semantic complexity faced by these systems
in the tasks they perform.

At the AAAI 1999 Fall Symposium on Question Answering Systems, the
problem of semantic complexity, a topic of a 90 minutes panel,
motivated a lot of interest and discussion. To continue the
investigation of this important issue, in this workshop, we will
address the question of complexity as it pertains to the syntax and
semantics of natural language. In particular, the workshop will seek
to address the following areas:

1) How can we model syntactic and semantic complexity for formal models of 
 natural language?
2) How does complexity impact acquisition of semantic and conceptual
3) How does syntactic and semantic complexity impact document classification 
 in information and text retrieval tasks?
4) How do statistical clustering approaches compare to knowledge-based
 approaches at partitioning and quantifying the semantic space in a document
5) Concerning NLP systems that are deployed in the field, how can we quantify
 the information extraction task and QA task in ways similar to what is
 currently done with IR tasks and algorithms?
6) How does the estimation of syntactic and semantic complexity impact the 
 evaluation of such systems?
7) Can syntactic and semantic complexity coupled with a history of the past 
 performance of a system be used to predict future performance of the system 
 on a different data set?

The workshop invites short papers, full-length papers, proposals for panel
discussions, and position statements that deal with any aspect of syntactic 
and/or semantic complexity of NLP systems. In particular, the workshop is 
interested in addressing the following topics:

 - estimation of the syntactic and semantic complexity of specific NLP tasks
 - semantic complexity and world knowledge
 - role of syntactic and semantic complexity in system design and testing
 - syntactic and semantic complexity and its role in the evaluation of NLP 
 - use of syntactic and semantic complexity as a performance predictor
 - relationship between syntactic and semantic complexity


Paper submissions should consist of either a short paper (2000 words
or less, including references), a position statement (2000 words or
less, including references), or a full paper (5000 words or less,
including references). Each submission should include a separate
title page providing the following information: the title, the type of
paper (short/position/full), the word count, a short abstract, names
and affiliations of all the authors, the full address of the primary
author (or alternate contact person), including phone, fax, and email.
Proposals for panels should consist of a short (upto 500 words)
description of the proposed panel along with the names of the proposed

Papers and proposals for panel discussions may be submitted by
submitting three hard copies or one soft copy (ASCII, or PS) to:

Amit Bagga
General Electric CRD
Room K1-5C38B
1 Research Circle
Niskayuna, NY 12309. USA
phone: 1-518-387-7077


Paper submission deadline: February 7
Notification of acceptance of panels : February 21
Notification of acceptance of papers : February 28
Camera ready papers due: March 13

Amit Bagga
General Electric Corporate Research and Development
P.O. Box 8
Schenectady, NY 12301
518-387-7077 (voice)
518-387-6845 (fax)

James Pustejovsky
Computer Science Department and Volen Center for Complex Systems
Brandeis University
Waltham, MA 02254-9110
781-736-2709 (voice)
781-736-2741 (fax)

Wlodek Zadrozny
IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
30 Saw Mill River Road
Hawthorne, NY 10532
914-784-7835 (voice)
914-784-7455 (fax)

Amit Bagga - GE CRD
Branimir Boguraev - IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
J-P Chanod (Xerox, Grenoble)
Shalom Lappin (Kings College, London);
Aravind Joshi (University of Pennsylvania)
Larry Moss (Indiana)
Rohit Parikh (CUNY),
Adam Pease (Teknowledge)
James Pustejovsky - Brandeis University
Wlodek Zadrozny - IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
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Message 2: Session on Optimal Approaches to Language Change-Final Call

Date: Tue, 14 Dec 1999 11:32:06 -0500
From: D. Eric Holt <>
Subject: Session on Optimal Approaches to Language Change-Final Call

FINAL CALL FOR PAPERS: (abbreviated from the original call) "OPTIMAL
APPROACHES TO LANGUAGE CHANGE" A special session to be held at the
45th Annual Conference of the International Linguistic Association,
April 7-9, 2000, Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

The 45th ILA conference has as its major theme Language
Contact/Language Change, and abstracts are solicited for a session on
the application of Optimality Theory to language change. To date there
has been no gathering dedicated to bringing researchers in this area
together to share their work and discuss it as primary issue, rather
than as part of a larger more general meeting. This session solicits
abstracts related to the analysis of some issue related to historical
linguistics and/or to the application of OT to language change from a
more general perspective. Submission information is given below.

>From the original ILA call: The 45th ILA conference will have as its
major theme Language Contact/Language Change. While papers on that
theme are especially welcomed, abstracts on any subject in theoretical
and applied linguistics are also solicited. Invited speakers: Lila
Gleitman, University of Pennsylvania and Lesley Milroy and Sarah
Thomason, both of the University of Michigan. Local host: Father
Solomon Sara.

Single-spaced abstracts, bearing the title of the paper (but no
author), of not more than 425 words should clearly state the problems
or research questions addressed, and should give some indication of
results or conclusions. Send via e-mail to the Session organizer (see
below). Simultaneously, send via airmail 3 camera-ready hard copies of
the abstract, plus a 3x5 card bearing name, title of paper, addresses,
affiliation, and audio-visual equipment needed. (Anonymity will be
preserved when abstracts are forwarded to the judges.) Presentations
will be 20 minutes (plus discussion). Submissions on diskette will
not be accepted.

Deadline for submission of abstracts for the special session on OT:
January 7, 2000.

Any questions regarding the conference itself may be addressed to
either the Conference Chair, Ruth Brend ( or the
Conference Secretary Johanna Woltjer (
Abstracts designed for this panel will be judged by the general
conference committee, who will send direct notification regarding

Send e-mail and hard copies of abstracts and 3x5 information card to:

D. Eric Holt
Organizer, ILA session on OT and language change
Department of Spanish, Italian and Portuguese &
Program in Linguistics
University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC 29208

[Please send abstracts in one of the following formats, listed in
descending order of preference: Word97, RTF, WordPerfect, PDF, or as
text in the body of an e-mail message.]
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