LINGUIST List 21.3621|
Tue Sep 14 2010
Diss: Comp Ling/Morphology/Syntax: Faaß: 'A Morpho-Syntactic ...'
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A Morpho-Syntactic Description of Northern Sotho as a Basis for an Automated Translation from Northern Sotho to English
Message 1: A Morpho-Syntactic Description of Northern Sotho as a Basis for an Automated Translation from Northern Sotho to English
From: Gertrud Faaß <gertrud.faaszims.uni-stuttgart.de>
Subject: A Morpho-Syntactic Description of Northern Sotho as a Basis for an Automated Translation from Northern Sotho to English
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Institution: University of Pretoria
Program: Department of African Languages
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2010
Author: Gertrud Faaß
Dissertation Title: A Morpho-Syntactic Description of Northern Sotho as a Basis for an Automated Translation from Northern Sotho to English
Dissertation URL: http://www.ims.uni-stuttgart.de/~faaszgd/PhD-thesis.html
Subject Language(s): Sotho, Northern (nso)
Danie Jacobus Prinsloo
This PhD thesis provides a morpho-syntactic description of Northern Sotho
from a computational perspective. While a number of publications describe
morphological and syntactical aspects of this language, mostly in the form
of prescriptive study books (e.g. Lombard (1985); Van Wyk et al. (1992);
Poulos and Louwrens (1994)) or of descriptive articles (e.g. Anderson and
Kotzé (2006); Kosch (2006); De Schryver and Taljard (2006)), so far no
comprehensive description is available that would provide a basis for
developing a rule-based parser to analyse Northern Sotho on sentence level.
This study attempts to ﬁll the gap.
Northern Sotho morpho-syntactic phenomena are explored which results in the
following descriptions: Language units (tokens) of Northern Sotho are
identiﬁed. These are sorted into word class categories (parts of speech),
using the descriptions of Taljard et al. (2008) as a basis; the formal
relationships between these units are described in the form of productive
morpho-syntactic phrase grammar rules. These rules are deﬁned within the
framework of generative grammar. Additionally, an attempt is made to ﬁnd
generalisations on the contextual distribution of the many items contained
in verbs that are polysemous in terms of their parts of speech.
The grammar rules described in the preceding chapter are now explored in
order to ﬁnd patterns in the co-occurrence of parts of speech leading
towards a future, more general linguistic modelling of Northern Sotho
verbs. It is also shown how a parser could work its way step-by-step doing
an analysis of a complete sentence making use of a lexicon and the rules
developed here. A number of relevant phrase grammar rules have also been
implemented as a constraint-based grammar fragment, in line with the theory
of Lexical-Functional Grammar (LFG, Kaplan and Bresnan, 1982). Here, we
utilized the Xerox Linguistic Environment (XLE) (with permission from the
Xerox Palo Alto Research Centre (PARC).
Lastly, the study contains some basic deﬁnitions for a proposed machine
translation (MT) into English attempting to support the development of
MT-rules. An introduction to MT and a ﬁrst contrastive description of
phenomena of both languages is provided.
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