LINGUIST List 9.1043

Thu Jul 16 1998

Calls: Computational Semantics, Syllable Structure

Editor for this issue: Julie Wilson <>

Please do not use abbreviations or acronyms for your conference unless you explain them in your text. Many people outside your area of specialization will not recognize them. Also, if you are posting a second call for the same event, please keep the message short. Thank you for your cooperation.


  1. Harry Bunt, Computational Semantics
  2. Dave Odden, Syllable Structure and Gesture Timing

Message 1: Computational Semantics

Date: Wed, 15 Jul 1998 13:16:51 +0200
From: Harry Bunt <>
Subject: Computational Semantics

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 Third International Workshop on 


 (IWCS - 3)

 January 13-15, 1999, Tilburg, The Netherlands



The Linguistics Department at Tilburg University will host the Third 
International Workshop on Computational Semantics, that will take 
place in Tilburg, The Netherlands, 13 - 15 January 1999. The aim of
the workshop is to bring together researchers involved in the study 
of computational aspects of the semantics of natural language. 


The workshop will focus on computational aspects of formal semantic 
theories and on the theoretical issues involved in the development of
natural language processing systems. Papers are invited in areas which
include, but are not limited to, the following topics: 

 * working with underspecified semantic representations 
 * use of context in interpretation
 * the semantics-pragmatics interface
 * dynamic interpretation in text and dialogue
 * information packaging
 * computational lexical semantics
 * interpretation and inference
 * interpretation in multi-modal interaction
 * context modelling
 * speech acts and interpretation
 * incremental interpretation
 * connections with theorem proving and knowledge representation


Authors are asked to submit an original paper of maximally 5000 words
by September 15, 1998. Papers should be prepared with LaTeX and should
be submitted by email. All submitted papers will be refereed by the
programme committee. Accepted papers will be published in the
proceedings; we also aim at publishing a selection of accepted papers
in book form. Guidelines for LaTeX preparation of your manuscript are 
available at the IWCS-3 web pages:

For initial submission email a Postscript version of the paper to:


 Patrick Blackburn Martha Palmer
 Mario Borillo Manfred Pinkal
 Harry Bunt (chair) Steve Pulman
 Robin Cooper James Pustejovsky 
 Jan van Eijck Allan Ramsay
 John Etchemendy Patrick Saint Dizier 
 Giacomo Ferrari Lenhart Schubert 
 Erhard Hinrichs Rohini Srihari 
 Megumi Kameyama Mark Steedman 
 Daniel Kayser Enric Vallduvi
 Paul Mc Kevitt Wlodek Zadrozny
 Reinhard Muskens Henk Zeevat 
 John Nerbonne 


 Harry Bunt Reinhard Muskens Elias Thijsse


 15 September 1998 Submission of preliminary papers 
 15 October 1998 Notification of acceptance
 15 November 1998 Final papers due 
 13-15 January 1999 Workshop 


 Conference Secretariat:
 Anne Adriaensen
 Department of Linguistics
 Tilburg University
 PO Box 90153, 5000 LE Tilburg
 The Netherlands

 Phone: +31-13 466 30 60
 Fax: +31-13 466 31 10


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- ----------------------------------------------------
 Harry C. Bunt
 Professor of Linguistics and Computer Science
 Dean, Faculty of Arts
 Tilburg University 
 P.O. Box 90153 
 5000 LE Tilburg, the Netherlands
 Phone: +31 - 13 466.3060 (secretary Anne Andriaensen)
 2568 (Dean's office)
 2653 (office, room B 310)
 Fax: +31 - 13 466.3110
- ---------------------------------------------------------
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Message 2: Syllable Structure and Gesture Timing

Date: Wed, 15 Jul 1998 14:46:28 -0400 (EDT)
From: Dave Odden <>
Subject: Syllable Structure and Gesture Timing


 As part of the conference LP '98 to be held at Ohio State University
Sept. 15-20, there will be a workshop funded by the National Science
Foundation Sept. 19-20, on 'Syllable Structure and Gesture Timing',
covering issues related to phonetic and phonological accounts of
segmentation, and timing and ordering of gestures in speech, especially
how sequences of consonants e.g. [spr], [ntw] are formally represented.
 Speech is traditionally represented as a string of segments,
defined in terms of features which are implemented simultaneously. In
that conception, the phoneme is the minimal phonological unit where
time and ordering are defined. As has long been known, the transition
from phoneme to phoneme is phonetically realized as a continuous change.
There has been a steady progression in phonological theory from linear
generative theory to nonlinear representations where the mapping
between segments and features is quite relaxed, and highly articulated
suprasegmental structures are assumed. A consequence of nonlinear
models, which allow single 'segments' to bear multiple values of a
feature and allow one feature to be associated with many 'segments', is
that one can meaningfully question the existence of the 'segment' as a
formal object. The theory of feature geometry does not explicitly
represent the notion 'segment', and it has been argued that the
traditional segment does not correspond to any specific level of
representation in current models. Nonlinear models have increasingly
tended towards positing complex but internally timeless single
'segments' in place of clusters of segments: thus, what was formerly
represented as a triconsonantal sequence [ntw] might also be
represented as a single segment, a 'voiceless prenasalised rounded
 Some languages, such as Bella Coola and Georgian, seem to allow
unbounded arbitrary sequences of consonants, which suggests that
phonological theory may ultimately need to allow infinitely long
syllables and unstructured onsets and codas. One of the central
questions to be taken up in the workshop is "are there any universal
limits on possible strings of segments in various positions within the
syllable"? This statement of the question begs two quite important
questions: do segments per se exist (and how can one identify whether a
given temporal stretch of the phonetic output corresponds to one or more
segments), and do syllables themselves exist? Both of these
assumptions remain controversial, especially in nonlinear phonology.

 Invited speakers for this workshop include Donca Steriade, John
Ohala, John Harris and Louis Goldstein. Further details on the issues
being investigated in this workshop can be found at
 One-page abstracts for 30 minute papers to be presented at this
workshop are solicited (due date for receipt of abstracts: August 10).
Lodging and up to $400 to cover economy travel expenses will be
provided to authors presenting papers at the workshop.

 Abstracts may be sent by email to, or by
surface mail to:

 Syllable Workshop
 Department of Linguistics
 Ohio State University
 Columbus, OH 43210

Please include a surface mail address, email address, and phone number.
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