By Sari Pietikäinen, FinlandAlexandra Jaffe, Long BeachHelen Kelly-Holmes, and Nikolas Coupland
Sociolinguistics from the Periphery "presents a fascinating book about change: shifting political, economic and cultural conditions; ephemeral, sometimes even seasonal, multilingualism; and altered imaginaries for minority and indigenous languages and their users."
This study presents an original and penetrating analysis of the complex problems surrounding the automatic generation of natural language text. Laurence Danlos provides a valuable critical review of research in this important and increasingly active field and goes on to describe a theoretical model that is thoroughly grounded in linguistic principles. The model emphasises the semantic, syntactic and lexical constraints that must be dealt with when establishing a relationship between meaning and form and it is consideration of such linguistic constraints that determines Danlos’ generation algorithm. The book concludes with a description of a generation system based on this algorithm which produces texts in several domains and also a system for the synthesis of spoken messages from semantic representation. The book is a significant addition to the literature on text generation and will be of particular interest to all computational linguists and AI researchers who have wrestled with the problem of vocabulary selection.