"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more
To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.
This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.
Interactive question answering and constraint relaxation in spoken dialogue systems
We explore the relationship between question answering and constraint relaxation in spoken dialogue systems and develop dialogue strategies for selecting and presenting information succinctly. In particular, we describe methods for dealing with the results of database queries in information-seeking dialogues. Our goal is to structure the dialogue in such a way that the user is neither overwhelmed with information nor left uncertain as to how to refine the query further. We present two sets of evaluation results for a restaurant selection task: one is a system performance evaluation experiment involving twenty subjects, the other is an experimental evaluation of the use of suggestions involving sixteen subjects.