Featured Linguist!

Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"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



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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

By: Tim William Machan

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.


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Medical Writing in Early Modern English

Edited by Irma Taavitsainen and Paivi Pahta

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.


Academic Paper


Title: Exploiting the Wikipedia structure in local and global classification of taxonomic relations
Author: Quang Xuan Do
Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Author: Dan Roth
Institution: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Linguistic Field: Computational Linguistics; Text/Corpus Linguistics
Abstract: Determining whether two terms have an ancestor relation (e.g. Toyota Camry and car) or a sibling relation (e.g. Toyota and Honda) is an essential component of textual inference in Natural Language Processing applications such as Question Answering, Summarization, and Textual Entailment. Significant work has been done on developing knowledge sources that could support these tasks, but these resources usually suffer from low coverage, noise, and are inflexible when dealing with ambiguous and general terms that may not appear in any stationary resource, making their use as general purpose background knowledge resources difficult. In this paper, rather than building a hierarchical structure of concepts and relations, we describe an algorithmic approach that, given two terms, determines the taxonomic relation between them using a machine learning-based approach that makes use of existing resources. Moreover, we develop a global constraint-based inference process that leverages an existing knowledge base to enforce relational constraints among terms and thus improves the classifier predictions. Our experimental evaluation shows that our approach significantly outperforms other systems built upon the existing well-known knowledge sources.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Natural Language Engineering Vol. 18, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site .



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