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Syntactic Processing of Unknown Words

Gregor Erbach
In: P. Jorrand; V. Sgurev (Hrsg.). Artificial Intelligence IV - Methodology, Systems, and Applications. Artificial Intelligence: Methodology, Systems, and Applications (AIMSA), September 19-22, Albena, Bulgaria, Pages 371-382, ISBN 0-444-88771-7, North-Holland Publishing Company, 1990.


A method for processing sentences which contain unknown words, i. e. words for which no lexical entry exists, is presented. There are three different stages of processing: 1. The sentence with the unknown word is parsed. There are no special requirements for the parsing algorithm, but the lexical lookup procedure needs to be modified. 2. Based on the syntactic structure of the parse, information about the unknown word can be extracted. 3. The information obtained in step 2 may be too fully specified for a lexical entry. Therefore a filter is applied to it to create a new lexical entry. An application of the method is illustrated with examples from Categorial Unification Grammar. The problem of using the extracted information for lexical knowledge acquisition is discussed.

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