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From Discourse to Logic: Introduction to Modeltheoretic Semantics of Natural Language, Formal Logic and Discourse Representation Theory (Studies in Linguistics and Philosophy) Paperback – July 31, 1993

ISBN-13: 978-0792310280 ISBN-10: 0792310284 Edition: 1993rd

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Product Details

  • Series: Studies in Linguistics and Philosophy (Book 42)
  • Paperback: 717 pages
  • Publisher: Springer; 1993 edition (July 31, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0792310284
  • ISBN-13: 978-0792310280
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.7 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #930,671 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Randall Helzerman on March 28, 2005
Format: Paperback
Although written a while back, this is still necessary reading for those interested in computational linguistics, because it is still the best introduction, discussion, and reference for an important semantic theory: Discourse Representation Theory (DRT).

Unlike the semantic theories which came before, DRT takes seriously the fact that in natural language, sentences arn't understood in isolation, but in context. Each sentence is understood in light of the previously uttered sentences, and adds its own information to an evolving set of knowledge.

To track this dynamically evolving information, DRT introduces a unique data structure called a "Discourse Representation Structure" or DRS. The DRS consists of a set of known individual object, plus properties and relations, interpreted as constraints, about them.

But the twist--what really sets DRT out as a breakthrough scientific theory--is that the DRS serves not _just_ as a handy means to track an evolving knowledge base, but it also solves several otherwise mysterious problems in understanding sentences, including so-called "Donkey Anaphora" and other pronoun binding problems.

DRT has served as the foundation and inspiration to much work in computational linguistics, including such interesting frameworks as situation theory, which cements this book's place in the linguist's cannon.
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Format: Paperback
I took part of this course with Prof. Kamp (circa 1980). He had a hand-out on Formal Semantics about 40pages which was an explanation of what the subject is all about. This is an excellent text, rather extensive analysis of approach to language that is founded on Logic. Hans Kamp was a research student of Richard Montague in the 70s at UCLA. Richard Montague was himself a student of l Alfred Tarski at UC Berkeley. I asked him about a reference on natural language understanding systems, he recommended the work of Hendrix.
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From Discourse to Logic: Introduction to Modeltheoretic Semantics of Natural Language, Formal Logic and Discourse Representation Theory (Studies in Linguistics and Philosophy)
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