Natural Language Semantic Theory

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A Natural Language Semantic Theory is a Theory of how to represent the Semantic Structure of an Utterance.

  • Context:
    • It can include:
      • Expressive Adequacy: How well does the theory allow linguistic meanings to be expressed correctly?
      • Grammatical Compatibility: How cleanly does the semantic representation link to other kinds of grammatical information (most notably syntax)?
      • Computational Tractability: How simple is it to process meanings; to check semantic equivalence efficiently; and to straightforwardly express relationships between semantic representations?
      • Underspecifiability: Does it allow for leaving semantic distinctions unresolved (underspecification), and still allow flexible, monotonic resolution of these underspecifications?
  • Example(s):
    • First-Order Logic: I have a computer and a laptop.Have(Speaker, computer) ^ Have(Speaker, computer)
  • See: Natural Language Syntactic Theory


References

2005

2000