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Invisibility is an inherent and signiicant problem in the task of developing large software systems. There are no direct solutions to this problem; however, there are several categories of systems|relational code analyzers, reuse librarians , and project management databases{ that can be seen as addressing aspects of the invisibility problem. We argue that(More)
A computer programming system called the "Natural Language Computer" (NLC) is described which allows a user to type English commands while watching them executed on sample data appearing on a display screen. Direct visual feedback enables the user to detect most misinterpretation errors as they are made so that incorrect or ambiguous commands can be retyped(More)
We discuss the techniques we have developed and implemented for the cross-categorial treatment of comparatives in TELl, a natural language question-answering system that's transportable among both application domains and types of backend retrieval systems. For purposes of illustration, we shall consider the example sentences "List the cars at least 20(More)
The difficulty of maintaining very large software systems is becoming more widely acknowledged. One of the primary problems is the need to access information about a complex and evolving system. We are exploring the contribution to be made by applying explicit knowledge representation and reasoning to the management of information about large systems.(More)
We discuss ways of allowing the users of a natural language processor to define, examine, and modify the definitions of any domain-specific words or phrases known to the system. An implementation of this work forms a critical portion of the knowledge acquisition component of our Transportable English-Language Interface (TELl), which answers English(More)
The state of the art in computational linguistics has progressed to the point where it is now possible to process simple programs written in natural language. This report describes a natural language programming system called NLC which enables a computer user to type English commands into a display terminal and watch them executed on example data shown on(More)
During the 1970s, a number of systems providing limited English-language processing capabilities were developed to permit computer access by casual or untrained users. Our interest is in adapting and extending techniques developed for these systems, especially those used in database query systems and our own English-language programming language system(More)