Aspects of an intelligent interface that provides natural language access to a large body of data distributed over a computer network are described. The overall system architecture is presented, showing how a user is buffered from the actual database management systems (DBMSs) by three layers of insulating components. These layers operate in series to… (More)
Human engineering features for enhancing the usabil ity of practical natural language systems a l re described. Such features include spelling correction, processing of incomplete (ell ipt ic-~I) input?, jntfrrog-t ior of th p underlying language definition through English oueries, and ?r rbil.it y for casual users to extrnd the language accepted by the… (More)
1.1 The Interface Problem A major problem faced by would-be users of computer systems is that computers generally make use of special-purpose languages familiar only to those trained in computer science. For a large number of applications requiring interaction between humans and computer systems, it would be highly desirable for machines to converse in… (More)
The problem addressed in this paper is how to enable a computer system to acquire facts about new domains from tutors who are experts in their respective fields, but who have little or no training in computer science. The information to be acquired is that needed to support question-answering activities. The basic acquisition approach is "learning by being… (More)
in which the various nodes and arcs are partitioned into "net spaces." These net spaces delimit the scopes of quantified variables, distinguish hypothetical and imaginary situations from reality, encode alternative worlds considered in planning, and focus attention at particular levels of detall.
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We describe a knowledge representation scheme called K-NHT and a problem solving system called SNIFFER designed to answer queries using a K-NET knowledge base. K-NtT uses a partitioned semantic net to combine the expressive capabilities of the first-order predicate calculus with linkage to procedural knowledge and with full indexing of objects to the… (More)
A. Introduction For over two decades, researchers in artificial intelligence and computational linguistics have sought to discover principles that would allow computer systems to process natural languages such as English. This work has been pursued both to further the scientific goals of providing a framework for a computational theory of natural-language… (More)
This note describes LIFER, a practical facility for creating natural language interfaces to other computer software. Emphasizing human engineering, LIFER has bundled natural language specification and parsing technology into one convenient package.