MoL-2007-08: A computational model of reference

MoL-2007-08: Garin, Ori (2007) A computational model of reference. [Report]

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This paper is an interdisciplinary study toward a theory of information status and representation of objects. The motivation is a computational problem: in Natural Language Generation, the task of Generating Referring Expressions (GRE) tacitly assumes that the referent is part of the user's focus of attention and must be distinguished from other entities in that context. The generation of Hearer-New entities is hopelessly flawed due to a problem which Kronfeld [Kronfeld, 1990] identifies as the standard-name assumption: every domain entity is mutually known to all discourse participants. Under this assumption, referring means finding a description which identifies the internal presentation of the intended referent. Hearer-new referents do not fit this model. Kronfeld addresses the external perspective of reference, which is crucial for overcoming the standard-name assumption, and provides a theory of referring in which the basis of a successful referring act is mutual individuation: the mutual belief of interlocutors that they are both thinking about the same object. The current paper is focused on the epistemic aspect of Kronfeld's model, aiming at a realistic internal representation of domain entities. To this aim, several epistemic distinctions are made. Finally, applications to GRE and linguistics are discussed.

Item Type: Report
Report Nr: MoL-2007-08
Series Name: Master of Logic Thesis (MoL) Series
Year: 2007
Date Deposited: 12 Oct 2016 14:38
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2016 14:38

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