Joint Grammar Development by Linguists and Computer Scientists
Maxwell, Michael, and Anne David. 2008. Joint Grammar Development by Linguists and Computer Scientists. Workshop on NLP for Less Privileged Languages, Third International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing, Hyderabad, India.
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For languages with inflectional morphology, development of a morphological parser is often a bottleneck for further development of computational linguistic capabilities. We focus on two difficulties: first, finding people with expertise in both computer programming and the linguistics of a particular language, and second, the short lifetime of software such as parsers. We then describe a methodology we have developed to split the task of building a parser for a language into two tasks, descriptive grammar development and formal grammar development. The two grammars are combined into a single document using Literate Programming. The formal grammar is designed not to be dependent on a particular parsing engine’s programming language, so that it can be readily ported to a new parsing engine, thus helping solve the software lifetime problem.