On the problems of time retrieval of temporal relations causality, and coexistence

  • Nicholas V. Findler
  • David Chen


Intelligent question-answering programs do more than retrieve “raw” data; they make deductive inferences in order to return all valid responses. They report logical inconsistencies, possibly at the data input phase. Similarly, more information is requested from the user if a question asked proves to be ambiguous. A question-answering system of the above type has been designed and implemented. Besides retrieving explicit and implicit temporal relations, the system discovers potentially causal relationships which also satisfy different time restrictions. Questions concerning a generalized concept of coexistence can also be answered. It is hoped that programs of a similar nature will become of much pragmatic use to researchers in physics, chemistry, biology, and so on, in evaluating complex, interrelated experimental data. Several additional applications for this type of program are mentioned, ranging from problems in criminology to air traffic control. The Associative Memory, Parallel Processing Language, AMPPL-II, was found rather satisfactory for the project. It is finally suggested that the system being described could serve as a component in a complex cognitive mechanism.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1973

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nicholas V. Findler
    • 1
  • David Chen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceState University of New York at BuffaloAmherst

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