Modular Natural Language Processing Using Declarative Attribute Grammars

  • Rahmatullah Hafiz
  • Richard A. Frost
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7094)


A system based on a general top-down parsing algorithm has been developed which allows language processors to be created as executable specifications of arbitrary attribute grammars. Declarative notation of attribute grammars allows modular construction of executable language definitions. Syntax is defined through general context-free grammar rules, and meaning is defined by associated semantic rules with arbitrary dependencies. An innovative technique allows parses to be pruned by arbitrary semantic constraints. This new technique is useful in modelling natural-language phenomena by imposing unification-like restrictions, and accommodating long-distance and cross-serial dependencies, which cannot be handled by context-free rules alone.


Top-down parsing Attribute grammars Lazy evaluation Constraint-based Formalism Compositional Semantics 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rahmatullah Hafiz
    • 1
  • Richard A. Frost
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Computer ScienceUniversity of WindsorCanada

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