A System for Archivable Grammar Documentation
This paper describes a number of criteria for archivable documentation of grammars of natural languages, extending the work of Bird and Simons’ “Seven dimensions of portability for language documentation and description.” We then describe a system for writing and testing morphological and phonological grammars of languages, a system which satisfies most of these criteria (where it does not, we discuss plans to extend the system).
The core of this system is based on an XML schema which allows grammars to be written in a stable and linguistically-based formalism, a formalism which is independent of any particular parsing engine. This core system also includes a converter program, analogous to a programming language compiler, which translates grammars written in this format, plus a dictionary, into the programming language of a suitable parsing engine (currently the Stuttgart Finite State Tools). The paper describes some of the decisions which went into the design of the formalism; for example, the decision to aim for observational adequacy, rather than descriptive adequacy. We draw out the implications of this decision in several areas, particularly in the treatment of morphological reduplication.
We have used this system to produce formal grammars of Bangla, Urdu,Pashto, and Persian (Farsi), and we have derived parsers from those formal grammars. In the future we expect to implement similar grammars of other languages, including Dhivehi, Swahili, and Somali. In further work (briefly described in this paper), we have embedded formal grammars produced in this core system into traditional descriptive grammars of several of these languages. These descriptive grammars serve to document the formal grammars, and also provide automatically extractable test cases for the parser.
KeywordsRegular Expression Phonological Feature Phonological Rule Morphosyntactic Feature State Transducer
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- 1.Beesley, K.R., Karttunen, L.: Finite State Morphology. University of Chicago Press, Chicago (2003)Google Scholar
- 4.Burnard, L., Bauman, S.: TEI P5: Guidelines for electronic text encoding and interchange (2013)Google Scholar
- 5.Chomsky, N.: Aspects of the Theory of Syntax. MIT Press, Cambridge (1965)Google Scholar
- 6.David, A., Maxwell, M.: Joint grammar development by linguists and computer scientists. In: IJCNLP, pp. 27–34. The Association for Computer Linguistics (2008)Google Scholar
- 7.Dieterman, J.I.: Secondary palatalization in Isthmus Mixe: a phonetic and phonological account. SIL International, Dallas (2008), http://www.sil.org/silepubs/Pubs/50951/50951_DietermanJ_Mixe_Palatalization.pdf
- 8.Halle, M.: Prolegomena to a theory of word formation. Linguistic Inquiry 4, 3–16 (1973)Google Scholar
- 9.Halle, M., Mohanan, K.P.: Segmental phonology of modern english. Linguistic Inquiry 16(1), 57–116 (1985)Google Scholar
- 10.Hankamer, J.: Finite state morphology and left to right phonology. In: Proceedings of the Fifth West Coast Conference on Formal Linguistics. pp. 29–34 (1986)Google Scholar
- 13.ISO TC37: Language resource management — Feature structures — Part 1: Feature structure representation (2006)Google Scholar
- 14.ISO TC37: Language resource management — Lexical markup framework, LMF (2008)Google Scholar
- 15.ISO TC37: Language resource management — Feature structures — Part 2: Feature system declaration (2011)Google Scholar
- 16.Karttunen, L.: The insufficiency of paper-and-pencil linguistics: the case of Finnish prosody. In: Kaplan, R.M., Butt, M., Dalrymple, M., King, T.H. (eds.) Intelligent Linguistic Architectures: Variations on Themes, pp. 287–300. CSLI Publications, Stanford (2006)Google Scholar
- 18.Marantz, A.: Re reduplication. Linguistic Inquiry 13, 435–482 (1982)Google Scholar
- 19.Maxwell, M.: Electronic grammars and reproducible research. In: Nordoff, S., Poggeman, K.-L.G. (eds.) Electronic Grammaticography, pp. 207–235. University of Hawaii Press (2012)Google Scholar
- 20.Maxwell, M.: A Grammar Formalism for Computational Morphology (forthcoming)Google Scholar
- 21.Maxwell, M., David, A.: Interoperable grammars. In: Webster, J., Ide, N., Fang, A.C. (eds.) First International Conference on Global Interoperability for Language Resources (ICGL 2008), Hong Kong, pp. 155–162 (2008), http://hdl.handle.net/1903/11611
- 22.Newman, S.: The Yokuts Language of California. Viking Fund, New York (1944)Google Scholar
- 23.Rice, C., Blaho, S. (eds.): Modeling ungrammaticality in Optimality Theory. Advances in Optimality Theory. Equinox Press, London (2009)Google Scholar
- 25.Walsh, N.: DocBook 5: The Definitive Guide. O’Reilly, Sebastopol, California (2011), http://www.docbook.org/
- 26.Weber, D.J., Black, H.A., McConnel, S.R.: AMPLE: A Tool for Exploring Morphology. Summer Institute of Linguistics, Dallas (1988)Google Scholar
- 27.Weigel, W.F.: The interaction of theory and description: The yokuts canon. Talk Presented at the Annual Meeting of the Society for the Study of the Indigenous Languages of the Americas (2002)Google Scholar
- 28.Weigel, W.F.: Yowlumne in the Twentieth Century. Ph.D. thesis, University of California, Berkeley (2005)Google Scholar