Programmatic semantics for natural language interfaces

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Programmatic semantics for natural language interfaces
An important way of making interfaces usable by nonexpert users is to enable the use of natural language input, as in natural language query interfaces to databases, or MUDs and MOOs. When the subject matter is about procedures, however, we have discovered that interfaces can take advantage of what we call Programmatic Semantics, procedural relations that can be inferred from the linguistic structure. Roughly, nouns can be interpreted as data structures; verbs are functions; adjectives are properties. Some linguistic forms imply conditionals, loops, and recursive structures. We illustrate the principles of Programmatic Semantics with a description of Metafor, a "brainstorming" editor for programs, analogous to an outlining tool for prose writing. Metafor interactively converts English sentences to partially specified program code, to be used as "scaffolding" for a more detailed program. A user study showed that Metafor is capable of capturing enough Programmatic Se...
Hugo Liu, Henry Lieberman
Added 30 Nov 2009
Updated 30 Nov 2009
Type Conference
Year 2005
Where CHI
Authors Hugo Liu, Henry Lieberman
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