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From Universal Dependencies to Abstract Syntax

Conference paper
Authors Aarne Ranta
Kolachina Prasanth
Published in Proceedings of the NoDaLiDa 2017 Workshop on Universal Dependencies (UDW 2017)
Publication year 2017
Published at Department of Computer Science and Engineering (GU)
Language en
Links https://www.aclweb.org/anthology/W1...
Keywords Universal Dependencies, Grammatical Framework, robust parsing
Subject categories Computational linguistics

Abstract

Abstract syntax is a tectogrammatical tree representation, which can be shared between languages. It is used for programming languages in compilers, and has been adapted to natural languages in GF (Grammatical Framework). Recent work has shown how GF trees can be converted to UD trees, making it possible to generate parallel synthetic treebanks for those 30 languages that are currently covered by GF. This paper attempts to invert the mapping: take UD trees from standard treebanks and reconstruct GF trees from them. Such a conversion is potentially useful in bootstrapping treebanks by translation. It can also help GF-based interlingual translation by providing a robust, efficient front end. However, since UD trees are based on natural (as opposed to generated) data and built manually or by machine learning (as opposed to rules), the conversion is not trivial. This paper will present a basic algorithm, which is essentially based on inverting the GF to UD conversion. This method enables covering around 70% of nodes, and the rest can be covered by approximative back up strategies. Analysing the reasons of the incompleteness reveals structures missing in GF grammars, but also some problems in UD treebanks.

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