Natural Language Processing

Spring 2003
Prof. Grishman

Course Description

The Web, along with intranets and electronic publication, is making vast amounts of text available on-line. But getting the information we need out of these texts still involves a lot of searching and reading. Web search can at best find relevant documents (along with a lot of irrelevant ones); it doesn't find the facts we need.

This course will consider how methods of natural language processing can be used to bridge this gap: to extract information from text, and to answer a user's questions about text and data base information. We will consider several levels of text analysis, including syntactic analysis (grammars and parsing), semantic analysis (word and sentence meaning), and discourse analysis (pronoun resolution and text structure).

During the course you will use and extend a suite of text processing tools, JET, coded in Java, building up all the basic components for an information extraction system. There will be small weekly assignments (some written, some programming), a term project, and a final exam.

Students should have

A familiarity with the basics of propositional and predicate logic, and with elementary statistics, is also helpful but not required.

Textbook:  Jurafsky and Martin, Speech and Language Processing (Prentice Hall)

For further information, you can consult the course pages from 2001, when the course was last given.  You may also want to look at the pages of our natural language research group, the Proteus Project, and in particular its work on information extraction.

For further information, contact Prof. Grishman.