[lit-ideas] Re: . Davidson

  • From: John McCreery <john.mccreery@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 12 Feb 2015 08:49:11 +0900

Whether the beliefs are true or not, the need for an immensely wide array of 
backgrounds is a huge issue for those who attempt to develop natural-language 
interfaces for computers. Computer scientists call it the world-knowledge 
problem. A bit of dark humor overheard while I worked briefly as a research 
assistant for the Yale AI project back in 1979 makes the point. We were working 
on a project called FRUMP, for Fast Reading and Understanding Meaning Program. 
Someone imagined a future in which FRUMP controls a satellite loaded with 
hydrogen bomb-tipped missiles read to destroy any country that dares to attack 
another. An operator on Earth is furiously typing, "No FRUMP, No! 'Russsia 
crushes Israel,' that was a soccer game." 

Practically speaking, what I learned by working on FRUMP was how thoroughly the 
language used in sports, business and political news reporting is permeated by 
military metaphors, e.g., "weapons," "tactics," "strategies," "campaigns," 
"attacks."

But the sun is shining in Yokohama. Looks like another good day.

Cheers,

John



Sent from my iPad

> On 2015/02/11, at 16:08, Adriano Palma <Palma@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> 
> one has to assume an immensely wide array of backgrounds true beliefs to even 
> attempt understanding.
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