From Universal Dependencies to Abstract Syntax

Aarne Ranta
University of Gothenburg, Sweden

Prasanth Kolachina
University of Gothenburg, Sweden

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Ingår i: Proceedings of the NoDaLiDa 2017 Workshop on Universal Dependencies, 22 May, Gothenburg Sweden

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 135:14, s. 107-116

NEALT Proceedings Series 31:14, s. 107-116

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Publicerad: 2017-05-29

ISBN: 978-91-7685-501-0

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


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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