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Formal Semantics and Pragmatics for Natural Language Querying (1990)

by James Clifford

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This book discusses the connection between two areas of semantics, namely the semantics of databases and the semantics of natural language, and links them via a common view of the semantics of time. It is argued that a coherent theory of the semantics of time is an essential ingredient for the success of efforts to incorporate more 'real world' semantics into database models. This idea is a relatively recent concern of database research but it is receiving growing interest. The book begins with a discussion of database querying which motivates the use of the paradigm of Montague Semantics and discusses the details of the intensional logic ILs. This is followed by a description of the author's own model, the Historical Relational Data Model (HRDM) which extends the RDM to include a temporal dimension. Finally the database querying language QEHIII is defined and examples illustrate its use. A formal model for the interpretation of questions is presented in this work which will form the basis for much further research.… (more)
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This book discusses the connection between two areas of semantics, namely the semantics of databases and the semantics of natural language, and links them via a common view of the semantics of time. It is argued that a coherent theory of the semantics of time is an essential ingredient for the success of efforts to incorporate more 'real world' semantics into database models. This idea is a relatively recent concern of database research but it is receiving growing interest. The book begins with a discussion of database querying which motivates the use of the paradigm of Montague Semantics and discusses the details of the intensional logic ILs. This is followed by a description of the author's own model, the Historical Relational Data Model (HRDM) which extends the RDM to include a temporal dimension. Finally the database querying language QEHIII is defined and examples illustrate its use. A formal model for the interpretation of questions is presented in this work which will form the basis for much further research.

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