This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

A Knowledge Base and Question Answering System Based on Loglan and English




Linker, Sheldon

Type of Degree



Computer Science


One of the "holy grails" of computational linguistics has been to have a machine carry out a conversation, and to have some idea of what it is talking about. Loglan's machine grammar was a first attempt to carry out such a project using a grammar which was unambiguous, yet able to encompass the whole of human discourse. Writing a logical, speakable language, with a SLR-1 (simple left-to-right parsing, with one look-ahead) grammar, and then reducing that to a functional form results in a language which is hard to use for spoken logic, and is hard to translate into. A more useful way to go is to use the symbols of predicate, first-order logic, second-order logic, and higher-order logic, to use the word-classes of Loglan, to build a functional form from those in combination, and then to work backward from such a functional form to a speakable language, as much like English and Loglan, in priority order, as possible. Such a language is feasible, speakable, understandable, and useful (Linker, 2007). The result was the JCB-English language. ¶ The thesis presented herein is that JBC-English can be improved by a number of means, making the language easier to learn and speak, more concise, and faster to process. The research and development projects detailed herein are to produce an improved version of the language, and the language processing system, which can be effectively used for human and machine discourse, and a demonstration system, which converses in this language, in such a way as to be useful in business and academia.