Lab 7 (Due 2/17 11:45pm)


These instructions might get edited a bit over the next couple of days. I'll try to flag changes.

As usual, check the write up instructions first. Especially in the test corpus section, but also in general, it will be helpful to keep notes along the way as you are doing grammar development.

Requirements for this assignment

Run a baseline test suite

Before making any changes to your grammar for this lab, run a baseline test suite instance. If you decide to add items to your test suite for the material covered here, consider doing so before modifying your grammar so that your baseline can include those examples. (Alternatively, if you add examples in the course of working on your grammar and want to make the snapshot later, you can do so using the grammar you turned in for Lab 6.)


The goal of this lab is to be able to parse the two sentences I can eat glass. It doesn't hurt me., assign them appropriate semantics, and generate back. You have already done some of the work: from previous labs, your grammar should already handle pronouns, case (if applicable), and transitive verbs. Negation may already be working from the customization system and/or previous work you've done. You may need to add some vocabulary and possibly some verb forms. In addition, depending on how the sentences translate in your language, you might need to consider a new valence pattern for verbs and a new type of nouns (e.g., mass nouns).

Semantic representations

Your semantic representations for the two sentences should look approximately like this, modulo the relations showing up in a different order, the variables (e's, x's, and h's) showing up with different numbers, the SEMSORT information showing up in different places. Also, if your language tends to use prodrop rather than overt pronouns, you might end up without any representation of the pronouns in these sentences. Finally, if you need a complex predicate in place of, say, "hurt", then you'll also have some differences. If you're unsure if your reprsentations are correct, please post them to GoPost.

(NB 2/17/12: These are somewhat out of date, because the LKB displays the GTOP not the LTOP for the whole MRS. If you look at the feature structure rather than the extracted MRS, you should see that the LTOP matches the LBL of the matrix verb's relation.)


can as an auxiliary verb

Use this version if in your language the morpheme expressing the same notion as can is a separate word which takes a VP complement and a subject.

can as a bound morpheme

Use this version if the morpheme expressing the same meaning as can in your language attaches morphologically to the main verb of the sentence.


The negation library is more robust than in previous years, so we expect that in most cases the output is working or close to working.

One sentence from the test corpus

The goal of this section is to parse one more sentence from your test corpus than you are before starting this section. In most cases, that will mean parsing one sentence total. In your write up, you should document what you had to add to get the sentence working. Note that it is possible to get full credit here even if the sentence ultimately doesn't parse by documenting what you still have to get working.

This is a very open-ended part of the lab (even more so than usual), which means: A) you should get started early and post to GoPost so I can assist in developing analyses of whatever additional phenomena you run accross and B) you'll have to restrain yourselves; the goal isn't to parse the whole test corpus this week ;-).

Write up your analyses

For each of the following phenomena, please include the following your write up:

  1. A descriptive statement of the facts of your language.
  2. Illustrative IGT examples from your testsuite. These should be examples that actually work in the current grammar, or would work if not for the particular problem you are talking about.
  3. A statement of how you implemented the phenomenon (in terms of types you added/modified and particular tdl constraints).
  4. If the analysis is not (fully) working, a description of the problems you are encountering.
  5. A statement of whether or not you can generate from examples illustrating the phenomenon.


In addition, your write up should include a statement of the current coverage of your grammar over your test suite (using numbers you can get from Analyze | Coverage and Analyze | Overgeneration in [incr tsdb()]) and a comparison between your baseline test suite run and your final one for this lab (see Compare | Competence).

Submit your assignment

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ebender at u dot washington dot edu
Last modified: 2/11/12