The Reading to Learn Project

SRI International and Boeing Phantom Works, 3/1/05 - 6/1/06

The following page contains material produced under this DARPA seedling project.

Project Overview (Abstract of Final Report)

One of the most important methods by which human beings learn is by reading, a task which includes integrating what was read with existing, prior knowledge. While in its full generality, the reading task is still too difficult a capability to be implemented in a computer, significant (if partial) approaches to the task are now feasible. Our goal in this project was to study issues and develop solutions for this task by working with a reduced version of the problem, namely working with text written in a simplified version of English (a Controlled Language) rather than full natural language. Our experience and results reveal that even this reduced version of the task is still challenging, and we have uncovered several major insights into this challenge. In particular, our work indicates a need for fairly substantial domain and linguistic knowledge to ensure reliable interpretation, and for a radical revision of traditional knowledge representation structures to support knowledge integration. We describe our work and analysis, present a synthesis and evaluation of our work, and make several recommendations for future work in this area. Our conclusion is that ultimately, to bridge the "knowledge gap", a pipelined approach is inappropriate, and that to address the knowledge requirements for good language understanding an iterative (bootstrapped) approach is the most promising way forward.

Final Report


The Original Chemistry Text (pp614-619, Brown, LeMay, Bursten)

CPL (Computer-Processable Language) Encodings