25 January 2010 - computational linguistics

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One Insight at a Time

“Corpus-based computational linguistics”—let’s take it from the back. “Linguistics” means about language. “Computational” means it ignores meaning; it’s empty. “Corpus” is from the same root as “corpse”, so the whole means “dead, empty language.” And that’s the important thing to remember: The whole shifted paradigm, which has taught us so much about ourselves, is assembled on a lab table but still waits for the lightning strike that will bring it to life.


Corpus-based computational linguistics tries hard to incorporate meaning, but still hasn’t figured out how to face the subject head on.

give me a clue so sweet and true

the Daily Whale || copyright 2010, 2014 Jay J.P. Scott <jay@satirist.org>