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FYI: II UNL Panel: Call for Chapters


Author: Ronaldo Martins

Linguistic Field(s): Computational Linguistics

FYI Body: II UNL Panel: Call for Chapters
www.unlweb.net

The UNDL Foundation invites submissions to the second volume of the UNL Series, to be published on January 2015, and which will be dedicated to the nature and role of relations and attributes in the UNL framework. The participation is open and free, and the chapters must necessarily comply with the instructions below. Authors of selected papers will be invited to present their work in the II UNL Panel, to be held in Geneva, on March 2015. The UNDL Foundation will pay the travel and accommodation expenses for the selected candidates not living in Geneva.

Important Dates:
Deadline for submission: 31 Oct 2014
Notification of acceptance: 30 Nov 2014
Final version: 15 Dec 2014
II UNL Panel: March 2015

Rationale:
The UNL is an artificial language created to represent and process information across language barriers. Proposed by the Institute of Advanced Studies of the United Nations University, in Tokyo, Japan, in 1996, it has been enhanced and promoted by the UNDL Foundation, in Geneva, Switzerland, under a mandate of the United Nations, since 2000. The basic assumption of the UNL approach is that the information conveyed by natural languages can be formally represented through a semantic network made of three different types of discrete semantic units: concepts, relations and attributes. Concepts are nodes in the UNL graph, to be interlinked by relations and specified by attributes.

Originally proposed more than 15 years ago, the UNL has not incorporated yet several recent advances in the domain of natural language processing. Additionally, there has been a claim for better standardization practices in the UNL framework, especially after the results of the large-scale development inside the www.unlweb.net. In order to organize this discussion, the UNDL Foundation set the UNL Panel initiative and proposes a three-chapter dialogue with the NLP community. In each chapter, the UNDL Foundation invites specialists, from inside and outside the UNL Society, to present their positions and views about technical issues concerning natural language processing applied to UNL. The first meeting was held at COLING 2012 and was dedicated to the lexical issues of UNL. The results are available at Martins, R. (ed). (2013). Lexical Issues of UNL: Universal Networking Language 2012 Panel. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

The second meeting targets the nature and role of relations and attributes in semantic networks. Specialists are requested to explain their positions in a paper in a question-answer format, which must necessarily address the five examples below. The selected papers will be published in the second volume of the UNL Series and the authors will be invited to present their work in the II UNL Panel, to be held in Geneva, on March 2015. The UNDL Foundation will pay the travel and accommodation expenses for the selected candidates not living in Geneva.

Questions:
Considering the commitments, assumptions and properties of the UNL (available at www.unlweb.net/wiki/Introduction_to_UNL), how would you represent, as a language-independent semantic graph, the following English sentences?
1. The disappointment killed Mary.
2. The book is right under the table.
3. Peter is between John and Mary.
4. John took a very long nap.
5. John made Peter go away.
The sentences above illustrate some theoretical and practical issues concerning relations and attributes that have been receiving several different possible answers within the current UNL framework. The main goal of II UNL Panel is to discuss which answers would be more appropriate and feasible, considering the state of the art of the theory and technology on natural language processing. We would ask participants to use them as starting points for their presentations, but we would expect them to suggest some general procedures to be adopted in similar cases. The current answers as well as further instructions for authors are available at www.unlweb.net/wiki/II_UNL_Panel.

Support:
Authors of selected papers will be invited to present their work in the II UNL Panel, to be held in Geneva, on March 2015. The UNDL Foundation will pay the following travel and accommodation expenses for the selected candidates not living in Geneva:
- a round-trip plane, bus or train ticket from/to Geneva;
- 6 (six) nights at a budget hotel in Geneva; and
- 6 (six) per diem of CHF100.00 (total of CHF600.00), to cover any other expenses, including meals and transportation.

UNDL Foundation:
The UNDL Foundation is a non-profit organization based in Geneva, Switzerland, which has received, from the United Nations, the mandate for implementing the Universal Networking Language (UNL). The UNL is an artificial language that has been used for several different tasks in natural language engineering, such as machine translation, multilingual document generation, summarization, information retrieval and semantic reasoning. It has been, since 1996, a unique initiative to reduce language barriers and strengthen cross-cultural communication in the framework of the UN.

Further Information:
For further information, please contact:
Ronaldo Martins, PhD
Language Resources Manager
UNDL Foundation
r.martins@undlfoundation.org

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