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Mark Leighton Fisher (4252)

Mark Leighton Fisher
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I am a Systems Engineer at Regenstrief Institute []. I also own Fisher's Creek Consulting [].
Wednesday June 18, 2008
05:57 AM

The Golden Rule of Data Manipulation

[ #36712 ]

The Golden Rule of Data Manipulation can be summed up as "Concatenation is Easy, But Parsing Is Hard". But we are talking really, really hard here not just lifting a dining room hutch hard, but lifting the Empire State Building hard (in the end game). That hardness has been a large barrier in natural language communication for computers, as parsing an arbitrary sentence is ludicrously hard. AIML have worked around the problem by restricting both the domain of discourse and the variety of sentences recognized, but they have only worked around the problem, not solved it. If you start from a point of concatenating simple, nearly atomic data, your programming task will be much easier (and much more like to lend itself to later parsing, rather than starting at arbitrary parsing of your data). Anyway, read the article!

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