Luke Gessler


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A Summary of the First Workshop on Language Technology for Language Documentation and Revitalization
Graham Neubig | Shruti Rijhwani | Alexis Palmer | Jordan MacKenzie | Hilaria Cruz | Xinjian Li | Matthew Lee | Aditi Chaudhary | Luke Gessler | Steven Abney | Shirley Anugrah Hayati | Antonios Anastasopoulos | Olga Zamaraeva | Emily Prud’hommeaux | Jennette Child | Sara Child | Rebecca Knowles | Sarah Moeller | Jeffrey Micher | Yiyuan Li | Sydney Zink | Mengzhou Xia | Roshan S Sharma | Patrick Littell
Proceedings of the 1st Joint Workshop on Spoken Language Technologies for Under-resourced languages (SLTU) and Collaboration and Computing for Under-Resourced Languages (CCURL)

Despite recent advances in natural language processing and other language technology, the application of such technology to language documentation and conservation has been limited. In August 2019, a workshop was held at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, PA, USA to attempt to bring together language community members, documentary linguists, and technologists to discuss how to bridge this gap and create prototypes of novel and practical language revitalization technologies. The workshop focused on developing technologies to aid language documentation and revitalization in four areas: 1) spoken language (speech transcription, phone to orthography decoding, text-to-speech and text-speech forced alignment), 2) dictionary extraction and management, 3) search tools for corpora, and 4) social media (language learning bots and social media analysis). This paper reports the results of this workshop, including issues discussed, and various conceived and implemented technologies for nine languages: Arapaho, Cayuga, Inuktitut, Irish Gaelic, Kidaw’ida, Kwak’wala, Ojibwe, San Juan Quiahije Chatino, and Seneca.

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Supervised Grapheme-to-Phoneme Conversion of Orthographic Schwas in Hindi and Punjabi
Aryaman Arora | Luke Gessler | Nathan Schneider
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

Hindi grapheme-to-phoneme (G2P) conversion is mostly trivial, with one exception: whether a schwa represented in the orthography is pronounced or unpronounced (deleted). Previous work has attempted to predict schwa deletion in a rule-based fashion using prosodic or phonetic analysis. We present the first statistical schwa deletion classifier for Hindi, which relies solely on the orthography as the input and outperforms previous approaches. We trained our model on a newly-compiled pronunciation lexicon extracted from various online dictionaries. Our best Hindi model achieves state of the art performance, and also achieves good performance on a closely related language, Punjabi, without modification.

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AMALGUM – A Free, Balanced, Multilayer English Web Corpus
Luke Gessler | Siyao Peng | Yang Liu | Yilun Zhu | Shabnam Behzad | Amir Zeldes
Proceedings of the 12th Language Resources and Evaluation Conference

We present a freely available, genre-balanced English web corpus totaling 4M tokens and featuring a large number of high-quality automatic annotation layers, including dependency trees, non-named entity annotations, coreference resolution, and discourse trees in Rhetorical Structure Theory. By tapping open online data sources the corpus is meant to offer a more sizable alternative to smaller manually created annotated data sets, while avoiding pitfalls such as imbalanced or unknown composition, licensing problems, and low-quality natural language processing. We harness knowledge from multiple annotation layers in order to achieve a “better than NLP” benchmark and evaluate the accuracy of the resulting resource.

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Supersense and Sensibility: Proxy Tasks for Semantic Annotation of Prepositions
Luke Gessler | Shira Wein | Nathan Schneider
Proceedings of the 14th Linguistic Annotation Workshop

Prepositional supersense annotation is time-consuming and requires expert training. Here, we present two sensible methods for obtaining prepositional supersense annotations indirectly by eliciting surface substitution and similarity judgments. Four pilot studies suggest that both methods have potential for producing prepositional supersense annotations that are comparable in quality to expert annotations.


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A Discourse Signal Annotation System for RST Trees
Luke Gessler | Yang Liu | Amir Zeldes
Proceedings of the Workshop on Discourse Relation Parsing and Treebanking 2019

This paper presents a new system for open-ended discourse relation signal annotation in the framework of Rhetorical Structure Theory (RST), implemented on top of an online tool for RST annotation. We discuss existing projects annotating textual signals of discourse relations, which have so far not allowed simultaneously structuring and annotating words signaling hierarchical discourse trees, and demonstrate the design and applications of our interface by extending existing RST annotations in the freely available GUM corpus.

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B. Rex: a dialogue agent for book recommendations
Mitchell Abrams | Luke Gessler | Matthew Marge
Proceedings of the 20th Annual SIGdial Meeting on Discourse and Dialogue

We present B. Rex, a dialogue agent for book recommendations. B. Rex aims to exploit the cognitive ease of natural dialogue and the excitement of a whimsical persona in order to engage users who might not enjoy using more common interfaces for finding new books. B. Rex succeeds in making book recommendations with good quality based on only information revealed by the user in the dialogue.

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Developing without developers: choosing labor-saving tools for language documentation apps
Luke Gessler
Proceedings of the 3rd Workshop on the Use of Computational Methods in the Study of Endangered Languages Volume 1 (Papers)