[MUD-Dev] Re: Natural Language Parsing (Was: Re: darkness/visibility)

Adam J. Thornton adam at phoenix.Princeton.EDU
Thu Jun 18 16:53:35 New Zealand Standard Time 1998

On Thu, Jun 18, 1998 at 02:53:57PM -0400, s001gmu at nova.wright.edu wrote:
> Without respecifying, the 'it' still referes to the same thing.
> To accomplish anything like what I think you want, it should look like:
> I am straying pretty far from anything I've really studied, so anyone with
> more expertise than I please feel free to correct any glaring stupidities
> in my (admittedly ad-hoc) approach.

You might want to go to ftp.gmd.de in /if-archive.

Take a look at the three big modern text-adventure writing systems, Inform,
TADS, and Hugo, and the way the parsers for each work.

Inform's is probably the easiest to work with, since the parser is in
Inform language files, while TADS builds a lot of the parser into the
convoluted C code that makes up the interpreter and compiler.  I think Hugo
follows the Inform model but I don't really know.

Inform compiles to the Infocom Z-machine format; almost all modern games
are Version 5 format, which is the same VM that ran _Trinity_.  So memory
requirements are pretty meager, since a V5 interpreter will run on a 128K
Apple II.

Pronoun reference, disambiguation, and prepositional phrases are all
problems each system's parser addresses.

adam at princeton.edu 
"There's a border to somewhere waiting, and a tank full of time." - J. Steinman

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