Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Hostname: page-component-7d8f8d645b-h5t26 Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-05-28T01:28:15.927Z Has data issue: false Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": true } hasContentIssue false

5 - What is a thesaurus?

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 September 2009

Yorick Wilks
Affiliation:
University of Sheffield
Get access

Summary

Introduction

Faced with the necessity of saying, in a finite space and in an extremely finite time, what I believe the thesaurus theory of language to be, I have decided on the following procedure.

First, I give, in logical and mathematical terms, what I believe to be the abstract outlines of the theory. This account may sound abstract, but it is being currently put to practical use. That is to say, with its help an actual thesaurus to be used for medium-scale mechanical translation (MT) tests, and consisting of specifications in terms of archeheads, heads and syntax markers, made upon words, is being constructed straight on to punched cards. The cards are multiply punched; a nuisance, but they have to be, since the thesaurus in question has 800 heads. There is also an engineering bottleneck about interpreting them; at present, if we wish to reproduce the pack, every reproduced card has to be written on by hand, which makes the reproduction an arduous business; a business also that will become more and more arduous as the pack grows larger. If this interpreting difficulty can be overcome, however, we hope to be able to offer to reproduce this punched-card thesaurus mechanically, as we finish it, for any other MT group that is interested, so that, at last, repeatable, thesauric translations (or mistranslations) can be obtained.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2005

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×