Paper: On Identifying Sets

ACL ID W00-1416
Title On Identifying Sets
Venue International Conference on Natural Language Generation
Session Main Conference
Year 2000

A range of research has explored the problem of generating referring expressions that uniquely iden- tify a single entity from the shared context. But what about expressions that identify sets of enti- ties? In this paper, I adapt recent semantic re- search on plural descriptions--using covers to ab- stract collective and distributive readings and us- ing sets of assignments to represent dependencies among references--to describe a search problem for set-identifying expressions that largely mirrors the search problem for singular referring expressions. By structuring the search space only in terms of the words that can be added to the description, the proposal defuses potential combinatorial explosions that might otherwise arise with reference to sets.