Vagueness as cost reduction: An empirical test

Authors: Green, M.J. and van Deemter, K.

Conference: PRE-CogSci 2011 -- Production of Referring Expressions: Bridging the gap between computational, empirical and theoretical approaches to reference. 33rd Annual meeting of the Cognitive Science Society (CogSci 2011)

Dates: 20-23 July 2011

Journal: Proceedings of the 33rd Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/28103/

Source: Manual

Vagueness as cost reduction: An empirical test

Authors: Green, M. and van Deemter, K.

Conference: Proceedings of `Production of Referring Expressions' workshop at 33rd Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society

Abstract:

NLG systems that generate text from numerical data must de- cide between alternative linguistic forms of the given numeri- cal content, such as whether to use a precise or a vague expres- sion. Currently there is little empirical data for these systems to draw on when making these decisions. We performed ex- periments with human readers in which participants responded to instructions in the form of referring expressions, where we manipulated whether the instruction used a vague or a crisp referring expression, in order to test the hypothesis that vague- ness reduces processing costs for the comprehender. Results indicate that people respond more quickly and accurately to vague linguistic expressions than to crisp numerical expres- sions, but that this benefit also accrues to precise terms that avoid numbers.

http://eprints.bournemouth.ac.uk/28103/

Source: BURO EPrints