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Re: assignment 2
June 05, 2007 11:58AM
Perl and Python won't have "executable" files smiling smiley

But I certainly agree with Malcolm that a simple anagram solver doesn't in any way address the subject matter at hand. But I don't see how a basic/partial FST answers the question either??

Perhaps its just a preparation to verify that you're capable of writing code and gathering the resources, for the next programming assignment (#4). This is also grasping at straws...

The 2nd edition retains the question in its exact format, so that didn't shed any light either.
avatar Re: assignment 2
June 05, 2007 12:46PM
Well if all we have to do is generate a bunch of combinations and check them against a file then I have a strong urge to demand my money back and go to another university or something, because I could have coded that when I was a little kid I definitely would not be learning anything at all from doing it.
This is meant to be honours for crying out loud.

I'm out of ideas though.. I'm not going to do this assignment until the lecturer answers her phone.(If in fact she ever does)

--
"Knowledge has much better uses than self-pity and superiority"
Re: assignment 2
June 05, 2007 01:40PM
I've spoken Prof Pretorius a number of times this year (she was very helpful in resolving some registration difficulties). Your best bet is to try to phone before lunch. However, if she is not answering her email, she may be away or very busy.

For those still interested in solving the anagram issue, one clue is that there is a super-fast way of solving it that does *not* involve generating combinations.
Anonymous User
Re: assignment 2
June 05, 2007 01:57PM
yeah, just run through a list finding words that in the list are anagrams - what I did.
Re: assignment 2
June 06, 2007 03:09PM
Hi there

The lecturer has given the following information regarding the assignment:

"For your assignment to be self-contained "online" in this case means that you have to supply and electronic resource (a file) that can serve as a dictionary,i.e. a list of valid English words of sufficient size so that when I run your program it will access this so-called dictionary that you provide"

This should clear up all areas of confusion.

Please don't open up anymore cans of worms! grinning smiley

Thanks very much
Re: assignment 2
June 07, 2007 08:49AM
Wait there is more... sad smiley

She also says:

"The file must be a list of words, but in your program brute force list lookup will not be acceptable"

Wow! I actually have no idea how to solve this now! confused smiley
Anonymous User
Re: assignment 2
June 07, 2007 09:31AM
sorry but what does brute force list lookup mean? Is that what I did?

If she wants to give me 0 credits then she can. I know for a fact that as long as I have submitted all assignments, I still get to write exams even if I have less than 100 credits
avatar Re: assignment 2
June 07, 2007 09:43AM
I have just spoken to her on the phone. Basically I was right she wants the question done relevant to the context of the two chapters it falls after.
IE/ make use of finite state networks/transducers for it don't write a pre-primary school program like you want to.

With your peoples attitudes to wanting to do this in the really easy way that a 5 year old could probably do, I have to ask you a question.
Are you doing honours because you want to learn stuff or are you just doing it for a piece of paper? If I had to guess right now I would definitely say it is the latter.

--
"Knowledge has much better uses than self-pity and superiority"
Re: assignment 2
June 07, 2007 10:10AM
I don't think there is a need to be mean and judgmental
Re: assignment 2
June 07, 2007 10:11AM
Listen Malcolm the "Grand Master Contributor" eye rolling smiley Fanx for your motivational speech there!! It really inspired us all!! Now if you have any further comments about dumb people and the abilities of 5 year olds, please visit a kindergarten to inspire them also in the way you inspire us. Cheers mate.
Re: assignment 2
June 07, 2007 10:14AM
Celene,

The lecturer says we must apply what we learnt in Chapter 3.
In particular - state of the art representation of lexicons.

I am also a bit lost as to what to do now.
Anonymous User
Re: assignment 2
June 07, 2007 11:31AM
hmmm... well, I am not clued up enough in the programming languages we are "allowed to use". So if my assignment is not correct then right now, I honestly couldn't care less.

Lois, thanks for letting us know what the lecturer said. I will submit all 5 assignments. And if I get 0 credits for the programming ones, then so be it. At least I will hopefully understand the theory by the time the exam comes round.
Re: assignment 2
June 08, 2007 11:50AM
Did anyone get any clarity on the coverage we were supposed have? The textbook only covers a tiny fraction of all the construction rules that English has. I don't see how its reasonable to implement a full English language FST compiler, and yet this is implied by the fact that we are supposed to supply an online dictionary (which presumably is all the English words).
avatar Re: assignment 2
June 08, 2007 11:56AM
From what I gathered the focus is on having a working one rather then a complete one.
If it can do most the stuff covered in the chapter it should be okay.
It would not obviously be feasible to cover all the odd cases in the englsih language.

In other words the main purpose is to demonstrate that we know how transducers work and are capable of building one, not to cover the entire english language.

You can always phone the lecturer for more clarity though don't take my word on this, and if you do phone please let me know what you find out.

--
"Knowledge has much better uses than self-pity and superiority"
Re: assignment 2
June 11, 2007 12:19PM
Given that we agree that a partial FST is required here, we therefore would need a suitable dictionary of stem words, as well as some knowledge about whether the word is a verb or noun or adjective (or more than one). I've been trying to find such a list on the internet and an unable to do so. Can anyone point me to the right place?

Or do you think we should just hand craft our own lists of a few dozen words?
Anonymous User
Re: assignment 2
June 11, 2007 01:17PM
sorry, I am unable to help because I submitted an assignment that uses brute force to find a word in the dictionaries.

A big favour.. if we don't get "decent" model answers for this assignment would someone who actually got good marks for it please forward a copy to me - just so I can see what we were actually supposed to do...

Thanks
Celene
Re: assignment 2
June 11, 2007 02:07PM
Hi there

From what I gathered when chatted to the lecturer, we are supposed to use a dicionary file with just the list of valid words - NOT a stem dictionary - I am afraid that is not allowed.

And she also said that you can create your own dictionary of a considerable amount of valid words, but again it must just be a list of words - no special format.

Thanks
Re: assignment 2
June 11, 2007 03:41PM
Interesting. That supports my (worrying) theory that I've completely failed to grasp the question.

How to use FST theory to do word lookups...nope, I just can't see it...
Re: assignment 2
June 11, 2007 04:12PM
Yup, it is very hard to figure out what is expected of us for this question.

I have no idea how an FST will fit into this question.
Just try to solve the problem anyway other than the basic list-lookup.
Anonymous User
Re: assignment 2
June 11, 2007 05:45PM
is a reverse list-lookup "any other way" winking smiley Okay, now I am just being stupid... Assignment 3 looks a bit more "sensible"
Re: assignment 2
June 13, 2007 02:10PM
i might end up sitting this one out.
Re: assignment 2
June 13, 2007 03:35PM
Implementing a simple finite state network, based on Lois' statement that we don't use a stem dictionary and thus DON'T use a transducer/grammar approach, was actually comparitively easy. I found generating the permutations more difficult (not to mention slow and memory hungry for large input words)
Re: assignment 2
June 14, 2007 09:19AM
Yup, i did the same thing.

No transducers, but just a simpe finite state representation of the lexicon.
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