Programming Computers in Everyday Language

Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) researchers are developing software that directly translates natural language into machine readable source texts. The goal is enable people to create software applications using a few sentences. However, the researchers note people do not always describe processes in a strictly chronological order. The KIT analysis tool automatically orders the commands in the way they are to be executed by the computer. The software installs a language interface for any type of program, enabling users to open and operate apps using only spoken commands. The researchers say they already have successfully incorporated this type of interface into an application controlling a heating system, illumination, and windows of smart houses. The software analyzes time-related signal words that indicate the spoken text does not describe the process order in a strictly linear manner. “It is our objective that the computer adapts to the way the user speaks, and not the other way around,” says KIT researcher Mathias Landhauber. The researchers note other natural language programming challenges include the use of synonyms and pronouns. “People understand these relationships, because the situation flashes like a film on their inner eye,” Landhauber says. “We are working on giving computers such an understanding in the long term.”

More info here: Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (10/08/14)

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