[developers] SEM-I question: properties on 'i' variables

Michael Wayne Goodman goodman.m.w at gmail.com
Mon Nov 12 22:26:23 CET 2018

Thank you, Dan!

Note that it's not just quantifiers. I also see in the gold profiles 
instances of pron, part_of, generic_entity, etc., with an 'i' variable 
for ARG0 with 'x' properties. And grepping 'i {' over the etc/*.smi 
files yields a lot more, and not always on ARG0:

     _tomorrow_a_1 : ARG0 i, ARG1 i { NUM sg }.

In case it's relevant, I'm looking at the ERG trunk SEM-I, so there is 
no core.smi file anymore, but it looks like the problem is the same. I'm 
sorry if these bugs delay the release!

On 11/12/18 1:10 PM, Dan Flickinger wrote:
> Hi Mike,
> I think having properties appear on an `i' variable should be 
> considered a bug in the grammar.  Looking now at the trunk gold 
> profiles, I find two kinds of examples where the relevant lexical type 
> failed to constrain a quantifier's ARG0 to be an `x', and I have now 
> fixed those errors.  I also see that in the file erg/etc/core.smi, the 
> ARG0 for quantifier predicates is uniformly presented as an `i' (with 
> properties), but these should also be `x'.  I'll see if I can get this 
> correction into the 2018 release, which I aim to freeze and announce 
> this week.
>  Dan
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> *From:* developers-bounces at emmtee.net <developers-bounces at emmtee.net> 
> on behalf of Michael Wayne Goodman <goodman.m.w at gmail.com>
> *Sent:* Monday, November 12, 2018 10:57 AM
> *To:* developers
> *Subject:* [developers] SEM-I question: properties on 'i' variables
> Hi all,
> What does it mean when variable properties are specified on 'i'? The
> following example is taken from http://moin.delph-in.net/SemiRfc 
> <http://moin.delph-in.net/SemiRfc>, which
> comes from the ERG:
>      _a+little_q : ARG0 i { NUM sg }, RSTR h, BODY h.
> In the "variables" section of the ERG's SEM-I, no properties are defined
> on 'i', and 'NUM' is only on 'x':
>      u.
>      i < u.
>      p < u.
>      h < p.
>      e < i : PERF bool, PROGR bool, MOOD bool, TENSE tense, SF sf.
>      x < i & p : DIV bool, IND bool, GEND gender, PERS person, NUM
> number, PT pt.
> So why is 'i' the value of 'ARG0' on the predicate synopsis above? Why
> not 'x'?
> When I looked through through all the .smi files of the ERG (trunk), 'i'
> was the only underspecified variable type that took properties, and
> every instance specified 'x' properties such as NUM or IND (not 'e'
> properties like TENSE or SF). Perhaps something in the grammar could be
> more tightly constrained so the SEM-I generation code doesn't enumerate
> apparent redundancies such as the following?
>      def_explicit_q : ARG0 x { NUM sg }, RSTR h, BODY h.
>      def_implicit_q : ARG0 i { NUM sg }, RSTR h, BODY h.
> Or am I mistaken in thinking these are erroneous?
> -mwg
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