The Application of Theorem Proving to Information Retrieval


Coles, L. S. (1971). The Application of Theorem Proving to Information Retrieval. Artificial Intelligence Center, SRI International.


Most conventional computer information-retrieval systems are limited by rigid data structures and inflexible query languages. Computer question-answering systems designed to overcome either or both of these limitations have been built, but for the most part they have been restricted to small data bases. In this paper we will describe an approach to combining and extending recently developed question-answering techniques to reasonably large data files. A compilation of widely used physical laws and effects of interest to both engineers and scientists consisting of 105 basic data items will be used as a basis for demonstrating theorem-proving techniques on a large file. A restricted natural-language input for querying the file is also described.

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