Natural Language Processing


There is almost no logic to any language that humans speak. Most of our languages have evolved over time - based on convenience and random acceptance. (Only exception is Sansrit that was formally created and finalized before it could be used). One can never produce an algorithm that can map an English sentence to its meaning. Yet, the mind has absolutely no problem doing this job! How does it manage this?

NLP is a science of trying to understand the mind's way of understanding a language and producing sentences. Essentially, language cannot work with a point in time sample. That is, a word by itself does not carry much meaning in any languge. Its meaning is in relation to the words before it. Recurrent Neural Networks are used to correlate words in relation to previous words.

But, the fact is just a few words is not enough. The meaning of a word is in relation to the sentence, and the sentences before and the events that occured before and the events that happened years ago... that could go trace to the big bang itself! The meaning of anything that we say today can be entirely different in the context of an event in the past.

We have made a huge progress in this domain but it is far from completion. We are yet to guess how we can identify sarcasm, implied messages, etc. These require a lot of background knowledge about the subject of discussion.