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Completed research project

Title / Titel Attempto: Controlled English for Requirements Specifications
PDF Abstract (PDF, 14 KB)
Summary / Zusammenfassung Today, the majority of actual requirements specifications is still written in natural language. This is true despite the fact that natural language specifications are notoriously ambiguous, incomplete and contradictory. A potential solution for that problem is using controlled natural language. This is a formal language which looks like normal natural language.
We have developed Attempto Controlled English (ACE) – a subset of English with a restricted grammar and a domain-specific vocabulary – which allows domain specialists to interactively formulate requirements specifications in domain concepts. ACE can be accurately and efficiently processed by a computer, but is expressive enough to allow natural usage. The Attempto system translates specifications in ACE into discourse representation structures – a structured form of first-order predicate logic.
The Attempto Reasoner (RACE) allows users to query or prove ACE texts, for example to answer queries about an ACE text or to prove that an ACE text is (in-)consistent.

The results of this project are applied and further developed in the ongoing REWERSE project.
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Publications / Publikationen Fuchs,N.E. U. Schwertel, R. Schwitter (1998). Attempto Controlled English – Not Just Another Logic Specification Language. Eighth International Workshop on Logic-based Program Synthesis and Transformation LOPSTR'98, Manchester, UK, 15-19 June 1998 (to appear in: Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Berlin, etc.: Springer).

Fuchs, N.E., U. Schwertel, S. Torge (2000). A Natural Language Front-End to Model Generation. Journal of Language and Computation, Volume 1, Number 2, 199-214.

Fuchs, N.E., U. Schwertel (2003). Reasoning in Attempto Controlled English, in: F. Bry, N. Henze and J. Maluszynski (eds.): Principles and Practice of Semantic Web Reasoning, International Workshop PPSWR 2003, Mumbai, India. Lecture Notes in Computer Science 2901, Springer Verlag.

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Keywords / Suchbegriffe Natural language, Attempto, Controlled natural language, requirements specification
Project leadership and contacts /
Projektleitung und Kontakte
Dr. Norbert Fuchs (Project Leader) fuchs 'at'
Funding source(s) /
Unterstützt durch
Universität Zürich (position pursuing an academic career), Other Public Sources (e.g. Federal or Cantonal Agencies)
Duration of Project / Projektdauer Jan 1995 to May 2005