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Some grammatical rules can be thought of like cancellation rules in algebra. For example here, the word Chocolate becomes a noun phrase once after cancelling with the noun phrase Biscuits on its right. The words Likes and Quite are more complicated, but constructed so that in the end after all cancellations we have derived a sentence. Adjectives absorb noun phrases, returning new ones. This has lead to some computational linguists treating adjectives as functions of nouns [nouns are often modelled as vectors which encapsulate what contexts they occur in, so adjectives could be matrices which multiply them giving new vectors] [more]

Some grammatical rules can be thought of like cancellation rules in algebra. For example here, the word Chocolate becomes a noun phrase once after cancelling with the noun phrase Biscuits on its right. The words Likes and Quite are more complicated, but constructed so that in the end after all cancellations we have derived a sentence. Adjectives absorb noun phrases, returning new ones. This has lead to some computational linguists treating adjectives as functions of nouns [nouns are often modelled as vectors which encapsulate what contexts they occur in, so adjectives could be matrices which multiply them giving new vectors] [more]

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    I don’t understand this at all, but someone just linked math and linguistics together. This is so awesome.
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    omg omg omg omg omg omg omg
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    Oh my fucking god….
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    Oh my gosh you can turn English into math I think I found a new hobby in other news I need to stop being such a fucking...
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    Holy. Shit.
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    Two of my favorite things in the world combined.
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Matt Henderson

I post original stuff about maths, space, computational linguistics and other things that I like. This blog is meant to be accessible and interesting to people of all backgrounds. My undergrad was maths in Cambridge, and I'm now starting research in Speech and Language technology. Email me at If you're new, check out this overview of my posts. All code posted is in Mathematica.

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