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Many researchers that develop full software applications in the broad field of natural language processing (NLP) typically implement their single system's components from scratch. While there is nothing wrong with such a methodology from an operational perspective, it typically results in a waste of time. Furthermore, it leads to a substantial diversion of the researchers' efforts from more conceptual and theoretical aspects that could be geared towards the advancement of the state-of-the-art in the field. These main drawbacks call for an implementation approach allowing components' reusability across domains and applications. In that respect, this paper presents an evaluation of a domain independent approach to natural language understanding (NLU) that we have been implementing over the last several years. We have successfully tested and used our approach in three different natural language interfaces to game-like applications, each with its own conversational domains.
Date of Conference: 7-10 Sept. 2009