Story Understanding: the Beginning of a Consensus

Unknown author (1978-06)

This report describes research done at the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Support for the laboratory's artificial intelligence research is provided in part by the Advanced Research Projects Agency of the Department of Defense under Office of Naval Research contract N00014-75-C-0643.

Working Paper

This paper is written for an Area Examination on the three papers: "A Framed PAINTING: The Representation of a Common Sense Knowledge Fragment" by Eugene Charniak, "Reporter: An Intelligent Noticer" by Steve Rosenberg, and "Using Plans to Understand Natural Language" by Robert Wilensky. Surprisingly, these papers share a common view of what it means to understand a story. The first part of this paper reviews the previous notions of "understanding", showing the progression to today's consensus. The content of the consensus and how the individual papers fit within it is then described. Finally, unsolved problems not adequately dealt with by any of the approaches are presented briefly.