Causal Reconstruction

Unknown author (1993-02-01)

Causal reconstruction is the task of reading a written causal description of a physical behavior, forming an internal model of the described activity, and demonstrating comprehension through question answering. T his task is difficult because written d escriptions often do not specify exactly how r eferenced events fit together. This article (1) ch aracterizes the causal reconstruction problem, (2) presents a representation called transition space, which portrays events in terms of "transitions,'' or collections of changes expressible in everyday language, and (3) describes a program called PATHFINDER, which uses the transition space representation to perform causal reconstruction on simplified English descriptions of physical activity.