Extracting Tactical Data from Operation Orders

by James R. Kipps, Jed B. Marti

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This Note describes an approach to automating the extraction of operation orders (OPORDs) and describes an application of the approach to the task of generating the OPORD translation system, which extracts task organization data from input OPORDs. This approach is one of the tools being developed to assist Division Ammunition Officers (DAOs) in anticipating ammunition consumption before battle, a capability that is a vital component of logistics operations in the Army's emerging AirLand Operations doctrine. Described here is a machine-translation approach that takes advantage of the prescribed five-paragraph format of OPORDs to identify and isolate pertinent information. This approach uses concise and clear rules to automatically generate programs that take as input textual OPORDs such as those transmitted through the Maneuver Control System (MCS), extract the desired data, and send them to other computer systems. The techniques described here are generally applicable to extracting and checking data from a wide range of highly structured but not "machine-readable" documents.

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