An Introduction to Linguistic Pattern Recognition

by Robert H. Anderson

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Review of the linguistic concepts "sentence," "language," "grammar," and "parse" as applied to strings of characters. The emphasis in this paper is on practical applications of linguistic theory to pattern recognition, rather than on linguistic theory itself. Various possibilities are suggested for extending these linguistic concepts from the domain of character strings to the domain of distributions of characters in two or more dimensions. The applications discussed include spark chamber photoanalysis, chromosome analysis in photomicrographs, and analysis of two-dimensional mathematical expressions. Several research projects are discussed which have attempted to use a linguistic approach for the recognition of "real-world" patterns.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation Paper series. The paper was a product of the RAND Corporation from 1948 to 2003 that captured speeches, memorials, and derivative research, usually prepared on authors' own time and meant to be the scholarly or scientific contribution of individual authors to their professional fields. Papers were less formal than reports and did not require rigorous peer review.

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