FMR: functional meaning representation

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Element types in FMR

  • Constants: Refer to specific objects in the world. A constant can be a number, a lexical string, or an entity.
  • Classes: Semantic category of entities. For example:, math.number
    • Sub-class: math.number ⊆ math.expression
    • Template classes: classes with one or more parameters, for example: t.list<c, m, n>, where c is a class, m and n are integers.
  • Functions: The major way to form larger language units from smaller ones. A function is comprised of a name, a list of core arguments, and a return type.
    • Noun functions
      • Map entities to their properties or to other entities having specific relations withe the argument(s).
      • Are used to represent noun phrases in natural language.
      • Pronoun functions are special zero-argument noun functions.
    • Verb functions
      • Act as sentences or sub-sentences
      • The most important function type?
    • Modifier functions
      • Many functions can take additional extended arguments as their modifiers.
      • Modifier functions often take the role of extended arguments to modify noun function, verb functions or other modifier functions.
      • Are used in FMR as the semantic representation of adjectives, adverb phrases (including conjunctive adverb phrases), and prepositional phrases in NL
  • Entity Variables: Variables are assigned to FMR nodes for indicating the co-reference of sub-trees to entities.

Features of FMR

  • Strongly typed language
    • Type-compatibility: The type of each child of a function node should match the corresponding argument type of the function.
  • Open-domain type system.
    • Thousands of types
    • Other languages: At most 100+ in grammar level
  • Built-in data structures
    • like t.list and nf.list

Semantic parsing from NL to FMR

By using CFG rules to map natural language sentences and phrases to FMR

"The product of 3 consecutive number is 60" =>, 3, mf.consecutive)), 60);


  • 语义理解平台/语音助手(2013-今,腾讯/搜狗)
    • 复合实体识别(CRF识别/规则识别/词表识别)
    • 基于语言模型的查询意图理解
    • 基于语义模板的查询意图识别和语义信息抽取
      • 通用CFG文法解析器:高效Earley算法的实现
      • 意图识别,槽位填充
    • 查询意图排序,基于候选意图结果的终判模块
    • 下游分类别知识库系统/垂直搜索系统