AAAI Publications, 2010 AAAI Fall Symposium Series

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Computability of Narrative
Loizos Michael

Last modified: 2010-11-03


Among the many aspects of human intelligence that currently elude the simulation by machines is that of story understanding. Although many theories of narrative have been proposed, several processes pertaining to narrative remain inadequately formalized and, hence, beyond full mechanization. This work proposes a general formal framework that attempts to make precise such processes and related notions, with first and foremost that of what constitutes a narrative. Emphasis is placed on identifying certain premises that narratives are expected to adhere to, and deriving the formal implications that these have in terms of the computability of the various relevant notions. Among others, it is established that checking whether a discourse is a narrative is decidable, and that narratives can be computably enumerated and, hence, unambiguously indexed.


narrative computability; narrative understanding; narrative generation; narrative indexing; canonical narrative index; preferred narrative; reasoning about actions and change; model-theoretic semantics

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