Компьютерная лингвистика и интеллектуальные технологии: По материалам ежегодной Международной конференции «Диалог» (Бекасово, 25 - 29 мая 2011 г.)
We analyse student-professor e-mail interaction in Russian universities in terms of Field, Tenor and Mode [Halliday 1978]. According to their content, we classify all e-mail messages into three types: “container e-mails”, “organizational e-mails” and “essential e-mails”. Even though the e-mail correspondence is a variety of the written communication mode, in organizational e-mails many speech-like features are present. They contain temporal and spatial deixis, anaphora and references to common ground. The word order is typical for colloquial speech, which makes organizational e-mails closer to phone calls. E-mails series resemble oral dialogues.
Both students and professors use different discourse styles: formal, informal, slang, etc. The mode of writing depends more on the authors’ age and computer skills rather than on their social status. However, the differences in tenor between the e-mails of students and professors do exist. They are explained by the different perceptions of the norms of social communication and politeness. The analysis of opening and closing formulae also shows that there is no significant difference between the mode of writing e-mails by students and professors. Nevertheless, some specific traits can be found.
Referential choice between various referential expressions, such as de-scriptions, proper names, and pronouns, depends on a variety of factors. We present recent results of our modeling study into referential choice, based on the RefRhet corpus. The account of additional factors and the employment of mixed machine learning techniques enabled an improvement of referential choice prediction. This applies both to the two-way choice between full NP and pronoun and to the threeway choice “descriptive full NP vs. proper name vs. pronoun”. We have demonstrated that the great majority of the factors taken into account are significant for modeling the referential choice.