Controlled language

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Controlled natural languages (CNLs) are artificial languages built by simplifying the grammar and reducing the number of words in the language to avoid ambiguity or complexity.

There are two types of controlled languages: some designed to help non-native speakers of a language, and some designed to enable automatic semantic analysis.

The first type of languages (often called "simplified" or "technical" languages) are used by businesses or industries to improve the quality of technical writing, and possibly simplify the (semi-)automatic translation to other languages. For example, the ASD Simplified Technical English, Caterpillar Technical English, and IBM's Easy English.

These languages guide the writer by general rules such as "write short and simple sentences", "use the person's name ("John Smith" for example) instead of saying "him", and "talk about who is doing something, rather than what is being done, unless you need to say what is being done".[1]

The second type of languages have a well defined rules of construction and interpretation, and can be matched to formal languages, such as first-order logic. Those languages can be used to handle information, to support fully automatic checks to test that they are correct and to search for information easily.

Languages[change | change source]

Existing logic-based controlled natural languages include:

Other existing controlled natural languages:

Related pages[change | change source]

References[change | change source]

  1. Muegge, Uwe (2007). "Controlled language: the next big thing in translation?". ClientSide News Magazine (ClientSide Publications) 7 (7): 21–24.

Other websites[change | change source]