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From:
Alan E & Carmel J Brain <[log in to unmask]>
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Date:
Fri, 18 Dec 1998 17:34:29 +1000
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Robert C. Leif, Ph.D. wrote:
>
> To: Wesley Groleau et al.
> From: Bob Leif, Ph.D.
>
> Subject: Language Efficiency

> I might add a comment, which I hope does not hurt anyone's feelings. Having
> spent almost 40 years doing science, analytical cytology and cancer
> research, I am totally horrified at the level of many computer science
> studies. Most of what I read would be totally unacceptable in the scientific
> literature.

Hallelujah, Brother! I couldn't agree more.

OK, so what metrics should we use? How do we design the experiment? I
would have thought the (US) DOD for one would be fascinated by getting
some hard date vis-a-vis comparative language capabilities. The FP
database in Melbourne seems to show that the single biggest contrivuting
factor to productivity is language.

I've tried to get the ball rolling several times here (I have a mere
BSc, and such a topic would be a LOVERLY PhD thesis..) but no joy. Yet
it's one of those dream areas, where there's b***** all in the way of
literature, most of it is very soft, yet there's a potential huge
practical economic benefit in the short term, ie Funding SHOULD be easy
to get.

Experimental design is another matter.

It should also either a) Prove what we knew all along or b) Shake our
complacency and kill some long-cherished beliefs. Probably a bit of
both. Might be an idea to get some  Adaphobes along to review things
too, as otherwise we may lose objectivity (and hence usefulness).

Over to you. Can we do something about this?

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