Generalised phrase structure grammars (GPSG's) appear to offer a means by which the syntactic properties of natural languages may be very concisely described. The main reason for this is that the GPSG framework allows you to state a variety of meta-grammatical rules which generate new rules from old ones, so that you can specify rules with a wide variety of realisations via a very small number of explicit statements. Unfortunately, trying to analyse a piece of text in terms of such rules is a very awkward task, as even a small set of GPSG statements will generate a large number of underlying rules. This paper discusses some of the difficulties of parsing with GPSG's, and presents a fairly straightforward bottom-up parser for them.
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