Projects

Large amounts of medical data are today available, which offers tremendous opportunities for optimization of healthcare quality and patient security. However, despite this large, increasing number of medical documents, the relevant information is not always easily available, and can be difficult to extract from the plethora of data. Moreover, even as medical documents are mostly digitalized, their free text content is not always mined to find relevant, valuable structured information for care,...

Past Projects

In many human language technology applications (e.g. machine translators, spelling checkers), it often happens that concatenatively written compounds (e.g. “skrywerspen”/”schrijverspen” ‘writer’s pen’) are processed incorrectly. From a technological perspective, these segmentation problems are particularly problematic, since concatenative compounding is a highly productive process in many languages, including Dutch and Afrikaans. Although a compound splitter has already been developed for...
01/07/2012 - 31/12/2013
Nowadays, many profoundly deaf children are given access to auditory information by means of a cochlear implant (CI). Thanks to this device, these children are able to develop oral speech and language. However, there are still many open questions about the nature of speech and language skills of CI children. Previous research has focused mainly on perceptual achievements, while far less attention has been paid to speech and language production, i.e. to how well do CI children speak? Moreover,...
01/07/2012 - 30/09/2013
  Voice control of the apparatus that we use in our daily lives is perceived as a luxury. Often, a remote control is even better suited for home automation because we find it easier to push a button than to speak a command. However, for persons with a physical impairment, pushing a button is not always as easy as it is for most people and voice control is a viable solution for them. What is perceived as a luxury for most people can actually mean a significant...
01/01/2011 - 31/12/2014
RESEARCH QUESTIONS: -To what extent do Flemish teenagers integrate morpho-syntactic and phonological features of the Brabantic regiolect in their chat language? -What is the impact of the independent variable ‘hometown’? Is there a correlation between the relative representation of Brabantic regiolect features and the region where the chatters come from? To what extent do teenagers from the provinces of West-Flanders, East-Flanders and Limburg integrate morpho-syntactic and phonological...
01/10/2010 - 30/09/2014
AMiCA is an IWT, SBO (Strategic Basic Research) funded pre-project with a societal valorization goal. It is a one-year project preparing a full (four-year) SBO project proposal. The project aims to mine relevant website resources (blogs, chat rooms, and social networks), and collect, analyse, and integrate large amounts of subjective information using text and image analysis with the ultimate goal of tracing harmful content in an automatic way.
01/10/2010 - 30/09/2011
Phonological descriptions of the Standard Dutch vowel system distinguish between tense and lax vowels. Both categories may differ in intensity, vowel quality and duration. This project focuses on the perceptual role of duration in vowel categorisation for tense vowels. We study how differences in vowel duration are perceived by listeners with different regional backgrounds. The durational measurements are made in spontaneous speech samples of native speakers in well-defined geographical regions...
01/10/2010
This project wants to investigate how techniques of statistical relational learning can be used for natural language processing. The focus will be on challenging natural language processing tasks, such as semantic role labeling, where syntac and semantic depedencies, structured and unstructured data, local and global models, and probabilistic and logical information must be combined with one another. For what concerns statistical relational learning, the emphasis will lie on probabilistic...
01/09/2010 - 31/01/2013
In this project we on the one hand propose a methodology to (semi)-automate the manual control of peer-to-peer networks and on the other hand a methodology for the automatic extraction and analysis of linguistic features (associated to age, gender and deceptive language usage) of chat language. The aim of the DAPHNE project is to develop a software prototype that will support the law enforcement agencies' control of peer-to-peer networks with regard to the illegal distribution of child...
01/01/2010 - 31/12/2013
The goal of the deLearyous project is the development of a 3D serious video game where players can practice their communication skills by interacting with a virtual character. The trainee talks to the virtual character by typing in sentences in Dutch. The software then has to interpret these sentences and determine the appropriate reaction for the virtual character. The virtual character's response follows a communication model known as the Interpersonal Circumplex (AKA "Leary's Rose", after...
01/01/2010 - 31/12/2012
This project studies schwa epenthesis in spontaneously spoken Standard Dutch in Flanders and The Netherlands. The focus is on the duration of the inserted schwas.
01/01/2010 - 30/09/2010
The goal of this project is to implement a robust, modular system for stylometry and readability research on the basis of existing techniques for automatic text analysis and machine learning, and the development of a web service that allows researchers in the humanities and social sciences to analyze texts with this system. In this way, the project will make available to researchers recent advances in research on the computational modeling of style and readability. More information: www.stylene...
01/01/2010 - 31/12/2011
This project involves making available as web services some of the language processing tools that were developed within the CLiPS computational linguistics group.
01/01/2010 - 31/12/2011
  Masked priming has become a very popular technique in psycholinguistics and other areas of cognitive psychology. In this paradigm a stimulus (the prime) is presented for a very short presentation duration and is immediately followed by the target, which causes backward masking of the prime. The combined action of the two masking stimuli and the short presentation duration of the prime result in a consciously imperceptible stimulus.  The advantage of masked priming is that it allows...
01/01/2009 - 31/10/2013
In his PhD dissertation (PDF), Tom De Smedt has looked at creativity and the thought-provoking question if and how machines can be creative. Why do ants seem so purposeful and creative when they are cooperating to harvest food; or where did spiders learn to make such intricate webs, while nature is inherently “blind” and without purpose? How does creativity work in humans? How exactly do we think new thoughts and construct creative solutions, which we unconsciously apply to everyday problems...
01/10/2008 - 01/10/2012
In this project we investigate whether language acquisition and language processing is best described using a rule-based model or using an exemplar-based model. More specifically, we will use priming experiments to find out whether these two models make correct predictions about the acquisition of the phonology and lexicon of a non-standardised variety (viz. the Maldegem dialect) by children who were raised in Standard Dutch.
01/10/2008 - 30/09/2011
FLaReNet aims at developing a common vision of the area language technology and fostering a European strategy for consolidating the sector, thus enhancing competitiveness at EU level and worldwide. By creating a consensus among major players in the field, the mission of FLaReNet is to identify priorities as well as short, medium, and long-term strategic objectives and provide consensual recommendations in the form of a plan of action for EC, national organisations and industry. Through the...
01/09/2008 - 01/09/2011
The main objectives of the project (i) to optimise deaf patients' hearing experience by developing a new hearing device which combines both types of stimulation in the same ear; (ii) to develop a test battery for prosody reception, i.e. the perception of language rhythm and melody; and (iii) to use this new prosody test battery as a quality measure for the current generation of cochlear implants and classical hearing aids, as well as for the newly developed hybrid electric-acoustic prototype.
01/07/2008 - 30/06/2010
01/01/2008 - 01/12/2009
Research in the field of developmental cognitive neuroscience has shown that audition and language exhibit plasticity, i.e. the ability to modify pre-existing neural synaptic connections dedicated to particular cognitive systems, depending on the quantity and quality of the environmental stimuli during a specific developmental stage. However, there is very little consensus in the literature with respect to the precise limits of these windows of opportunity. In this project we will tackle the...
01/12/2007 - 30/11/2010