Magpie Lab

From Eliza in the 1960s to Siri and Watson today, the idea of talking to computers in natural language has fascinated people. While Natural Language Processing (NLP) is a complicated field, it is fairly easy to create a simple program to respond to English sentences. This lab will take strings, parse them for recognizable information, and respond according to the information found. This can be done early in the course, as soon as students have learned if statements and start working with the String class. The code contains a while loop, but students only need to be able to read this code instead of modify it, so the lab can be used to introduce these concepts. There are suggested extensions which can be used to introduce arrays and array lists later in the class.

created 18 January 2013
last revised 1 March 2013
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