Pronoun Generation for Game Reports

Title:Pronoun Generation for Game Reports
Institute:University of Twente (HMI)
Place:Enschede The Netherlands
Type:Capita selecta and Research Topics
End date:not present
HMI ContactMariët Theune


NB: this assignment can be done as a final project or, in a reduced form, as a Capita Selecta.

One way to support reflection by players of serious games is to generate a story about what has happened in the game, for the players to read and discuss after the game. This assignment is about automatically generating such stories. Specifically, it is about using personal pronouns (he, she etc.) in the right places in such stories.

Background: HMI is currently working on the development of a serious game that should help people train their social interaction skills. In this game the player interacts with non-player characters, controlled by autonomous agents, which will react in intelligent ways to the player's actions (this part is still work in progress). The scenario is about a police officer who interacts with troublesome youths hanging around in a shopping street. Stories (in Dutch) about the actions are automatically generated by a system called the Narrator. A short example story:

Een politieman, die Adrie heet, is in een steegje.
Hij wil met een stoere hangjongere, die Barry heet, praten en hij gaat naar een hoofdstraat.
Hij beledigt hem, dus Barry is boos.
Met een schoen slaat hij de politieman, zodat hij verdrietig is.
Een omstander, die Manuela heet, gaat naar de hoofdstraat en zij ziet dat de hangjongere hem slaat.

As you see, several things could be improved about this story. One important thing is the use of personal pronouns. Their placement seems odd, and it is not always clear who is meant. (For example, who becomes sad in the example story?) The goal of this project is to create an test a new algorithm for pronoun generation in the Narrator.

Some papers on an old version of the Narrator (publications about the current version are not available yet):

A Fabula model for emergent narrative. Ivo Swartjes and Mariët Theune. Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Technologies for Interactive Digital Storytelling and Entertainment (TIDSE 2006), Lecture Notes in Computer Science 4326, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg, pages 49-60, 2006.

The Narrator: NLG for digital storytelling. Mariët Theune, Nanda Slabbers and Feikje Hielkema. In the Proceedings of the 11th European Workshop on Natural Language Generation (ENLG'07), Schloss Dagstuhl, Germany, pages 109-112, 2007.