Learning Commonsense Knowledge Through Interactive Dialogue

Authors Benjamin Wu, Alessandra Russo, Mark Law, Katsumi Inoue

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Author Details

Benjamin Wu
  • Imperial College London, Department of Computing, Imperial College London, SW7 2AZ, UK
Alessandra Russo
  • Imperial College London, Department of Computing, Imperial College London, SW7 2AZ, UK
Mark Law
  • Imperial College London, Department of Computing, Imperial College London, SW7 2AZ, UK
Katsumi Inoue
  • National Institute of Informatics, 2 Chome-1-2 Hitotsubashi, Chiyoda, Tokyo

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Benjamin Wu, Alessandra Russo, Mark Law, and Katsumi Inoue. Learning Commonsense Knowledge Through Interactive Dialogue. In Technical Communications of the 34th International Conference on Logic Programming (ICLP 2018). Open Access Series in Informatics (OASIcs), Volume 64, pp. 12:1-12:19, Schloss Dagstuhl – Leibniz-Zentrum für Informatik (2018)


One of the most difficult problems in Artificial Intelligence is related to acquiring commonsense knowledge - to create a collection of facts and information that an ordinary person should know. In this work, we present a system that, from a limited background knowledge, is able to learn to form simple concepts through interactive dialogue with a user. We approach the problem using a syntactic parser, along with a mechanism to check for synonymy, to translate sentences into logical formulas represented in Event Calculus using Answer Set Programming (ASP). Reasoning and learning tasks are then automatically generated for the translated text, with learning being initiated through question and answering. The system is capable of learning with no contextual knowledge prior to the dialogue. The system has been evaluated on stories inspired by the Facebook's bAbI's question-answering tasks, and through appropriate question and answering is able to respond accurately to these dialogues.

Subject Classification

ACM Subject Classification
  • Computing methodologies → Knowledge representation and reasoning
  • Commonsense Reasoning
  • Answer Set Programming
  • Event Calculus
  • Inductive Logic Programming


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