This is probably a really dumb question, but I figure I will ask anyways. I am trying to write a computer program that parses a sentance and determines wether or not that sentance is grammatically accurate. What I need and for some reason, cant seem to find is some site or book or anything that can give me some rules for the english parts of speech. In specific, I need to know what parts of speech are allowed to follow other parts of speech and maybe what kind of exceptions i need to look out for. Ive found litterally thousands of sites giving me a description of what the parts of speech are, but no real information on valid word order or any kind of rules to that affect. I suppose what I should ask is, do rules for what I am looking for even exist? Or can any part of speech follow another? There has got to be some list of rules somewhere that govern why "John jumped the fence" is valid gramatically and why " Jumped fence john the" isnt. I never really had formal training in grammar, what I learned I learned just from listening to other people talk. And those grammar sites just dont make much sence. Does what I am asking make any sence at all? Or am I off my rocker?

Much much too big a project for someone who has had no formal training in grammar, Terra. This has already been done by others more knowlegeable in language.

Try, "Parse a Sentence" at

If you don't mind my asking, Terra, which (programming) language do you intend to use?

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I havent really decided yet actually. I know it would require a bit of crunch power, so I would probably end up doing it in C++. But I know several different programming languages.
Well, the very best of luck with it. You may be able to pick up a wordlist already tagged for parts of speech somewhere.

I'm sorry to say it, but you seem to be in over your head on this! Knowing parts of speech isn't going to help because the same word can be many different parts of speech depending on context. If I had a Ph.D. in linguistics and and Ph.D. in computer science, I would still approach this project with trepidation. It's just too complex a problem to tackle without being an expert in many related areas. I think, though, that you should read as much as possible on the subject, both linguistics and computer science, and you may get some good ideas about how to go about it for a simpler subset of the language, just to get your feet wet. There's an old book called "Language as a Cognitive Process -- Syntax" by Terry Winograd which goes into the problems of writing software that analyzes sentences in English. You might browse through that, or something like it, to get started.

And no, you're not off your rocker! Good luck!

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Maybe you should investigate in which point the order of the words in a sentence turns to an invalid sentence. I wonder why you are able to understand Yoda, for example, are his sentences in the right order? Maybe not in the perfect order, but even so, you can understand what he says.
Hello terra,
I've just heard a presentation today, thank goodness, which concerns your quetion in a way, that is, programing language for representing syntax & semantics used in computational treatment of natural language.
All I can do is to refer you the following literature (which I haven't read) :

Copestake, Ann, Flickinger, Dan, Pollard, aCarl, & Sag, Ivan A. (2003). Minimal recursion semantics: an introduction. unpublished draft under review, available at :
http://lingo.stanford.edu/sag/papers/copestake.pdf .

(with my gratitude for professor G.T.)