Third GF Summer School 2013
Frontiers of Multilingual Technology

Special theme of 2013: Scaling Up Grammatical Resources

GF Summer School logo

Lake Chiemsee, Bavaria
18th–30th August, 2013


Grammatical Framework (GF),, is a multilingual grammar formalism based on the idea of a shared abstract syntax and mappings between the abstract syntax and concrete languages. GF has hundreds of users all over the world.

The GF Resource Grammar Library (RGL) implements the morphology (inflection) and basic syntax (phrase structure) of some 28 languages: Bulgarian, Catalan, Chinese, Danish, Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Interlingua, Japanese, Italian, Latvian, Maltese, Nepali, Norwegian bokmål, Persian, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Russian, Sindhi, Spanish, Swedish, Thai, and Urdu. These resources are freely available as open-source software. More languages are under construction, in both in-house and external projects.

We are constantly welcoming new languages, especially from new language families, as well as EU languages not yet covered by the Resource Grammar Library (Estonian, Lithuanian, Irish, Czech, Slovak, Hungarian, Slovene, and Portuguese). Learn more at the RGL status page. The Summer School is an excellent place to get started with a new language.

This year's special theme of “Scaling up Grammar Resources” means extending the existing resource grammars with the ultimate goal of dealing with any text in the supported languages. Lexicon extension is an obvious part of this work, but also new grammatical constructions are of interest. Porting resources from other open-source approaches, such as WordNets and Apertium, is one method of doing this. And reciprocally, we want to make GF resources easily reusable in other approaches.


The summer school starts with a GF tutorial aimed to be suitable for absolute beginners and bring them to the level where they can do independent work and follow the rest of the talks. But the tutorial should also make sense to experienced GF users, as it gives an update about some recent developments.

The tutorial will be completed on Wednesday, and followed by talks on various topics around GF and multilingual technology. These talks will be accessible even to the beginners who have followed the tutorial. They will usually not build on each other, so that, even if you find some of them difficult to follow, this will not compromise your understanding of the later talks.

Morning talks are intended for everyone, whereas afternoon work is in smaller groops. In the afternoons, guided tutoring will be given in small groups and to individuals, with detailed exercises and possibility for feedback. Potential tutors include Krasimir Angelov, John J. Camilleri, Dana Dannélls, Ramona Enache, Erzsébet Galgóczy, Normunds Grūzītis, Thomas Hallgren, Kaarel Kaljurand, Hans Leiß, Inari Listenmaa, Laurette Marais, Aarne Ranta, Jordi Saludes, Christina Unger, and Liza Zimina.

The afternoons also contain specialized tutorials and workshops, aimed for those interested in their topics; other people can focus on their own projects in the meantime. Their duration can be anything from 30 minutes to 3 hours. More workshop suggestions are welcome!

Needless to say, practical work in the afternoons is an essential part of the summer school. The participants are expected to bring their own laptop computers and work on them; the tutors will help everyone to install the GF software (as well as other relevant tools, such as Giza++ and Moses). The GF software should work without problems on Linux, Mac OS, and Windows.

First week (19-23 August):
Introduction to GF and multilingual grammar programming

Monday 19 August: Introduction to GF, part I

9-12 Aarne Ranta: Getting started with GF
12-14 lunch
14-17 Installing GF, using the GF shell, writing simple grammars.
[Installing GF on Windows]

Tuesday 20 August: Introduction to GF, part II

9-11 Aarne Ranta: The Resource Grammar Library
11-12 Thomas Hallgren: The GF Cloud
12-14 lunch
14-17 Tutorial on getting started with RGL
John J. Camlleri: The RGL source browser
RGL exercises

Wednesday 21 August: Introduction to GF, part III

9-11 Aarne Ranta: Best practices for GF applications
11-12 Mike Rosner: CNL for robots
12-14 lunch
14-17 John J. Camilleri: GF-Eclipse tutorial
Ramona Enache: Application grammar tutorial
Application grammar exercises

Thursday 22 August: GF and language theory

9-10 Krasimir Angelov: The mechanics of GF
10-11 Wolfgang Maier: Data-driven parsing
11-12 Christian Lieske: Natural Language Processing in Real-World Multilingual Production
12-14 lunch
Group photo at 13:00
14-15 Christian Lieske: Tutorial with OKAPI, Rainbow, LanguageTool
Inari Listenmaa: WordNet tutorial
15:30-17 Student presentations and project proposals:
  1. John: Investigating lexing on the character level
  2. Krasimir: Proper handling of non-existant forms
  3. Susan: Continue work on Ancient Greek, based on Hans Leiß' work
  4. Yan: Spend more time learning to program in GF
  5. Birgitta: Using GF for help in professional translation
  6. Rogan: DSL for relaxing concrete grammars
  7. Hans: Adding frames for German words
  8. Bibek: Mini-resource for Oriya language
  9. Michal: Resource grammar for Irish; Phrasomatic
  10. Laurette Jr.: Grammars with prosodic information
  11. Laurette Sr.: Tswana and dealing with agglutinative languages
  12. Prasanth: Benchmarking the English–Hindi translator
  13. Kaarel: Estonian resource grammar (with Inari); multilingual kitchen timer; PGF keyboard for Android; Pocketpshinx + GF C runtime; collection of GF error messages [slides]
  14. Christina U.: Generating grammars from ontologies
  15. Erzsébet: Hungarian resource grammar
  16. Christian: Terminology checking; building query system against a known term database
  17. Normunds: Tool for graphical modelling of ontologies using GF for verbalisation
  18. Heli: Post-editing for rule-based machine translation
  19. Manzoor: English–Kashimiri translation in travel domain; a resource grammar for Kashmiri
  20. Arulmozhi: Domain specific multilingual translation; a resource grammar for Tamil
  21. Wolfgang: Extraction of grammars from treebanks
  22. Grégoire: Java bindings for C runtime; workshop on GF source code (second week)
  23. Herbert: Latin resource grammar
  24. Thomas: Mini-resource grammar in Haskell
  25. Aarne: Look at the compiler error messages

Friday 23 August: GF, statistics, and hybrids

9-11 Cristina España: Statistical machine translation tutorial
11-12 Ramona Enache: What GF can learn from SMT
12:30-14 lunch: Ayurvedic buffet
14-17 Krasimir Angelov: C runtime tutorial
Cristina España: SMT standard tool tutorial [corpus]

Weekend: Social programme


For the Saturday we are planning a hike up nearby mountain Hochries (1,569m). We will take the ferry to Gstadt followed by a private bus. We then have the option of taking a ski lift up the mountain or hiking up (roughly 2 hours, very steep). Then we walk down the other side (roughly 2 hours, gentle) to Aschau im Chiemgau, and then get a train to Prien. There will be a few places to stop and eat along the way.


Sunday will be an open day with no guided excursion. Suggestions include:

Second week (26-30 August):
Advanced work in specialised tracks

Monday 26 August: resource grammar construction

9-10 Hans Leiß: A resource grammar for Ancient Greek
10-11 Yan Tian: The GF approach to Chinese
11-12 Laurette Pretorius: From Tswana finite state morphology to GF
12-14 lunch
14-17 K.V.S. Prasad: Workshop on South-Asian languages
Workshops on the details of various RGL languages

Tuesday 27 August: linguistic theory

9-10 Nyamsuren Erdenebadrakh: Mongolian resource grammar
Dana Dannélls: Multilingual ontology-based painting descriptions and queries
(Harald Hammarström: Cross-linguistic comparison with GF, cancelled)
10-11 Christina Unger: Inducing grammars from the lexicon-ontology interface
11-12 Normunds Grūzītis: A frame-semantic abstraction layer to GF RGL
12-14 lunch
14-17 Hans Leiß: Workshop on known problems with GF
Grégoire Détrez: Workshop on GF implementation source code

Wednesday 28 August: domain-specific applications

9-10 Jordi Saludes: Multilingual Mathematics
10-11 Björn Bringert: Building speech applications for Android
11-12 Kaarel Kaljurand: CNL in speech-recognition based user interfaces
12-14 lunch
14-17 Jyrki Nummenmaa: Workshop on summary generation

Thursday 29 August: industrial perspective (Open Day)

9-10 Michael Stormbom: The healthcare sector and language technology
10-11 Rogan Creswick: Language is unconstrained: deploying CNL systems
11-12:30 Liza Zimina: Japanese resource grammar
Aarne Ranta: Resource grammar explanation project
12:30-14 lunch: Ayurvedic buffet
Group photo at 14:00
14-17 Participant presentations:
  1. Laurette: IS and prosody in GF
  2. Bibek: Odia resource grammar
  3. Herbert: Latin resource grammar
  4. Erzsébet: Hungarian mini-resource grammar
  5. John: Character lexing
  6. Krasimir: Three small things – nonExists, runtime gluing, Java bindings to C runtime
  7. Michal: Irish mini-mini-resource grammar
  8. Normunds: CNL + a graphical notation for OWL

Friday 30 August: wrapping up

9-11:45 Participant presentations:
  1. Tommi: Generating test material for MT
  2. Inari & Kaarel: Estonian resource grammar
  3. Manzoor: GF approach to Kashmiri
  4. Prasanth: Benchmarking the robust GF translator
  5. Jyrki & Aarne: Simplifying textual structures by tree filtering
  6. Arulmozhi: Experiments with Tamil in GF. Investigating stepping into multilingual NLP for her company Veda Semantics
  7. Hans: Adding verb frames to DictGer
11:45-12 Closing discussion:
  • Promotion of GF via the book.
  • Summer Schools will continue to be held every 2 years. Next edition in 2015 will be held in Malta, possibly during July.
  • Ideas for smaller, more focused GF workshops (possibly as satellites to other larger events).
  • We will gather people's best photos soon, details will be sent on the mailing list.
  • A big thanks to Hans and all other organisers, speakers and attendees for making this another successful GF Summer School!
12-14 lunch

Group photos

Group photo taken 2013-08-22
Group photo from the first week of the Summer School.
Group photo taken 2013-08-29
Group photo from the second week of the Summer School.


Krasimir Angelov U Gothenburg
Björn Bringert Google
John J. Camilleri U Gothenburg
Rogan Creswick Galois Connection
Grégoire Détrez U Gothenburg
Ramona Enache U Gothenburg
Cristina España i Bonet UPC Barcelona
Thomas Hallgren U Gothenburg
Mohan Ganesalingam U Cambridge
Normunds Grūzītis U Latvia
Harald Hammarström Max Planck Institute
Kaarel Kaljurand U Zurich
Hans Leiß LMU Munich
Christian Lieske SAP AG
Wolfgang Maier Heinrich Heine U Düsseldorf
Jyrki Nummenmaa U Tampere
K.V.S. Prasad Chalmers U of Technology
Laurette Pretorius U South Africa
Aarne Ranta U Gothenburg
Mike Rosner U Malta
Jordi Saludes UPC Barcelona
Michael Stormbom Lingsoft
Yan Tian SJTU Shanghai
Christina Unger U Bielefeld


Frauenchiemsee island

The Summer School will take place at the Frauenwörth Abbey, on Frauenchiemsee island in Chiemsee lake, Bavaria, Germany.

Getting to Frauenwörth

Note: The Frauenwörth Abbey is on the second largest island in Lake Chiemsee. Google Maps (above) uses the name Frauenchiemsee, although local maps of the area call this island Fraueninsel.

From Munich airport

  1. Take S-Bahn line 8 to Munich East Station (Ostbahnhof), then the train to Prien at Lake Chiem (S-Bahn/train timetable: Munich Airport – Prien).
  2. From Prien train station to the lake harbour Prien–Stock you can walk (1.8 km, 20 min — walking map), or go by bus, taxi or Chiemsee railway (8 min).
  3. At Prien-Stock, take the boat to Frauenchiemsee island (about 30 min. ride, roughly every 45 minutes — boat timetable). The last boat for the island leaves Prien-Stock at 19:30.
  4. The abbey is next to the landing pier, to the left.
The "Bayernticket"

For those who come via Munich airport, we recommend to by a "Bayernticket" at the airport (either on some of the ticket machines or at the Deutsche Bahn desk - if the latter is open on sunday). The Bayernticket costs 22 Euro for 1 person, is valid for one day all over Bavaria in regional trains (RE, not in intercity IC or eurocity EC trains), the S-Bahn, and the Chiemsee-Bahn.

So with a single ticket you can take the S-Bahn S8 at the airport, go to the train station "Ostbahnhof" (arriving at platform 1), there take a regional train to Prien (direction Salzburg, leaving at platform 8), and at Prien Bahnhof switch to the "Chiemseebahn" which takes you to Prien/Stock, where the boat to the Fraueninsel leaves. For the boat, you need to buy a separate ticket at the harbour.

Notice that some of the trains mentioned in the train time table above are EC or IC trains, which you cannot use with the "Bayernticket". Notice also that for some connections, you have only 5 minutes to change from Deutsche Bahn to the Chiemseebahn at Prien.

Check your connection Munich airport → Prien/Stock (harbour) here. Click the check-box "use Bayern-Ticket" to be sure that only RE-trains are used. Click the + under the proposed connections to see the details on when and how to change trains etc. Here's a map which helps you make your way from Prien Bahnhof to the Chiemseebahn.

In case you miss the Chiemseebahn, you can take the a taxi from the other side of the train station to the harbour. Depending on how much luggage you have, the 30 minutes walk to the harbour may not be troublesome. In case you miss the last boat at Prien/Stock at 19:30, notice there are two later boats from Gstadt to the Fraueninsel at 19:55 and 21:00.

If you travel in a group, there is a version of the Bayernticket for up to 5 persons, at a price of 22 + n*4 Euro (n ≤ 4), i.e. only 4 Euro for each additional person.

From Salzburg, Austria

Take bus or taxi to Salzburg main station (Hauptbahnhof), there take the train to Prien (train timetable: Salzburg Hbf – Prien), and follow the remaining steps above.

By train

If you come by train from somewhere in Germany, go via Munich and there use the line Munich–Salzburg. Leave the train at Prien and proceed as under 3–5 above.

You can find train connections here: timetables of Deutsche Bahn AG.

By car

  1. Autobahn A8 from Munich into the direction of Salzburg; exit "Bernau", via Prien into the direction of Rimsting/Breitbrunn to Gstadt.
  2. Park your car (no cars allowed to the island), there is sufficient parking space.
  3. Take the boat to the Frauenchiemsee (about 10 min. ride).

Leaving Frauenwörth

For your return flight, note that in order to reach Munich airport before 11am, you need to stay a night in Prien and take an early train at 7am or 8am. You won't be able to get these trains by the first boat from Frauenchiemsee. Contact us if you need a hotel in Prien.

Accommodation & general information


  1. Accommodation will be in the Benedictine abbey Frauenwörth.
  2. Towels and sheets will be provided, but there are no hair dryers in the rooms.
  3. There is a washing machine and tumble dryer that you can use (see below).
  4. There is an "internet cafe" and two hotspots in the abbey. Internet connection is available in the lecture room, but not in the sleeping rooms.
  5. When leaving simply leave the key in the door (from the outside). There is no checking out procedure.


There is a washing machine and dryer on the second floor of house Irmengard. At the main staircase, turn left and go through the big white metal door. Then second glass door on your right. Washing costs 50c for 2 hours (the box on the wall with the red button). Drying costs 2x50c for 2 hours (the box with the white button). The machines only take 50c coins.


  1. All meals will be taken in the abbey's restaurant Klosterwirt.
  2. The Klosterwirt is not familiar with vegan cooking, but the abbey's (Indian) cook bought vegan food and will instruct the Klosterwirt how to prepare the meals.
  3. Breakfast is served between 8:00 and 9:00 each day.
  4. Lunch starts at 12:00.
  5. Dinner starts at 18:00.
  6. Please be on time for the meals!

The island

  1. There is NO bank on the Fraueninsel, nor a machine where you get cash (for this you must go to Prien or Gstadt). The abbey accepts EC, VISA and Mastercard, but no other credit cards. Some restaurants and shops probably also accept these cards.
  2. There is a shop where you can get fresh fruits, but it is open in the morning only, and not every day.
  3. Aside from the abbey's restaurant where we shall be having our meals, there are two other restaurants on the island, plus some other small food vendors.


During the evenings one can visit Gstadt and the other towns on the lake (remember to check the boat timetable for the last boat back), or simply walk, swim and relax on the island.


Registration for the Summer School is now closed. If you have questions about your registration please contact us directly on the addresses below.


The event is being sponsored by VolkswagenStiftung, who are covering the accommodation and board of all participants.

Travel refunds

All participants should pay for their travel arrangements themselves upfront. If you are eligible for reimbursebent of travel costs, this will take place after the Summer School is over. It is very important that you save all orginal tickets and boarding passes which you will need to hand over in order to get a refund.

For the Volkswagenstiftung, from each of the invited participants we need:

  1. a short abstract of your talk
  2. bank account details, including name and postal address of the bank, IBAN, SWIFT/BIC
  3. boarding cards, airplane and train tickets
Since there may be some funding left, we would like to ask every participant to have the informations in (2) available at the Summer School, and to keep their boarding cards and tickets. In additional, please make sure that you speak to Hans before leaving so that you may sign the refund form.

You can send your original tickets/boarding cards to:

Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
Centrum für Informations- und Sprachverarbeitung (CIS)
Dr. Hans Leiß
Oettingenstraße 67 (Raum C110)
D-80538 München


Our main communication channel for announcements will be the Google Group. You are welcome (and encouraged!) to ask general questions here.

If you use IRC, you should join the #gf channel on the Freenode network to ask quick questions or just chat about GF and the Summer School.

If you have a more specific question, you can contact us directly below:

Previous summer schools