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  It's UWAweek 49

help2003/help4407

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 UWA week 19 (1st semester, week 10) ↓
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Hi Michael, While comparing my output profile to the example one for Lawson Sample (Children Of The Bush Sample), my profile is exactly the same except for the contraction count, i.e. words with ' without ending in 's. Your example states contractions = 20, while mine states contractions = 19. I did a thorough check of my code and then many manual counts of the example, and I came to the result of 19 too. Respectfully, I have a sneaking suspicion your code counted "pickin'-up" as a contraction; I would argue this doesn't count as a contraction since it's not a shortening of two words, only one, as well as it not complying with your definition of "contraction" in the program instructions. In your profile, you defined contractions as "a simple word followed by an apostrophe, followed by other alphabetics, e.g. "won't", "shouldn't" " Since "-" is not an alphabetic, I would argue we can't count it as a contraction by your own definition. I had a look through previous questions on Help4407 and I saw a post talking about " pain'-killin' ". You stated there that "pain'-killin' " IS a contraction. Similarly, I would argue "pain'-killin'" doesn't count as a contraction, for the same reason. I don't mean to come across as a nitpick, but since the next stage of my project involves mathematics (normalisation then comparison), I want to make sure I'm starting off with the same numbers you are, and thus this definition affects the program. Warm regards, Justin Hart


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Just to add: If you wish to change the definition in the project instructions to allow words with <word>'-<word> to be counted as contractions too, that's fine. But as of right now I'm trying to follow the program instructions to the letter. Justin


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3:24pm Sat 14th May, Michael H.
Edited: shortly thereafter

Wondering the same thing^. Although i think you mean compound words


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Wondering the same thing^


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Hi Justin and Matt, To be utterly precise, "pickin'-up" is both a compound word AND a contraction (short form of "picking"). Indeed, what I said in the earlier posting was: "1) Well spotted. I think you'll agree that it is an interesting stylistic choice by the author, to indicate very informal speech, e.g. in Children of the Bush. Logically, it's both a contraction and a compound-word, so therefore also a word." What Henry Lawson, writing in the late C19 early C20, was doing, was very formal writing style to mimic very informal speech, so he nods to the bits that were elided. It's a small point. What I shall announce this afternoon via the LMS email is that I plan to mark the provided samples as per the provided profiles, but for the longer works I'll allow a margin of 10%, to account for all the small differences in interpretation. Thanks for your diligence and observation. If we were a F2F unit, you'd certainly be getting prizes. Cheers MichaelW


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Thanks Michael. I'll modify my program so it counts " '- " words as valid contractions and conjunctions then, so that it matches up with the sample counts. Appreciate your time.


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Would it be possible to get an example of the longer text? So we can at least know if we are withing the 10% margin? Thank you


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Hi, Will do. It may have to wait till Monday as it's tricky getting files past the UWA fire-wall. Cheers MichaelW


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Thank you very much :)


 UWA week 20 (1st semester, week 11) ↓
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Hi Michael, Sorry to be pedantic, although in reality “pickin’-up” may be a contraction and compound word, by my reading of the spec it is neither. It is not a contraction because the character which follows the apostrophe (a hyphen) is not an alphabetic. And it is not a compound word because, by the spec definition, pickin’ is not a simple word. I know you have kindly allowed for a margin of 10% on larger texts, but my program will not be marked as correct on the Lawson sample (which I assume is considered a “short text”) despite adhering to the spec. I think if you do expect that “pickin’-up” should be treated as a compound word and a contraction then the definitions of these in the spec should be updated accordingly (or correct my reading of the spec if it is incorrect.) I doubt all the students in this unit will see this forum thread. Kind regards :)


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This is a very good point. Since Michael has said so in the forum, I've made my code take "pickin'-up" as both contraction and compound, even though it does not fit the spec. I hope we will not be penalised either way.


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No, you won't. It was something I missed. Cheers MichaelW

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