## Abstract

We study the problem of computing the probability that a given stochastic context-free grammar (SCFG), G, generates a string in a given regular language L(D) (given by a DFA, D). This basic problem has a number of applications in statistical natural language processing, and it is also a key necessary step towards quantitative ω-regular model checking of stochastic context-free processes (equivalently, 1-exit recursive Markov chains, or stateless probabilistic pushdown processes).

We show that the probability that G generates a string in L(D) can be computed to within arbitrary desired precision in polynomial time (in the standard Turing model of computation), under a rather mild assumption about the SCFG, G, and with no extra assumption about D. We show that this assumption is satisfied for SCFG’s whose rule probabilities are learned via the well-known inside-outside (EM) algorithm for maximum-likelihood estimation (a standard method for constructing SCFGs in statistical NLP and biological sequence analysis). Thus, for these SCFGs the algorithm always runs in P-time.

We show that the probability that G generates a string in L(D) can be computed to within arbitrary desired precision in polynomial time (in the standard Turing model of computation), under a rather mild assumption about the SCFG, G, and with no extra assumption about D. We show that this assumption is satisfied for SCFG’s whose rule probabilities are learned via the well-known inside-outside (EM) algorithm for maximum-likelihood estimation (a standard method for constructing SCFGs in statistical NLP and biological sequence analysis). Thus, for these SCFGs the algorithm always runs in P-time.

Original language | English |
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Title of host publication | 40th International Colloquium, ICALP 2013, Riga, Latvia, July 8-12, 2013, Proceedings, Part II |

Publisher | Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg |

Pages | 199-211 |

Number of pages | 13 |

ISBN (Electronic) | 978-3-642-39212-2 |

ISBN (Print) | 978-3-642-39211-5 |

DOIs | |

Publication status | Published - 2013 |

### Publication series

Name | Lecture Notes in Computer Science |
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Publisher | Springer Berlin Heidelberg |

Volume | 7966 |

ISSN (Print) | 0302-9743 |

ISSN (Electronic) | 1611-3349 |