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Computational Humor

  • By: Julia M. Taylor
  • In: Encyclopedia of Humor Studies
  • Edited by: Salvatore Attardo
  • Subject:General Media, Communication & Cultural Studies, Sociology of Culture

The term computational humor refers to an ability of a computational system to detect or generate some form of verbal humor. It does not refer to jokes about computers or any other computer-based systems. The textual forms of humor are typically not specified, but due to the complexity of the problem, they are often restricted to the low-hanging fruit, such as template-based light bulb or knock-knock jokes. To understand the nature of the phenomenon of computational humor, what needs to be discussed is the usefulness and applications of computational humor, as well as some of its dimensions, such as top-down versus bottom-up approaches and generation versus detection.

The usefulness and motivations of computational humor have been argued in many fora, starting from the 1990s, when the ...

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