A number of paradigms and procedures are employed to analyze verbally relayed information, including natural language. In the social sciences, these are typically grouped into one of two methodological classes: qualitative methods, and quantitative methods. The use of one, or the other, of these two classes of methods to analyze natural language is related to particular general tendencies and attitudes, which we discuss first in this section of these Technicals. Next, we provide an overview of several concepts and procedures from previous qualitative methods in the social sciences, followed by a similar summary of previous quantitative methods. We then turn to a discussion on the previous development of Raven’s Eye. Along the way, we detail the ways in which Raven’s Eye incorporates and facilitates various aspects of analysis according to these qualitative, quantitative, and mixed- or multi-method approaches to natural language understanding.
In this section, we discuss the general tendencies and attitudes about natural language analysis in the social and information sciences prior to the invention of Raven’s Eye, and note how our expansive attitude both incorporates, and expands on these pre-existing tendencies and attitudes.