Computational Linguistics Olympiad

Computational Linguistics Olympiads started in Moscow in 1962. Finally in 2007 the US caught up and now we have the NACLO — North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad.

The problems from past Soviet Olympiads are hard to find, so here I present a translation from Russian of a sample problem from the Moscow Linguistics Olympiad website:

You are given sentences in Niuean language with their translations into English:

  1. To lele e manu. — The bird will fly.
  2. Kua fano e tama. — The boy is walking.
  3. Kua koukou a koe. — You are swimming.
  4. Kua fano a ia. — He is walking.
  5. Ne kitia he tama a Sione. — The boy saw John.
  6. Kua kitia e koe a Pule. — You are seeing Pule.
  7. To kitia e Sione a ia. — John will see him.
  8. Ne liti e ia e kulï. — He left the dog.
  9. Kua kai he kulï e manu. — The dog is eating the bird.

Translate the following sentences into Niuean:

  1. John swam.
  2. You will eat the dog.
  3. Pule is leaving you.
  4. The bird will see the boy.
  5. The dog is flying.


  1. Lian:

    I loved this one!! Please send me the answers to see if I´m correct.

    1 – Ne koukou e Sione
    2 – To kai e koe e kulï
    3 – Kua liti e Pule a koe
    4 – To kitia he mano e kulï
    5 – Kua lele e kulï


  2. Lian:

    Hey, it´s me again, I´ve checked it out in the original site…

    Phrase 4 is actually “The bird will see the BOY”, not the “DOG”.

    I´ve checked the answer, I´ve missed just the first one which I should have written “A Sione”, instead of “E Sione”.


  3. Tanya Khovanova:

    Thanks, Lian,

    I corrected it (changed the dog into a boy). Luckily, it doesn’t matter at all for the solution.

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