This article challenges the received wisdom that template-based approaches to the generation of language are necessarily inferior to other approaches as regards their maintainability, linguistic well-foundedness, and quality of output. Some recent NLG systems that call themselves “template-based” will illustrate our claims.

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Author notes

Computing Science Department, King's College, University of Aberdeen, United Kingdom.

Communication and Cognition/Computational Linguistics, Faculty of Arts, Tilburg University, Tilburg, The Netherlands.

Human Media Interaction Group, Computer Science, University of Twente, The Netherlands.