string(13) "dissertations"
Start Date: January 1, 2002
Sigletos Georgios

Εξόρυξη γνώσης για εξαγωγή πληροφορίας από τον παγκόσμιο ιστό με χρήση τεχνικών ψηφοφορίας και συσσωρευμένης...

  • January 1, 2002
  • November 30, 2005
  • National and Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • Sigletos Georgios
  • Constantine Spyropoulos
  • The AI Lab


The proliferation of the World Wide Web and the other Internet services in the past few yearsintensifies the need for developing systems that help users to cope with the enormous
amount of text that is available online. Information extraction systems, that is, systems that
locate and pull relevant fragments out of domain-specific collections of text documents, seem
to be a promising way to deal with the information explosion. Machine learning techniques
facilitate the development of information extraction systems and their portability to new
domains of interest. Information extraction using machine learning techniques is a typical
Web mining problem, since the task is to learn extraction rules that can effectively recognize
relevant text fragments within Web documents.
This dissertation demonstrates the effectiveness of combining information extraction systems
using voting and stacked generalization (stacking). The motivation derives from the
opportunity to obtain higher extraction performance at meta-level, by exploiting the
disagreement in the predictions of the information extraction systems that are employed at
base-level. Existing combination techniques primarily focus on classification. However,
information extraction is not naturally a classification problem. A new methodology is
proposed for combining information extraction systems through voting and stacking. The
proposed methodology facilitates the combination of a wide range of systems, since only
their output is combined, without taking into account how each system is implemented or
models the extraction task. Information extraction is transformed to a common classification
problem at meta-level, allowing the applicability of voting and stacking techniques.
The effectiveness of voting is initially investigated for combining multiple information
extraction systems at meta-level. Extensive experiments were performed in a variety of
domains using well known information extraction systems at base-level. The results
demonstrate the effectiveness of voting with probabilistic estimates of correctness in the
output of the base-level systems, as long as a probability threshold is set for deciding
whether to accept a prediction at meta-level. Voting was effective on most domains in the
experiments, outperforming the best base-level systems.
The effectiveness of stacking is then investigated for combining multiple information
extraction systems at meta-level. The basic idea is to combine well known information
extraction systems with a common classifier at meta-level, such as a decision-tree classifier or
a Naïve Bayes classifier. Cross-validation takes place on the base-level dataset, which consists
of text documents annotated with relevant information, in order to create a meta-level
dataset that consists of feature vectors. A common classifier is then trained using the new
vectors. Results demonstrate the effectiveness of stacking using probabilities in the output of
the base-level systems. Stacking was consistently effective in all examined domains, always
outperforming the best base-level information extraction systems. Comparing against voting,
stacking performs comparably or better, while always obtaining more accurate predictions at
Particular emphasis was also given to analyzing the results obtained by voting and stacking,
aiming to investigate the sources of their success in information extraction tasks. The analysis
showed that voting and stacking successfully exploit the disagreement in the output of the
base-level systems, towards better results at meta-level. Stacking, however, proved to be
better than voting, even when all base-level systems predict identically.
This dissertation contributes to the direction of realizing the high potential of combination
methods in the context of accurately identifying relevant items of information on the
abundant of computerized text, aiming at a method easily adapted to new domains.
SUBJECT AREAS: information extraction, machine learning
KEYWORDS: extraction, learning, voting, stacked generalization, web

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