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Evaluating sense disambiguation across diverse parameter spaces

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 January 2003

DAVID YAROWSKY
Affiliation:
Department of Computer Science and Center for Language and Speech Processing, Johns Hopkins University, MD 21218, USA e-mail: yarowsky@cs.jhu.edu, rflorian@cs.jhu.edu
RADU FLORIAN
Affiliation:
Department of Computer Science and Center for Language and Speech Processing, Johns Hopkins University, MD 21218, USA e-mail: yarowsky@cs.jhu.edu, rflorian@cs.jhu.edu

Abstract

This paper presents a comprehensive empirical exploration and evaluation of a diverse range of data characteristics which influence word sense disambiguation performance. It focuses on a set of six core supervised algorithms, including three variants of Bayesian classifiers, a cosine model, non-hierarchical decision lists, and an extension of the transformation-based learning model. Performance is investigated in detail with respect to the following parameters: (a) target language (English, Spanish, Swedish and Basque); (b) part of speech; (c) sense granularity; (d) inclusion and exclusion of major feature classes; (e) variable context width (further broken down by part-of-speech of keyword); (f) number of training examples; (g) baseline probability of the most likely sense; (h) sense distributional entropy; (i) number of senses per keyword; (j) divergence between training and test data; (k) degree of (artificially introduced) noise in the training data; (l) the effectiveness of an algorithm's confidence rankings; and (m) a full keyword breakdown of the performance of each algorithm. The paper concludes with a brief analysis of similarities, differences, strengths and weaknesses of the algorithms and a hierarchical clustering of these algorithms based on agreement of sense classification behavior. Collectively, the paper constitutes the most comprehensive survey of evaluation measures and tests yet applied to sense disambiguation algorithms. And it does so over a diverse range of supervised algorithms, languages and parameter spaces in single unified experimental framework.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
2002 Cambridge University Press

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