crfsuite for natural language processing

October 29, 2018
By

(This article was first published on bnosac :: open analytical helpers - bnosac :: open analytical helpers, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

A new R package called crfsuite supported by BNOSAC landed safely on CRAN last week. The crfsuite package (https://github.com/bnosac/crfsuite) is an R package specific to Natural Language Processing and allows you to easily build and apply models for

  • named entity recognition
  • text chunking
  • part of speech tagging
  • intent recognition or
  • classification of any category you have in mind

The focus of the implementation is on allowing the R user to build such models on his/her own data, with your own categories. The R package is a Rcpp interface to the popular crfsuite C++ package which is used a lot in all kinds of chatbots.

In order to facilitate creating training data on your own data, a shiny app is made available in this R package which allows you to easily tag your own chunks of text, with your own categories, which can next be used to build a crfsuite model. The package also plays nicely together with the udpipe R package (https://CRAN.R-project.org/package=udpipe), which you need in order to extract predictive features (e.g. parts of speech tags) for your words to be used in the crfsuite model.

On a side-note. If you are in the area of NLP, you might also be interested in the upcoming ruimtehol R package which is a wrapper around the excellent StarSpace C++ code providing word/sentence/document embeddings, text-based classification, content-based recommendation and similarities as well as entity relationship completion.

app screenshot

You can get going with the crfsuite package as follows. Have a look at the package vignette, it shows you how to construct and apply your own crfsuite model.

## Install the packages
install.packages("crfsuite")
install.packages("udpipe")

## Look at the vignette
library(crfsuite)
library(udpipe)
vignette("crfsuite-nlp", package = "crfsuite")

More details at the development repository https://github.com/bnosac/crfsuite where you can also provide feedback.

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