Wrapper Induction Programs as Information Extraction Assistants

Wrapper Induction Programs as Information Extraction Assistants

Klaus Jantke (Research Institute for Information Technologies Leipzig, Germany) and Carsten Müller (SAP AG, Germany)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-878-9.ch003
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These days, search engines are useful tools relying on quite elaborated technologies which, albeit their enormous frequency of usage and the sophistication of the technologies invoked, continuously frustrate thousands of users. They are simply tools not easy to wield, but they are far from being assistants to their human users. Wrappers are extraction procedures which exploit knowledge of how to wrap information into documents for extracting such information on demand. Wrappers alone are nothing more than highly specialized tools. But the development of wrapper types and information ex-traction technologies has paved the road for a transformation of information extraction tools into intelligent assistants. Such a technology transformation program is outlined and discussed in some detail. The chapter stresses the dichotomy of internal mechanisms and external assistance behavior. It is the authors’ general intention to contribute to the discussion about perspectives of intelligent systems’ assistance. Which properties, features or “systems’ abilities” do establish intelligent assistance beyond the limits of comfortable tools? What are related advantages and drawbacks? What are the potentials and what are the risks of the general trend from tools to assistants? Wrapper induction serves as a representative case study.

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