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Named Entity Recognition with NLTK and SpaCy

The goal of NER is to label names of people, places, organizations, and other entities of interest in text documents. There are three major approaches to NER: lexicon-based, rule-based, and machine learning based. However, a NER system may combine more than one of these categories (Keretna et al., 2014). Some approaches to NER rely on POS tagging. Also, NER is a preprocessing step for tasks such as information or relationship extraction

We can find which companies or organizations are mentioned in the article or text or contain the name of a person or any product or something.

Shown in Table are tools used for NER tagging. All the tools are based primarily on statistical approaches. 

Table 1

NER pipeline

A typical NER system pipeline includes preprocessing the data such as tokenization, sentence splitting, feature extraction, applying ML models on the data for tagging, and then post-processing to remove some tagging inconsistencies. Fig. 5 illustrates this pipeline.



import nltk
from nltk.tokenize import word_tokenize
from nltk.tag import pos_tag
sentence = 'European authorities fined Google a record $5.1 billion on Wednesday for abusing its power in the mobile phone market and ordered the company to alter its practices'
# defining a fuction for preprocessing the sentence
def preprocess(sent):
    sent = nltk.word_tokenize(sent)
    sent = nltk.pos_tag(sent)
    return sent
sent = preprocess(sentence)
#Our chunk pattern consists of one rule, that a noun phrase, NP, should be formed whenever the chunker finds an optional determiner, DT, followed by any number of adjectives, JJ, and then a noun, NN.

pattern = 'NP: {<DT>?<JJ>*<NN>}'
#Using this pattern, we create a chunk parser and test it on our sentence.

cp = nltk.RegexpParser(pattern)
cs = cp.parse(sent)
from nltk.chunk import conlltags2tree, tree2conlltags
from pprint import pprint
iob_tagged = tree2conlltags(cs)
ne_tree = ne_chunk(pos_tag(word_tokenize(ex)))

With SpaCy

SpaCy’s named entity recognition has been trained on the OntoNotes 5 corpus and it supports the following entity types:

import spacy
from spacy import displacy
from collections import Counter
import en_core_web_sm
nlp = en_core_web_sm.load()
doc = nlp('European authorities fined Google a record $5.1 billion on Wednesday for abusing its power in the mobile phone market and ordered the company to alter its practices')

print([(X.text, X.label_) for X in doc.ents])
pprint([(X, X.ent_iob_, X.ent_type_) for X in doc])


# Extracting named entity from an article

from bs4 import BeautifulSoup
import requests
import re
def url_to_string(url):
    res = requests.get(url)
    html = res.text
    soup = BeautifulSoup(html, 'html5lib')
    for script in soup(["script", "style", 'aside']):
    return " ".join(re.split(r'[\n\t]+', soup.get_text()))
ny_bb = url_to_string('')
article = nlp(ny_bb)
labels = [x.label_ for x in article.ents]
items = [x.text for x in article.ents]
# Let’s randomly select one sentence to learn more.

sentences = [x for x in article.sents]
displacy.render(nlp(str(sentences[20])), jupyter=True, style='ent')
displacy.render(nlp(str(sentences[20])), style='dep', jupyter = True, options = {'distance': 120})
# parts of speech

[(x.orth_,x.pos_, x.lemma_) for x in [y 
                                      for y
                                      in nlp(str(sentences[20])) 
                                      if not y.is_stop and y.pos_ !='PUNCT']]
dict([(str(x), x.label_) for x in nlp(str(sentences[20])).ents])
print([(x, x.ent_iob_, x.ent_type_) for x in sentences[20]])

Final output:


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