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University of Massachusetts


Whats In A Web Query


What's in a Web Query? Understanding and Predicting User Intents


Over the years search paradigm has shifted from document retrieval to deeper user intent understanding. Today’s users are no longer satisfied with seeing a list of relevant documents, instead they want to complete tasks and take actions on them. The question I will address in this talk is how to build an automated user intent understanding system, where given a query like "Mia" the users see relevant intents such as "buy latest album of the singer", or "check-in flight to Miami". I will begin by introducing the task and main challenges with semantic representations. Then, I will describe query categorization and tagging models used for intent prediction. Finally, by running experiments and evaluations on the shopping, movie, restaurant and sport domains, I will highlight current capabilities and limitations.


Dr. Zornitsa Kozareva is a Senior Manager of the Query Processing and User Intent Understanding group at Yahoo! Labs. She leads the team powering queries for Mobile Search and Advertisement. Prior to that she was a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Southern California and a Research Scientist in the Natural Language group at the Information Sciences Institute. She received her PhD with Cum Laude from the University of Alicante, Spain. Her research interests lie in Web-based knowledge acquisition, semantics, ontology population, multilingual information extraction and sentiment analysis. Dr. Kozareva is a recipient of the RANLP young scientist award, and has organized the SemEval challenges on paraphrases, sentiment analysis, causality detection and relation identification.

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