What is Named Entity Recognition (NER)?

An introduction to Named Entity Recognition

Named Entity Recognition (NER) is a machine learning task that involves identifying and recognizing certain things called named entities. In this article, I will explain what NER is and how machine learning is used in the task of recognizing the named entities.

What is Named Entity Recognition?

Named entities generally mean the semantic identification of people, organizations, and certain numeric expressions such as date, time, and quantities. The concept of named entities was introduced in the applications of natural language processing.

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Simply put, named entities are defined as proper nouns or common nouns that act like proper nouns.

Thus, locating, classifying and recognizing named entities in a piece of text, paragraph, or whole document of any type is known as Named Entity Recognition.

So in layman’s terms, we can say that it is a task of holding names of people, places, organizations, date, time, and other entities that have a name. So when and where should we use machine learning to recognize named entities. In the section below, I’ll tell you when we need to use named entity recognition.

When Do We Need NER?

According to a survey carried out between 2009 and 2020, the quantity of digital information should increase by a factor of 44, on the contrary, the workforce and investments only grow by a factor of 1.4. So dealing with such a mismatch is a big challenge for everyone because the biggest problem in such situations is finding ways to add more structure to unstructured data.

NER which can be used to identify the semantics of interests in unstructured data is exactly one of the key areas where the NER is used. Today, the NER is used as the basis for many areas crucial to managing information systems such as semantic annotations, automatic question responses, ontology population, and opinion mining.

Simply put, in machine learning, NER is used for identifying elements with certain types of the semantics of interest, which can be used later to create machine learning models for more complex problems.

Applications of Named Entity Recognition

The NER plays a very important role in information extraction tasks such as identifying relationships and producing scenario models. Some other applications where the NER is used are semantic annotations and opinion mining. Below is a machine learning project based on the problem of recognizing named entities.

I hope you liked this article on what is Named Entity Recognition and where it is being used. Feel free to ask your valuable questions in the comments section below.

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Aman Kharwal
Coder with the ♥️ of a Writer || Data Scientist | Solopreneur | Founder
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