Entity resolution is a widely studied problem with several proposals to match records across relations. Matching textual content is a widespread task in many applications, such as question answering and search. While recent methods achieve promising results for these two tasks, there is no clear solution for the more general problem of matching textual content and structured data. We introduce a framework that supports this new task in an unsupervised setting for any pair of corpora, being relational tables or text documents. Our method builds a fine-grained graph over the content of the corpora and derives word embeddings to represent the objects to match in a low dimensional space. The learned representation enables effective and efficient matching at different granularity, from relational tuples to text sentences and paragraphs. Our flexible framework can exploit pre-trained resources, but it does not depends on their existence and achieves better quality performance in matching content when the vocabulary is domain specific. We also introduce optimizations in the graph creation process with an “expand and compress” approach that first identifies new valid relationships across elements, to improve matching, and then prunes nodes and edges, to reduce the graph size. Experiments on real use cases and public datasets show that our framework produces embeddings that outperform word embeddings and fine-tuned language models both in results’ quality and in execution times.
Unsupervised matching of data and text
ICDE 2022, 38th IEEE International Conference on Data Engineering, 9-12 May 2022, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (Virtual Event)
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