Joint Optimization of Wrapper Generation and Template Detection

author: Ruihua Song, Microsoft Research
published: Sept. 14, 2007,   recorded: September 2007,   views: 4065


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Many websites have large collections of pages generated dynamically from an underlying structured source like a database. The data of a category are typically encoded into similar pages by a common script or template. In recent years, some value-added services, such as comparison shopping and vertical search in a specific domain, have motivated the research of extraction technologies with high accuracy. Almost all previous works assume that input pages of a wrapper induction system conform to a common template and they can be easily identified in terms of a common schema of URL. However, we observed that it is hard to distinguish different templates using dynamic URLs today. Moreover, since extraction accuracy heavily depends on how consistent input pages are, we argue that it is risky to determine whether pages share a common template solely based on URLs. Instead, we propose a new approach that utilizes similarity between pages to detect templates. Our approach separates pages with notable inner differences and then generates wrappers, respectively. Experimental results show that our proposed approach is feasible and effective for improving extraction accuracy.

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