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Patent 7925496 Click For Printable Version of This Patent
Patent Information:  USPTO Site Listing

Patent Number: 7925496
Case ID: 0
Patent Title: Method for summarizing natural language text
Status: ACTIVE
Status Date: 11/30/2011 10:09:20 AM
Issue Date: 4/12/2011
Filed Date: 4/23/2007
Serial #: 1/789,129
Assignee Name: The United States of America as represented by the Secretary of the Navy (Washington, DC)
Inventor(s): Rubin, Stuart Harvey
Lab Information:  View Lab Profile

Lab Name: SPAWAR Systems Center, Pacific
Location: 53560 Hull Street
San Diego, CA 92152-5001
Contact: Contact Lab About This Patent

The embodiments of the invention relate generally to the field of text summarizers.

Text summarizers are software programs used to transform a body of text into a generally shorter and more concise body of text. Such programs assist with activities such as news reporting, financial reporting, and legal analysis. Text summarizers typically require a user to program the summarization rules into the software if the summarizer is not adequately summarizing text. This process is time consuming, error-prone, burdensome, and requires a proficient level of programming knowledge. Further, traditional body of text summarizers do not offer the flexibility to adapt to the writing style of particular individuals.

Therefore, there is a current need for a text summarizer that may automatically learn summarization rules based on user input and implement the summarization rules without user programming.

A method includes the steps of comparing a first body of text with a user-created summary of the first body of text, creating rules based on the comparison of the first body of text with the user-created summary of the first body of text, selecting one or more summary rules for generating a computer-created summary of a second body of text, and applying the selected summary rules to the second body of text to generate a computer-created summary of the second body of text. The first body of text may be a user-corrected summary of a computer-created summary of the first body of text. The rules may be selected based on previous use, frequency of use, context of the body of text, or most-specific applicability. The rules may be iteratively applied to generate a summary. A method is also provided for generating a heading for a summary of text.
I claim:

1. A computer-implemented method comprising the steps of: eliminating, from a portion of a body of text, the most-frequently occurring words that do not relate to the specific context of the portion of the body of text; searching a data storage having a plurality of words and at least one summary rule associated with each word stored therein, for the remaining words within the portion of the body of text; selecting, from the data storage, one of the summary rules associated with each remaining word found in the data storage, wherein if more than one summary rule is associated with one of the remaining words, a validated summary rule is selected over a non-validated summary rule, if more than one validated summary rule is associated with one of the remaining words, the validated summary rule that covers the most-specific context of the remaining word is selected, and if equally-specific validated summary rules are associated with one of the remaining words, the most- . . . . More