Web-based closed-domain data extraction on online advertisements

Maria S. Pera, Rani Qumsiyeh, Yiu-Kai Ng
2013 Information Systems  
Taking advantage of the popularity of the web, online marketplaces such as Ebay (.com), advertisements (ads for short) websites such as Craigslist(.org), and commercial websites such as Carmax(.com) (allow users to) post ads on a variety of products and services. Instead of browsing through numerous websites to locate ads of interest, web users would benefit from the existence of a single, fully integrated database (DB) with ads in multiple domains, such as Cars-for-Sale and Job-Postings,
more » ... ted from various online sources so that ads of interest could be retrieved at a centralized site. Since existing ads websites impose their own structures and formats for storing and accessing ads, generating a uniform, integrated ads repository is not a trivial task. The challenges include (i) identifying ads domains, (ii) dealing with the diversity in structures of ads in various ads domains, and (iii) analyzing data with different meanings in each ads domain. To handle these problems, we introduce ADEx, a tool that relies on various machine learning approaches to automate the process of extracting (un-/semi-/fully-structured) data from online ads to create ads records archived in an underlying DB through domain classification, keyword tagging, and identification of valid attribute values. Experimental results generated using a dataset of 18,000 online ads originated from Craigslist, Ebay, and KSL(.com) show that ADEx is superior in performance compared with existing text classification, keyword labeling, and data extraction approaches. Further evaluations verify that ADEx either outperforms or performs at least as good as current state-of-the-art information extractors in mapping data from unstructured or (semi-)structured sources into DB records.
doi:10.1016/j.is.2012.07.006 fatcat:5ltypqhcgrhclm2l2qnxnzca24