This paper aims to present an open source math-aware Question Answering System based on Ask Platypus.
The system returns as a single mathematical formula for a natural language question in English or Hindi. These formulae originate from the knowledge-based Wikidata. The authors translate these formulae to computable data by integrating the calculation engine sympy into the system. This way, users can enter numeric values for the variables occurring in the formula. Moreover, the system loads numeric values for constants occurring in the formula from Wikidata.
In a user study, this system outperformed a commercial computational mathematical knowledge engine by 13 per cent. However, the performance of this system heavily depends on the size and quality of the formula data available in Wikidata. As only a few items in Wikidata contained formulae when the project started, the authors facilitated the import process by suggesting formula edits to Wikidata editors. With the simple heuristic that the first formula is significant for the paper, 80 per cent of the suggestions were correct.
This research was presented at the JCDL17 KDD workshop.
The authors would like to thank Akiko Aizawa for her advice and for hosting as visiting researchers in her lab at the National Institute of Informatics (NII) in Tokyo. Furthermore, they thank Wikimedia Foundation and Wikimedia Deutschland for providing cloud computing facilities and a research visit. Besides many Wikimedians, Lydia Pintscher and Jonas Kress were a great help in getting started with Wikidata. This work was supported by the FITWeltweit program of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) as well as the German Research Foundation (DFG grant GI-1259-1).ACM acknowledges that this contribution was authored or co-authored by an employee, contractor or affiliate of the US Government. As such, the US Government retains a nonexclusive, royalty-free right to publish or reproduce this article, or to allow others to do so, for government purposes only.
Schubotz, M., Scharpf, P., Dudhat, K., Nagar, Y., Hamborg, F. and Gipp, B. (2018), "Introducing MathQA: a Math-Aware question answering system", Information Discovery and Delivery, Vol. 46 No. 4, pp. 214-224. https://doi.org/10.1108/IDD-06-2018-0022
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