The Google Similarity Distance

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The Google Similarity Distance
Words and phrases acquire meaning from the way they are used in society, from their relative semantics to other words and phrases. For computers the equivalent of `society' is `database,' and the equivalent of `use' is `way to search the database.' We present a new theory of similarity between words and phrases based on information distance and Kolmogorov complexity. To fix thoughts we use the world-wide-web as database, and Google as search engine. The method is also applicable to other search engines and databases. This theory is then applied to construct a method to automatically extract similarity, the Google similarity distance, of words and phrases from the world-wideweb using Google page counts. The world-wide-web is the largest database on earth, and the context information entered by millions of independent users averages out to provide automatic semantics of useful quality. We give applications in hierarchical clustering, classification, and language trans...
Rudi Cilibrasi, Paul M. B. Vitányi
Added 17 Dec 2010
Updated 17 Dec 2010
Type Journal
Year 2004
Where CORR
Authors Rudi Cilibrasi, Paul M. B. Vitányi
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