Synonyms and Stopwords

1. Introduction 

Conversational bots give a human touch to their responses. An end-user may ask any query in a free format if the bot has been trained to handle the query it will handle it with its variations. This is done with the help of processing these sentences using NLP.

Text Preprocessing is the action of transforming text to make it ready for Natural Language Processing. MyBOT’s proprietary NLP engine, e.Sense automatically handles various aspects of text preprocessing including stemming, spelling mistakes handling, context handling, synonyms handling, stopwords reduction, parts of speech handling and more. 

Of these, Synonyms and Stopwords often have a very domain-specific context and hence MyBOT provides a way for you to be able to manage these easily for your bot. The section below describes the configuration options available for you in more detail. 

As an example: If a user has added ‘a’ and ‘the’ as stop words then while processing both the queries will be the same. 

Q1: what is the number of the customer support department?
Q2: What is the number of the customer support department?

1.1 Availability

This functionality is available for Business plan and above. To access this functionality click on Build tab on your left panel, select FAQ and Navigate to Advanced button on the right side of the portal. In the Advanced option select Configure Synonyms. 

1.2 Terms and Definitions 

Terms Definitions
FAQFrequently Asked Questions (FAQs) are the standard queries relevant to a product or a service
NLPNatural Language Processing is the ability of a computer program to understand human language as it is spoken. NLP is a component of artificial intelligence (AI)
Synonyms These are different words that mean the same. Adding synonyms can improve FAQ response since synonyms are assigned the same value when matching an FAQ for a valid response.
StopwordsStop words are the words that are excluded in NLP  while matching a given query.
Context Based on the previous conversation of the user on the bot it maintains the relevance of the communication.

2. Configure

Options to configure Synonyms, as well as Stopwords, are available from within the Build > FAQ section and under the Advanced Menu. Once there, click on “Configure Synonyms” to see these options 

3. Synonyms

Synonyms – Synonyms are alternate words to denote the same object or action. From a bot and context relevancy, typical use cases involve your domain-specific synonyms. It could also be used for cases of common misspellings, abbreviations, and similar uses.

MyBOT has a pre-configured set of Synonyms for English. This capability allows you to add to that list for your bot. 

You can click on “Add” and add synonyms to your bot.

You can add more than one synonym by pressing tab/enter key after each entry. Our system finds matching synonyms and adds to your list, you can remove these if you don’t find it relevant.

MyBOT also lets you add synonyms for any language other than English in the exact same manner as you do it for English. All you have to do is select the other language in question while adding a new Synonym. 

4. Stopwords

Stop words are a set of commonly used words in a language. Examples of stop words in English are “a”, “the”, “is”, “are” and etc. The intuition behind using stop words is that, by removing low information words from the text, we can focus on the important words instead of the actual NLP. 

MyBOT comes with a list of predefined Stopwords but it’s not uncommon to see some domain or use case-specific stop words. As an example, if the chatbot is to answer queries about various features of a product, it might be prudent to include that particular product name itself as one of the Stopwords. 

Click on Stopwords tab to add/remove stopwords. These words are ignored by NLP when matching FAQs to relevant responses. There are many stopwords preconfigured for a bot.

You can add more than one stopword at one go by separating them by a comma (,).

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