What is Natural Language Processing?
Natural Language Processing also abbreviated as NLP can be understood as the interpretation and manipulation of the natural language (like tweets, newspaper articles, books, etc.) by a software or computer. It is a branch of artificial intelligence that helps computers in understanding, interpreting, and manipulating human language. Natural language processing aims to fill the gap that exists between human communication and computer interpretation and it draws is existence from many different domains, including computer science and computational linguistics.
The domain of natural language processing originated from the field of linguistics with the growth and use of computers. It is not a new domain and it has been around for close to 50-60 years now. Let us discuss what is it and why it is important?
Natural Language is the way communication happens between humans. This can be in form of speech or inform of text. The sign boards, menus, emails, web pages, newspapers and there are many more places where you’ll see natural language in textual format. Similarly, you will find natural language in speech format when humans talk to each other. Some believe that it is easier to learn to speak than to write. Thus, we see that natural language is vital for human interaction and we need to have methods to understand and analyze natural language.
The rise of social media and web 2.0 has given a boost to the natural language processing and natural language understanding techniques with the focus to produce satisfactory human-computer dialogues. Though lot of academic breakthroughs in the domain of natural language processing have been achieved in the past, however, industrial success to improve user experience is still debatable.