Word sense disambiguation is the process of determining which sense of a word is used in a given context. Due to its importance in understanding semantics of natural languages, word sense disambiguation has been extensively studied in Computational Linguistics. However, existing methods either are brittle and narrowly focus on specific topics or words, or provide only mediocre performance in real-world settings. Broad coverage and disambiguation quality are critical for a word sense disambiguation system. In this paper we present a fully unsupervised word sense disambiguation method that requires only a dictionary and unannotated text as input. Such an automatic approach overcomes the problem of brittleness suffered in many existing methods and makes broad-coverage word sense disambiguation feasible in practice. We evaluated our approach using SemEval 2007 Task 7 (Coarse-grained English All-words Task), and our system significantly outperformed the best unsupervised system participating in SemEval 2007 and achieved the performance approaching top-performing supervised systems. Although our method was only tested with coarse-grained sense disambiguation, it can be directly applied to fine-grained sense disambiguation.
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