An Introduction to Oracle Digital Assistant Entities by Daniel Teixeira

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This post is a back to basics intro on Entities and their relevance in the context of a conversational interface.

Why are Entities so important?

Entities allow us to to extract information from user input. When the user provides an input, the NLP engine maps that utterance to an intent, but that same input can potentially contain much more rich information. Entities are the mechanism we use to extract it.

That information will add meaning and context to the Intent as it can describe it more in details.

On top of that we do not lose any information. One of the worst things we can have in a conversational interface is the user provide information that is not acknowledged by the chatbot.

User Input Examples

Above we have 3 utterances as an example. As humans we can very easily identify Intent and see all the relevant information those utterances provide. Below, color highlighted potential Entities that we should be able to extract.

How does ODA extract these values?

The above entities allow us to extract information that fits their type. For example an Entity of type Currency will be able to identify currency values in the utterance. Similarly the Email will identify emails in the input. On top of this, there also Custom Entities. Read the complete article here.

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