(Digital) goodies from the ERC Wishing Well: BabelNet, Babelfy, video games with a purpose and the Wikipedia bitaxonomy


Multilinguality is a key feature of today’s Web, and it is this feature that we leverage and exploit in our research work at the Sapienza University of Rome’s Linguistic Computing Laboratory, which I am going to overview and showcase in this talk.

I will start by presenting BabelNet 2.5 (http://babelnet.org), a very large multilingual encyclopedic dictionary and semantic network, which covers 50 languages and provides both lexicographic and encyclopedic knowledge for all the open-class parts of speech, thanks to the seamless integration of WordNet, Wikipedia, Wiktionary, OmegaWiki, Wikidata and the Open Multilingual WordNet.

Next, I will present Babelfy (http://babelfy.org), a unified approach that leverages BabelNet to perform word sense disambiguation and entity linking in arbitrary languages, with performance on both tasks on a par with, or surpassing, those of task-specific state-of-the-art supervised systems.

In the third part of the talk I will present two approaches to large-scale knowledge acquisition and validation: video games with a purpose, a novel, powerful paradigm for the large scale acquisition and validation of knowledge and data, and WiBi (http://wibitaxonomy.org), our approach to the construction of a Wikipedia bitaxonomy, that is, the largest and most accurate currently available taxonomy of Wikipedia pages and a taxonomy of categories, aligned to each other.


Roberto Navigli is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science of the Sapienza University of Rome. He was awarded the Marco Cadoli 2007 AI*IA Prize for the best doctoral thesis in Artificial Intelligence and the Marco Somalvico 2013 AI*IA Prize for the best young researcher in AI. He is the recipient of an ERC Starting Grant in computer science and informatics on multilingual word sense disambiguation (2011-2016) and a co-PI of a Google Focused Research Award on Natural Language Understanding. 

His research lies in the field of Natural Language Processing (including word sense disambiguation and induction, ontology learning from scratch, large-scale knowledge acquisition, open information extraction and relation extraction).

He has served as an area chair of ACL, WWW, and *SEM, and a senior program committee member of IJCAI. Currently he is an Associate Editor of the Artificial Intelligence Journal, a member of the editorial board of the Journal of Natural Language Engineering, a guest editor of the Journal of Web Semantics, and a former editorial board member of Computational Linguistics.