We stand with Ukraine

Expert System Releases Live Semantic Index of Obama Administration’s recovery.gov and data.gov Sites

23 June 2009

Semantic Technology Conference, 6-16-2009

San Jose, CALIF., SEMANTIC TECHNOLOGY CONFERENCE – June 16, 2009 – Expert System, leading provider of semantic software that searches, discovers, classifies and interprets unstructured text information, today announces it has semantically indexed all the information on recovery.gov and data.gov – the two Obama Administration Web sites that are for public accountability and openness.

The semantic indexing of recovery.gov and data.gov were created for citizen users to semantically search and categorize issues, topics or actions and thus discover a more complete understanding without having to sort through unwanted text.

“Using a semantic index rather than a keyword index of these government Web sites is more helpful for all users to understand how their tax dollars are being spent, how effective policies are for current economic recovery efforts, and to substantiate government officials’ aim to be more open and inclusive”, said Brooke Aker, CEO of Expert System USA.

Semantic index is far superior to keyword indexes. For example, on recovery.gov, a search for the word “money” will return documents only with the term “money.” A keyword index limits our understanding since it only returns one concept “as a medium of exchange.” The semantic index, however, will know that alternative forms of money in the context of “medium of exchange” would include such things cash, currency, tender, and even appropriations or amounts – government short hand for money. This unique technology is a map of all of English words, definitions and their relationships to one another. The semantic index can understand all the ways authors may express the same concept and give that to users. Thus, a semantic index has better recall across the same set of information than does a keyword index.

Citizens, policies makers and researchers can also use the Expert System semantic index to gain better precision over the documents they receive from a search. A search for “fruit” using a keyword index will likely include documents about something to eat as well as the outcome of some policy choice. But, the semantic index can distinguish between these and allow the user to ask for, say, only the “outcome” context of fruit. This saves the user from sorting through documents in the wrong context.

“The Obama Administration is using technology and communication in far more advanced ways than any previous administration”, Aker said. “Semantic technology is one of those tools that provide efficiency, clarity and understanding that are the heart of government openness and inclusiveness.”

For access to the semantic search site of recovery.gov and data.gov, contact Brooke Aker on [email protected].