UW students design a summarizer extension: Jent.ly

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Are you tired of having to skim through entire articles to find relevant information?

A group of four UW Software Engineering students — Essa Saeed, Jerry Liu, Nicholas Huang, and Tony Liang — are developing a Google Chrome extension to help students instantly find relevant information in online articles.

The extension is currently available in the Chrome Web Store for free use. The Jent.ly Summarizer aims to assist students and others who read online articles to quickly find the information they are looking for without having to read through the whole article.

The summarizer highlights parts of the articles it considers relevant to the topic of the item and the Jent.ly Summarizer analyzes the text to identify the important information.

“Our summarization technology combines the syntax and semantics of the article to deliver a summary that is approximately 20 per cent of the original article length. Syntax refers to analyzing the structure of the article, for example, giving precedence to the first sentence of every paragraph. Semantics refers to analyzing the meaning of the words and sentences,” Saeed explained.

The extension provides an accurate summary by ranking sentences in order of relevance. The developers plan on adding a feature for the summarizer to capture user intent when using the summarizer.

This way, users can declare their intent and the summarizer will respond accordingly by ranking sentences that best match that intent. A couple of students commented on their experience with Jent.ly.

“ I can easily gloss over a glob of text and see the important parts,” Amour Karir commented.

“[It] would be great if it worked on PDFs.” John Tiamzon, another student, shared his experience, saying, “Jent.ly has helped me significantly in terms of finding out the summary of articles and reports in one click. A lot of improvements can be added, but it’s heading [in] the right direction.”

The developers plan on allowing for the summary of a particular area in the text. They have already received positive feedback so far from their early user experiences, and hope to use the feedback to improve their summarizer.

The extension is still under development, and users are able to send feedback directly to the creators. Users can look at the code and share their experiences through GitHub Repositories for Jent.ly. The developers welcome anyone technically inclined to contribute to the summarizer. They plan on improving the extension even after their graduation .

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