Advanced Conversions

Conversions take place prior to lemmatization when text is being processed; this feature is intended to augment and assist lemmatization. Additionally, this feature allows the user to customize text replacement. The Conversions panel may be used to fix common misspellings (e.g., “hieght” to “height”; “teh” to “the”), convert “textisms” (e.g., “bf” to “boyfriend”), and so on. The conversions feature also allows for wildcards (*).

The proper format for conversion is:

(original form)^(converted form)

Example:

bf^boyfriend

This will replace all occurrences of the word “bf” with “boyfriend” before analyzing text. Additionally, original and converted forms need not be a single word, as MEH is able to perform phrase conversions as well (e.g., “MEH rules!” to “This software is adequate”).¬†Note: Capitalization does not matter for conversions.

More Examples:

dream*^dream
*estimat*^estimate
I * you^social_phrase

In the above examples:

Words such as “dreaming” and “dreamt” are converted to “dream”.
Words such as “underestimate” and “overestimation” are converted to “estimate”, due to the use of wildcards (*) at the beginning and end.
Phrases such as “I love you” and “I know you” are converted to “social_phrase”.

This last example is of particular importance for users who wish to reconstrue the meaning of specific words or phrases for conceptual reasons in their frequency analyses, meaning extractions, or both. For example, if you are interested in extracting meanings pertaining to emotions broadly defined, rather than specifics, you may consider adding extra conversions such as the following:

happy^emotion
sad^emotion
anger^emotion
excite*^emotion
fear*^emotion

This list would convert all words listed, including words picked up with wildcards (e.g., “fearfulness” and “excitement”) to the word “emotion”. This would allow for the user to look at the ways in which the emotional concepts correspond to other content words as per the standard meaning extraction method. Such additional conversions will also be accounted for during the construction of an external dictionary, if this option is selected.