Quick Q&A with Text Mining Research Group

Read other profiles: Don Comeau | Rezarta Dogan | Nicolas Fiorini | Sun Kim | Robert Leaman | Wanli Liu | Zhiyong Lu | Yifan Peng | Lana Yeganova

Quick Q&A with Alan Hsu, Won Gyu Kim, and Chih-Hsuan Wei
Question Alan Hsu, PhD Won Gyu Kim, PhD Chih-Hsuan Wei, PhD
Casual headshot of Alan Hsu Headshot of Won-Gyu Kim Casual headshot of Chih-Hsuan Wei
What is the focus of your NLM research and why is it significant?
My research focuses on biomedical text mining that applies machine learning to search engine optimization and automatic extraction of biomedical named entities. This type of research helps users improve searches for related works. Machine learning and text mining research for improving the quality of databases at NCBI.
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My research focuses on bioconcept recognition in text.

I develop systems and web Application Program Interfaces (API) allowing users to access our systems and generate automatic annotation results. Most of the text mining and some other bioinformatics research fields are highly dependent on the bioconcept annotations.

What or who inspired you to pursue your career? I love watching Sci-Fi movies, and there is a friend “Johnny Five” (the JavaScript Robotics & IoT Platform) that inspires me to explore machine learning Richard P. Feynman (1918-1988), scientist, teacher, raconteur, and musician. Many people inspired me, especially my supervisor and advisors.
How did you get started in your career? I participated in several competitions held by NCBI that had a great impact on my previous research. Therefore, I decided to do my postdoctoral research at NCBI. I started with a postdoc fellowship at NCBI in 1998. I started my research since my PhD period.
What really gets you jazzed about science and research? It is a great pleasure to design useful systems and assist people in understanding and discovering new knowledge. It is also an exciting challenge to develop interdisciplinary research in collaboration with life science. It does not lie. Natural language processing is amazing. How to teach a computer to extract and retrieve the information and knowledge in the text is a challenging and exciting task.
If you weren’t doing this work, what other profession might you have pursued? I would like to start a business in analyzing the sports data and open government data. Chef Professor or teacher
Tell us something surprising about yourself. When I was a child, I used to play erhu, piano, and recorder. I have two daughters who will be much taller than me. I wasn’t good at studying during my teenage and college years, but I was, and still am, interested in programming. That’s the reason I am here.

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