Enriching Temporal Query Understanding through Date Identification: How to Tag Implicit Temporal Queries?

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Ricardo Campos
Alípio Jorge
Célia Nunes
Gaël Dias
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Generically, search engines fail to understand the user's temporal intents when expressed as implicit temporal queries. This causes the retrieval of less relevant information and prevents users from being aware of the possible temporal dimension of the query results. In this paper, we aim to develop a language-independent model that tackles the temporal dimensions of a query and identifies its most relevant time periods. For this purpose, we propose a temporal similarity measure capable of associating a relevant date(s) to a given query and filtering out irrelevant ones. Our approach is based on the exploitation of temporal information from web content, particularly within the set of k-top retrieved web snippets returned in response to a query. We particularly focus on extracting years, which are a kind of temporal information that often appears in this type of collection. We evaluate our methodology using a set of real-world text temporal queries, which are clear concepts (i.e. querie