What is Natural Language Processing? A Brief Introduction

Natural Language Processing: As humans, we have several languages that we use to convey information through various means. They don’t just limit to verbal languages either, we have sign languages and many other sources of language, but have we ever focused on the concept of computers learning, adapting, and understanding the languages that we speak? With that, we’ll be learning about natural language processing with this article. The definition for Natural Language processing can be termed as the ability of a computer program to understand human languages as it’s spoken and written. It is an essential integration of Artificial Intelligence as well.

NLP has existed for more than 5 decades and has its roots in basic linguistics and connecting the computer to human knowledge. It has been and is still being used for various purposes in multiple fields across the globe. So how does it work?

Working of Natural Language Processing

As the words have been spoken or written by a human in any form, the computer takes it as input and then through various means such as involving Artificial Intelligence and processing the input in such a way that the computer can make sense of the input. Different devices are used as senses to recognize inputs, and the programs with their respective task perform to make the computer understand the input that has been provided to it.

Primarily there are two key steps of NLP which are data pre-processing and algorithm development.

Data pre-processing involves filtering out data with unnecessary information excluded and making sense of the input that has been provided to the system. This can be filtered out with various aspects involving but not limited to tokenization, stemming, the figure of speech, and much more. These classify words among categories and blocks that are easy to make sense of and with the help of AI sort them out as different figures of speech and everything else.

Once the pre-processing steps have been in action, the program then develops an algorithm for further processing of data to make it understandable to the computer and form an appropriate output. The two primarily used algorithms are figured out as a Rules-based system and Machine-learning based system.

Rules-based system is considered as the basic layout of protocols according to the linguistic values that have been previously used and are continued to use to this date as it does provide the basic mandates required for processing.

Machine-Based Learning System unlike the previous method uses statistical methods as the information is provided to the system and hence, adjusts methods as more data has been inputted. Through redundant processes and learning acquired, MBLS can adapt to the system and change as per the requirement.

Why is Natural Language Processing So Important?

Various businesses and organizations use huge amounts of text-heavy and unstructured data and require an efficient and easy way to process that data. As the data is mainly stored in huge databases which is not exactly readable by the system, analyzing or inspecting the data got difficult. With the help of NLP, it made it easier for people to convert the data and make it easy and understandable for the computer to read.

Different uses of Natural Language Processing

As we have discussed earlier on how efficient and smooth working software it is, where can we technically benefit from the various uses of NLPs? Let’s discuss some of the below.

  • Text Classification means converting the human language as you speak into a computer and then processing the information provided to it.
  • Machine Translation is referred to as the translation that takes place on our phones. We notice how a translator on the phone changes one sentence from one language into another language and helps us understand and communicate with each other better.
  • Other various uses include Customer feedback, customer service automation, academic research and analysis and so much more.


Natural Language Processing plays a key role in the technology world that we live in today, it has made it possible and has opened doors for so many functionalities with the advancement it is. The more we have been advancing into it the more we have been able to achieve greater accomplishments through it. Its evolution of it proved its importance and necessity of it.