EDBT 2013
Conference paper

HIL: A high-level scripting language for entity integration

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We introduce HIL, a high-level scripting language for entity resolution and integration. HIL aims at providing the core logic for complex data processing flows that aggregate facts from large collections of structured or unstructured data into clean, unified entities. Such flows typically include many stages of processing that start from the outcome of information extraction and continue with entity resolution, mapping and fusion. A HIL program captures the overall integration flow through a combination of SQL-like rules that link, map, fuse and aggregate entities. A salient feature of HIL is the use of logical indexes in its data model to facilitate the modular construction and aggregation of complex entities. Another feature is the presence of a flexible, open type system that allows HIL to handle input data that is irregular, sparse or partially known. As a result, HIL can accurately express complex integration tasks, while still being high-level and focused on the logical entities (rather than the physical operations). Compilation algorithms translate the HIL specification into efficient run-time queries that can execute in parallel on Hadoop. We show how our framework is applied to real-world integration of entities in the financial domain, based on public filings archived by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Furthermore, we apply HIL on a larger-scale scenario that performs fusion of data from hundreds of millions of Twitter messages into tens of millions of structured entities. © 2013 ACM.