Abstract: We present a novel method for mining textual answers in Web pages
using semi-structured NL questions and Google for initial document retrieval.
We exploit the redundancy on the Web by weighting all identified named entities
(NEs) found in the relevant document set based on their occurrences and
distributions. The ranked NEs are used as our primary anchors for document
indexing, paragraph selection, and answer identification. The latter is
dependent on two factors: the overlap of terms at different levels (e.g.,
tokens and named entities) between queries and sentences, and the relevance of
identified NEs corresponding to the expected answer type. The set of answer
candidates is further subdivided into ranked equivalent classes from which the
final answer is selected. The system has been evaluated using question-answer
pairs extracted from a popular German quiz book.