Natural Language Processing

17 Top Free and Open Source Python Natural Language Processing Tools

Natural language processing (NLP) is an exciting field of computer science, artificial intelligence, and computational linguistics concerned with the interactions between computers and human (natural) languages. It includes word and sentence tokenization, text classification and sentiment analysis, spelling correction, information extraction, parsing, meaning extraction, and question answering.

In our formative years, we master the basics of spoken and written language. However, the vast majority of us do not progress past some basic processing rules when we learn how to handle text in our applications. Yet unstructured software comprises the majority of the data we see. NLP is the technology for dealing with our all-pervasive product: human language, as it appears in social media, emails, web pages, tweets, product descriptions, newspaper stories, and scientific articles, in thousands of languages and variants.

Many challenges in NLP involve natural language understanding. In other words, computers learn how to determine meaning from human or natural language input, and others involve natural language generation.

Python and R stand toe-to-toe in data science. But in the field of NLP, Python stands very tall. The Natural Language Toolkit (NLTK) for Python is an awesome library and set of corpuses.

Here’s our verdict captured in a legendary LinuxLinks-style ratings chart. Only free and open source software is eligible for inclusion here.

Ratings chart for the best free and open source Python NLP software

Click the links in the table to learn more about each program.

Python Natural Language Processing Tools
PyTorch-TransformersLibrary of state-of-the-art pre-trained models for NLP
NLTKNatural Language Toolkit
spaCyIndustrial strength natural language processing
scikit-learnMachine learning library
GensimVector space modeling and topic modeling toolkit
flairSimple framework for state-of-the-art NLP
AllenNLPApache 2.0 NLP research library
PatternWeb mining module
textacyPython library for performing NLP tasks
TextBlobPython (2 and 3) library for processing textual data
Snips NLUNatural Language Understanding Python library
nlpnetNatural Language Processing with neural networks
GluonNLPDeep Learning for NLP
PyNLPIVarious modules useful for common, and less common, NLP tasks
polyglotMultilingual text (NLP) processing toolkit
NLP ArchitectDeep Learning NLP/NLU library
PyTorch-NLPNeural network layers, text processing modules and datasets

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