Swapnil Nawale Swapnil Nawale - 4 days ago 4
Python Question

Counting bigrams (pair of two words) in a file using python

I want to count the number of occurrences of all bigrams (pair of adjacent words) in a file using python. Here, I am dealing with very large files, so I am looking for an efficient way. I tried using count method with regex "\w+\s\w+" on file contents, but it did not prove to be efficient.

e.g. Let's say I want to count the number of bigrams from a file a.txt, which has following content:

"the quick person did not realize his speed and the quick person bumped "


For above file, the bigram set and their count will be :

(the,quick) = 2
(quick,person) = 2
(person,did) = 1
(did, not) = 1
(not, realize) = 1
(realize,his) = 1
(his,speed) = 1
(speed,and) = 1
(and,the) = 1
(person, bumped) = 1


I have come across an example of Counter objects in Python, which is used to count unigrams (single words). It also uses regex approach.

The example goes like this:

>>> # Find the ten most common words in Hamlet
>>> import re
>>> words = re.findall('\w+', open('a.txt').read())
>>> print Counter(words)


The output of above code is :

[('the', 2), ('quick', 2), ('person', 2), ('did', 1), ('not', 1),
('realize', 1), ('his', 1), ('speed', 1), ('bumped', 1)]


I was wondering if it is possible to use the Counter object to get count of bigrams.
Any approach other than Counter object or regex will also be appreciated.

Answer

Some itertools magic:

>>> import re
>>> from itertools import islice, izip
>>> words = re.findall("\w+", 
   "the quick person did not realize his speed and the quick person bumped")
>>> print Counter(izip(words, islice(words, 1, None)))

Output:

Counter({('the', 'quick'): 2, ('quick', 'person'): 2, ('person', 'did'): 1, 
  ('did', 'not'): 1, ('not', 'realize'): 1, ('and', 'the'): 1, 
  ('speed', 'and'): 1, ('person', 'bumped'): 1, ('his', 'speed'): 1, 
  ('realize', 'his'): 1})

Bonus

Get the frequency of any n-gram:

from itertools import tee, islice

def ngrams(lst, n):
  tlst = lst
  while True:
    a, b = tee(tlst)
    l = tuple(islice(a, n))
    if len(l) == n:
      yield l
      next(b)
      tlst = b
    else:
      break

>>> Counter(ngrams(words, 3))

Output:

Counter({('the', 'quick', 'person'): 2, ('and', 'the', 'quick'): 1, 
  ('realize', 'his', 'speed'): 1, ('his', 'speed', 'and'): 1, 
  ('person', 'did', 'not'): 1, ('quick', 'person', 'did'): 1, 
  ('quick', 'person', 'bumped'): 1, ('did', 'not', 'realize'): 1, 
  ('speed', 'and', 'the'): 1, ('not', 'realize', 'his'): 1})

This works with lazy iterables and generators too. So you can write a generator which reads a file line by line, generating words, and pass it to ngarms to consume lazily without reading the whole file in memory.

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