Note: The below TL;DR was created using wordbot.io’s text summarizer tool. How cool is that – the AI this article is about wrote some of it!
What is a Text Summarizer? A summarizing tool, or text summarizer is a piece of software that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to condense a piece of content into a smaller piece covering only the main points. In this post, we’ll cover what a Text Summarizer is used for and who uses it. We’ll wrap up with some highlights of wordbot’s text summarizer tool.
A summarizing tool, or text summarizer is a piece of software that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to condense a piece of content into a smaller piece that covers only the main points. This software can be a desktop application, and entire website specifically written for summarizing text, or a tool or feature within a larger piece of software.
So why would someone want to use a text summarizer to summarize a large article or several paragraphs? I’m sure you can already think of a few. Let’s review some groups of people that commonly use a text summarizer and how they use it.
TL;DR is an acronym that stands for Too Long Didn’t Read. Bloggers and content marketers that regularly write long-form content for SEO are more and more starting to include a TL;DR section at the beginning of their articles. You probably even noticed that we include TL;DRs on many of our blog posts like this one.
The TL;DR section allows the reader like yourself to read a paragraph or two, get the main points of the article, and move on. However, if you read the TL;DR and are interested you can dig into the entire article and read the details. This is a great way to summarize articles and be respectful of the reader’s time. We use the text summarizer at wordbot.io to automatically generate our TL;DR summaries for our blog posts.
Bloggers and marketers often include conclusions at the end of their articles. A text summarizer can quickly transform an article into a few paragraph conclusion section, saving the blogger some minutes of mentally rebuilding the article in their mind for a conclusion.
From Financial Analysts to Human Resource (HR) professionals to any employee creating sliding decks, reports, job descriptions, employee communications, policies and more, a text summarizer is a great tool for creating executive summaries of longer form content. Let’s look at a few examples.
You’re a pricing analyst proposing a new way to structure the complex pricing for the manufacturer you work for. You have a slide deck you created that is 20 slides and you’ll be presenting it to the executive management in hopes of gaining their approval. What better way to begin the presentation then reviewing a 1-slide, bulleted summary of the key points? Executives and senior management are always short on time and often shy away from details and thus love summaries.
You’re a Controller and are responsible for creating a reporting packet each week. Each Monday you send your packet out to senior management and it’s huge. Over time, based on questions you get you start questioning who is even using it. The busy executives don’t have time to read the reports they originally asked for. They still demand you create the reports, but you know they rarely read them.
Using a text summarizer, you can quickly summarize your financial reports and include the synopsis in the email when you send the reports out. This gets you bonus points with the boss and increases the chances of senior management understand the key takeaways of your reports.
Many job descriptions have a section that summarizes the company, job, and some other basic info about the position before getting into the details. A text summarizer is a great tool for creating summaries and intros for your longer, more detailed job descriptions.
Internal communications with employees include company newsletters, employee achievements, company news projected on TV screens in the break room, etc. A text summarizer can help create summaries for all these things, helping the workforce digest company news in seconds instead of minutes or hours.
The Marketing or HR Departments of companies will often submit press releases to share existing company news with those outside the company. Typically a teaser, or smaller piece of content is submitted in the press release and points to the full content on the company’s blog. A text summarizer can be used to quickly create press releases for company content.
Similar to business professionals, a text summarizer can help students create executive summaries for their presentations. It can also help them digest large bodies of content to quickly gain the main points.
Teachers and students alike have to do much research when learning new things and applying them, like in a learning aid or assignment. The text summarizer can take in-depth research and quickly extract the main bullet points or paragraphs.
Several websites and online businesses, including us at wordbot.io, offer a text summarizer as a feature. Because websites come and go, we won’t review each specific company’s text summarizer here, but we will discuss several of the features you can expect to find in an online summarizer. You can then use the list as an aid when choosing the summarizer tool that is best for you.
All text summarizers are powered by artificial intelligence. Some companies create their own while others access 3rd party APIs that handle the heavy lifting. The AI often uses natural language processing, machine learning, deep learning, neural networks and more to analyze the text and extract the main points. AI is exploding onto the software scene in a big way, so expect text summarizers, article rewriters, paraphrasers, and more to continue to get better and better over the coming years. We at wordbot use GPT-3 AI.
Most text summarizers will allow you to set the length of your summary. Some tools provide the length setting in the form of a percentage while others offer a slider control with the word “short” on the left side and “long” on the right side.
This setting is nice because sometimes you will summarize content that is say 3,000 words and other times content that is say 400 words. On the 3,000 word version, you probably want or need at least a few paragraphs to properly summarize the key points, but for the 400 word article you might only need a few sentences. By keeping the summary length short on the 400 word article, you ensure you don’t get a summary with a content length similar to the article itself.
Most summarizers have an option to show the results in bullet or paragraph form. For example, you may want to use paragraph form when creating TL;DR and Conclusion sections for blog posts, but bullet form for summarizing job descriptions and highlighting the key points in an executive summary for a work related slide deck.
Some summarizers offer the ability to extract and focus on specific keywords.
Extracting keywords is the ability to tell the summarizer to analyze the entire article and then extract the keywords, or main topic phrases that the article focuses on. This is a great SEO tool for analyzing competitors content to see which keywords they target. Summarizers like wordbot.io can also rank the weight of the extracted keywords. For example, if it extracts 10 keywords from your article, it will then tell you the weight (in a percentage) of each keyword, allowing you to know which of the 10 are used the most in the content.
Some summarizers give you the ability to choose which keywords to write your summary around. They will automatically extract the top keywords from your content and then ask you which of those keywords to target. You select the one(s) you want and run the summarizer tool. The tool will then create your summary around that keyword(s).
Not a common feature, but some summarizers offer a “best of” option. This option is typically a number from 1 to 5. It tells the summarizer tool to run that many summaries and return the best.
For example, you can set the “best of” setting to 3 and the summarizer’s AI will actually create three different summaries, score them against each other, and then return the highest scoring summary. AI often gets smarter and learns from your content, so often the third summary returned would be a higher quality than the first and so on. This can be an expensive process though, so many summarizers don’t offer it.
This feature allows you to choose the tone of your summary, such as professional, casual, comical, ironic, etc. Depending on the mood of the content, a feature like this ensures your summary holds the same mood as your original content.
Many websites that offer summarizer tools also offer paraphraser tools. This gives you the option of taking your summary and paraphrasing / rewriting it several times. This is a great feature for editing and fine-tuning your summary or optimizing it for specific keywords.
People often confuse the two because the tools are related, but quite different. A paraphrasing tool is one that allows you to rewrite and restructure content while keeping its original meaning. A summarizing tool is one that will create a summary, or condensed version, that covers just the key points of the content.
Candidly, our summarizer tool is not very robust at the time of this writing regarding features. We are purposely working on other areas of our software, including making our paraphraser and article rewriter the best on the planet.
However, we do plan on giving it a total makeover at some point in the near future, so check back frequently for updates. In the mean time, our summarizer tool does have a few great features.
It works really, really well. Meaning, if you put an article in, wordbot will generate a very high quality summary. This might not sound like much, but there are many tools out there that don’t work well. You paste in content and get a summary that makes no sense. Our summarizer might not be fancy, but it does what it’s supposed to really well – summarize long form content.
Our summarizer does allow you to extract keywords from articles, including the weight of each keyword. This makes it a very simple, yet powerful SEO tool for content marketers and bloggers. You can easily take top-ranking articles in Google, paste them in, click Summarize, and get a list of the targeted keywords.
After running summaries, you can save them using wordbot’s file system. You can create folders and files and easily access them later.
Wordbot has a paraphraser and summarizer tool all accessible from a rich text editor. It makes generating summaries and then rewriting them several times super easy. It rewrites a sentence at a time, so it gives you the ultimate control over rewriting your summaries.
You now have a good understanding of what a text summarizer is, have learned several practical uses for one, and know which features are possible. We hope you’ll give our summarizer tool a chance by signing up at wordbot.io, but regardless thanks for stopping by our blog.