Reference Work Entry

Encyclopedia of Database Systems

pp 3472-3473

Web Harvesting

  • Wolfgang GatterbauerAffiliated withUniversity of Washington


Web data extraction; Web information extraction; Web mining


Web harvesting describes the process of gathering and integrating data from various heterogeneous web sources. Necessary input is an appropriate knowledge representation of the domain of interest (e.g., an ontology), together with example instances of concepts or relationships (seed knowledge). Output is structured data (e.g., in the form of a relational database) that is gathered from the Web. The term harvesting implies that, while passing over a large body of available information, the process gathers only such information that lies in the domain of interest and is, as such, relevant.

Key Points

The process of web harvesting can be divided into three subsequent tasks: (i) data or information retrieval, which involves finding relevant information on the Web and storing it locally. This task requires tools for searching and navigating the Web, i.e., crawlers and means for interacting ...

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