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Harnessing the Power of Amazon SageMaker for Topic Modeling


Topic modeling is a powerful technique used in natural language processing (NLP) that allows us to identify hidden patterns and themes in large volumes of text data.

It has many applications in social media analysis, market research, and customer feedback analysis.

In this blog post, we will explore how to use Amazon SageMaker, a cloud-based machine learning platform, to perform topic modeling on a dataset of online customer reviews.

Working of Amazon SageMaker

Amazon SageMaker provides a managed environment for building, training, and deploying machine learning models. To start with Amazon SageMaker, we first need to create an instance of the service. Once we have created an instance, we can start building our topic modeling model.


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Creating a Topic Modeling Model

The following actions must be taken in Amazon SageMaker to establish a topic modeling model:

  • Data Preparation: The first step is preparing the data for analysis. We have a dataset of customer reviews in our situation. Thus, we must clean and preprocess the data to remove any noise and prepare it for analysis.
  • Model Training: After the data has been cleaned and prepared, we may begin training the model. The Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA) technique is included in SageMaker for topic modeling. In a generative probabilistic model called LDA, documents are modeled as a jumble of subjects.
  • Model Deployment: After training our model, we can upload it to a SageMaker endpoint and use it to predict fresh data. The endpoint can be developed and deployed using the SageMaker SDK.
  • Inference: After the endpoint is installed, we may use it to make assumptions about fresh data. In our situation, we can use it to examine fresh client feedback and determine the discussed subjects.

Applications of Topic Modeling

Topic modeling has numerous applications in various fields, such as marketing, healthcare, social media analysis, and scientific research. Some of the popular use cases of topic modeling include:

  • Market research: Topic modeling can help marketers understand the sentiments and preferences of customers by analyzing their online reviews, social media posts, and customer feedback.
  • Healthcare: Topic modeling can extract medical terms from clinical notes and electronic health records, which can help in disease diagnosis and treatment planning.
  • Social media analysis: Topic modeling can analyze social media data to detect trends and patterns, understand user sentiments, and identify influencers.
  • Scientific research: Topic modeling can be used to analyze research papers to identify relevant topics and themes, which can help researchers in literature review and data exploration.

Techniques of Topic Modeling

Topic modeling is an unsupervised learning technique to discover hidden topics or themes within large volumes of textual data. The most popular techniques used for topic modeling are:

  • Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA): LDA is a probabilistic generative model that assumes each document is a mixture of topics and each topic is a word distribution. The algorithm starts by randomly assigning each word in the corpus to a topic and then iteratively adjusts the topic assignments based on the probability of observing the words given the topic and the probability of observing the topic given the document. The end result is a set of topics, each represented by a list of words with their corresponding probabilities. LDA is widely used for topic modeling due to its simplicity and scalability.

Here is an example of topic modeling using the popular BBC News dataset.

The BBC News dataset comprises 2,225 news articles across 5 categories: business, entertainment, politics, sport, and tech. We will use the LDA algorithm to identify the underlying topics within this dataset.

First, we must preprocess the data by removing stopwords and punctuations and stemming the words. Then, we will use the LDA algorithm to identify the topics within the dataset. Here’s some sample code in Python:

This code will output the top 10 words for each of the 5 identified topics.


From the output, we can see that the LDA algorithm has identified 5 topics within the BBC News dataset, including topics related to business, entertainment, politics, sports, and technology.

  • Non-negative Matrix Factorization (NMF): NMF is a matrix factorization technique that factorizes the document-term matrix into two non-negative matrices representing a topic matrix and a word matrix. The topic matrix represents the distribution of topics in each document, and the word matrix represents the distribution of words in each topic. The algorithm iteratively updates the matrices until they converge to a stable solution. NMF is preferred for its interpretability and sparsity.
  • Hierarchical Dirichlet Process (HDP): HDP is an extension of LDA that allows for an infinite number of topics, which can be useful for modeling complex and diverse data.

Challenges of Topic Modeling

Topic modeling is a challenging task due to the following reasons:

  • Data preprocessing: Preprocessing textual data can be time-consuming and error-prone. The quality of topic modeling heavily depends on the quality of the preprocessed data.
  • Model selection: There are numerous topic modeling techniques, and selecting the best one for a particular task can be difficult. It requires a good understanding of the strengths and weaknesses of each technique.
  • Evaluation: Evaluating the quality of topic modeling results is subjective and depends on the application. Common evaluation metrics include coherence, perplexity, and human evaluation.


Topic modeling is a powerful technique that allows us to extract insights from large volumes of text data. In this blog post, we have seen how to use Amazon SageMaker to perform topic modeling on a dataset of customer reviews. With Amazon SageMaker, we can easily build, train, and deploy our topic modeling model and use it to analyze new data in real time.

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1. What is Topic Modelling?

ANS: – Topic modeling is a statistical technique used to extract hidden patterns or themes from a collection of documents. These patterns are called topics, representing groups of words frequently appearing together in the text. Each topic is a set of related words that can be used to describe the content of the documents that belong to that topic.

2. How does Topic Modelling work?

ANS: – The most popular approach to topic modeling is Latent Dirichlet Allocation (LDA), which assumes that each document is a mixture of different topics and that each topic is a distribution of words. LDA uses a generative probabilistic model to represent this assumption, which involves a set of latent variables that cannot be observed directly.

3. How do I choose the number of topics for my model?

ANS: – Choosing the number of topics for your model can be challenging, as it depends on your dataset’s size and the topics’ complexity. Some common methods for choosing topics include visual inspection of topic clusters, statistical metrics like coherence and perplexity, and conducting a domain-specific analysis to determine the number of distinct topics.

4. How do I evaluate the quality of a topic model?

ANS: – Several metrics can be used to evaluate the quality of a topic model, including coherence, perplexity, and topic diversity. Coherence measures how semantically similar the words are in each topic, while perplexity measures how well the model predicts unseen data. Topic diversity measures how distinct the identified topics are from each other.

WRITTEN BY Hitesh Verma



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