Breeds of cooccurrence: an attempt at classification
The paper proposes a substantial classification of collocates (pairs of words that tend to cooccur) along with heuristics that can help to attibute a word pair to a proper type automatically.
The best studied type is frequent phrases, which includes idioms, lexicographic collocations, and syntactic selection. Pairs of this type are known to occur at a short distance and can be singled out by choosing a narrow window for collecting cooccurrence data.
The next most salient type is topically related pairs. These can be identified by considering word frequencies in individual documents, as in the wellknown distributional topic models.
The third type is pairs that occur in repeated text fragments such as popular quotes of standard legal formulae. The characteristic feature of these is that the fragment contains several aligned words that are repeated in the same sequence. Such pairs are normally filtered out for most practical purposes, but filtering is usually applied only to exact repeats; we propose a method of capturing inexact repetition.
Hypothetically one could also expect to find a forth type, collocate pairs linked by an intrinsic semantic relation or a long-distance syntactic relation; such a link would guarantee co-occurrence at a certain relatively restricted range of distances, a range narrower than in case of a purely topical connection, but not so narrow as in repeats. However we do not find many cases of this sort in the preliminary empirical study.