Table of contents
A classifier is a machine learning tool that will take data items and place them into one of k classes. A probabilistic classifier, like this one, can also give a probability distribution over the class assignment for a data item. This software is a Java implementation of a maximum entropy classifier. Maximum entropy models are otherwise known as softmax classifiers and are essentially equivalent to multiclass logistic regression models (though parameterized slightly differently, in a way that is advantageous with sparse explanatory feature vectors). In other words, this is the same basic technology that you’re usually getting in various of the cloud-based machine learning APIs (Amazon, Google, …) The classification method is described in:
Version 2 of the classifier was developed by Anna Rafferty, Alex Kleeman, Jenny Finkel, and Christopher Manning.
The software requires requires Java (now Java 8). As well as API access, the program includes an easy-to-use command-line interface,
ColumnDataClassifier, for building models. Its features are especially suited to building models over text data, but it also supports numeric variables.
Licensing. The Stanford Classifier is available for download, licensed under the GNU General Public License (v2 or later). Source is included. The Stanford Classifier code is dual licensed (in a similar manner to MySQL, etc.). Open source licensing is under the full GPL, which allows many free uses. For distributors of proprietary software, commercial licensing is available. If you don’t need a commercial license, but would like to support maintenance of these tools, we welcome gift funding.
The download is a 9.6 MB zipped file. If you unpack that file, you should have everything needed, including example files and documentation. Start by reading the
README.txt file. Send any questions or feedback to
The Stanford Classifier is included in the most recent versions of CoreNLP.
Have a support question, PR, or bug report? Please post an issue on our Github
Feedback and licensing issues can also be sent to our mailing lists (see immediately below).
We have 3 mailing lists for the Stanford Classifier all of which are shared with other JavaNLP tools (with the exclusion of the parser). Each address is at
java-nlp-userThis is the best list to post to in order to send feature requests, make announcements, or for discussion among JavaNLP users. (Please ask support questions on Github.) You have to subscribe to be able to use this list. Join the list via this webpage or by emailing
firstname.lastname@example.org. (Leave the subject and message body empty.) You can also look at the list archives.
java-nlp-announceThis list will be used only to announce new versions of Stanford JavaNLP tools. So it will be very low volume (expect 2-4 messages a year). Join the list via this webpage or by emailing
email@example.com. (Leave the subject and message body empty.)
java-nlp-supportThis list goes only to the software maintainers. It’s a good address for licensing questions, etc. For general use and support questions, you’re better off using Github or joining and using
java-nlp-user. You cannot join
java-nlp-support, but you can mail questions to
There is a standalone distribution of the classifier which has not been updated in some time.
|4.2.0||2020‑11‑17||Update for compatibility|
|4.0.0||2020‑04‑19||Update for compatibility|
|3.9.2||2018‑10‑16||Updated for compatibility|
|3.9.1||2018‑02‑27||Updated for compatibility|
|3.8.0||2017‑06‑09||Updated for compatibility|
|3.7.0||2016‑10‑31||Update for compatibility|
|3.6.0||2015‑12‑09||Updated for compatibility|
|3.5.2||2015‑04‑20||Updated for compatibility|
|3.5.1||2015‑01‑29||New input / output format options; support for GloVe word vector features|
|3.5.0||2014‑10‑26||Upgrade to Java 8|
|3.4.1||2014‑08‑27||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|3.4||2014‑06‑16||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|3.3.0||2013‑11‑12||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|3.2.0||2013‑06‑20||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|2.1.8||2013‑04‑04||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|2.1.7||2012‑11‑11||Pair of word features added|
|2.1.6||2012‑07‑09||Minor bug fixes|
|2.1.5||2012‑05‑22||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|2.1.4||2012‑03‑09||Bugfix for svmlight format|
|2.1.3||2011‑12‑22||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|2.1.2||2011‑09‑14||Change ColumnDataClassifier to be an object with API rather than static methods; ColumnDataClassifier thread safe|
|2.1.1||2011‑06‑19||Updated for compatibility with other Stanford releases|
|2.1||2011‑05‑15||Updated with more documentation|
|2.0||2007‑08‑15||New command line interface, substantial increase in options and features (updated on 2007-09-28 with a bug fix)|