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Latent Dirichlet allocation (LDA) topic modeling in javascript for node.js. LDA is a machine learning algorithm that extracts topics and their related keywords from a collection of documents.

In LDA, a document may contain several different topics, each with their own related terms. The algorithm uses a probabilistic model for detecting the number of topics specified and extracting their related keywords. For example, a document may contain topics that could be classified as beach-related and weather-related. The beach topic may contain related words, such as sand, ocean, and water. Similarly, the weather topic may contain related words, such as sun, temperature, and clouds.


$ npm install lda


var lda = require('lda');
// Example document. 
var text = 'Cats are small. Dogs are big. Cats like to chase mice. Dogs like to eat bones.';
// Extract sentences. 
var documents = text.match( /[^\.!\?]+[\.!\?]+/g );
// Run LDA to get terms for 2 topics (5 terms each). 
var result = lda(documents, 2, 5);

The above example produces the following result with two topics (topic 1 is "cat-related", topic 2 is "dog-related"):

Topic 1
cats (0.21%)
dogs (0.19%)
small (0.1%)
mice (0.1%)
chase (0.1%)
Topic 2
dogs (0.21%)
cats (0.19%)
big (0.11%)
eat (0.1%)
bones (0.1%)


LDA returns an array of topics, each containing an array of terms. The result contains the following format:

[ [ { term: 'dogs', probability: 0.2 },
    { term: 'cats', probability: 0.2 },
    { term: 'small', probability: 0.1 },
    { term: 'mice', probability: 0.1 },
    { term: 'chase', probability: 0.1 } ],
  [ { term: 'dogs', probability: 0.2 },
    { term: 'cats', probability: 0.2 },
    { term: 'bones', probability: 0.11 },
    { term: 'eat', probability: 0.1 },
    { term: 'big', probability: 0.099 } ] ]

The result can be traversed as follows:

var result = lda(documents, 2, 5);
// For each topic. 
for (var i in result) {
    var row = result[i];
    console.log('Topic ' + (parseInt(i) + 1));
    // For each term. 
    for (var j in row) {
        var term = row[j];
        console.log(term.term + ' (' + term.probability + '%)');

Additional Languages

LDA uses stop-words to ignore common terms in the text (for example: this, that, it, we). By default, the stop-words list uses English. To use additional languages, you can specify an array of language ids, as follows:

// Use English (this is the default). 
result = lda(documents, 2, 5, ['en']);
// Use German. 
result = lda(documents, 2, 5, ['de']);
// Use English + German. 
result = lda(documents, 2, 5, ['en', 'de']);

To add a new language-specific stop-words list, create a file /lda/lib/stopwords_XX.js where XX is the id for the language. For example, a French stop-words list could be named "stopwords_fr.js". The contents of the file should follow the format of an existing stop-words list. The format is, as follows:

exports.stop_words = [

Setting a Random Seed

A specific random seed can be used to compute the same terms and probabilities during subsequent runs. You can specify the random seed, as follows:

// Use the random seed 123. 
result = lda(documents, 2, 5, null, null, null, 123);


Kory Becker

Based on original javascript implementation