Mini-Course: Intro to NLU for technical non-programmers

This is a mini-course which covers the basics of Natural Language Understanding (NLU). There is no code in this mini-course. So it serves as a good introduction for technical non-programmers.

Why learn NLU

By learning about NLU, you will be able to build better Dialogflow chatbots. Not because you can directly use the knowledge in your Dialogflow bot – more because having a background knowledge in NLU can help you get a better mental map of how Dialogflow works.


There is some disagreement on terminology when it comes to calling this NLP (Natural Language Processing) vs NLU (Natural Language Understanding). For example, according to Wikipedia, a task like Part of speech tagging is NLP but not actually NLU.

But regardless of what terminology you wish to use, the lessons in this course explain specific tasks which all deal with turning unstructured text into structured data.

Also, unfortunately, if you search for the word NLP on Google, the vast majority of hits are talking about Neuro-linguistic programming.

1 Google Cloud NL API

2 Text Segmentation

3 Stemming

4 Stopwords

5 Part of speech tagging part 1

6 Part of speech tagging part 2

7 Named Entity Recognition

8 Synsets

This website contains affiliate links. See the disclosure page for more details. 
"The magic key I needed as a non-programmer"

The custom payload generator was the magic key I needed (as a non-programmer) to build a good demo with rich responses in DialogFlow Messenger. I've only used it for 30 minutes and am thrilled. I've spent hours trying to figure out some of the intricacies of DialogFlow on my own. Over and over, I kept coming back to Aravind's tutorials available on-line. I trust the other functionalities I learn to use in the app will save me additional time and heartburn.

- Kathleen R
Cofounder, gathrHealth
In this free course, I provide some tips for managing large Dialogflow ES bots without compromising on accuracy.