Automated question answering - the ability of a machine to answer questions, simple or complex, posed in ordinary human language - is one of todays most exciting technological developments. It has all the markings of a disruptive technology, one that is poised to displace the existing search methods and establish new standards for user-centered access to information. This book gives a comprehensive and detailed look at the current approaches to automated question answering. The level of presentation is suitable for newcomers to the field as well as for professionals wishing to study this area and/or to build practical QA systems. The book can serve as a 'how-to' handbook for IT practitioners and system developers. It can also be used to teach advanced graduate courses in Computer Science, Information Science and related disciplines. The readers will acquire in-depth practical knowledge of this critical new technology.