Spoken Question Answering (SQA) is essential for machines to reply to user's question by finding the answer span within a given spoken passage. SQA has been previously achieved without ASR to avoid recognition errors and Out-of-Vocabulary (OOV) problems. However, the real-world problem of Open-domain SQA (openSQA), in which the machine needs to first retrieve passages that possibly contain the answer from a spoken archive in addition, was never considered. This paper proposes the first known end-to-end framework, Speech Dense Passage Retriever (SpeechDPR), for the retrieval component of the openSQA problem. SpeechDPR learns a sentence-level semantic representation by distilling knowledge from the cascading model of unsupervised ASR (UASR) and text dense retriever (TDR). No manually transcribed speech data is needed. Initial experiments showed performance comparable to the cascading model of UASR and TDR, and significantly better when UASR was poor, verifying this approach is more robust to speech recognition errors.
In recent advancements in spoken question answering (QA), end-to-end models have made significant strides. However, previous research has primarily focused on extractive span selection. While this extractive-based approach is effective when answers are present directly within the input, it falls short in addressing abstractive questions, where answers are not directly extracted but inferred from the given information. To bridge this gap, we introduce the first end-to-end Generative Spoken Question Answering (GSQA) model that empowers the system to engage in abstractive reasoning. The challenge in training our GSQA model lies in the absence of a spoken abstractive QA dataset. We propose using text models for initialization and leveraging the extractive QA dataset to transfer knowledge from the text generative model to the spoken generative model. Experimental results indicate that our model surpasses the previous extractive model by 3% on extractive QA datasets. Furthermore, the GSQA model has only been fine-tuned on the spoken extractive QA dataset. Despite not having seen any spoken abstractive QA data, it can still closely match the performance of the cascade model. In conclusion, our GSQA model shows the potential to generalize to a broad spectrum of questions, thus further expanding the spoken question answering capabilities of abstractive QA. Our code is available at https://voidful.github.io/GSQA
We propose Fast Language-Audio Pre-training (FLAP), a self-supervised approach that efficiently and effectively learns aligned audio and language representations through masking, contrastive learning and reconstruction. For efficiency, FLAP randomly drops audio spectrogram tokens, focusing solely on the remaining ones for self-supervision. Through inter-modal contrastive learning, FLAP learns to align paired audio and text representations in a shared latent space. Notably, FLAP leverages multiple augmented views via masking for inter-modal contrast and learns to reconstruct the masked portion of audio tokens. Moreover, FLAP leverages large language models (LLMs) to augment the text inputs, contributing to improved performance. These approaches lead to more robust and informative audio-text representations, enabling FLAP to achieve state-of-the-art (SoTA) performance on audio-text retrieval tasks on AudioCaps (achieving 53.0% R@1) and Clotho (achieving 25.5% R@1).
Ever since the development of GPT-3 in the natural language processing (NLP) field, in-context learning (ICL) has played an important role in utilizing large language models (LLMs). By presenting the LM utterance-label demonstrations at the input, the LM can accomplish few-shot learning without relying on gradient descent or requiring explicit modification of its parameters. This enables the LM to learn and adapt in a black-box manner. Despite the success of ICL in NLP, little work is exploring the possibility of ICL in speech processing. This study proposes the first exploration of ICL with a speech LM without text supervision. We first show that the current speech LM does not have the ICL capability. With the proposed warmup training, the speech LM can, therefore, perform ICL on unseen tasks. In this work, we verify the feasibility of ICL for speech LM on speech classification tasks.
Data-driven unit discovery in self-supervised learning (SSL) of speech has embarked on a new era of spoken language processing. Yet, the discovered units often remain in phonetic space, limiting the utility of SSL representations. Here, we demonstrate that a syllabic organization emerges in learning sentence-level representation of speech. In particular, we adopt "self-distillation" objective to fine-tune the pretrained HuBERT with an aggregator token that summarizes the entire sentence. Without any supervision, the resulting model draws definite boundaries in speech, and the representations across frames show salient syllabic structures. We demonstrate that this emergent structure largely corresponds to the ground truth syllables. Furthermore, we propose a new benchmark task, Spoken Speech ABX, for evaluating sentence-level representation of speech. When compared to previous models, our model outperforms in both unsupervised syllable discovery and learning sentence-level representation. Together, we demonstrate that the self-distillation of HuBERT gives rise to syllabic organization without relying on external labels or modalities, and potentially provides novel data-driven units for spoken language modeling.
The 2023 Multilingual Speech Universal Performance Benchmark (ML-SUPERB) Challenge expands upon the acclaimed SUPERB framework, emphasizing self-supervised models in multilingual speech recognition and language identification. The challenge comprises a research track focused on applying ML-SUPERB to specific multilingual subjects, a Challenge Track for model submissions, and a New Language Track where language resource researchers can contribute and evaluate their low-resource language data in the context of the latest progress in multilingual speech recognition. The challenge garnered 12 model submissions and 54 language corpora, resulting in a comprehensive benchmark encompassing 154 languages. The findings indicate that merely scaling models is not the definitive solution for multilingual speech tasks, and a variety of speech/voice types present significant challenges in multilingual speech processing.
Prompting and adapter tuning have emerged as efficient alternatives to fine-tuning (FT) methods. However, existing studies on speech prompting focused on classification tasks and failed on more complex sequence generation tasks. Besides, adapter tuning is primarily applied with a focus on encoder-only self-supervised models. Our experiments show that prompting on Wav2Seq, a self-supervised encoder-decoder model, surpasses previous works in sequence generation tasks. It achieves a remarkable 53% relative improvement in word error rate for ASR and a 27% in F1 score for slot filling. Additionally, prompting competes with the FT method in the low-resource scenario. Moreover, we show the transferability of prompting and adapter tuning on Wav2Seq in cross-lingual ASR. When limited trainable parameters are involved, prompting and adapter tuning consistently outperform conventional FT across 7 languages. Notably, in the low-resource scenario, prompting consistently outperforms adapter tuning.
Contrastive Language-Image Pre-training (CLIP) is an approach that has advanced research and applications in computer vision, fueling modern recognition systems and generative models. We believe that the main ingredient to the success of CLIP is its data and not the model architecture or pre-training objective. However, CLIP only provides very limited information about its data and how it has been collected, leading to works that aim to reproduce CLIP's data by filtering with its model parameters. In this work, we intend to reveal CLIP's data curation approach and in our pursuit of making it open to the community introduce Metadata-Curated Language-Image Pre-training (MetaCLIP). MetaCLIP takes a raw data pool and metadata (derived from CLIP's concepts) and yields a balanced subset over the metadata distribution. Our experimental study rigorously isolates the model and training settings, concentrating solely on data. MetaCLIP applied to CommonCrawl with 400M image-text data pairs outperforms CLIP's data on multiple standard benchmarks. In zero-shot ImageNet classification, MetaCLIP achieves 70.8% accuracy, surpassing CLIP's 68.3% on ViT-B models. Scaling to 1B data, while maintaining the same training budget, attains 72.4%. Our observations hold across various model sizes, exemplified by ViT-H achieving 80.5%, without any bells-and-whistles. Curation code and training data distribution on metadata is made available at https://github.com/facebookresearch/MetaCLIP.
* 17 pages. arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:2103.00020 by
Audio-visual representation learning aims to develop systems with human-like perception by utilizing correlation between auditory and visual information. However, current models often focus on a limited set of tasks, and generalization abilities of learned representations are unclear. To this end, we propose the AV-SUPERB benchmark that enables general-purpose evaluation of unimodal audio/visual and bimodal fusion representations on 7 datasets covering 5 audio-visual tasks in speech and audio processing. We evaluate 5 recent self-supervised models and show that none of these models generalize to all tasks, emphasizing the need for future study on improving universal model performance. In addition, we show that representations may be improved with intermediate-task fine-tuning and audio event classification with AudioSet serves as a strong intermediate task. We release our benchmark with evaluation code and a model submission platform to encourage further research in audio-visual learning.
We present CM3Leon (pronounced "Chameleon"), a retrieval-augmented, token-based, decoder-only multi-modal language model capable of generating and infilling both text and images. CM3Leon uses the CM3 multi-modal architecture but additionally shows the extreme benefits of scaling up and tuning on more diverse instruction-style data. It is the first multi-modal model trained with a recipe adapted from text-only language models, including a large-scale retrieval-augmented pre-training stage and a second multi-task supervised fine-tuning (SFT) stage. It is also a general-purpose model that can do both text-to-image and image-to-text generation, allowing us to introduce self-contained contrastive decoding methods that produce high-quality outputs. Extensive experiments demonstrate that this recipe is highly effective for multi-modal models. CM3Leon achieves state-of-the-art performance in text-to-image generation with 5x less training compute than comparable methods (zero-shot MS-COCO FID of 4.88). After SFT, CM3Leon can also demonstrate unprecedented levels of controllability in tasks ranging from language-guided image editing to image-controlled generation and segmentation.