We present a series of long-context LLMs that support effective context windows of up to 32,768 tokens. Our model series are built through continual pretraining from Llama 2 with longer training sequences and on a dataset where long texts are upsampled. We perform extensive evaluation on language modeling, synthetic context probing tasks, and a wide range of research benchmarks. On research benchmarks, our models achieve consistent improvements on most regular tasks and significant improvements on long-context tasks over Llama 2. Notably, with a cost-effective instruction tuning procedure that does not require human-annotated long instruction data, the 70B variant can already surpass gpt-3.5-turbo-16k's overall performance on a suite of long-context tasks. Alongside these results, we provide an in-depth analysis on the individual components of our method. We delve into Llama's position encodings and discuss its limitation in modeling long dependencies. We also examine the impact of various design choices in the pretraining process, including the data mix and the training curriculum of sequence lengths -- our ablation experiments suggest that having abundant long texts in the pretrain dataset is not the key to achieving strong performance, and we empirically verify that long context continual pretraining is more efficient and similarly effective compared to pretraining from scratch with long sequences.
In this work, we develop and release Llama 2, a collection of pretrained and fine-tuned large language models (LLMs) ranging in scale from 7 billion to 70 billion parameters. Our fine-tuned LLMs, called Llama 2-Chat, are optimized for dialogue use cases. Our models outperform open-source chat models on most benchmarks we tested, and based on our human evaluations for helpfulness and safety, may be a suitable substitute for closed-source models. We provide a detailed description of our approach to fine-tuning and safety improvements of Llama 2-Chat in order to enable the community to build on our work and contribute to the responsible development of LLMs.
Machine Translation (MT) has been widely used for cross-lingual classification, either by translating the test set into English and running inference with a monolingual model (translate-test), or translating the training set into the target languages and finetuning a multilingual model (translate-train). However, most research in the area focuses on the multilingual models rather than the MT component. We show that, by using a stronger MT system and mitigating the mismatch between training on original text and running inference on machine translated text, translate-test can do substantially better than previously assumed. The optimal approach, however, is highly task dependent, as we identify various sources of cross-lingual transfer gap that affect different tasks and approaches differently. Our work calls into question the dominance of multilingual models for cross-lingual classification, and prompts to pay more attention to MT-based baselines.
Mixture-of-Experts (MoE) models have recently gained steam in achieving the state-of-the-art performance in a wide range of tasks in computer vision and natural language processing. They effectively expand the model capacity while incurring a minimal increase in computation cost during training. However, deploying such models for inference is difficult due to their large model size and complex communication pattern. In this work, we provide a characterization of two MoE workloads, namely Language Modeling (LM) and Machine Translation (MT) and identify their sources of inefficiencies at deployment. We propose three optimization techniques to mitigate sources of inefficiencies, namely (1) Dynamic gating, (2) Expert Buffering, and (3) Expert load balancing. We show that dynamic gating improves execution time by 1.25-4$\times$ for LM, 2-5$\times$ for MT Encoder and 1.09-1.5$\times$ for MT Decoder. It also reduces memory usage by up to 1.36$\times$ for LM and up to 1.1$\times$ for MT. We further propose Expert Buffering, a new caching mechanism that only keeps hot, active experts in GPU memory while buffering the rest in CPU memory. This reduces static memory allocation by 1.47$\times$. We finally propose a load balancing methodology that provides additional robustness to the workload. The code will be open-sourced upon acceptance.
Sparsely gated Mixture of Experts (MoE) models have been shown to be a compute-efficient method to scale model capacity for multilingual machine translation. However, for low-resource tasks, MoE models severely over-fit. We show effective regularization strategies, namely dropout techniques for MoE layers in EOM and FOM, Conditional MoE Routing and Curriculum Learning methods that prevent over-fitting and improve the performance of MoE models on low-resource tasks without adversely affecting high-resource tasks. On a massively multilingual machine translation benchmark, our strategies result in about +1 chrF++ improvement in very low resource language pairs. We perform an extensive analysis of the learned MoE routing to better understand the impact of our regularization methods and how we can improve them.
Multilingual machine translation models can benefit from synergy between different language pairs, but also suffer from interference. While there is a growing number of sophisticated methods that aim to eliminate interference, our understanding of interference as a phenomenon is still limited. This work identifies the main factors that contribute to interference in multilingual machine translation. Through systematic experimentation, we find that interference (or synergy) are primarily determined by model size, data size, and the proportion of each language pair within the total dataset. We observe that substantial interference occurs mainly when the model is very small with respect to the available training data, and that using standard transformer configurations with less than one billion parameters largely alleviates interference and promotes synergy. Moreover, we show that tuning the sampling temperature to control the proportion of each language pair in the data is key to balancing the amount of interference between low and high resource language pairs effectively, and can lead to superior performance overall.
Driven by the goal of eradicating language barriers on a global scale, machine translation has solidified itself as a key focus of artificial intelligence research today. However, such efforts have coalesced around a small subset of languages, leaving behind the vast majority of mostly low-resource languages. What does it take to break the 200 language barrier while ensuring safe, high quality results, all while keeping ethical considerations in mind? In No Language Left Behind, we took on this challenge by first contextualizing the need for low-resource language translation support through exploratory interviews with native speakers. Then, we created datasets and models aimed at narrowing the performance gap between low and high-resource languages. More specifically, we developed a conditional compute model based on Sparsely Gated Mixture of Experts that is trained on data obtained with novel and effective data mining techniques tailored for low-resource languages. We propose multiple architectural and training improvements to counteract overfitting while training on thousands of tasks. Critically, we evaluated the performance of over 40,000 different translation directions using a human-translated benchmark, Flores-200, and combined human evaluation with a novel toxicity benchmark covering all languages in Flores-200 to assess translation safety. Our model achieves an improvement of 44% BLEU relative to the previous state-of-the-art, laying important groundwork towards realizing a universal translation system. Finally, we open source all contributions described in this work, accessible at https://github.com/facebookresearch/fairseq/tree/nllb.
Multilingual machine translation suffers from negative interference across languages. A common solution is to relax parameter sharing with language-specific modules like adapters. However, adapters of related languages are unable to transfer information, and their total number of parameters becomes prohibitively expensive as the number of languages grows. In this work, we overcome these drawbacks using hyper-adapters -- hyper-networks that generate adapters from language and layer embeddings. While past work had poor results when scaling hyper-networks, we propose a rescaling fix that significantly improves convergence and enables training larger hyper-networks. We find that hyper-adapters are more parameter efficient than regular adapters, reaching the same performance with up to 12 times less parameters. When using the same number of parameters and FLOPS, our approach consistently outperforms regular adapters. Also, hyper-adapters converge faster than alternative approaches and scale better than regular dense networks. Our analysis shows that hyper-adapters learn to encode language relatedness, enabling positive transfer across languages.
Neural Machine Translation (NMT) models are typically trained on heterogeneous data that are concatenated and randomly shuffled. However, not all of the training data are equally useful to the model. Curriculum training aims to present the data to the NMT models in a meaningful order. In this work, we introduce a two-stage curriculum training framework for NMT where we fine-tune a base NMT model on subsets of data, selected by both deterministic scoring using pre-trained methods and online scoring that considers prediction scores of the emerging NMT model. Through comprehensive experiments on six language pairs comprising low- and high-resource languages from WMT'21, we have shown that our curriculum strategies consistently demonstrate better quality (up to +2.2 BLEU improvement) and faster convergence (approximately 50% fewer updates).
Mixture of Experts layers (MoEs) enable efficient scaling of language models through conditional computation. This paper presents a detailed empirical study of how autoregressive MoE language models scale in comparison with dense models in a wide range of settings: in- and out-of-domain language modeling, zero- and few-shot priming, and full fine-tuning. With the exception of fine-tuning, we find MoEs to be substantially more compute efficient. At more modest training budgets, MoEs can match the performance of dense models using $\sim$4 times less compute. This gap narrows at scale, but our largest MoE model (1.1T parameters) consistently outperforms a compute-equivalent dense model (6.7B parameters). Overall, this performance gap varies greatly across tasks and domains, suggesting that MoE and dense models generalize differently in ways that are worthy of future study. We make our code and models publicly available for research use.