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General Domain Adaptation Through Proportional Progressive Pseudo Labeling

Dec 23, 2020
Mohammad J. Hashemi, Eric Keller

Domain adaptation helps transfer the knowledge gained from a labeled source domain to an unlabeled target domain. During the past few years, different domain adaptation techniques have been published. One common flaw of these approaches is that while they might work well on one input type, such as images, their performance drops when applied to others, such as text or time-series. In this paper, we introduce Proportional Progressive Pseudo Labeling (PPPL), a simple, yet effective technique that can be implemented in a few lines of code to build a more general domain adaptation technique that can be applied on several different input types. At the beginning of the training phase, PPPL progressively reduces target domain classification error, by training the model directly with pseudo-labeled target domain samples, while excluding samples with more likely wrong pseudo-labels from the training set and also postponing training on such samples. Experiments on 6 different datasets that include tasks such as anomaly detection, text sentiment analysis and image classification demonstrate that PPPL can beat other baselines and generalize better.

* Published at 2020 IEEE International Conference on Big Data (Big Data) 

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GDPNet: Refining Latent Multi-View Graph for Relation Extraction

Dec 12, 2020
Fuzhao Xue, Aixin Sun, Hao Zhang, Eng Siong Chng

Relation Extraction (RE) is to predict the relation type of two entities that are mentioned in a piece of text, e.g., a sentence or a dialogue. When the given text is long, it is challenging to identify indicative words for the relation prediction. Recent advances on RE task are from BERT-based sequence modeling and graph-based modeling of relationships among the tokens in the sequence. In this paper, we propose to construct a latent multi-view graph to capture various possible relationships among tokens. We then refine this graph to select important words for relation prediction. Finally, the representation of the refined graph and the BERT-based sequence representation are concatenated for relation extraction. Specifically, in our proposed GDPNet (Gaussian Dynamic Time Warping Pooling Net), we utilize Gaussian Graph Generator (GGG) to generate edges of the multi-view graph. The graph is then refined by Dynamic Time Warping Pooling (DTWPool). On DialogRE and TACRED, we show that GDPNet achieves the best performance on dialogue-level RE, and comparable performance with the state-of-the-arts on sentence-level RE.

* To appear at AAAI 2021 

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DoLFIn: Distributions over Latent Features for Interpretability

Nov 10, 2020
Phong Le, Willem Zuidema

Interpreting the inner workings of neural models is a key step in ensuring the robustness and trustworthiness of the models, but work on neural network interpretability typically faces a trade-off: either the models are too constrained to be very useful, or the solutions found by the models are too complex to interpret. We propose a novel strategy for achieving interpretability that -- in our experiments -- avoids this trade-off. Our approach builds on the success of using probability as the central quantity, such as for instance within the attention mechanism. In our architecture, DoLFIn (Distributions over Latent Features for Interpretability), we do no determine beforehand what each feature represents, and features go altogether into an unordered set. Each feature has an associated probability ranging from 0 to 1, weighing its importance for further processing. We show that, unlike attention and saliency map approaches, this set-up makes it straight-forward to compute the probability with which an input component supports the decision the neural model makes. To demonstrate the usefulness of the approach, we apply DoLFIn to text classification, and show that DoLFIn not only provides interpretable solutions, but even slightly outperforms the classical CNN and BiLSTM text classifiers on the SST2 and AG-news datasets.

* COLING 2020 

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Diverse Image Captioning with Context-Object Split Latent Spaces

Nov 02, 2020
Shweta Mahajan, Stefan Roth

Diverse image captioning models aim to learn one-to-many mappings that are innate to cross-domain datasets, such as of images and texts. Current methods for this task are based on generative latent variable models, e.g. VAEs with structured latent spaces. Yet, the amount of multimodality captured by prior work is limited to that of the paired training data -- the true diversity of the underlying generative process is not fully captured. To address this limitation, we leverage the contextual descriptions in the dataset that explain similar contexts in different visual scenes. To this end, we introduce a novel factorization of the latent space, termed context-object split, to model diversity in contextual descriptions across images and texts within the dataset. Our framework not only enables diverse captioning through context-based pseudo supervision, but extends this to images with novel objects and without paired captions in the training data. We evaluate our COS-CVAE approach on the standard COCO dataset and on the held-out COCO dataset consisting of images with novel objects, showing significant gains in accuracy and diversity.

* To appear at NeurIPS 2020 

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Improving Zero and Few-Shot Abstractive Summarization with Intermediate Fine-tuning and Data Augmentation

Oct 24, 2020
Alexander R. Fabbri, Simeng Han, Haoyuan Li, Haoran Li, Marjan Ghazvininejad, Shafiq Joty, Dragomir Radev, Yashar Mehdad

Models pretrained with self-supervised objectives on large text corpora achieve state-of-the-art performance on text summarization tasks. However, these models are typically fine-tuned on hundreds of thousands of data points, an infeasible requirement when applying summarization to new, niche domains. In this work, we introduce a general method, called WikiTransfer, for fine-tuning pretrained models for summarization in an unsupervised, dataset-specific manner which makes use of characteristics of the target dataset such as the length and abstractiveness of the desired summaries. We achieve state-of-the-art, zero-shot abstractive summarization performance on the CNN-DailyMail dataset and demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach on three additional, diverse datasets. The models fine-tuned in this unsupervised manner are more robust to noisy data and also achieve better few-shot performance using 10 and 100 training examples. We perform ablation studies on the effect of the components of our unsupervised fine-tuning data and analyze the performance of these models in few-shot scenarios along with data augmentation techniques using both automatic and human evaluation.

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BioMegatron: Larger Biomedical Domain Language Model

Oct 14, 2020
Hoo-Chang Shin, Yang Zhang, Evelina Bakhturina, Raul Puri, Mostofa Patwary, Mohammad Shoeybi, Raghav Mani

There has been an influx of biomedical domain-specific language models, showing language models pre-trained on biomedical text perform better on biomedical domain benchmarks than those trained on general domain text corpora such as Wikipedia and Books. Yet, most works do not study the factors affecting each domain language application deeply. Additionally, the study of model size on domain-specific models has been mostly missing. We empirically study and evaluate several factors that can affect performance on domain language applications, such as the sub-word vocabulary set, model size, pre-training corpus, and domain transfer. We show consistent improvements on benchmarks with our larger BioMegatron model trained on a larger domain corpus, contributing to our understanding of domain language model applications. We demonstrate noticeable improvements over the previous state-of-the-art (SOTA) on standard biomedical NLP benchmarks of named entity recognition, relation extraction, and question answering. Model checkpoints and code are available at [] and [].

* Accepted for publication at EMNLP 2020 

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Deep learning models for representing out-of-vocabulary words

Jul 28, 2020
Johannes V. Lochter, Renato M. Silva, Tiago A. Almeida

Communication has become increasingly dynamic with the popularization of social networks and applications that allow people to express themselves and communicate instantly. In this scenario, distributed representation models have their quality impacted by new words that appear frequently or that are derived from spelling errors. These words that are unknown by the models, known as out-of-vocabulary (OOV) words, need to be properly handled to not degrade the quality of the natural language processing (NLP) applications, which depend on the appropriate vector representation of the texts. To better understand this problem and finding the best techniques to handle OOV words, in this study, we present a comprehensive performance evaluation of deep learning models for representing OOV words. We performed an intrinsic evaluation using a benchmark dataset and an extrinsic evaluation using different NLP tasks: text categorization, named entity recognition, and part-of-speech tagging. Although the results indicated that the best technique for handling OOV words is different for each task, Comick, a deep learning method that infers the embedding based on the context and the morphological structure of the OOV word, obtained promising results.

* Preprint of the paper accepted at the 9th Brazilian Conference on Intelligent Systems (BRACIS'2020). To facilitate reproducibility, the results were updated using a fixed random seed for all methods 

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COVID-19 SignSym: A fast adaptation of general clinical NLP tools to identify and normalize COVID-19 signs and symptoms to OMOP common data model

Jul 13, 2020
Jingqi Wang, Huy Anh Pham, Frank Manion, Masoud Rouhizadeh, Yaoyun Zhang

The COVID-19 pandemic swept across the world rapidly infecting millions of people. An efficient tool that can accurately recognize important clinical concepts of COVID-19 from free text in electronic health records will be significantly valuable to accelerate various applications of COVID-19 research. To this end, the existing clinical NLP tool CLAMP was quickly adapted to COVID-19 information and generated an automated tool called COVID-19 SignSym, which can extract and signs/symptoms and their eight attributes such as temporal information and negations from clinical text. The extracted information is also mapped to standard clinical concepts in the common data model of OHDSI OMOP. Evaluation on clinical notes and medical dialogues demonstrated promising results. It is freely accessible to the community as a downloadable package of APIs ( We believe COVID-19 SignSym will provide fundamental supports to the secondary use of EHRs, thus accelerating the global research of COVID-19.

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CompRes: A Dataset for Narrative Structure in News

Jul 09, 2020
Effi Levi, Guy Mor, Shaul Shenhav, Tamir Sheafer

This paper addresses the task of automatically detecting narrative structures in raw texts. Previous works have utilized the oral narrative theory by Labov and Waletzky to identify various narrative elements in personal stories texts. Instead, we direct our focus to news articles, motivated by their growing social impact as well as their role in creating and shaping public opinion. We introduce CompRes -- the first dataset for narrative structure in news media. We describe the process in which the dataset was constructed: first, we designed a new narrative annotation scheme, better suited for news media, by adapting elements from the narrative theory of Labov and Waletzky (Complication and Resolution) and adding a new narrative element of our own (Success); then, we used that scheme to annotate a set of 29 English news articles (containing 1,099 sentences) collected from news and partisan websites. We use the annotated dataset to train several supervised models to identify the different narrative elements, achieving an $F_1$ score of up to 0.7. We conclude by suggesting several promising directions for future work.

* Accpted to the First Joint Workshop on Narrative Understanding, Storylines, and Events, ACL 2020 

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