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Unifying Architectures, Tasks, and Modalities Through a Simple Sequence-to-Sequence Learning Framework

Feb 07, 2022
Peng Wang, An Yang, Rui Men, Junyang Lin, Shuai Bai, Zhikang Li, Jianxin Ma, Chang Zhou, Jingren Zhou, Hongxia Yang

In this work, we pursue a unified paradigm for multimodal pretraining to break the scaffolds of complex task/modality-specific customization. We propose OFA, a unified multimodal pretrained model that unifies modalities (i.e., cross-modality, vision, language) and tasks (e.g., image generation, visual grounding, image captioning, image classification, text generation, etc.) to a simple sequence-to-sequence learning framework based on the encoder-decoder architecture. OFA performs pretraining and finetuning with task instructions and introduces no extra task-specific layers for finetuning. Experimental results show that OFA achieves new state-of-the-arts on a series of multimodal tasks, including image captioning (COCO test CIDEr: 149.6), text-to-image generation (COCO test FID: 10.5), VQA (test-std acc.: 80.02), SNLI-VE (test acc.: 90.20), and referring expression comprehension (RefCOCO / RefCOCO+ / RefCOCOg test acc.: 92.93 / 90.10 / 85.20). Through extensive analyses, we demonstrate that OFA reaches comparable performance with uni-modal pretrained models (e.g., BERT, MAE, MoCo v3, SimCLR v2, etc.) in uni-modal tasks, including NLU, NLG, and image classification, and it effectively transfers to unseen tasks and domains. Code shall be released soon at

* 23 pages, 11 figures 

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Grounded Language-Image Pre-training

Dec 07, 2021
Liunian Harold Li, Pengchuan Zhang, Haotian Zhang, Jianwei Yang, Chunyuan Li, Yiwu Zhong, Lijuan Wang, Lu Yuan, Lei Zhang, Jenq-Neng Hwang, Kai-Wei Chang, Jianfeng Gao

This paper presents a grounded language-image pre-training (GLIP) model for learning object-level, language-aware, and semantic-rich visual representations. GLIP unifies object detection and phrase grounding for pre-training. The unification brings two benefits: 1) it allows GLIP to learn from both detection and grounding data to improve both tasks and bootstrap a good grounding model; 2) GLIP can leverage massive image-text pairs by generating grounding boxes in a self-training fashion, making the learned representation semantic-rich. In our experiments, we pre-train GLIP on 27M grounding data, including 3M human-annotated and 24M web-crawled image-text pairs. The learned representations demonstrate strong zero-shot and few-shot transferability to various object-level recognition tasks. 1) When directly evaluated on COCO and LVIS (without seeing any images in COCO during pre-training), GLIP achieves 49.8 AP and 26.9 AP, respectively, surpassing many supervised baselines. 2) After fine-tuned on COCO, GLIP achieves 60.8 AP on val and 61.5 AP on test-dev, surpassing prior SoTA. 3) When transferred to 13 downstream object detection tasks, a 1-shot GLIP rivals with a fully-supervised Dynamic Head. Code will be released at

* Code will be released at 

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Letter-level Online Writer Identification

Dec 06, 2021
Zelin Chen, Hong-Xing Yu, Ancong Wu, Wei-Shi Zheng

Writer identification (writer-id), an important field in biometrics, aims to identify a writer by their handwriting. Identification in existing writer-id studies requires a complete document or text, limiting the scalability and flexibility of writer-id in realistic applications. To make the application of writer-id more practical (e.g., on mobile devices), we focus on a novel problem, letter-level online writer-id, which requires only a few trajectories of written letters as identification cues. Unlike text-\ document-based writer-id which has rich context for identification, there are much fewer clues to recognize an author from only a few single letters. A main challenge is that a person often writes a letter in different styles from time to time. We refer to this problem as the variance of online writing styles (Var-O-Styles). We address the Var-O-Styles in a capture-normalize-aggregate fashion: Firstly, we extract different features of a letter trajectory by a carefully designed multi-branch encoder, in an attempt to capture different online writing styles. Then we convert all these style features to a reference style feature domain by a novel normalization layer. Finally, we aggregate the normalized features by a hierarchical attention pooling (HAP), which fuses all the input letters with multiple writing styles into a compact feature vector. In addition, we also contribute a large-scale LEtter-level online wRiter IDentification dataset (LERID) for evaluation. Extensive comparative experiments demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed framework.

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Offensive Language Identification in Low-resourced Code-mixed Dravidian languages using Pseudo-labeling

Aug 27, 2021
Adeep Hande, Karthik Puranik, Konthala Yasaswini, Ruba Priyadharshini, Sajeetha Thavareesan, Anbukkarasi Sampath, Kogilavani Shanmugavadivel, Durairaj Thenmozhi, Bharathi Raja Chakravarthi

Social media has effectively become the prime hub of communication and digital marketing. As these platforms enable the free manifestation of thoughts and facts in text, images and video, there is an extensive need to screen them to protect individuals and groups from offensive content targeted at them. Our work intends to classify codemixed social media comments/posts in the Dravidian languages of Tamil, Kannada, and Malayalam. We intend to improve offensive language identification by generating pseudo-labels on the dataset. A custom dataset is constructed by transliterating all the code-mixed texts into the respective Dravidian language, either Kannada, Malayalam, or Tamil and then generating pseudo-labels for the transliterated dataset. The two datasets are combined using the generated pseudo-labels to create a custom dataset called CMTRA. As Dravidian languages are under-resourced, our approach increases the amount of training data for the language models. We fine-tune several recent pretrained language models on the newly constructed dataset. We extract the pretrained language embeddings and pass them onto recurrent neural networks. We observe that fine-tuning ULMFiT on the custom dataset yields the best results on the code-mixed test sets of all three languages. Our approach yields the best results among the benchmarked models on Tamil-English, achieving a weighted F1-Score of 0.7934 while scoring competitive weighted F1-Scores of 0.9624 and 0.7306 on the code-mixed test sets of Malayalam-English and Kannada-English, respectively.

* 27 pages, 12 figures, 10 tables 

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Chest ImaGenome Dataset for Clinical Reasoning

Jul 31, 2021
Joy T. Wu, Nkechinyere N. Agu, Ismini Lourentzou, Arjun Sharma, Joseph A. Paguio, Jasper S. Yao, Edward C. Dee, William Mitchell, Satyananda Kashyap, Andrea Giovannini, Leo A. Celi, Mehdi Moradi

Despite the progress in automatic detection of radiologic findings from chest X-ray (CXR) images in recent years, a quantitative evaluation of the explainability of these models is hampered by the lack of locally labeled datasets for different findings. With the exception of a few expert-labeled small-scale datasets for specific findings, such as pneumonia and pneumothorax, most of the CXR deep learning models to date are trained on global "weak" labels extracted from text reports, or trained via a joint image and unstructured text learning strategy. Inspired by the Visual Genome effort in the computer vision community, we constructed the first Chest ImaGenome dataset with a scene graph data structure to describe $242,072$ images. Local annotations are automatically produced using a joint rule-based natural language processing (NLP) and atlas-based bounding box detection pipeline. Through a radiologist constructed CXR ontology, the annotations for each CXR are connected as an anatomy-centered scene graph, useful for image-level reasoning and multimodal fusion applications. Overall, we provide: i) $1,256$ combinations of relation annotations between $29$ CXR anatomical locations (objects with bounding box coordinates) and their attributes, structured as a scene graph per image, ii) over $670,000$ localized comparison relations (for improved, worsened, or no change) between the anatomical locations across sequential exams, as well as ii) a manually annotated gold standard scene graph dataset from $500$ unique patients.

* Dataset available on PhysioNet (

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Streaming Social Event Detection and Evolution Discovery in Heterogeneous Information Networks

Apr 02, 2021
Hao Peng, Jianxin Li, Yangqiu Song, Renyu Yang, Rajiv Ranjan, Philip S. Yu, Lifang He

Events are happening in real-world and real-time, which can be planned and organized for occasions, such as social gatherings, festival celebrations, influential meetings or sports activities. Social media platforms generate a lot of real-time text information regarding public events with different topics. However, mining social events is challenging because events typically exhibit heterogeneous texture and metadata are often ambiguous. In this paper, we first design a novel event-based meta-schema to characterize the semantic relatedness of social events and then build an event-based heterogeneous information network (HIN) integrating information from external knowledge base. Second, we propose a novel Pairwise Popularity Graph Convolutional Network, named as PP-GCN, based on weighted meta-path instance similarity and textual semantic representation as inputs, to perform fine-grained social event categorization and learn the optimal weights of meta-paths in different tasks. Third, we propose a streaming social event detection and evolution discovery framework for HINs based on meta-path similarity search, historical information about meta-paths, and heterogeneous DBSCAN clustering method. Comprehensive experiments on real-world streaming social text data are conducted to compare various social event detection and evolution discovery algorithms. Experimental results demonstrate that our proposed framework outperforms other alternative social event detection and evolution discovery techniques.

* Accepted by TKDD 2021. arXiv admin note: text overlap with arXiv:1906.04580 

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Mining Public Opinion on Twitter about Natural Disaster Response Using Machine Learning Techniques

Jun 01, 2020
Lingyu Meng, Zhijie Sasha Dong, Lauren Christenson, Lawrence Fulton

With the development of the Internet, social media has become an essential channel for posting disaster-related information. Analyzing attitudes hidden in these texts, known as sentiment analysis, is crucial for the government or relief agencies to improve disaster response efficiency, but it has not received sufficient attention. This paper aims to fill this gap by focusing on investigating public attitudes towards disaster response and analyzing targeted relief supplies during disaster relief. The research comprises four steps. First, this paper implements Python in grasping Twitter data, and then, we assess public perceptron quantitatively by these opinioned texts, which contain information like the demand for targeted relief supplies, satisfactions of disaster response and fear of the public. A natural disaster dataset with sentiment labels is created, which contains 49,816 Twitter data about natural disasters in the United States. Second, this paper proposes eight machine learning models for sentiment prediction, which are the most popular models used in classification problems. Third, the comparison of these models is conducted via various metrics, and this paper also discusses the optimization method of these models from the perspective of model parameters and input data structures. Finally, a set of real-world instances are studied from the perspective of analyzing changes of public opinion during different natural disasters and understanding the relationship between the same hazard and time series. Results in this paper demonstrate the feasibility and validation of the proposed research approach and provide relief agencies with insights into better disaster response.

* 27 pages, 12 figures 

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Semantics derived automatically from language corpora contain human-like biases

May 25, 2017
Aylin Caliskan, Joanna J. Bryson, Arvind Narayanan

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are in a period of astounding growth. However, there are concerns that these technologies may be used, either with or without intention, to perpetuate the prejudice and unfairness that unfortunately characterizes many human institutions. Here we show for the first time that human-like semantic biases result from the application of standard machine learning to ordinary language---the same sort of language humans are exposed to every day. We replicate a spectrum of standard human biases as exposed by the Implicit Association Test and other well-known psychological studies. We replicate these using a widely used, purely statistical machine-learning model---namely, the GloVe word embedding---trained on a corpus of text from the Web. Our results indicate that language itself contains recoverable and accurate imprints of our historic biases, whether these are morally neutral as towards insects or flowers, problematic as towards race or gender, or even simply veridical, reflecting the {\em status quo} for the distribution of gender with respect to careers or first names. These regularities are captured by machine learning along with the rest of semantics. In addition to our empirical findings concerning language, we also contribute new methods for evaluating bias in text, the Word Embedding Association Test (WEAT) and the Word Embedding Factual Association Test (WEFAT). Our results have implications not only for AI and machine learning, but also for the fields of psychology, sociology, and human ethics, since they raise the possibility that mere exposure to everyday language can account for the biases we replicate here.

* 14 pages, 3 figures 

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Category-Theoretic Quantitative Compositional Distributional Models of Natural Language Semantics

Nov 06, 2013
Edward Grefenstette

This thesis is about the problem of compositionality in distributional semantics. Distributional semantics presupposes that the meanings of words are a function of their occurrences in textual contexts. It models words as distributions over these contexts and represents them as vectors in high dimensional spaces. The problem of compositionality for such models concerns itself with how to produce representations for larger units of text by composing the representations of smaller units of text. This thesis focuses on a particular approach to this compositionality problem, namely using the categorical framework developed by Coecke, Sadrzadeh, and Clark, which combines syntactic analysis formalisms with distributional semantic representations of meaning to produce syntactically motivated composition operations. This thesis shows how this approach can be theoretically extended and practically implemented to produce concrete compositional distributional models of natural language semantics. It furthermore demonstrates that such models can perform on par with, or better than, other competing approaches in the field of natural language processing. There are three principal contributions to computational linguistics in this thesis. The first is to extend the DisCoCat framework on the syntactic front and semantic front, incorporating a number of syntactic analysis formalisms and providing learning procedures allowing for the generation of concrete compositional distributional models. The second contribution is to evaluate the models developed from the procedures presented here, showing that they outperform other compositional distributional models present in the literature. The third contribution is to show how using category theory to solve linguistic problems forms a sound basis for research, illustrated by examples of work on this topic, that also suggest directions for future research.

* DPhil Thesis, University of Oxford, Submitted and accepted in 2013 

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