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"Topic": models, code, and papers

Knowledge-Grounded Dialogue Flow Management for Social Robots and Conversational Agents

Aug 04, 2021
Lucrezia Grassi, Carmine Tommaso Recchiuto, Antonio Sgorbissa

The article proposes a system for knowledge-based conversation designed for Social Robots and other conversational agents. The proposed system relies on an Ontology for the description of all concepts that may be relevant conversation topics, as well as their mutual relationships. The article focuses on the algorithm for Dialogue Management that selects the most appropriate conversation topic depending on the user's input. Moreover, it discusses strategies to ensure a conversation flow that captures, as more coherently as possible, the user's intention to drive the conversation in specific directions while avoiding purely reactive responses to what the user says. To measure the quality of the conversation, the article reports the tests performed with 100 recruited participants, comparing five conversational agents: (i) an agent addressing dialogue flow management based only on the detection of keywords in the speech, (ii) an agent based both on the detection of keywords and the Content Classification feature of Google Cloud Natural Language, (iii) an agent that picks conversation topics randomly, (iv) a human pretending to be a chatbot, and (v) one of the most famous chatbots worldwide: Replika. The subjective perception of the participants is measured both with the SASSI (Subjective Assessment of Speech System Interfaces) tool, as well as with a custom survey for measuring the subjective perception of coherence.

* 21 pages, 20 figures 

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Proactive Human-Machine Conversation with Explicit Conversation Goals

Jun 13, 2019
Wenquan Wu, Zhen Guo, Xiangyang Zhou, Hua Wu, Xiyuan Zhang, Rongzhong Lian, Haifeng Wang

Though great progress has been made for human-machine conversation, current dialogue system is still in its infancy: it usually converses passively and utters words more as a matter of response, rather than on its own initiatives. In this paper, we take a radical step towards building a human-like conversational agent: endowing it with the ability of proactively leading the conversation (introducing a new topic or maintaining the current topic). To facilitate the development of such conversation systems, we create a new dataset named DuConv where one acts as a conversation leader and the other acts as the follower. The leader is provided with a knowledge graph and asked to sequentially change the discussion topics, following the given conversation goal, and meanwhile keep the dialogue as natural and engaging as possible. DuConv enables a very challenging task as the model needs to both understand dialogue and plan over the given knowledge graph. We establish baseline results on this dataset (about 270K utterances and 30k dialogues) using several state-of-the-art models. Experimental results show that dialogue models that plan over the knowledge graph can make full use of related knowledge to generate more diverse multi-turn conversations. The baseline systems along with the dataset are publicly available

* Accepted by ACL 2019 

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Combining Privileged Information to Improve Context-Aware Recommender Systems

Nov 07, 2015
Camila V. Sundermann, Marcos A. Domingues, Ricardo M. Marcacini, Solange O. Rezende

A recommender system is an information filtering technology which can be used to predict preference ratings of items (products, services, movies, etc) and/or to output a ranking of items that are likely to be of interest to the user. Context-aware recommender systems (CARS) learn and predict the tastes and preferences of users by incorporating available contextual information in the recommendation process. One of the major challenges in context-aware recommender systems research is the lack of automatic methods to obtain contextual information for these systems. Considering this scenario, in this paper, we propose to use contextual information from topic hierarchies of the items (web pages) to improve the performance of context-aware recommender systems. The topic hierarchies are constructed by an extension of the LUPI-based Incremental Hierarchical Clustering method that considers three types of information: traditional bag-of-words (technical information), and the combination of named entities (privileged information I) with domain terms (privileged information II). We evaluated the contextual information in four context-aware recommender systems. Different weights were assigned to each type of information. The empirical results demonstrated that topic hierarchies with the combination of the two kinds of privileged information can provide better recommendations.


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A Survey on Knowledge Graphs: Representation, Acquisition and Applications

Feb 02, 2020
Shaoxiong Ji, Shirui Pan, Erik Cambria, Pekka Marttinen, Philip S. Yu

Human knowledge provides a formal understanding of the world. Knowledge graphs that represent structural relations between entities have become an increasingly popular research direction towards cognition and human-level intelligence. In this survey, we provide a comprehensive review on knowledge graph covering overall research topics about 1) knowledge graph representation learning, 2) knowledge acquisition and completion, 3) temporal knowledge graph, and 4) knowledge-aware applications, and summarize recent breakthroughs and perspective directions to facilitate future research. We propose a full-view categorization and new taxonomies on these topics. Knowledge graph embedding is organized from four aspects of representation space, scoring function, encoding models and auxiliary information. For knowledge acquisition, especially knowledge graph completion, embedding methods, path inference and logical rule reasoning are reviewed. We further explore several emerging topics including meta relational learning, commonsense reasoning, and temporal knowledge graphs. To facilitate future research on knowledge graphs, we also provide a curated collection of datasets and open-source libraries on different tasks. In the end, we have a thorough outlook on several promising research directions.

* 25 pages, 10 figures, 9 tables 

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Out of the Shadows: Analyzing Anonymous' Twitter Resurgence during the 2020 Black Lives Matter Protests

Jul 22, 2021
Keenan Jones, Jason R. C. Nurse, Shujun Li

Recently, there had been little notable activity from the once prominent hacktivist group, Anonymous. The group, responsible for activist-based cyber attacks on major businesses and governments, appeared to have fragmented after key members were arrested in 2013. In response to the major Black Lives Matter (BLM) protests that occurred after the killing of George Floyd, however, reports indicated that the group was back. To examine this apparent resurgence, we conduct a large-scale study of Anonymous affiliates on Twitter. To this end, we first use machine learning to identify a significant network of more than 33,000 Anonymous accounts. Through topic modelling of tweets collected from these accounts, we find evidence of sustained interest in topics related to BLM. We then use sentiment analysis on tweets focused on these topics, finding evidence of a united approach amongst the group, with positive tweets typically being used to express support towards BLM, and negative tweets typically being used to criticize police actions. Finally, we examine the presence of automation in the network, identifying indications of bot-like behavior across the majority of Anonymous accounts. These findings show that whilst the group has seen a resurgence during the protests, bot activity may be responsible for exaggerating the extent of this resurgence.

* 12 pages, 9 figures, 3 tables. Accepted for publication in the proceedings of the sixteenth International AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media 

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Detection of FLOSS version release events from Stack Overflow message data

Mar 30, 2020
A. Sokolovsky, T. Gross, J. Bacardit

Topic Detection and Tracking (TDT) is a very active research question within the area of text mining, generally applied to news feeds and Twitter datasets, where topics and events are detected. The notion of "event" is broad, but typically it applies to occurrences that can be detected from a single post or a message. Little attention has been drawn to what we call "micro-events", which, due to their nature, cannot be detected from a single piece of textual information. The study investigates micro-event detection on textual data using a sample of messages from the Stack Overflow Q&A platform in order to detect Free/Libre Open Source Software (FLOSS) version releases. Micro-events are detected using logistic regression models with step-wise forward regression feature selection from a set of LDA topics and sentiment analysis features. We perform a detailed statistical analysis of the models, including influential cases, variance inflation factors, validation of the linearity assumption, pseudo R squared measures and no-information rate. Finally, in order to understand the detection limits and improve the performance of the estimators, we suggest a method for generating micro-event synthetic datasets and use them identify the micro-event detectability thresholds.


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Attentive Geo-Social Group Recommendation

Nov 15, 2019
Fei Yu, Feiyi Fan, Shouxu Jiang, Kaiping Zheng

Social activities play an important role in people's daily life since they interact. For recommendations based on social activities, it is vital to have not only the activity information but also individuals' social relations. Thanks to the geo-social networks and widespread use of location-aware mobile devices, massive geo-social data is now readily available for exploitation by the recommendation system. In this paper, a novel group recommendation method, called attentive geo-social group recommendation, is proposed to recommend the target user with both activity locations and a group of users that may join the activities. We present an attention mechanism to model the influence of the target user $u_T$ in candidate user groups that satisfy the social constraints. It helps to retrieve the optimal user group and activity topic candidates, as well as explains the group decision-making process. Once the user group and topics are retrieved, a novel efficient spatial query algorithm SPA-DF is employed to determine the activity location under the constraints of the given user group and activity topic candidates. The proposed method is evaluated in real-world datasets and the experimental results show that the proposed model significantly outperforms baseline methods.

* 12 pages, 7 figures 

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Handwritten Optical Character Recognition (OCR): A Comprehensive Systematic Literature Review (SLR)

Jan 01, 2020
Jamshed Memon, Maira Sami, Rizwan Ahmed Khan

Given the ubiquity of handwritten documents in human transactions, Optical Character Recognition (OCR) of documents have invaluable practical worth. Optical character recognition is a science that enables to translate various types of documents or images into analyzable, editable and searchable data. During last decade, researchers have used artificial intelligence / machine learning tools to automatically analyze handwritten and printed documents in order to convert them into electronic format. The objective of this review paper is to summarize research that has been conducted on character recognition of handwritten documents and to provide research directions. In this Systematic Literature Review (SLR) we collected, synthesized and analyzed research articles on the topic of handwritten OCR (and closely related topics) which were published between year 2000 to 2018. We followed widely used electronic databases by following pre-defined review protocol. Articles were searched using keywords, forward reference searching and backward reference searching in order to search all the articles related to the topic. After carefully following study selection process 142 articles were selected for this SLR. This review article serves the purpose of presenting state of the art results and techniques on OCR and also provide research directions by highlighting research gaps.


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Can Predominant Credible Information Suppress Misinformation in Crises? Empirical Studies of Tweets Related to Prevention Measures during COVID-19

Feb 01, 2021
Yan Wang, Shangde Gao, Wenyu Gao

During COVID-19, misinformation on social media affects the adoption of appropriate prevention behaviors. It is urgent to suppress the misinformation to prevent negative public health consequences. Although an array of studies has proposed misinformation suppression strategies, few have investigated the role of predominant credible information during crises. None has examined its effect quantitatively using longitudinal social media data. Therefore, this research investigates the temporal correlations between credible information and misinformation, and whether predominant credible information can suppress misinformation for two prevention measures (i.e. topics), i.e. wearing masks and social distancing using tweets collected from February 15 to June 30, 2020. We trained Support Vector Machine classifiers to retrieve relevant tweets and classify tweets containing credible information and misinformation for each topic. Based on cross-correlation analyses of credible and misinformation time series for both topics, we find that the previously predominant credible information can lead to the decrease of misinformation (i.e. suppression) with a time lag. The research findings provide empirical evidence for suppressing misinformation with credible information in complex online environments and suggest practical strategies for future information management during crises and emergencies.


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