Andrej Risteski


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The Limitations of Limited Context for Constituency Parsing
Yuchen Li | Andrej Risteski
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Incorporating syntax into neural approaches in NLP has a multitude of practical and scientific benefits. For instance, a language model that is syntax-aware is likely to be able to produce better samples; even a discriminative model like BERT with a syntax module could be used for core NLP tasks like unsupervised syntactic parsing. Rapid progress in recent years was arguably spurred on by the empirical success of the Parsing-Reading-Predict architecture of (Shen et al., 2018a), later simplified by the Order Neuron LSTM of (Shen et al., 2019). Most notably, this is the first time neural approaches were able to successfully perform unsupervised syntactic parsing (evaluated by various metrics like F-1 score). However, even heuristic (much less fully mathematical) understanding of why and when these architectures work is lagging severely behind. In this work, we answer representational questions raised by the architectures in (Shen et al., 2018a, 2019), as well as some transition-based syntax-aware language models (Dyer et al., 2016): what kind of syntactic structure can current neural approaches to syntax represent? Concretely, we ground this question in the sandbox of probabilistic context-free-grammars (PCFGs), and identify a key aspect of the representational power of these approaches: the amount and directionality of context that the predictor has access to when forced to make parsing decision. We show that with limited context (either bounded, or unidirectional), there are PCFGs, for which these approaches cannot represent the max-likelihood parse; conversely, if the context is unlimited, they can represent the max-likelihood parse of any PCFG.


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Linear Algebraic Structure of Word Senses, with Applications to Polysemy
Sanjeev Arora | Yuanzhi Li | Yingyu Liang | Tengyu Ma | Andrej Risteski
Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Volume 6

Word embeddings are ubiquitous in NLP and information retrieval, but it is unclear what they represent when the word is polysemous. Here it is shown that multiple word senses reside in linear superposition within the word embedding and simple sparse coding can recover vectors that approximately capture the senses. The success of our approach, which applies to several embedding methods, is mathematically explained using a variant of the random walk on discourses model (Arora et al., 2016). A novel aspect of our technique is that each extracted word sense is accompanied by one of about 2000 “discourse atoms” that gives a succinct description of which other words co-occur with that word sense. Discourse atoms can be of independent interest, and make the method potentially more useful. Empirical tests are used to verify and support the theory.


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Automated WordNet Construction Using Word Embeddings
Mikhail Khodak | Andrej Risteski | Christiane Fellbaum | Sanjeev Arora
Proceedings of the 1st Workshop on Sense, Concept and Entity Representations and their Applications

We present a fully unsupervised method for automated construction of WordNets based upon recent advances in distributional representations of sentences and word-senses combined with readily available machine translation tools. The approach requires very few linguistic resources and is thus extensible to multiple target languages. To evaluate our method we construct two 600-word testsets for word-to-synset matching in French and Russian using native speakers and evaluate the performance of our method along with several other recent approaches. Our method exceeds the best language-specific and multi-lingual automated WordNets in F-score for both languages. The databases we construct for French and Russian, both languages without large publicly available manually constructed WordNets, will be publicly released along with the testsets.


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A Latent Variable Model Approach to PMI-based Word Embeddings
Sanjeev Arora | Yuanzhi Li | Yingyu Liang | Tengyu Ma | Andrej Risteski
Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Volume 4

Semantic word embeddings represent the meaning of a word via a vector, and are created by diverse methods. Many use nonlinear operations on co-occurrence statistics, and have hand-tuned hyperparameters and reweighting methods. This paper proposes a new generative model, a dynamic version of the log-linear topic model of Mnih and Hinton (2007). The methodological novelty is to use the prior to compute closed form expressions for word statistics. This provides a theoretical justification for nonlinear models like PMI, word2vec, and GloVe, as well as some hyperparameter choices. It also helps explain why low-dimensional semantic embeddings contain linear algebraic structure that allows solution of word analogies, as shown by Mikolov et al. (2013a) and many subsequent papers. Experimental support is provided for the generative model assumptions, the most important of which is that latent word vectors are fairly uniformly dispersed in space.