Dian Yu


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Unsupervised Slot Schema Induction for Task-oriented Dialog
Dian Yu | Mingqiu Wang | Yuan Cao | Izhak Shafran | Laurent Shafey | Hagen Soltau
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Carefully-designed schemas describing how to collect and annotate dialog corpora are a prerequisite towards building task-oriented dialog systems. In practical applications, manually designing schemas can be error-prone, laborious, iterative, and slow, especially when the schema is complicated. To alleviate this expensive and time consuming process, we propose an unsupervised approach for slot schema induction from unlabeled dialog corpora. Leveraging in-domain language models and unsupervised parsing structures, our data-driven approach extracts candidate slots without constraints, followed by coarse-to-fine clustering to induce slot types. We compare our method against several strong supervised baselines, and show significant performance improvement in slot schema induction on MultiWoz and SGD datasets. We also demonstrate the effectiveness of induced schemas on downstream applications including dialog state tracking and response generation.

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End-to-End Chinese Speaker Identification
Dian Yu | Ben Zhou | Dong Yu
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Speaker identification (SI) in texts aims to identify the speaker(s) for each utterance in texts. Previous studies divide SI into several sub-tasks (e.g., quote extraction, named entity recognition, gender identification, and coreference resolution). However, we are still far from solving these sub-tasks, making SI systems that rely on them seriously suffer from error propagation. End-to-end SI systems, on the other hand, are not limited by individual modules, but suffer from insufficient training data from the existing small-scale datasets. To make large end-to-end models possible, we design a new annotation guideline that regards SI as span extraction from the local context, and we annotate by far the largest SI dataset for Chinese named CSI based on eighteen novels. Viewing SI as a span selection task also introduces the possibility of applying existing storng extractive machine reading comprehension (MRC) baselines. Surprisingly, simply using such a baseline without human-annotated character names and carefully designed rules, we can already achieve performance comparable or better than those of previous state-of-the-art SI methods on all public SI datasets for Chinese. Furthermore, we show that our dataset can serve as additional training data for existing benchmarks, which leads to further gains (up to 6.5% in accuracy). Finally, using CSI as a clean source, we design an effective self-training paradigm to continuously leverage hundreds of unlabeled novels.

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Improving Machine Reading Comprehension with Contextualized Commonsense Knowledge
Kai Sun | Dian Yu | Jianshu Chen | Dong Yu | Claire Cardie
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

To perform well on a machine reading comprehension (MRC) task, machine readers usually require commonsense knowledge that is not explicitly mentioned in the given documents. This paper aims to extract a new kind of structured knowledge from scripts and use it to improve MRC. We focus on scripts as they contain rich verbal and nonverbal messages, and two relevant messages originally conveyed by different modalities during a short time period may serve as arguments of a piece of commonsense knowledge as they function together in daily communications. To save human efforts to name relations, we propose to represent relations implicitly by situating such an argument pair in a context and call it contextualized knowledge. To use the extracted knowledge to improve MRC, we compare several fine-tuning strategies to use the weakly-labeled MRC data constructed based on contextualized knowledge and further design a teacher-student paradigm with multiple teachers to facilitate the transfer of knowledge in weakly-labeled MRC data. Experimental results show that our paradigm outperforms other methods that use weakly-labeled data and improves a state-of-the-art baseline by 4.3% in accuracy on a Chinese multiple-choice MRC dataset C3, wherein most of the questions require unstated prior knowledge. We also seek to transfer the knowledge to other tasks by simply adapting the resulting student reader, yielding a 2.9% improvement in F1 on a relation extraction dataset DialogRE, demonstrating the potential usefulness of the knowledge for non-MRC tasks that require document comprehension.

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Learning-by-Narrating: Narrative Pre-Training for Zero-Shot Dialogue Comprehension
Chao Zhao | Wenlin Yao | Dian Yu | Kaiqiang Song | Dong Yu | Jianshu Chen
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

Comprehending a dialogue requires a model to capture diverse kinds of key information in the utterances, which are either scattered around or implicitly implied in different turns of conversations. Therefore, dialogue comprehension requires diverse capabilities such as paraphrasing, summarizing, and commonsense reasoning. Towards the objective of pre-training a zero-shot dialogue comprehension model, we develop a novel narrative-guided pre-training strategy that learns by narrating the key information from a dialogue input. However, the dialogue-narrative parallel corpus for such a pre-training strategy is currently unavailable. For this reason, we first construct a dialogue-narrative parallel corpus by automatically aligning movie subtitles and their synopses. We then pre-train a BART model on the data and evaluate its performance on four dialogue-based tasks that require comprehension. Experimental results show that our model not only achieves superior zero-shot performance but also exhibits stronger fine-grained dialogue comprehension capabilities. The data and code are available at https://github.com/zhaochaocs/Diana.

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C-MORE: Pretraining to Answer Open-Domain Questions by Consulting Millions of References
Xiang Yue | Xiaoman Pan | Wenlin Yao | Dian Yu | Dong Yu | Jianshu Chen
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 2: Short Papers)

We consider the problem of pretraining a two-stage open-domain question answering (QA) system (retriever + reader) with strong transfer capabilities. The key challenge is how to construct a large amount of high-quality question-answer-context triplets without task-specific annotations. Specifically, the triplets should align well with downstream tasks by: (i) covering a wide range of domains (for open-domain applications), (ii) linking a question to its semantically relevant context with supporting evidence (for training the retriever), and (iii) identifying the correct answer in the context (for training the reader). Previous pretraining approaches generally fall short of one or more of these requirements. In this work, we automatically construct a large-scale corpus that meets all three criteria by consulting millions of references cited within Wikipedia. The well-aligned pretraining signals benefit both the retriever and the reader significantly. Our pretrained retriever leads to 2%-10% absolute gains in top-20 accuracy. And with our pretrained reader, the entire system improves by up to 4% in exact match.


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Language Embeddings for Typology and Cross-lingual Transfer Learning
Dian Yu | Taiqi He | Kenji Sagae
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)

Cross-lingual language tasks typically require a substantial amount of annotated data or parallel translation data. We explore whether language representations that capture relationships among languages can be learned and subsequently leveraged in cross-lingual tasks without the use of parallel data. We generate dense embeddings for 29 languages using a denoising autoencoder, and evaluate the embeddings using the World Atlas of Language Structures (WALS) and two extrinsic tasks in a zero-shot setting: cross-lingual dependency parsing and cross-lingual natural language inference.

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QA-Driven Zero-shot Slot Filling with Weak Supervision Pretraining
Xinya Du | Luheng He | Qi Li | Dian Yu | Panupong Pasupat | Yuan Zhang
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 2: Short Papers)

Slot-filling is an essential component for building task-oriented dialog systems. In this work, we focus on the zero-shot slot-filling problem, where the model needs to predict slots and their values, given utterances from new domains without training on the target domain. Prior methods directly encode slot descriptions to generalize to unseen slot types. However, raw slot descriptions are often ambiguous and do not encode enough semantic information, limiting the models’ zero-shot capability. To address this problem, we introduce QA-driven slot filling (QASF), which extracts slot-filler spans from utterances with a span-based QA model. We use a linguistically motivated questioning strategy to turn descriptions into questions, allowing the model to generalize to unseen slot types. Moreover, our QASF model can benefit from weak supervision signals from QA pairs synthetically generated from unlabeled conversations. Our full system substantially outperforms baselines by over 5% on the SNIPS benchmark.

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Self-Teaching Machines to Read and Comprehend with Large-Scale Multi-Subject Question-Answering Data
Dian Yu | Kai Sun | Dong Yu | Claire Cardie
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2021

Despite considerable progress, most machine reading comprehension (MRC) tasks still lack sufficient training data to fully exploit powerful deep neural network models with millions of parameters, and it is laborious, expensive, and time-consuming to create large-scale, high-quality MRC data through crowdsourcing. This paper focuses on generating more training data for MRC tasks by leveraging existing question-answering (QA) data. We first collect a large-scale multi-subject multiple-choice QA dataset for Chinese, ExamQA. We next use incomplete, yet relevant snippets returned by a web search engine as the context for each QA instance to convert it into a weakly-labeled MRC instance. To better use the weakly-labeled data to improve a target MRC task, we evaluate and compare several methods and further propose a self-teaching paradigm. Experimental results show that, upon state-of-the-art MRC baselines, we can obtain +5.1% in accuracy on a multiple-choice Chinese MRC dataset, Cˆ3, and +3.8% in exact match on an extractive Chinese MRC dataset, CMRC 2018, demonstrating the usefulness of the generated QA-based weakly-labeled data for different types of MRC tasks as well as the effectiveness of self-teaching. ExamQA will be available at https://dataset.org/examqa/.

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Attribute Alignment: Controlling Text Generation from Pre-trained Language Models
Dian Yu | Zhou Yu | Kenji Sagae
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2021

Large language models benefit from training with a large amount of unlabeled text, which gives them increasingly fluent and diverse generation capabilities. However, using these models for text generation that takes into account target attributes, such as sentiment polarity or specific topics, remains a challenge. We propose a simple and flexible method for controlling text generation by aligning disentangled attribute representations. In contrast to recent efforts on training a discriminator to perturb the token level distribution for an attribute, we use the same data to learn an alignment function to guide the pre-trained, non-controlled language model to generate texts with the target attribute without changing the original language model parameters. We evaluate our method on sentiment- and topic-controlled generation, and show large performance gains over previous methods while retaining fluency and diversity.

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Few-shot Intent Classification and Slot Filling with Retrieved Examples
Dian Yu | Luheng He | Yuan Zhang | Xinya Du | Panupong Pasupat | Qi Li
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Few-shot learning arises in important practical scenarios, such as when a natural language understanding system needs to learn new semantic labels for an emerging, resource-scarce domain. In this paper, we explore retrieval-based methods for intent classification and slot filling tasks in few-shot settings. Retrieval-based methods make predictions based on labeled examples in the retrieval index that are similar to the input, and thus can adapt to new domains simply by changing the index without having to retrain the model. However, it is non-trivial to apply such methods on tasks with a complex label space like slot filling. To this end, we propose a span-level retrieval method that learns similar contextualized representations for spans with the same label via a novel batch-softmax objective. At inference time, we use the labels of the retrieved spans to construct the final structure with the highest aggregated score. Our method outperforms previous systems in various few-shot settings on the CLINC and SNIPS benchmarks.

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Automatically Exposing Problems with Neural Dialog Models
Dian Yu | Kenji Sagae
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Neural dialog models are known to suffer from problems such as generating unsafe and inconsistent responses. Even though these problems are crucial and prevalent, they are mostly manually identified by model designers through interactions. Recently, some research instructs crowdworkers to goad the bots into triggering such problems. However, humans leverage superficial clues such as hate speech, while leaving systematic problems undercover. In this paper, we propose two methods including reinforcement learning to automatically trigger a dialog model into generating problematic responses. We show the effect of our methods in exposing safety and contradiction issues with state-of-the-art dialog models.

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Connect-the-Dots: Bridging Semantics between Words and Definitions via Aligning Word Sense Inventories
Wenlin Yao | Xiaoman Pan | Lifeng Jin | Jianshu Chen | Dian Yu | Dong Yu
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Word Sense Disambiguation (WSD) aims to automatically identify the exact meaning of one word according to its context. Existing supervised models struggle to make correct predictions on rare word senses due to limited training data and can only select the best definition sentence from one predefined word sense inventory (e.g., WordNet). To address the data sparsity problem and generalize the model to be independent of one predefined inventory, we propose a gloss alignment algorithm that can align definition sentences (glosses) with the same meaning from different sense inventories to collect rich lexical knowledge. We then train a model to identify semantic equivalence between a target word in context and one of its glosses using these aligned inventories, which exhibits strong transfer capability to many WSD tasks. Experiments on benchmark datasets show that the proposed method improves predictions on both frequent and rare word senses, outperforming prior work by 1.2% on the All-Words WSD Task and 4.3% on the Low-Shot WSD Task. Evaluation on WiC Task also indicates that our method can better capture word meanings in context.

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MIDAS: A Dialog Act Annotation Scheme for Open Domain HumanMachine Spoken Conversations
Dian Yu | Zhou Yu
Proceedings of the 16th Conference of the European Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Main Volume

Dialog act prediction in open-domain conversations is an essential language comprehension task for both dialog system building and discourse analysis. Previous dialog act schemes, such as SWBD-DAMSL, are designed mainly for discourse analysis in human-human conversations. In this paper, we present a dialog act annotation scheme, MIDAS (Machine Interaction Dialog Act Scheme), targeted at open-domain human-machine conversations. MIDAS is designed to assist machines to improve their ability to understand human partners. MIDAS has a hierarchical structure and supports multi-label annotations. We collected and annotated a large open-domain human-machine spoken conversation dataset (consisting of 24K utterances). To validate our scheme, we leveraged transfer learning methods to train a multi-label dialog act prediction model and reached an F1 score of 0.79.


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CLUE: A Chinese Language Understanding Evaluation Benchmark
Liang Xu | Hai Hu | Xuanwei Zhang | Lu Li | Chenjie Cao | Yudong Li | Yechen Xu | Kai Sun | Dian Yu | Cong Yu | Yin Tian | Qianqian Dong | Weitang Liu | Bo Shi | Yiming Cui | Junyi Li | Jun Zeng | Rongzhao Wang | Weijian Xie | Yanting Li | Yina Patterson | Zuoyu Tian | Yiwen Zhang | He Zhou | Shaoweihua Liu | Zhe Zhao | Qipeng Zhao | Cong Yue | Xinrui Zhang | Zhengliang Yang | Kyle Richardson | Zhenzhong Lan
Proceedings of the 28th International Conference on Computational Linguistics

The advent of natural language understanding (NLU) benchmarks for English, such as GLUE and SuperGLUE allows new NLU models to be evaluated across a diverse set of tasks. These comprehensive benchmarks have facilitated a broad range of research and applications in natural language processing (NLP). The problem, however, is that most such benchmarks are limited to English, which has made it difficult to replicate many of the successes in English NLU for other languages. To help remedy this issue, we introduce the first large-scale Chinese Language Understanding Evaluation (CLUE) benchmark. CLUE is an open-ended, community-driven project that brings together 9 tasks spanning several well-established single-sentence/sentence-pair classification tasks, as well as machine reading comprehension, all on original Chinese text. To establish results on these tasks, we report scores using an exhaustive set of current state-of-the-art pre-trained Chinese models (9 in total). We also introduce a number of supplementary datasets and additional tools to help facilitate further progress on Chinese NLU. Our benchmark is released at https://www.cluebenchmarks.com

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Dialogue-Based Relation Extraction
Dian Yu | Kai Sun | Claire Cardie | Dong Yu
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

We present the first human-annotated dialogue-based relation extraction (RE) dataset DialogRE, aiming to support the prediction of relation(s) between two arguments that appear in a dialogue. We further offer DialogRE as a platform for studying cross-sentence RE as most facts span multiple sentences. We argue that speaker-related information plays a critical role in the proposed task, based on an analysis of similarities and differences between dialogue-based and traditional RE tasks. Considering the timeliness of communication in a dialogue, we design a new metric to evaluate the performance of RE methods in a conversational setting and investigate the performance of several representative RE methods on DialogRE. Experimental results demonstrate that a speaker-aware extension on the best-performing model leads to gains in both the standard and conversational evaluation settings. DialogRE is available at https://dataset.org/dialogre/.

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Recurrent Chunking Mechanisms for Long-Text Machine Reading Comprehension
Hongyu Gong | Yelong Shen | Dian Yu | Jianshu Chen | Dong Yu
Proceedings of the 58th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics

In this paper, we study machine reading comprehension (MRC) on long texts: where a model takes as inputs a lengthy document and a query, extracts a text span from the document as an answer. State-of-the-art models (e.g., BERT) tend to use a stack of transformer layers that are pre-trained from a large number of unlabeled language corpora to encode the joint contextual information of query and document. However, these transformer models can only take as input a fixed-length (e.g., 512) text. To deal with even longer text inputs, previous approaches usually chunk them into equally-spaced segments and predict answers based on each segment independently without considering the information from other segments. As a result, they may form segments that fail to cover complete answers or retain insufficient contexts around the correct answer required for question answering. Moreover, they are less capable of answering questions that need cross-segment information. We propose to let a model learn to chunk in a more flexible way via reinforcement learning: a model can decide the next segment that it wants to process in either direction. We also apply recurrent mechanisms to enable information to flow across segments. Experiments on three MRC tasks – CoQA, QuAC, and TriviaQA – demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed recurrent chunking mechanisms: we can obtain segments that are more likely to contain complete answers and at the same time provide sufficient contexts around the ground truth answers for better predictions.

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Investigating Prior Knowledge for Challenging Chinese Machine Reading Comprehension
Kai Sun | Dian Yu | Dong Yu | Claire Cardie
Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Volume 8

Machine reading comprehension tasks require a machine reader to answer questions relevant to the given document. In this paper, we present the first free-form multiple-Choice Chinese machine reading Comprehension dataset (C3), containing 13,369 documents (dialogues or more formally written mixed-genre texts) and their associated 19,577 multiple-choice free-form questions collected from Chinese-as-a-second-language examinations. We present a comprehensive analysis of the prior knowledge (i.e., linguistic, domain-specific, and general world knowledge) needed for these real-world problems. We implement rule-based and popular neural methods and find that there is still a significant performance gap between the best performing model (68.5%) and human readers (96.0%), especiallyon problems that require prior knowledge. We further study the effects of distractor plausibility and data augmentation based on translated relevant datasets for English on model performance. We expect C3 to present great challenges to existing systems as answering 86.8% of questions requires both knowledge within and beyond the accompanying document, and we hope that C3 can serve as a platform to study how to leverage various kinds of prior knowledge to better understand a given written or orally oriented text. C3 is available at https://dataset.org/c3/.


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Improving Machine Reading Comprehension with General Reading Strategies
Kai Sun | Dian Yu | Dong Yu | Claire Cardie
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 1 (Long and Short Papers)

Reading strategies have been shown to improve comprehension levels, especially for readers lacking adequate prior knowledge. Just as the process of knowledge accumulation is time-consuming for human readers, it is resource-demanding to impart rich general domain knowledge into a deep language model via pre-training. Inspired by reading strategies identified in cognitive science, and given limited computational resources - just a pre-trained model and a fixed number of training instances - we propose three general strategies aimed to improve non-extractive machine reading comprehension (MRC): (i) BACK AND FORTH READING that considers both the original and reverse order of an input sequence, (ii) HIGHLIGHTING, which adds a trainable embedding to the text embedding of tokens that are relevant to the question and candidate answers, and (iii) SELF-ASSESSMENT that generates practice questions and candidate answers directly from the text in an unsupervised manner. By fine-tuning a pre-trained language model (Radford et al., 2018) with our proposed strategies on the largest general domain multiple-choice MRC dataset RACE, we obtain a 5.8% absolute increase in accuracy over the previous best result achieved by the same pre-trained model fine-tuned on RACE without the use of strategies. We further fine-tune the resulting model on a target MRC task, leading to an absolute improvement of 6.2% in average accuracy over previous state-of-the-art approaches on six representative non-extractive MRC datasets from different domains (i.e., ARC, OpenBookQA, MCTest, SemEval-2018 Task 11, ROCStories, and MultiRC). These results demonstrate the effectiveness of our proposed strategies and the versatility and general applicability of our fine-tuned models that incorporate these strategies. Core code is available at https://github.com/nlpdata/strategy/.

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UC Davis at SemEval-2019 Task 1: DAG Semantic Parsing with Attention-based Decoder
Dian Yu | Kenji Sagae
Proceedings of the 13th International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation

We present an encoder-decoder model for semantic parsing with UCCA SemEval 2019 Task 1. The encoder is a Bi-LSTM and the decoder uses recursive self-attention. The proposed model alleviates challenges and feature engineering in traditional transition-based and graph-based parsers. The resulting parser is simple and proved to effective on the semantic parsing task.

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Dependency Parsing for Spoken Dialog Systems
Sam Davidson | Dian Yu | Zhou Yu
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

Dependency parsing of conversational input can play an important role in language understanding for dialog systems by identifying the relationships between entities extracted from user utterances. Additionally, effective dependency parsing can elucidate differences in language structure and usage for discourse analysis of human-human versus human-machine dialogs. However, models trained on datasets based on news articles and web data do not perform well on spoken human-machine dialog, and currently available annotation schemes do not adapt well to dialog data. Therefore, we propose the Spoken Conversation Universal Dependencies (SCUD) annotation scheme that extends the Universal Dependencies (UD) (Nivre et al., 2016) guidelines to spoken human-machine dialogs. We also provide ConvBank, a conversation dataset between humans and an open-domain conversational dialog system with SCUD annotation. Finally, to demonstrate the utility of the dataset, we train a dependency parser on the ConvBank dataset. We demonstrate that by pre-training a dependency parser on a set of larger public datasets and fine-tuning on ConvBank data, we achieved the best result, 85.05% unlabeled and 77.82% labeled attachment accuracy.

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Gunrock: A Social Bot for Complex and Engaging Long Conversations
Dian Yu | Michelle Cohn | Yi Mang Yang | Chun Yen Chen | Weiming Wen | Jiaping Zhang | Mingyang Zhou | Kevin Jesse | Austin Chau | Antara Bhowmick | Shreenath Iyer | Giritheja Sreenivasulu | Sam Davidson | Ashwin Bhandare | Zhou Yu
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP): System Demonstrations

Gunrock is the winner of the 2018 Amazon Alexa Prize, as evaluated by coherence and engagement from both real users and Amazon-selected expert conversationalists. We focus on understanding complex sentences and having in-depth conversations in open domains. In this paper, we introduce some innovative system designs and related validation analysis. Overall, we found that users produce longer sentences to Gunrock, which are directly related to users’ engagement (e.g., ratings, number of turns). Additionally, users’ backstory queries about Gunrock are positively correlated to user satisfaction. Finally, we found dialog flows that interleave facts and personal opinions and stories lead to better user satisfaction.

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Improving Question Answering with External Knowledge
Xiaoman Pan | Kai Sun | Dian Yu | Jianshu Chen | Heng Ji | Claire Cardie | Dong Yu
Proceedings of the 2nd Workshop on Machine Reading for Question Answering

We focus on multiple-choice question answering (QA) tasks in subject areas such as science, where we require both broad background knowledge and the facts from the given subject-area reference corpus. In this work, we explore simple yet effective methods for exploiting two sources of external knowledge for subject-area QA. The first enriches the original subject-area reference corpus with relevant text snippets extracted from an open-domain resource (i.e., Wikipedia) that cover potentially ambiguous concepts in the question and answer options. As in other QA research, the second method simply increases the amount of training data by appending additional in-domain subject-area instances. Experiments on three challenging multiple-choice science QA tasks (i.e., ARC-Easy, ARC-Challenge, and OpenBookQA) demonstrate the effectiveness of our methods: in comparison to the previous state-of-the-art, we obtain absolute gains in accuracy of up to 8.1%, 13.0%, and 12.8%, respectively. While we observe consistent gains when we introduce knowledge from Wikipedia, we find that employing additional QA training instances is not uniformly helpful: performance degrades when the added instances exhibit a higher level of difficulty than the original training data. As one of the first studies on exploiting unstructured external knowledge for subject-area QA, we hope our methods, observations, and discussion of the exposed limitations may shed light on further developments in the area.

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Improving Pre-Trained Multilingual Model with Vocabulary Expansion
Hai Wang | Dian Yu | Kai Sun | Jianshu Chen | Dong Yu
Proceedings of the 23rd Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning (CoNLL)

Recently, pre-trained language models have achieved remarkable success in a broad range of natural language processing tasks. However, in multilingual setting, it is extremely resource-consuming to pre-train a deep language model over large-scale corpora for each language. Instead of exhaustively pre-training monolingual language models independently, an alternative solution is to pre-train a powerful multilingual deep language model over large-scale corpora in hundreds of languages. However, the vocabulary size for each language in such a model is relatively small, especially for low-resource languages. This limitation inevitably hinders the performance of these multilingual models on tasks such as sequence labeling, wherein in-depth token-level or sentence-level understanding is essential. In this paper, inspired by previous methods designed for monolingual settings, we investigate two approaches (i.e., joint mapping and mixture mapping) based on a pre-trained multilingual model BERT for addressing the out-of-vocabulary (OOV) problem on a variety of tasks, including part-of-speech tagging, named entity recognition, machine translation quality estimation, and machine reading comprehension. Experimental results show that using mixture mapping is more promising. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first work that attempts to address and discuss the OOV issue in multilingual settings.

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Evidence Sentence Extraction for Machine Reading Comprehension
Hai Wang | Dian Yu | Kai Sun | Jianshu Chen | Dong Yu | David McAllester | Dan Roth
Proceedings of the 23rd Conference on Computational Natural Language Learning (CoNLL)

Remarkable success has been achieved in the last few years on some limited machine reading comprehension (MRC) tasks. However, it is still difficult to interpret the predictions of existing MRC models. In this paper, we focus on extracting evidence sentences that can explain or support the answers of multiple-choice MRC tasks, where the majority of answer options cannot be directly extracted from reference documents. Due to the lack of ground truth evidence sentence labels in most cases, we apply distant supervision to generate imperfect labels and then use them to train an evidence sentence extractor. To denoise the noisy labels, we apply a recently proposed deep probabilistic logic learning framework to incorporate both sentence-level and cross-sentence linguistic indicators for indirect supervision. We feed the extracted evidence sentences into existing MRC models and evaluate the end-to-end performance on three challenging multiple-choice MRC datasets: MultiRC, RACE, and DREAM, achieving comparable or better performance than the same models that take as input the full reference document. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first work extracting evidence sentences for multiple-choice MRC.

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DREAM: A Challenge Data Set and Models for Dialogue-Based Reading Comprehension
Kai Sun | Dian Yu | Jianshu Chen | Dong Yu | Yejin Choi | Claire Cardie
Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Volume 7

We present DREAM, the first dialogue-based multiple-choice reading comprehension data set. Collected from English as a Foreign Language examinations designed by human experts to evaluate the comprehension level of Chinese learners of English, our data set contains 10,197 multiple-choice questions for 6,444 dialogues. In contrast to existing reading comprehension data sets, DREAM is the first to focus on in-depth multi-turn multi-party dialogue understanding. DREAM is likely to present significant challenges for existing reading comprehension systems: 84% of answers are non-extractive, 85% of questions require reasoning beyond a single sentence, and 34% of questions also involve commonsense knowledge. We apply several popular neural reading comprehension models that primarily exploit surface information within the text and find them to, at best, just barely outperform a rule-based approach. We next investigate the effects of incorporating dialogue structure and different kinds of general world knowledge into both rule-based and (neural and non-neural) machine learning-based reading comprehension models. Experimental results on the DREAM data set show the effectiveness of dialogue structure and general world knowledge. DREAM is available at https://dataset.org/dream/.


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Open Relation Extraction and Grounding
Dian Yu | Lifu Huang | Heng Ji
Proceedings of the Eighth International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Previous open Relation Extraction (open RE) approaches mainly rely on linguistic patterns and constraints to extract important relational triples from large-scale corpora. However, they lack of abilities to cover diverse relation expressions or measure the relative importance of candidate triples within a sentence. It is also challenging to name the relation type of a relational triple merely based on context words, which could limit the usefulness of open RE in downstream applications. We propose a novel importance-based open RE approach by exploiting the global structure of a dependency tree to extract salient triples. We design an unsupervised relation type naming method by grounding relational triples to a large-scale Knowledge Base (KB) schema, leveraging KB triples and weighted context words associated with relational triples. Experiments on the English Slot Filling 2013 dataset demonstrate that our approach achieves 8.1% higher F-score over state-of-the-art open RE methods.


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Unsupervised Person Slot Filling based on Graph Mining
Dian Yu | Heng Ji
Proceedings of the 54th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)


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Why Read if You Can Scan? Trigger Scoping Strategy for Biographical Fact Extraction
Dian Yu | Heng Ji | Sujian Li | Chin-Yew Lin
Proceedings of the 2015 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

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Detecting Deceptive Groups Using Conversations and Network Analysis
Dian Yu | Yulia Tyshchuk | Heng Ji | William Wallace
Proceedings of the 53rd Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 7th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)


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The Wisdom of Minority: Unsupervised Slot Filling Validation based on Multi-dimensional Truth-Finding
Dian Yu | Hongzhao Huang | Taylor Cassidy | Heng Ji | Chi Wang | Shi Zhi | Jiawei Han | Clare Voss | Malik Magdon-Ismail
Proceedings of COLING 2014, the 25th International Conference on Computational Linguistics: Technical Papers


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Resolving Entity Morphs in Censored Data
Hongzhao Huang | Zhen Wen | Dian Yu | Heng Ji | Yizhou Sun | Jiawei Han | He Li
Proceedings of the 51st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)