Ebtesam Almazrouei


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AlGhafa Evaluation Benchmark for Arabic Language Models
Ebtesam Almazrouei | Ruxandra Cojocaru | Michele Baldo | Quentin Malartic | Hamza Alobeidli | Daniele Mazzotta | Guilherme Penedo | Giulia Campesan | Mugariya Farooq | Maitha Alhammadi | Julien Launay | Badreddine Noune
Proceedings of ArabicNLP 2023

Recent advances in the space of Arabic large language models have opened up a wealth of potential practical applications. From optimal training strategies, large scale data acquisition and continuously increasing NLP resources, the Arabic LLM landscape has improved in a very short span of time, despite being plagued by training data scarcity and limited evaluation resources compared to English. In line with contributing towards this ever-growing field, we introduce AlGhafa, a new multiple-choice evaluation benchmark for Arabic LLMs. For showcasing purposes, we train a new suite of models, including a 14 billion parameter model, the largest monolingual Arabic decoder-only model to date. We use a collection of publicly available datasets, as well as a newly introduced HandMade dataset consisting of 8 billion tokens. Finally, we explore the quantitative and qualitative toxicity of several Arabic models, comparing our models to existing public Arabic LLMs.


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A Holistic Assessment of the Carbon Footprint of Noor, a Very Large Arabic Language Model
Imad Lakim | Ebtesam Almazrouei | Ibrahim Abualhaol | Merouane Debbah | Julien Launay
Proceedings of BigScience Episode #5 -- Workshop on Challenges & Perspectives in Creating Large Language Models

As ever larger language models grow more ubiquitous, it is crucial to consider their environmental impact. Characterised by extreme size and resource use, recent generations of models have been criticised for their voracious appetite for compute, and thus significant carbon footprint. Although reporting of carbon impact has grown more common in machine learning papers, this reporting is usually limited to compute resources used strictly for training. In this work, we propose a holistic assessment of the footprint of an extreme-scale language model, Noor. Noor is an ongoing project aiming to develop the largest multi-task Arabic language models–with up to 13B parameters–leveraging zero-shot generalisation to enable a wide range of downstream tasks via natural language instructions. We assess the total carbon bill of the entire project: starting with data collection and storage costs, including research and development budgets, pretraining costs, future serving estimates, and other exogenous costs necessary for this international cooperation. Notably, we find that inference costs and exogenous factors can have a significant impact on total budget. Finally, we discuss pathways to reduce the carbon footprint of extreme-scale models.