Emine Yilmaz


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ASSIST: Towards Label Noise-Robust Dialogue State Tracking
Fanghua Ye | Yue Feng | Emine Yilmaz
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2022

The MultiWOZ 2.0 dataset has greatly boosted the research on dialogue state tracking (DST). However, substantial noise has been discovered in its state annotations. Such noise brings about huge challenges for training DST models robustly. Although several refined versions, including MultiWOZ 2.1-2.4, have been published recently, there are still lots of noisy labels, especially in the training set. Besides, it is costly to rectify all the problematic annotations. In this paper, instead of improving the annotation quality further, we propose a general framework, named ASSIST (lAbel noiSe-robuSt dIalogue State Tracking), to train DST models robustly from noisy labels. ASSIST first generates pseudo labels for each sample in the training set by using an auxiliary model trained on a small clean dataset, then puts the generated pseudo labels and vanilla noisy labels together to train the primary model. We show the validity of ASSIST theoretically. Experimental results also demonstrate that ASSIST improves the joint goal accuracy of DST by up to 28.16% on MultiWOZ 2.0 and 8.41% on MultiWOZ 2.4, compared to using only the vanilla noisy labels.

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MultiWOZ 2.4: A Multi-Domain Task-Oriented Dialogue Dataset with Essential Annotation Corrections to Improve State Tracking Evaluation
Fanghua Ye | Jarana Manotumruksa | Emine Yilmaz
Proceedings of the 23rd Annual Meeting of the Special Interest Group on Discourse and Dialogue

The MultiWOZ 2.0 dataset has greatly stimulated the research of task-oriented dialogue systems. However, its state annotations contain substantial noise, which hinders a proper evaluation of model performance. To address this issue, massive efforts were devoted to correcting the annotations. Three improved versions (i.e., MultiWOZ 2.1-2.3) have then been released. Nonetheless, there are still plenty of incorrect and inconsistent annotations. This work introduces MultiWOZ 2.4, which refines the annotations in the validation set and test set of MultiWOZ 2.1. The annotations in the training set remain unchanged (same as MultiWOZ 2.1) to elicit robust and noise-resilient model training. We benchmark eight state-of-the-art dialogue state tracking models on MultiWOZ 2.4. All of them demonstrate much higher performance than on MultiWOZ 2.1.

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Dynamic Schema Graph Fusion Network for Multi-Domain Dialogue State Tracking
Yue Feng | Aldo Lipani | Fanghua Ye | Qiang Zhang | Emine Yilmaz
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Dialogue State Tracking (DST) aims to keep track of users’ intentions during the course of a conversation. In DST, modelling the relations among domains and slots is still an under-studied problem. Existing approaches that have considered such relations generally fall short in: (1) fusing prior slot-domain membership relations and dialogue-aware dynamic slot relations explicitly, and (2) generalizing to unseen domains. To address these issues, we propose a novel Dynamic Schema Graph Fusion Network (DSGFNet), which generates a dynamic schema graph to explicitly fuse the prior slot-domain membership relations and dialogue-aware dynamic slot relations. It also uses the schemata to facilitate knowledge transfer to new domains. DSGFNet consists of a dialogue utterance encoder, a schema graph encoder, a dialogue-aware schema graph evolving network, and a schema graph enhanced dialogue state decoder. Empirical results on benchmark datasets (i.e., SGD, MultiWOZ2.1, and MultiWOZ2.2), show that DSGFNet outperforms existing methods.


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Improving Dialogue State Tracking with Turn-based Loss Function and Sequential Data Augmentation
Jarana Manotumruksa | Jeff Dalton | Edgar Meij | Emine Yilmaz
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2021

While state-of-the-art Dialogue State Tracking (DST) models show promising results, all of them rely on a traditional cross-entropy loss function during the training process, which may not be optimal for improving the joint goal accuracy. Although several approaches recently propose augmenting the training set by copying user utterances and replacing the real slot values with other possible or even similar values, they are not effective at improving the performance of existing DST models. To address these challenges, we propose a Turn-based Loss Function (TLF) that penalises the model if it inaccurately predicts a slot value at the early turns more so than in later turns in order to improve joint goal accuracy. We also propose a simple but effective Sequential Data Augmentation (SDA) algorithm to generate more complex user utterances and system responses to effectively train existing DST models. Experimental results on two standard DST benchmark collections demonstrate that our proposed TLF and SDA techniques significantly improve the effectiveness of the state-of-the-art DST model by approximately 7-8% relative reduction in error and achieves a new state-of-the-art joint goal accuracy with 59.50 and 54.90 on MultiWOZ2.1 and MultiWOZ2.2, respectively.


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Unsupervised Few-Bits Semantic Hashing with Implicit Topics Modeling
Fanghua Ye | Jarana Manotumruksa | Emine Yilmaz
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2020

Semantic hashing is a powerful paradigm for representing texts as compact binary hash codes. The explosion of short text data has spurred the demand of few-bits hashing. However, the performance of existing semantic hashing methods cannot be guaranteed when applied to few-bits hashing because of severe information loss. In this paper, we present a simple but effective unsupervised neural generative semantic hashing method with a focus on few-bits hashing. Our model is built upon variational autoencoder and represents each hash bit as a Bernoulli variable, which allows the model to be end-to-end trainable. To address the issue of information loss, we introduce a set of auxiliary implicit topic vectors. With the aid of these topic vectors, the generated hash codes are not only low-dimensional representations of the original texts but also capture their implicit topics. We conduct comprehensive experiments on four datasets. The results demonstrate that our approach achieves significant improvements over state-of-the-art semantic hashing methods in few-bits hashing.

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Uncertainty and Traffic-Aware Active Learning for Semantic Parsing
Priyanka Sen | Emine Yilmaz
Proceedings of the First Workshop on Interactive and Executable Semantic Parsing

Collecting training data for semantic parsing is a time-consuming and expensive task. As a result, there is growing interest in industry to reduce the number of annotations required to train a semantic parser, both to cut down on costs and to limit customer data handled by annotators. In this paper, we propose uncertainty and traffic-aware active learning, a novel active learning method that uses model confidence and utterance frequencies from customer traffic to select utterances for annotation. We show that our method significantly outperforms baselines on an internal customer dataset and the Facebook Task Oriented Parsing (TOP) dataset. On our internal dataset, our method achieves the same accuracy as random sampling with 2,000 fewer annotations.


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Deconstructing Complex Search Tasks: a Bayesian Nonparametric Approach for Extracting Sub-tasks
Rishabh Mehrotra | Prasanta Bhattacharya | Emine Yilmaz
Proceedings of the 2016 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies