George-Eduard Zaharia


2021

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Dialect Identification through Adversarial Learning and Knowledge Distillation on Romanian BERT
George-Eduard Zaharia | Andrei-Marius Avram | Dumitru-Clementin Cercel | Traian Rebedea
Proceedings of the Eighth Workshop on NLP for Similar Languages, Varieties and Dialects

Dialect identification is a task with applicability in a vast array of domains, ranging from automatic speech recognition to opinion mining. This work presents our architectures used for the VarDial 2021 Romanian Dialect Identification subtask. We introduced a series of solutions based on Romanian or multilingual Transformers, as well as adversarial training techniques. At the same time, we experimented with a knowledge distillation tool in order to check whether a smaller model can maintain the performance of our best approach. Our best solution managed to obtain a weighted F1-score of 0.7324, allowing us to obtain the 2nd place on the leaderboard.

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UPB at SemEval-2021 Task 8: Extracting Semantic Information on Measurements as Multi-Turn Question Answering
Andrei-Marius Avram | George-Eduard Zaharia | Dumitru-Clementin Cercel | Mihai Dascalu
Proceedings of the 15th International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation (SemEval-2021)

Extracting semantic information on measurements and counts is an important topic in terms of analyzing scientific discourses. The 8th task of SemEval-2021: Counts and Measurements (MeasEval) aimed to boost research in this direction by providing a new dataset on which participants train their models to extract meaningful information on measurements from scientific texts. The competition is composed of five subtasks that build on top of each other: (1) quantity span identification, (2) unit extraction from the identified quantities and their value modifier classification, (3) span identification for measured entities and measured properties, (4) qualifier span identification, and (5) relation extraction between the identified quantities, measured entities, measured properties, and qualifiers. We approached these challenges by first identifying the quantities, extracting their units of measurement, classifying them with corresponding modifiers, and afterwards using them to jointly solve the last three subtasks in a multi-turn question answering manner. Our best performing model obtained an overlapping F1-score of 36.91% on the test set.

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UPB at SemEval-2021 Task 1: Combining Deep Learning and Hand-Crafted Features for Lexical Complexity Prediction
George-Eduard Zaharia | Dumitru-Clementin Cercel | Mihai Dascalu
Proceedings of the 15th International Workshop on Semantic Evaluation (SemEval-2021)

Reading is a complex process which requires proper understanding of texts in order to create coherent mental representations. However, comprehension problems may arise due to hard-to-understand sections, which can prove troublesome for readers, while accounting for their specific language skills. As such, steps towards simplifying these sections can be performed, by accurately identifying and evaluating difficult structures. In this paper, we describe our approach for the SemEval-2021 Task 1: Lexical Complexity Prediction competition that consists of a mixture of advanced NLP techniques, namely Transformer-based language models, pre-trained word embeddings, Graph Convolutional Networks, Capsule Networks, as well as a series of hand-crafted textual complexity features. Our models are applicable on both subtasks and achieve good performance results, with a MAE below 0.07 and a Person correlation of .73 for single word identification, as well as a MAE below 0.08 and a Person correlation of .79 for multiple word targets. Our results are just 5.46% and 6.5% lower than the top scores obtained in the competition on the first and the second subtasks, respectively.

2020

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UPB at SemEval-2020 Task 8: Joint Textual and Visual Modeling in a Multi-Task Learning Architecture for Memotion Analysis
George-Alexandru Vlad | George-Eduard Zaharia | Dumitru-Clementin Cercel | Costin Chiru | Stefan Trausan-Matu
Proceedings of the Fourteenth Workshop on Semantic Evaluation

Users from the online environment can create different ways of expressing their thoughts, opinions, or conception of amusement. Internet memes were created specifically for these situations. Their main purpose is to transmit ideas by using combinations of images and texts such that they will create a certain state for the receptor, depending on the message the meme has to send. These posts can be related to various situations or events, thus adding a funny side to any circumstance our world is situated in. In this paper, we describe the system developed by our team for SemEval-2020 Task 8: Memotion Analysis. More specifically, we introduce a novel system to analyze these posts, a multimodal multi-task learning architecture that combines ALBERT for text encoding with VGG-16 for image representation. In this manner, we show that the information behind them can be properly revealed. Our approach achieves good performance on each of the three subtasks of the current competition, ranking 11th for Subtask A (0.3453 macro F1-score), 1st for Subtask B (0.5183 macro F1-score), and 3rd for Subtask C (0.3171 macro F1-score) while exceeding the official baseline results by high margins.

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UPB at SemEval-2020 Task 9: Identifying Sentiment in Code-Mixed Social Media Texts Using Transformers and Multi-Task Learning
George-Eduard Zaharia | George-Alexandru Vlad | Dumitru-Clementin Cercel | Traian Rebedea | Costin Chiru
Proceedings of the Fourteenth Workshop on Semantic Evaluation

Sentiment analysis is a process widely used in opinion mining campaigns conducted today. This phenomenon presents applications in a variety of fields, especially in collecting information related to the attitude or satisfaction of users concerning a particular subject. However, the task of managing such a process becomes noticeably more difficult when it is applied in cultures that tend to combine two languages in order to express ideas and thoughts. By interleaving words from two languages, the user can express with ease, but at the cost of making the text far less intelligible for those who are not familiar with this technique, but also for standard opinion mining algorithms. In this paper, we describe the systems developed by our team for SemEval-2020 Task 9 that aims to cover two well-known code-mixed languages: Hindi-English and Spanish-English. We intend to solve this issue by introducing a solution that takes advantage of several neural network approaches, as well as pre-trained word embeddings. Our approach (multlingual BERT) achieves promising performance on the Hindi-English task, with an average F1-score of 0.6850, registered on the competition leaderboard, ranking our team 16 out of 62 participants. For the Spanish-English task, we obtained an average F1-score of 0.7064 ranking our team 17th out of 29 participants by using another multilingual Transformer-based model, XLM-RoBERTa.

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Exploring the Power of Romanian BERT for Dialect Identification
George-Eduard Zaharia | Andrei-Marius Avram | Dumitru-Clementin Cercel | Traian Rebedea
Proceedings of the 7th Workshop on NLP for Similar Languages, Varieties and Dialects

Dialect identification represents a key aspect for improving a series of tasks, for example, opinion mining, considering that the location of the speaker can greatly influence the attitude towards a subject. In this work, we describe the systems developed by our team for VarDial 2020: Romanian Dialect Identification, a task specifically created for challenging participants to solve the previously mentioned issue. More specifically, we introduce a series of neural systems based on Transformers, that combine a BERT model exclusively pre-trained on the Romanian language with techniques such as adversarial training or character-level embeddings. By using these approaches, we were able to obtain a 0.6475 macro F1 score on the test dataset, thus allowing us to be ranked 5th out of 8 participant teams.