Hsuan Su


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Position Matters! Empirical Study of Order Effect in Knowledge-grounded Dialogue
Hsuan Su | Shachi H. Kumar | Sahisnu Mazumder | Wenda Chen | Ramesh Manuvinakurike | Eda Okur | Saurav Sahay | Lama Nachman | Shang-Tse Chen | Hung-yi Lee
Proceedings of the Third DialDoc Workshop on Document-grounded Dialogue and Conversational Question Answering

With the power of large pretrained language models, various research works have integrated knowledge into dialogue systems. The traditional techniques treat knowledge as part of the input sequence for the dialogue system, prepending a set of knowledge statements in front of dialogue history. However, such a mechanism forces knowledge sets to be concatenated in an ordered manner, making models implicitly pay imbalanced attention to the sets during training. In this paper, we first investigate how the order of the knowledge set can influence autoregressive dialogue systems’ responses. We conduct experiments on two commonly used dialogue datasets with two types of transformer-based models and find that models view the input knowledge unequally. To this end, we propose a simple and novel technique to alleviate the order effect by modifying the position embeddings of knowledge input in these models. With the proposed position embedding method, the experimental results show that each knowledge statement is uniformly considered to generate responses.


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Cue-bot: A Conversational Agent for Assistive Technology
Shachi H Kumar | Hsuan Su | Ramesh Manuvinakurike | Maximilian C. Pinaroc | Sai Prasad | Saurav Sahay | Lama Nachman
Proceedings of the 60th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics: System Demonstrations

Intelligent conversational assistants have become an integral part of our lives for performing simple tasks. However, such agents, for example, Google bots, Alexa and others are yet to have any social impact on minority population, for example, for people with neurological disorders and people with speech, language and social communication disorders, sometimes with locked-in states where speaking or typing is a challenge. Language model technologies can be very powerful tools in enabling these users to carry out daily communication and social interactions. In this work, we present a system that users with varied levels of disabilties can use to interact with the world, supported by eye-tracking, mouse controls and an intelligent agent Cue-bot, that can represent the user in a conversation. The agent provides relevant controllable ‘cues’ to generate desirable responses quickly for an ongoing dialog context. In the context of usage of such systems for people with degenerative disorders, we present automatic and human evaluation of our cue/keyword predictor and the controllable dialog system and show that our models perform significantly better than models without control and can also reduce user effort (fewer keystrokes) and speed up communication (typing time) significantly.

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CueBot: Cue-Controlled Response Generation for Assistive Interaction Usages
Shachi H. Kumar | Hsuan Su | Ramesh Manuvinakurike | Max Pinaroc | Sai Prasad | Saurav Sahay | Lama Nachman
Ninth Workshop on Speech and Language Processing for Assistive Technologies (SLPAT-2022)

Conversational assistants are ubiquitous among the general population, however, these systems have not had an impact on people with disabilities, or speech and language disorders, for whom basic day-to-day communication and social interaction is a huge struggle. Language model technology can play a huge role in empowering these users and help them interact with others with less effort via interaction support. To enable this population, we build a system that can represent them in a social conversation and generate responses that can be controlled by the users using cues/keywords. We build models that can speed up this communication by suggesting relevant cues in the dialog response context. We also introduce a keyword-loss to lexically constrain the model response output. We present automatic and human evaluation of our cue/keyword predictor and the controllable dialog system to show that our models perform significantly better than models without control. Our evaluation and user study shows that keyword-control on end-to-end response generation models is powerful and can enable and empower users with degenerative disorders to carry out their day-to-day communication.


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Put Chatbot into Its Interlocutor’s Shoes: New Framework to Learn Chatbot Responding with Intention
Hsuan Su | Jiun-Hao Jhan | Fan-yun Sun | Saurav Sahay | Hung-yi Lee
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Most chatbot literature that focuses on improving the fluency and coherence of a chatbot, is dedicated to making chatbots more human-like. However, very little work delves into what really separates humans from chatbots – humans intrinsically understand the effect their responses have on the interlocutor and often respond with an intention such as proposing an optimistic view to make the interlocutor feel better. This paper proposes an innovative framework to train chatbots to possess human-like intentions. Our framework includes a guiding chatbot and an interlocutor model that plays the role of humans. The guiding chatbot is assigned an intention and learns to induce the interlocutor to reply with responses matching the intention, for example, long responses, joyful responses, responses with specific words, etc. We examined our framework using three experimental setups and evaluated the guiding chatbot with four different metrics to demonstrate flexibility and performance advantages. Additionally, we performed trials with human interlocutors to substantiate the guiding chatbot’s effectiveness in influencing the responses of humans to a certain extent. Code will be made available to the public.