In classic instruction following, language like “I’d like the JetBlue flight” maps to actions (e.g., selecting that flight). However, language also conveys information about a user’s underlying reward function (e.g., a general preference for JetBlue), which can allow a model to carry out desirable actions in new contexts. We present a model that infers rewards from language pragmatically: reasoning about how speakers choose utterances not only to elicit desired actions, but also to reveal information about their preferences. On a new interactive flight–booking task with natural language, our model more accurately infers rewards and predicts optimal actions in unseen environments, in comparison to past work that first maps language to actions (instruction following) and then maps actions to rewards (inverse reinforcement learning).
We introduce translation error correction (TEC), the task of automatically correcting human-generated translations.Imperfections in machine translations (MT) have long motivated systems for improving translations post-hoc with automatic post-editing.In contrast, little attention has been devoted to the problem of automatically correcting human translations, despite the intuition that humans make distinct errors that machines would be well-suited to assist with, from typos to inconsistencies in translation conventions.To investigate this, we build and release the Aced corpus with three TEC datasets (available at: github.com/lilt/tec). We show that human errors in TEC exhibit a more diverse range of errors and far fewer translation fluency errors than the MT errors in automatic post-editing datasets, suggesting the need for dedicated TEC models that are specialized to correct human errors. We show that pre-training instead on synthetic errors based on human errors improves TEC F-score by as much as 5.1 points. We conducted a human-in-the-loop user study with nine professional translation editors and found that the assistance of our TEC system led them to produce significantly higher quality revised translations.