Jie Bao


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Reduce Catastrophic Forgetting of Dense Retrieval Training with Teleportation Negatives
Si Sun | Chenyan Xiong | Yue Yu | Arnold Overwijk | Zhiyuan Liu | Jie Bao
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

In this paper, we investigate the instability in the standard dense retrieval training, which iterates between model training and hard negative selection using the being-trained model. We show the catastrophic forgetting phenomena behind the training instability, where models learn and forget different negative groups during training iterations. We then propose ANCE-Tele, which accumulates momentum negatives from past iterations and approximates future iterations using lookahead negatives, as “teleportations” along the time axis to smooth the learning process. On web search and OpenQA, ANCE-Tele outperforms previous state-of-the-art systems of similar size, eliminates the dependency on sparse retrieval negatives, and is competitive among systems using significantly more (50x) parameters. Our analysis demonstrates that teleportation negatives reduce catastrophic forgetting and improve convergence speed for dense retrieval training. The source code of this paper is available at https://github.com/OpenMatch/ANCE-Tele.


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Few-Shot Text Ranking with Meta Adapted Synthetic Weak Supervision
Si Sun | Yingzhuo Qian | Zhenghao Liu | Chenyan Xiong | Kaitao Zhang | Jie Bao | Zhiyuan Liu | Paul Bennett
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 1: Long Papers)

The effectiveness of Neural Information Retrieval (Neu-IR) often depends on a large scale of in-domain relevance training signals, which are not always available in real-world ranking scenarios. To democratize the benefits of Neu-IR, this paper presents MetaAdaptRank, a domain adaptive learning method that generalizes Neu-IR models from label-rich source domains to few-shot target domains. Drawing on source-domain massive relevance supervision, MetaAdaptRank contrastively synthesizes a large number of weak supervision signals for target domains and meta-learns to reweight these synthetic “weak” data based on their benefits to the target-domain ranking accuracy of Neu-IR models. Experiments on three TREC benchmarks in the web, news, and biomedical domains show that MetaAdaptRank significantly improves the few-shot ranking accuracy of Neu-IR models. Further analyses indicate that MetaAdaptRank thrives from both its contrastive weak data synthesis and meta-reweighted data selection. The code and data of this paper can be obtained from https://github.com/thunlp/MetaAdaptRank.