Juraj Juraska


2023

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Controllable Generation of Dialogue Acts for Dialogue Systems via Few-Shot Response Generation and Ranking
Angela Ramirez | Kartik Agarwal | Juraj Juraska | Utkarsh Garg | Marilyn Walker
Proceedings of the 24th Annual Meeting of the Special Interest Group on Discourse and Dialogue

Dialogue systems need to produce responses that realize multiple types of dialogue acts (DAs) with high semantic fidelity. In the past, natural language generators (NLGs) for dialogue were trained on large parallel corpora that map from a domain-specific DA and its semantic attributes to an output utterance. Recent work shows that pretrained language models (LLMs) offer new possibilities for controllable NLG using prompt-based learning. Here we develop a novel few-shot overgenerate-and-rank approach that achieves the controlled generation of DAs. We compare eight few-shot prompt styles that include a novel method of generating from textual pseudo-references using a textual style transfer approach. We develop six automatic ranking functions that identify outputs with both the correct DA and high semantic accuracy at generation time. We test our approach on three domains and four LLMs. To our knowledge, this is the first work on NLG for dialogue that automatically ranks outputs using both DA and attribute accuracy. For completeness, we compare our results to fine-tuned few-shot models trained with 5 to 100 instances per DA. Our results show that several prompt settings achieve perfect DA accuracy, and near perfect semantic accuracy (99.81%) and perform better than few-shot fine-tuning.

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There’s No Data like Better Data: Using QE Metrics for MT Data Filtering
Jan-Thorsten Peter | David Vilar | Daniel Deutsch | Mara Finkelstein | Juraj Juraska | Markus Freitag
Proceedings of the Eighth Conference on Machine Translation

Quality Estimation (QE), the evaluation of machine translation output without the need of explicit references, has seen big improvements in the last years with the use of neural metrics. In this paper we analyze the viability of using QE metrics for filtering out bad quality sentence pairs in the training data of neural machine translation systems (NMT). While most corpus filtering methods are focused on detecting noisy examples in collections of texts, usually huge amounts of web crawled data, QE models are trained to discriminate more fine-grained quality differences. We show that by selecting the highest quality sentence pairs in the training data, we can improve translation quality while reducing the training size by half. We also provide a detailed analysis of the filtering results, which highlights the differences between both approaches.

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MetricX-23: The Google Submission to the WMT 2023 Metrics Shared Task
Juraj Juraska | Mara Finkelstein | Daniel Deutsch | Aditya Siddhant | Mehdi Mirzazadeh | Markus Freitag
Proceedings of the Eighth Conference on Machine Translation

This report details the MetricX-23 submission to the WMT23 Metrics Shared Task and provides an overview of the experiments that informed which metrics were submitted. Our 3 submissions—each with a quality estimation (or reference-free) version—are all learned regression-based metrics that vary in the data used for training and which pretrained language model was used for initialization. We report results related to understanding (1) which supervised training data to use, (2) the impact of how the training labels are normalized, (3) the amount of synthetic training data to use, (4) how metric performance is related to model size, and (5) the effect of initializing the metrics with different pretrained language models. The most successful training recipe for MetricX employs two-stage fine-tuning on DA and MQM ratings, and includes synthetic training data. Finally, one important takeaway from our extensive experiments is that optimizing for both segment- and system-level performance at the same time is a challenging task.

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Training and Meta-Evaluating Machine Translation Evaluation Metrics at the Paragraph Level
Daniel Deutsch | Juraj Juraska | Mara Finkelstein | Markus Freitag
Proceedings of the Eighth Conference on Machine Translation

As research on machine translation moves to translating text beyond the sentence level, it remains unclear how effective automatic evaluation metrics are at scoring longer translations. In this work, we first propose a method for creating paragraph-level data for training and meta-evaluating metrics from existing sentence-level data. Then, we use these new datasets to benchmark existing sentence-level metrics as well as train learned metrics at the paragraph level. Interestingly, our experimental results demonstrate that using sentence-level metrics to score entire paragraphs is equally as effective as using a metric designed to work at the paragraph level. We speculate this result can be attributed to properties of the task of reference-based evaluation as well as limitations of our datasets with respect to capturing all types of phenomena that occur in paragraph-level translations.

2022

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GEMv2: Multilingual NLG Benchmarking in a Single Line of Code
Sebastian Gehrmann | Abhik Bhattacharjee | Abinaya Mahendiran | Alex Wang | Alexandros Papangelis | Aman Madaan | Angelina Mcmillan-major | Anna Shvets | Ashish Upadhyay | Bernd Bohnet | Bingsheng Yao | Bryan Wilie | Chandra Bhagavatula | Chaobin You | Craig Thomson | Cristina Garbacea | Dakuo Wang | Daniel Deutsch | Deyi Xiong | Di Jin | Dimitra Gkatzia | Dragomir Radev | Elizabeth Clark | Esin Durmus | Faisal Ladhak | Filip Ginter | Genta Indra Winata | Hendrik Strobelt | Hiroaki Hayashi | Jekaterina Novikova | Jenna Kanerva | Jenny Chim | Jiawei Zhou | Jordan Clive | Joshua Maynez | João Sedoc | Juraj Juraska | Kaustubh Dhole | Khyathi Raghavi Chandu | Laura Perez Beltrachini | Leonardo F . R. Ribeiro | Lewis Tunstall | Li Zhang | Mahim Pushkarna | Mathias Creutz | Michael White | Mihir Sanjay Kale | Moussa Kamal Eddine | Nico Daheim | Nishant Subramani | Ondrej Dusek | Paul Pu Liang | Pawan Sasanka Ammanamanchi | Qi Zhu | Ratish Puduppully | Reno Kriz | Rifat Shahriyar | Ronald Cardenas | Saad Mahamood | Salomey Osei | Samuel Cahyawijaya | Sanja Štajner | Sebastien Montella | Shailza Jolly | Simon Mille | Tahmid Hasan | Tianhao Shen | Tosin Adewumi | Vikas Raunak | Vipul Raheja | Vitaly Nikolaev | Vivian Tsai | Yacine Jernite | Ying Xu | Yisi Sang | Yixin Liu | Yufang Hou
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing: System Demonstrations

Evaluations in machine learning rarely use the latest metrics, datasets, or human evaluation in favor of remaining compatible with prior work. The compatibility, often facilitated through leaderboards, thus leads to outdated but standardized evaluation practices. We pose that the standardization is taking place in the wrong spot. Evaluation infrastructure should enable researchers to use the latest methods and what should be standardized instead is how to incorporate these new evaluation advances. We introduce GEMv2, the new version of the Generation, Evaluation, and Metrics Benchmark which uses a modular infrastructure for dataset, model, and metric developers to benefit from each other’s work. GEMv2 supports 40 documented datasets in 51 languages, ongoing online evaluation for all datasets, and our interactive tools make it easier to add new datasets to the living benchmark.

2021

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Athena 2.0: Contextualized Dialogue Management for an Alexa Prize SocialBot
Juraj Juraska | Kevin Bowden | Lena Reed | Vrindavan Harrison | Wen Cui | Omkar Patil | Rishi Rajasekaran | Angela Ramirez | Cecilia Li | Eduardo Zamora | Phillip Lee | Jeshwanth Bheemanpally | Rohan Pandey | Adwait Ratnaparkhi | Marilyn Walker
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing: System Demonstrations

Athena 2.0 is an Alexa Prize SocialBot that has been a finalist in the last two Alexa Prize Grand Challenges. One reason for Athena’s success is its novel dialogue management strategy, which allows it to dynamically construct dialogues and responses from component modules, leading to novel conversations with every interaction. Here we describe Athena’s system design and performance in the Alexa Prize during the 20/21 competition. A live demo of Athena as well as video recordings will provoke discussion on the state of the art in conversational AI.

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Attention Is Indeed All You Need: Semantically Attention-Guided Decoding for Data-to-Text NLG
Juraj Juraska | Marilyn Walker
Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Natural Language Generation

Ever since neural models were adopted in data-to-text language generation, they have invariably been reliant on extrinsic components to improve their semantic accuracy, because the models normally do not exhibit the ability to generate text that reliably mentions all of the information provided in the input. In this paper, we propose a novel decoding method that extracts interpretable information from encoder-decoder models’ cross-attention, and uses it to infer which attributes are mentioned in the generated text, which is subsequently used to rescore beam hypotheses. Using this decoding method with T5 and BART, we show on three datasets its ability to dramatically reduce semantic errors in the generated outputs, while maintaining their state-of-the-art quality.

2019

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ViGGO: A Video Game Corpus for Data-To-Text Generation in Open-Domain Conversation
Juraj Juraska | Kevin Bowden | Marilyn Walker
Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Natural Language Generation

The uptake of deep learning in natural language generation (NLG) led to the release of both small and relatively large parallel corpora for training neural models. The existing data-to-text datasets are, however, aimed at task-oriented dialogue systems, and often thus limited in diversity and versatility. They are typically crowdsourced, with much of the noise left in them. Moreover, current neural NLG models do not take full advantage of large training data, and due to their strong generalizing properties produce sentences that look template-like regardless. We therefore present a new corpus of 7K samples, which (1) is clean despite being crowdsourced, (2) has utterances of 9 generalizable and conversational dialogue act types, making it more suitable for open-domain dialogue systems, and (3) explores the domain of video games, which is new to dialogue systems despite having excellent potential for supporting rich conversations.

2018

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Characterizing Variation in Crowd-Sourced Data for Training Neural Language Generators to Produce Stylistically Varied Outputs
Juraj Juraska | Marilyn Walker
Proceedings of the 11th International Conference on Natural Language Generation

One of the biggest challenges of end-to-end language generation from meaning representations in dialogue systems is making the outputs more natural and varied. Here we take a large corpus of 50K crowd-sourced utterances in the restaurant domain and develop text analysis methods that systematically characterize types of sentences in the training data. We then automatically label the training data to allow us to conduct two kinds of experiments with a neural generator. First, we test the effect of training the system with different stylistic partitions and quantify the effect of smaller, but more stylistically controlled training data. Second, we propose a method of labeling the style variants during training, and show that we can modify the style of the generated utterances using our stylistic labels. We contrast and compare these methods that can be used with any existing large corpus, showing how they vary in terms of semantic quality and stylistic control.

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A Deep Ensemble Model with Slot Alignment for Sequence-to-Sequence Natural Language Generation
Juraj Juraska | Panagiotis Karagiannis | Kevin Bowden | Marilyn Walker
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies, Volume 1 (Long Papers)

Natural language generation lies at the core of generative dialogue systems and conversational agents. We describe an ensemble neural language generator, and present several novel methods for data representation and augmentation that yield improved results in our model. We test the model on three datasets in the restaurant, TV and laptop domains, and report both objective and subjective evaluations of our best model. Using a range of automatic metrics, as well as human evaluators, we show that our approach achieves better results than state-of-the-art models on the same datasets.
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