Kai Hui


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ED2LM: Encoder-Decoder to Language Model for Faster Document Re-ranking Inference
Kai Hui | Honglei Zhuang | Tao Chen | Zhen Qin | Jing Lu | Dara Bahri | Ji Ma | Jai Gupta | Cicero Nogueira dos Santos | Yi Tay | Donald Metzler
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2022

State-of-the-art neural models typically encode document-query pairs using cross-attention for re-ranking. To this end, models generally utilize an encoder-only (like BERT) paradigm or an encoder-decoder (like T5) approach. These paradigms, however, are not without flaws, i.e., running the model on all query-document pairs at inference-time incurs a significant computational cost. This paper proposes a new training and inference paradigm for re-ranking. We propose to finetune a pretrained encoder-decoder model using in the form of document to query generation. Subsequently, we show that this encoder-decoder architecture can be decomposed into a decoder-only language model during inference. This results in significant inference time speedups since the decoder-only architecture only needs to learn to interpret static encoder embeddings during inference. Our experiments show that this new paradigm achieves results that are comparable to the more expensive cross-attention ranking approaches while being up to 6.8X faster. We believe this work paves the way for more efficient neural rankers that leverage large pretrained models.


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BERT-QE: Contextualized Query Expansion for Document Re-ranking
Zhi Zheng | Kai Hui | Ben He | Xianpei Han | Le Sun | Andrew Yates
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2020

Query expansion aims to mitigate the mismatch between the language used in a query and in a document. However, query expansion methods can suffer from introducing non-relevant information when expanding the query. To bridge this gap, inspired by recent advances in applying contextualized models like BERT to the document retrieval task, this paper proposes a novel query expansion model that leverages the strength of the BERT model to select relevant document chunks for expansion. In evaluation on the standard TREC Robust04 and GOV2 test collections, the proposed BERT-QE model significantly outperforms BERT-Large models.


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NPRF: A Neural Pseudo Relevance Feedback Framework for Ad-hoc Information Retrieval
Canjia Li | Yingfei Sun | Ben He | Le Wang | Kai Hui | Andrew Yates | Le Sun | Jungang Xu
Proceedings of the 2018 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Pseudo relevance feedback (PRF) is commonly used to boost the performance of traditional information retrieval (IR) models by using top-ranked documents to identify and weight new query terms, thereby reducing the effect of query-document vocabulary mismatches. While neural retrieval models have recently demonstrated strong results for ad-hoc retrieval, combining them with PRF is not straightforward due to incompatibilities between existing PRF approaches and neural architectures. To bridge this gap, we propose an end-to-end neural PRF framework that can be used with existing neural IR models by embedding different neural models as building blocks. Extensive experiments on two standard test collections confirm the effectiveness of the proposed NPRF framework in improving the performance of two state-of-the-art neural IR models.

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TDNN: A Two-stage Deep Neural Network for Prompt-independent Automated Essay Scoring
Cancan Jin | Ben He | Kai Hui | Le Sun
Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Existing automated essay scoring (AES) models rely on rated essays for the target prompt as training data. Despite their successes in prompt-dependent AES, how to effectively predict essay ratings under a prompt-independent setting remains a challenge, where the rated essays for the target prompt are not available. To close this gap, a two-stage deep neural network (TDNN) is proposed. In particular, in the first stage, using the rated essays for non-target prompts as the training data, a shallow model is learned to select essays with an extreme quality for the target prompt, serving as pseudo training data; in the second stage, an end-to-end hybrid deep model is proposed to learn a prompt-dependent rating model consuming the pseudo training data from the first step. Evaluation of the proposed TDNN on the standard ASAP dataset demonstrates a promising improvement for the prompt-independent AES task.


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PACRR: A Position-Aware Neural IR Model for Relevance Matching
Kai Hui | Andrew Yates | Klaus Berberich | Gerard de Melo
Proceedings of the 2017 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

In order to adopt deep learning for information retrieval, models are needed that can capture all relevant information required to assess the relevance of a document to a given user query. While previous works have successfully captured unigram term matches, how to fully employ position-dependent information such as proximity and term dependencies has been insufficiently explored. In this work, we propose a novel neural IR model named PACRR aiming at better modeling position-dependent interactions between a query and a document. Extensive experiments on six years’ TREC Web Track data confirm that the proposed model yields better results under multiple benchmarks.