Li Jing


pdf bib
Data-Informed Global Sparseness in Attention Mechanisms for Deep Neural Networks
Ileana Rugina | Rumen Dangovski | Li Jing | Preslav Nakov | Marin Soljacic
Proceedings of the 2024 Joint International Conference on Computational Linguistics, Language Resources and Evaluation (LREC-COLING 2024)

Attention mechanisms play a crucial role in the neural revolution of Natural Language Processing (NLP). With the growth of attention-based models, several pruning techniques have been developed to identify and exploit sparseness, making these models more efficient. Most efforts focus on hard-coding attention patterns or pruning attention weights based on training data. We propose Attention Pruning (AP), a framework that observes attention patterns in a fixed dataset and generates a global sparseness mask. AP saves 90% of attention computation for language modeling and about 50% for machine translation and GLUE tasks, maintaining result quality. Our method reveals important distinctions between self- and cross-attention patterns, guiding future NLP research. Our framework can reduce both latency and memory requirements for any attention-based model, aiding in the development of improved models for existing or new NLP applications. We have demonstrated this with encoder and autoregressive transformer models using Triton GPU kernels and make our code publicly available at


pdf bib
Vector-Vector-Matrix Architecture: A Novel Hardware-Aware Framework for Low-Latency Inference in NLP Applications
Matthew Khoury | Rumen Dangovski | Longwu Ou | Preslav Nakov | Yichen Shen | Li Jing
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Deep neural networks have become the standard approach to building reliable Natural Language Processing (NLP) applications, ranging from Neural Machine Translation (NMT) to dialogue systems. However, improving accuracy by increasing the model size requires a large number of hardware computations, which can slow down NLP applications significantly at inference time. To address this issue, we propose a novel vector-vector-matrix architecture (VVMA), which greatly reduces the latency at inference time for NMT. This architecture takes advantage of specialized hardware that has low-latency vector-vector operations and higher-latency vector-matrix operations. It also reduces the number of parameters and FLOPs for virtually all models that rely on efficient matrix multipliers without significantly impacting accuracy. We present empirical results suggesting that our framework can reduce the latency of sequence-to-sequence and Transformer models used for NMT by a factor of four. Finally, we show evidence suggesting that our VVMA extends to other domains, and we discuss novel hardware for its efficient use.


pdf bib
Rotational Unit of Memory: A Novel Representation Unit for RNNs with Scalable Applications
Rumen Dangovski | Li Jing | Preslav Nakov | Mićo Tatalović | Marin Soljačić
Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Volume 7

Stacking long short-term memory (LSTM) cells or gated recurrent units (GRUs) as part of a recurrent neural network (RNN) has become a standard approach to solving a number of tasks ranging from language modeling to text summarization. Although LSTMs and GRUs were designed to model long-range dependencies more accurately than conventional RNNs, they nevertheless have problems copying or recalling information from the long distant past. Here, we derive a phase-coded representation of the memory state, Rotational Unit of Memory (RUM), that unifies the concepts of unitary learning and associative memory. We show experimentally that RNNs based on RUMs can solve basic sequential tasks such as memory copying and memory recall much better than LSTMs/GRUs. We further demonstrate that by replacing LSTM/GRU with RUM units we can apply neural networks to real-world problems such as language modeling and text summarization, yielding results comparable to the state of the art.