Mohammed Saeed


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Transformers for Tabular Data Representation: A Survey of Models and Applications
Gilbert Badaro | Mohammed Saeed | Paolo Papotti
Transactions of the Association for Computational Linguistics, Volume 11

In the last few years, the natural language processing community has witnessed advances in neural representations of free texts with transformer-based language models (LMs). Given the importance of knowledge available in tabular data, recent research efforts extend LMs by developing neural representations for structured data. In this article, we present a survey that analyzes these efforts. We first abstract the different systems according to a traditional machine learning pipeline in terms of training data, input representation, model training, and supported downstream tasks. For each aspect, we characterize and compare the proposed solutions. Finally, we discuss future work directions.


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You Are My Type! Type Embeddings for Pre-trained Language Models
Mohammed Saeed | Paolo Papotti
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2022

One reason for the positive impact of Pre-trained Language Models (PLMs) in NLP tasks is their ability to encode semantic types, such as ‘European City’ or ‘Woman’. While previous work has analyzed such information in the context of interpretability, it is not clear how to use types to steer the PLM output. For example, in a cloze statement, it is desirable to steer the model to generate a token that satisfies a user-specified type, e.g., predict a date rather than a location. In this work, we introduce Type Embeddings (TEs), an input embedding that promotes desired types in a PLM. Our proposal is to define a type by a small set of word examples. We empirically study the ability of TEs both in representing types and in steering masking predictions without changes to the prompt text in BERT. Finally, using the LAMA datasets, we show how TEs highly improve the precision in extracting facts from PLMs.


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Neural Re-rankers for Evidence Retrieval in the FEVEROUS Task
Mohammed Saeed | Giulio Alfarano | Khai Nguyen | Duc Pham | Raphael Troncy | Paolo Papotti
Proceedings of the Fourth Workshop on Fact Extraction and VERification (FEVER)

Computational fact-checking has gained a lot of traction in the machine learning and natural language processing communities. A plethora of solutions have been developed, but methods which leverage both structured and unstructured information to detect misinformation are of particular relevance. In this paper, we tackle the FEVEROUS (Fact Extraction and VERification Over Unstructured and Structured information) challenge which consists of an open source baseline system together with a benchmark dataset containing 87,026 verified claims. We extend this baseline model by improving the evidence retrieval module yielding the best evidence F1 score among the competitors in the challenge leaderboard while obtaining an overall FEVEROUS score of 0.20 (5th best ranked system).

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Automatic Verification of Data Summaries
Rayhane Rezgui | Mohammed Saeed | Paolo Papotti
Proceedings of the 14th International Conference on Natural Language Generation

We present a generic method to compute thefactual accuracy of a generated data summarywith minimal user effort. We look at the prob-lem as a fact-checking task to verify the nu-merical claims in the text. The verification al-gorithm assumes that the data used to generatethe text is available. In this paper, we describehow the proposed solution has been used toidentify incorrect claims about basketball tex-tual summaries in the context of the AccuracyShared Task at INLG 2021.

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RuleBERT: Teaching Soft Rules to Pre-Trained Language Models
Mohammed Saeed | Naser Ahmadi | Preslav Nakov | Paolo Papotti
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

While pre-trained language models (PLMs) are the go-to solution to tackle many natural language processing problems, they are still very limited in their ability to capture and to use common-sense knowledge. In fact, even if information is available in the form of approximate (soft) logical rules, it is not clear how to transfer it to a PLM in order to improve its performance for deductive reasoning tasks. Here, we aim to bridge this gap by teaching PLMs how to reason with soft Horn rules. We introduce a classification task where, given facts and soft rules, the PLM should return a prediction with a probability for a given hypothesis. We release the first dataset for this task, and we propose a revised loss function that enables the PLM to learn how to predict precise probabilities for the task. Our evaluation results show that the resulting fine-tuned models achieve very high performance, even on logical rules that were unseen at training. Moreover, we demonstrate that logical notions expressed by the rules are transferred to the fine-tuned model, yielding state-of-the-art results on external datasets.