Wen Xiao


2021

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KW-ATTN: Knowledge Infused Attention for Accurate and Interpretable Text Classification
Hyeju Jang | Seojin Bang | Wen Xiao | Giuseppe Carenini | Raymond Ng | Young ji Lee
Proceedings of Deep Learning Inside Out (DeeLIO): The 2nd Workshop on Knowledge Extraction and Integration for Deep Learning Architectures

Text classification has wide-ranging applications in various domains. While neural network approaches have drastically advanced performance in text classification, they tend to be powered by a large amount of training data, and interpretability is often an issue. As a step towards better accuracy and interpretability especially on small data, in this paper we present a new knowledge-infused attention mechanism, called KW-ATTN (KnoWledge-infused ATTentioN) to incorporate high-level concepts from external knowledge bases into Neural Network models. We show that KW-ATTN outperforms baseline models using only words as well as other approaches using concepts by classification accuracy, which indicates that high-level concepts help model prediction. Furthermore, crowdsourced human evaluation suggests that additional concept information helps interpretability of the model.

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Predicting Discourse Trees from Transformer-based Neural Summarizers
Wen Xiao | Patrick Huber | Giuseppe Carenini
Proceedings of the 2021 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies

Previous work indicates that discourse information benefits summarization. In this paper, we explore whether this synergy between discourse and summarization is bidirectional, by inferring document-level discourse trees from pre-trained neural summarizers. In particular, we generate unlabeled RST-style discourse trees from the self-attention matrices of the transformer model. Experiments across models and datasets reveal that the summarizer learns both, dependency- and constituency-style discourse information, which is typically encoded in a single head, covering long- and short-distance discourse dependencies. Overall, the experimental results suggest that the learned discourse information is general and transferable inter-domain.

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W-RST: Towards a Weighted RST-style Discourse Framework
Patrick Huber | Wen Xiao | Giuseppe Carenini
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)

Aiming for a better integration of data-driven and linguistically-inspired approaches, we explore whether RST Nuclearity, assigning a binary assessment of importance between text segments, can be replaced by automatically generated, real-valued scores, in what we call a Weighted-RST framework. In particular, we find that weighted discourse trees from auxiliary tasks can benefit key NLP downstream applications, compared to nuclearity-centered approaches. We further show that real-valued importance distributions partially and interestingly align with the assessment and uncertainty of human annotators.

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Demoting the Lead Bias in News Summarization via Alternating Adversarial Learning
Linzi Xing | Wen Xiao | Giuseppe Carenini
Proceedings of the 59th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 11th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (Volume 2: Short Papers)

In news articles the lead bias is a common phenomenon that usually dominates the learning signals for neural extractive summarizers, severely limiting their performance on data with different or even no bias. In this paper, we introduce a novel technique to demote lead bias and make the summarizer focus more on the content semantics. Experiments on two news corpora with different degrees of lead bias show that our method can effectively demote the model’s learned lead bias and improve its generality on out-of-distribution data, with little to no performance loss on in-distribution data.

2020

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Do We Really Need That Many Parameters In Transformer For Extractive Summarization? Discourse Can Help !
Wen Xiao | Patrick Huber | Giuseppe Carenini
Proceedings of the First Workshop on Computational Approaches to Discourse

The multi-head self-attention of popular transformer models is widely used within Natural Language Processing (NLP), including for the task of extractive summarization. With the goal of analyzing and pruning the parameter-heavy self-attention mechanism, there are multiple approaches proposing more parameter-light self-attention alternatives. In this paper, we present a novel parameter-lean self-attention mechanism using discourse priors. Our new tree self-attention is based on document-level discourse information, extending the recently proposed “Synthesizer” framework with another lightweight alternative. We show empirical results that our tree self-attention approach achieves competitive ROUGE-scores on the task of extractive summarization. When compared to the original single-head transformer model, the tree attention approach reaches similar performance on both, EDU and sentence level, despite the significant reduction of parameters in the attention component. We further significantly outperform the 8-head transformer model on sentence level when applying a more balanced hyper-parameter setting, requiring an order of magnitude less parameters.

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Systematically Exploring Redundancy Reduction in Summarizing Long Documents
Wen Xiao | Giuseppe Carenini
Proceedings of the 1st Conference of the Asia-Pacific Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics and the 10th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing

Our analysis of large summarization datasets indicates that redundancy is a very serious problem when summarizing long documents. Yet, redundancy reduction has not been thoroughly investigated in neural summarization. In this work, we systematically explore and compare different ways to deal with redundancy when summarizing long documents. Specifically, we organize existing methods into categories based on when and how the redundancy is considered. Then, in the context of these categories, we propose three additional methods balancing non-redundancy and importance in a general and flexible way. In a series of experiments, we show that our proposed methods achieve the state-of-the-art with respect to ROUGE scores on two scientific paper datasets, Pubmed and arXiv, while reducing redundancy significantly.

2019

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Extractive Summarization of Long Documents by Combining Global and Local Context
Wen Xiao | Giuseppe Carenini
Proceedings of the 2019 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing and the 9th International Joint Conference on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP-IJCNLP)

In this paper, we propose a novel neural single-document extractive summarization model for long documents, incorporating both the global context of the whole document and the local context within the current topic. We evaluate the model on two datasets of scientific papers , Pubmed and arXiv, where it outperforms previous work, both extractive and abstractive models, on ROUGE-1, ROUGE-2 and METEOR scores. We also show that, consistently with our goal, the benefits of our method become stronger as we apply it to longer documents. Rather surprisingly, an ablation study indicates that the benefits of our model seem to come exclusively from modeling the local context, even for the longest documents.