Xiaobao Wu


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KDMCSE: Knowledge Distillation Multimodal Sentence Embeddings with Adaptive Angular margin Contrastive Learning
Cong-Duy Nguyen | Thong Nguyen | Xiaobao Wu | Anh Tuan Luu
Proceedings of the 2024 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics: Human Language Technologies (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Previous work on multimodal sentence embedding has proposed multimodal contrastive learning and achieved promising results. However, by taking the rest of the batch as negative samples without reviewing when forming contrastive pairs, those studies encountered many suspicious and noisy negative examples, significantly affecting the methods’ overall performance. In this work, we propose KDMCSE (Knowledge Distillation Multimodal contrastive learning of Sentence Embeddings), a novel approach that enhances the discrimination and generalizability of multimodal representation and inherits the knowledge from the teacher model to learn the difference between positive and negative instances and via that, can detect noisy and wrong negative samples effectively before they are calculated in the contrastive objective. Furthermore, to overcome the limitation of modeling the variation within negative pairs, we introduce a new contrastive objective, AdapACSE (Adaptive Angular Margin Supervised Contrastive Learning for Multimodal sentence embeddings), that enhances the discriminative representation by strengthening the margin within the angular space while capturing varying semantics within the negative. Experimental results on widely used Semantic Textual Similarity (STS) benchmarks demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach.


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Gradient-Boosted Decision Tree for Listwise Context Model in Multimodal Review Helpfulness Prediction
Thong Nguyen | Xiaobao Wu | Xinshuai Dong | Cong-Duy Nguyen | Zhen Hai | Lidong Bing | Anh Tuan Luu
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2023

Multimodal Review Helpfulness Prediction (MRHP) aims to rank product reviews based on predicted helpfulness scores and has been widely applied in e-commerce via presenting customers with useful reviews. Previous studies commonly employ fully-connected neural networks (FCNNs) as the final score predictor and pairwise loss as the training objective. However, FCNNs have been shown to perform inefficient splitting for review features, making the model difficult to clearly differentiate helpful from unhelpful reviews. Furthermore, pairwise objective, which works on review pairs, may not completely capture the MRHP goal to produce the ranking for the entire review list, and possibly induces low generalization during testing. To address these issues, we propose a listwise attention network that clearly captures the MRHP ranking context and a listwise optimization objective that enhances model generalization. We further propose gradient-boosted decision tree as the score predictor to efficaciously partition product reviews’ representations. Extensive experiments demonstrate that our method achieves state-of-the-art results and polished generalization performance on two large-scale MRHP benchmark datasets.

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Zero-Shot Text Classification via Self-Supervised Tuning
Chaoqun Liu | Wenxuan Zhang | Guizhen Chen | Xiaobao Wu | Anh Tuan Luu | Chip Hong Chang | Lidong Bing
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL 2023

Existing solutions to zero-shot text classification either conduct prompting with pre-trained language models, which is sensitive to the choices of templates, or rely on large-scale annotated data of relevant tasks for meta-tuning. In this work, we propose a new paradigm based on self-supervised learning to solve zero-shot text classification tasks by tuning the language models with unlabeled data, called self-supervised tuning. By exploring the inherent structure of free texts, we propose a new learning objective called first sentence prediction to bridge the gap between unlabeled data and text classification tasks. After tuning the model to learn to predict the first sentence in a paragraph based on the rest, the model is able to conduct zero-shot inference on unseen tasks such as topic classification and sentiment analysis. Experimental results show that our model outperforms the state-of-the-art baselines on 7 out of 10 tasks. Moreover, the analysis reveals that our model is less sensitive to the prompt design. Our code and pre-trained models are publicly available at https://github.com/DAMO-NLP-SG/SSTuning.

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DemaFormer: Damped Exponential Moving Average Transformer with Energy-Based Modeling for Temporal Language Grounding
Thong Nguyen | Xiaobao Wu | Xinshuai Dong | Cong-Duy Nguyen | See-Kiong Ng | Anh Luu
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: EMNLP 2023

Temporal Language Grounding seeks to localize video moments that semantically correspond to a natural language query. Recent advances employ the attention mechanism to learn the relations between video moments and the text query. However, naive attention might not be able to appropriately capture such relations, resulting in ineffective distributions where target video moments are difficult to separate from the remaining ones. To resolve the issue, we propose an energy-based model framework to explicitly learn moment-query distributions. Moreover, we propose DemaFormer, a novel Transformer-based architecture that utilizes exponential moving average with a learnable damping factor to effectively encode moment-query inputs. Comprehensive experiments on four public temporal language grounding datasets showcase the superiority of our methods over the state-of-the-art baselines.

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Fact-Checking Complex Claims with Program-Guided Reasoning
Liangming Pan | Xiaobao Wu | Xinyuan Lu | Anh Tuan Luu | William Yang Wang | Min-Yen Kan | Preslav Nakov
Proceedings of the 61st Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics (Volume 1: Long Papers)

Fact-checking real-world claims often requires collecting multiple pieces of evidence and applying complex multi-step reasoning. In this paper, we present Program-Guided Fact-Checking (ProgramFC), a novel fact-checking model that decomposes complex claims into simpler sub-tasks that can be solved using a shared library of specialized functions. We first leverage the in-context learning ability of large language models to generate reasoning programs to guide the verification process. Afterward, we execute the program by delegating each sub-task to the corresponding sub-task handler. This process makes our model both explanatory and data-efficient, providing clear explanations of its reasoning process and requiring minimal training data. We evaluate ProgramFC on two challenging fact-checking datasets and show that it outperforms seven fact-checking baselines across different settings of evidence availability, with explicit output programs that benefit human debugging. Our codes and data are publicly available at https://github.com/mbzuai-nlp/ProgramFC.


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Mitigating Data Sparsity for Short Text Topic Modeling by Topic-Semantic Contrastive Learning
Xiaobao Wu | Anh Tuan Luu | Xinshuai Dong
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

To overcome the data sparsity issue in short text topic modeling, existing methods commonly rely on data augmentation or the data characteristic of short texts to introduce more word co-occurrence information. However, most of them do not make full use of the augmented data or the data characteristic: they insufficiently learn the relations among samples in data, leading to dissimilar topic distributions of semantically similar text pairs. To better address data sparsity, in this paper we propose a novel short text topic modeling framework, Topic-Semantic Contrastive Topic Model (TSCTM). To sufficiently model the relations among samples, we employ a new contrastive learning method with efficient positive and negative sampling strategies based on topic semantics. This contrastive learning method refines the representations, enriches the learning signals, and thus mitigates the sparsity issue. Extensive experimental results show that our TSCTM outperforms state-of-the-art baselines regardless of the data augmentation availability, producing high-quality topics and topic distributions.

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Adaptive Contrastive Learning on Multimodal Transformer for Review Helpfulness Prediction
Thong Nguyen | Xiaobao Wu | Anh Tuan Luu | Zhen Hai | Lidong Bing
Proceedings of the 2022 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing

Modern Review Helpfulness Prediction systems are dependent upon multiple modalities, typically texts and images. Unfortunately, those contemporary approaches pay scarce attention to polish representations of cross-modal relations and tend to suffer from inferior optimization. This might cause harm to model’s predictions in numerous cases. To overcome the aforementioned issues, we propose Multi-modal Contrastive Learning for Multimodal Review Helpfulness Prediction (MRHP) problem, concentrating on mutual information between input modalities to explicitly elaborate cross-modal relations. In addition, we introduce Adaptive Weighting scheme for our contrastive learning approach in order to increase flexibility in optimization. Lastly, we propose Multimodal Interaction module to address the unalignment nature of multimodal data, thereby assisting the model in producing more reasonable multimodal representations. Experimental results show that our method outperforms prior baselines and achieves state-of-the-art results on two publicly available benchmark datasets for MRHP problem.


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Discovering Topics in Long-tailed Corpora with Causal Intervention
Xiaobao Wu | Chunping Li | Yishu Miao
Findings of the Association for Computational Linguistics: ACL-IJCNLP 2021


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Short Text Topic Modeling with Topic Distribution Quantization and Negative Sampling Decoder
Xiaobao Wu | Chunping Li | Yan Zhu | Yishu Miao
Proceedings of the 2020 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing (EMNLP)

Topic models have been prevailing for many years on discovering latent semantics while modeling long documents. However, for short texts they generally suffer from data sparsity because of extremely limited word co-occurrences; thus tend to yield repetitive or trivial topics with low quality. In this paper, to address this issue, we propose a novel neural topic model in the framework of autoencoding with a new topic distribution quantization approach generating peakier distributions that are more appropriate for modeling short texts. Besides the encoding, to tackle this issue in terms of decoding, we further propose a novel negative sampling decoder learning from negative samples to avoid yielding repetitive topics. We observe that our model can highly improve short text topic modeling performance. Through extensive experiments on real-world datasets, we demonstrate our model can outperform both strong traditional and neural baselines under extreme data sparsity scenes, producing high-quality topics.